Author Topic: Missing ESA  (Read 537 times)

Sunny Clouds

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Missing ESA
« on: October 03, 2017, 08:44:02 PM »
I just got an ATM ministatement and did a double-take, then went home and looked at my bank statements.  I hadn't noticed my ESA wasn't going in.  I've got some savings so it's not like I'd ended up close to zero or anything, and I've been very depressed and not going out much so spending very little.

But looking back at my  bank statements, the last one I had was one that mysteriously came through as JSA not ESA.  When I phoned, they'd said something about having to do it that way because of a problem.  I think it's when they asked me to take my passport into the jobcentre.  It can't be that the computer rejected it or they wouldn't have sent out more DWP PIP claim paperwork.

I'm dreading trying to sort this out.  They owe me thousands.  I'm not starving because as I say, I have savings, and if  push comes to shove, I can draw down on a private pension until my inheritance comes through, or claim my war pension instead.

But the thought of sorting the problem is freaking me.

KizzyKazaer

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Re: Missing ESA
« Reply #1 on: October 03, 2017, 09:45:10 PM »
They owe you thousands??  Do you mean your ESA hasn't been paid for months and months?  (you or the DWP will need to pin down the last date an actual ESA payment was made to you as the first step in calculating any arrears...if your claim hasn't gone 'clerical' this information should be easily available on the DWP's system)  I know it seems like a nightmare right now, but better they owe you money than the other way round  ;-) 

Can only guess at why the payments stopped - more than likely because someone didn't clear something from the system that needed clearing, that's usually why (from my experience as a benefit processor without getting too technical in my explanation!)

Sunny Clouds

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Re: Missing ESA
« Reply #2 on: October 03, 2017, 09:57:37 PM »
Last payment end of June.  Rough arithmetic two and a half thousand. 

Having said that, I'm seriously tempted to wait until the probate has gone through before sorting it.  That should only be another couple of months.  I suppose the other thing that could have gone wrong is when I phoned to ask whether I needed to change from IR ESA to CB ESA upon death or only upon probate, not knowing whether I was deemed to have my inheritance t straight away or only when I'd actually got it.  The person I spoke to said not until I inherit and they can then reclaim any overpayment but he made a big issue out of the fact that I'm entitled to contributions-based anyway and how I'd paid my stamp. 

Nightmaresville.


Monic1511

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Re: Missing ESA
« Reply #3 on: October 03, 2017, 10:58:36 PM »
26 June to 03 October is 15 weeks, so if your in support group that's 73.10 + 36.55 = 109.65 ESA
cant recall if you get the premiums or not so a minimum of 1644.75.   What concerns me is that you haven't had a letter saying they are suspending your payments while they investigate something.   Kizzy might know better than me but I'd phone them and say I haven't had an ESA payment since 26 June but havent been notified why its been stopped,  I think my claim may be a clerical claim so I know the contact centre wont be able to give me much info but can you get a call back from the decision maker explaining why I have been left to exist on my PIP/DLA (the contact centre don't need to know about your savings)  I'll wait while you type the email and please add that I need a 3 hour call back and if its not actioned I will have no choice but to escalate this with my MP (whoever that is).

when the person calls back you can ask them about cons based ESA plus a top up of income based ESA depending on the level of capital.
good luck
Monic

Sunny Clouds

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Re: Missing ESA
« Reply #4 on: October 04, 2017, 12:07:14 AM »
I get the disability premiums, but I've got capital, so I don't get the full amount of income related so the fortnightly payment was more than the amount you say. 

I think it may have happened following a declaration of capital, but they do seem to have got in a pickle over everything.

It's not that long since they got in a mess before.  When I moved house three years ago, they got in a mess and by the time it was sorted, the back payment was over two and a half thousand.  Last year, there was another mess after they tried to re-calculate my capital and overpaid because it took so long.  I tried to pay back the overpayment, but they insisted on referring it to the relevant department to write off the overpayment, and somewhere along the line they then changed me from IR to CB then stopped my benefits or something.  Again, by the time they'd sorted it all out, it was a four figure sum.

I'd ask how people cope without cushioning, but I know.  Years back, I lost my job when carted off to the psych unit, and when released a week or so later, I had to sort out my benefits.  The tax credits or whatever I was getting in work stopped straight away, but my incapacity benefit took 2 months to come through.  By the time it did, my cupboards were bare.

As I type this, I'm thinking of something, remembering my hunger and people that helped.  There's something I say to people that's crude but pointed.  I fall over a lot and people help.  I say that if you read the Mail, you'd think Muslims come here to blow us up, but where I live, they seem more interested in picking us up.  I think I should add filling us up, i.e. with food.   Not just me, either.  The first winter after my mother died, we had some snow and I dashed round to Dad's to find him looking bemused.  A woman had turned up on his doorstep and given him a carrier bag full of food.  He didn't know who she was.   All he could tell me was that she was Asian and wore hijab.     

And sure as hell when I was hungry, the mental health team didn't give a toss.  They'd got time to lecture me on  how I wasn't positive enough but not time to help with benefits.  I can remember collapsing, sobbing, on the floor of the social security office.

That's what I feel like now.  Not going to their office and sobbing, but sobbing's what I'm doing sitting at my desk. 

auntieCtheM

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Re: Missing ESA
« Reply #5 on: October 04, 2017, 03:50:19 AM »
 >hugs<

SunshineMeadows

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Re: Missing ESA
« Reply #6 on: October 04, 2017, 09:25:18 AM »
 >bighugs< >bighugs< >bighugs<


Sunny Clouds

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Re: Missing ESA
« Reply #7 on: October 04, 2017, 10:16:06 AM »
Thank you.

Whatever you do, don't worry about whether I've got money in the bank.  I've enough to cushion me.  It's the bureaucracy.

I phoned someone.  She was kind and has referred it to someone.

KizzyKazaer

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Re: Missing ESA
« Reply #8 on: October 04, 2017, 12:13:00 PM »
Good - let's hope this is the start of the DWP resolving their obvious error  >doh< >x-fingers<

Quote
... I say that if you read the Mail, you'd think Muslims come here to blow us up, but where I live, they seem more interested in picking us up.  I think I should add filling us up, i.e. with food.   Not just me, either.  The first winter after my mother died, we had some snow and I dashed round to Dad's to find him looking bemused.  A woman had turned up on his doorstep and given him a carrier bag full of food.  He didn't know who she was.   All he could tell me was that she was Asian and wore hijab. 
>thumbsup<  I do actually read mum's finished-with Mails for an occasional bedtime alternative to a book, but I don't actually believe everything in there  >whistle< ;-)

As for the attitude of the MH team when you needed practical assistance with finances, totally pathetic - and disgraceful.  A  Golden Raspberry award goes to them for incompetent buffoonery...


>edit to insert quote marks
« Last Edit: October 04, 2017, 12:27:01 PM by KizzyKazaer »

Sunny Clouds

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Re: Missing ESA
« Reply #9 on: October 04, 2017, 01:15:04 PM »
It was that point at which I swore never to apply for paid work again.  My employers rapidly dumped me after I tried to kill myself (not at work or in work hours, but not far away) and my psychiatrist was utterly scathing about my not working.  If he really cared, he'd have got in touch with my employers to try to change their minds, but what I believe, with the benefit of hindsight many years later, and having asked many other people including former patients and former colleagues about him, I'm satisfied that he just got off on being nasty.

That's the same team where when I said I needed help with shopping, one shovelled me in a car and took me to a shopping centre to look in clothes shops etc.  I was baffled when she grabbed clothes off a rail and dragged me into a changing room.  In turn, she seemed baffled by my response and asked me what sort of shopping I'd like to do.  "I need a loaf of bread," I told her. 

But after the way that psychiatrist and his team treated me, I swore I'd never do paid work again.  I just wasn't prepared to risk a breakdown and all the humiliation and cruelty that would go with it.  It had been hard enough to hold down a job anyway with all the endless appointments with the mental health team, made then rearranged at the drop of a hat.  Utterly depressing sessions being told I was thinking all wrong and dysfunctional and incurable etc.  My employers, colleagues, people I  managed worked incredibly hard to give me the opposite message but I was a wreck for anything from hours to days after each appointment.  It was what the mental health team was saying that had pushed me over the edge.

So I'd only do paid work again if I'd enough money to steer clear of the DWP and to fall back on good private health care.  (My current GP is terrific but old enough to retire.)

I have a basic human right not to be treated cruelly.

NeuralgicNeurotic

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Re: Missing ESA
« Reply #10 on: October 04, 2017, 07:37:09 PM »
 >bighugs<

huhn

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Re: Missing ESA
« Reply #11 on: October 04, 2017, 08:19:06 PM »
 >bighugs< >bighugs< >bighugs<

Sunny Clouds

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Re: Missing ESA
« Reply #12 on: October 04, 2017, 08:36:54 PM »
It's lovely to come back to  hugs.

They didn't call back when they said, so I left it another few hours then called.  I waited nearly an hour to speak to someone.  I explained that it's not about urgency and I'm not an angry customer, I just want to know whether they've found out whether it's just a glitch or it's going to need lots of sorting out.

Apparently they just made a mistake and they'll send a back payment and get the regular payments started again.

But it really, really damaged my self-confidence to discover that I hadn't noticed it.  Oh well, I'll need to try to find something to feel positive about.


Sunny Clouds

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Re: Missing ESA
« Reply #13 on: October 05, 2017, 12:50:20 PM »
I had a call today to say they're putting the payment through.  As I thought, it's about two and a half grand. I've told all the people I've spoken to that what I'm terribly upset about is that I hadn't noticed what was happening rather than the fact that it had happened, and that what I'd been so anxious about was whether there was a bigger problem that needed sorting, not just the problem of the money not coming through.  I said time's not of the essence, just reassurance that it's ok.  I've told all of them how much I appreciate how kind they are,  that it makes an enormous difference when you're struggling to cope to speak to kind people who manage not to sound impatient or whatever.

I couldn't do the job they do.  I used to do a job advising people mainly on the phone but it was very different.  They were all professionals and I had enough time to help.  I was no good at keeping calls short so I let it take as long as it did, and if that meant staying late at work and doing my written advice in my own time, so be it.  But the've got the clock ticking.  I bet they get shouted at.  I bet they get people who are distressed and say it's their fault.  I bet they're stressed out apologising for things that are outwith their control. 

And all the time, the kind ones know that if they leave, a less kind person might take the job.

To put this in perspective, the last time I moved house, about 3 years ago, things went pearshaped and they ended up owing me a similar amount, but that was a nightmare to sort out, because it wasn't a 'pressed the wrong button' sort of problem.   There's also been a four-figure arrears payment some time in between.  But when I say 'a nightmare', it was the system, not the people, that was the nightmare.

I'd send these lovely people a card if I thought it would get to them.

SunshineMeadows

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Re: Missing ESA
« Reply #14 on: October 05, 2017, 05:04:01 PM »
Sunny,

 >bighugs< you missing the fact the payments had not gone in is understandable given you life circumstances. Able bodied people do similar things all the time, it is just we are defined as having more spare time to notice stuff so the blame game begins.

Hmmmmmmmf like we even have more spare time when being as disabled and ill as we are is a full time occupation  >need a stretcher<

Quote
I'd send these lovely people a card if I thought it would get to them.

Mr Sunshine works on the phones on a technical line helping people with their computers etc, every now and then a letter of thanks gets put on his file. Thing is it is important that customers write general thanks and dont say for example thank you for giving me extra time  >angel< ;-)