Ouch Too - a place for and about disabled people.

Forum => Welfare Rights => Topic started by: Becca7 on 20 May 2014 03:06PM

Title: ESA Question
Post by: Becca7 on 20 May 2014 03:06PM
This isn't for me but for someone else, who I go to church with.

She has just had her ESA withdrawn altogether (she has terminal breast cancer but has survived longer than expected, she is having no treatment). She doesn't have any family or anyone who can financially support her. She knows I get ESA and DLA and that's why she mentioned it to me for advice/support, she doesn't have a PC. I don't really know her that well but she came to me for help so I'd like to if I can.

She has been told (by jobecentre and CAB advisor) to obtain JSA so she can have an income whilst waiting for appeals to go through and claiming JSA has nothing to do with appealing ESA and not to worry about looking for work or signing on etc (she lives many miles from jobcentre).

This sounds really really wrong to me, can anyone help me to advise her? She is appealing etc, though whether she will survive that long I do not know, but I'm really worried claiming JSA will effect her appeal. Apparently she has been told she can claim without it impacting on her ESA at all as she doesn't have to look for work.

I'm worried for her and would like to be able to help.

Just to add I thought I'd seen on here somewhere that JSA applications were changing which is why I'm worried about her doing this. Hopefully I'm wrong, which I'd rather be than see her struggle but I want to be sure.
Title: Re: ESA Question
Post by: Hurtyback on 20 May 2014 05:15PM
With the change of appeal rules, and claimants not being paid while awaiting Mandatory Reconsideration, more and more people are having to claim JSA as they have no other income whist awaiting MR. JCP are aware of this and should allow the claimant to have an agreement that is suited to their needs. The claimant has already been declared 'fit for work' by DWP so, we are told,  claiming JSA will not affect the ESA claim/appeal.
Title: Re: ESA Question
Post by: Monic1511 on 20 May 2014 09:47PM
When you friend makes her JSA claim she will be asked to make a "claimant committment"  this outlines what she is expected to do each week and what jobs she will be expected to apply for.
Unfortunatley the process now is
ESA refused as fit for work
claimant has to ask for a mandatory reconsideration
once mandatory reconsideration has made a decision the claimant can appeal this decision
It is only at this stage that ESA can be paid at the appeal rate as long as the client has a valid & backdated sickline

Since the mandatory reconsideration can take between 28 days to 26 weeks >yikes< your friend would really be advised to claim JSA but really think about what sort of job she could possible apply for, she will have to say she is fit for some work or her JSA claim will be refused.
She should also contact her local council to apply for a crisis grant and if she gets housing benefit / council tax reduction she will need to do a change of circumstances form explaining that her ESA is not stopped because she is working but because the DWP have made a wrong decision and she has  a zero income.
Good luck
Title: Re: ESA Question
Post by: devine63 on 21 May 2014 02:05AM
Hi Becca

I know that your local MP isn't great, but this woman should at least try to enlist his help as he might be able to get the process moving faster (and also the more MPs who know about these kinds of problems with the process the better).

Another thought: if the woman has any life insurance or pension from a job or anything like that she should contact the companies involved - sometimes for terminally ill people they are able to pay out some money "early".
regards, Deb
Title: Re: ESA Question
Post by: Becca7 on 21 May 2014 03:58AM
Thanks for the responses. It's appreciated.

I've no idea how she can claim JSA she can barely leave the house due to being so ill and she looks very very ill, hence me saying I don't know if she will survive the appeals process, she doesn't have a computer or email or a CV and I saw somewhere those are now needed to get JSA. I've no idea what work she could apply for, even getting to the jobcentre is very very difficult now as there are no disabled parking spaces anymore near it.

The crisis grant was turned down for, I asked about that (I think she had one before) she can't claim housing benefit as she owns her home, I'll get her to ask about council tax though.

She won't go to our mp. I did mention it, but got a mouthful back >yikes<. I'm unsure as to why and didn't want to press it. Possibly she has had similar issues to me with him and benefit.

I'll ask about the life insurance and pension.
Title: Re: ESA Question
Post by: devine63 on 21 May 2014 09:15PM
Becca they prefer applicants to apply fr JSA or whatever on line (because it's cheaper) but they MUST provide paper forms and other alternatives precisely for people who don't have computer access...

regards, Deb
Title: Re: ESA Question
Post by: Becca7 on 23 May 2014 03:02PM
I don't think the forms are the problem. She was told the rules changed so you need an email address and cv to be on JSA and she doesn't have email or a cv, I'm aware she was >steam< when told this so I needed to find out more.

I'm seeing her later. I'll see if I can find more about it. I don't think she is going to be willing to go through all the hassle of getting a computer and email and writing a cv just to obtain JSA, though she might. She has much more important things on her mind. She spent three days this week in hospital with an infection so hasn't been able to apply yet.

I know the stress of this isn't helping which is why asked you lovely people for help! Thanks  >rose<
Title: Re: ESA Question
Post by: Monic1511 on 23 May 2014 05:51PM
if her condition has detiorated she needs to phone and while requesting the reconsideration she needs to tell them that her circumstances have detiorated and her condition has changed since the wca.

As for the cv & email needed for JSA claimants = this is for anyone who makes an online claim, they can;t ask it of people who can't get online,  I know you said the MP is useless but they do have a stautory responsibility to their constituents, a letter to the local papers say my MP ignores me because she practices disability discrimination would be meat & drink to a newspaper editor

Title: Re: ESA Question
Post by: Becca7 on 23 May 2014 06:07PM
Thanks for clarifying monic. She's back in hospital according to her neighbours I went to see if I could visit but wasn't allowed as she is too ill  :-(

Title: Re: ESA Question
Post by: Becca7 on 26 May 2014 05:00PM
Sadly she has died.
Title: Re: ESA Question
Post by: Sunshine Meadows on 26 May 2014 05:51PM
Title: Re: ESA Question
Post by: seegee on 26 May 2014 06:14PM
 >bighugs< Sympathy to all her friends & family - who should be sending furious letters >steam< to her MP once they have done the more urgent things, like offering support to each other.  >hugs< 
The more MPs get to hear of stupid things like this happening, the better chances are of getting the system changed, at least for people with terminal illnesses.

No bloody use to her getting back-pay now, is it?  Just added extra worry to the last part of her life. >angry<
Title: Re: ESA Question
Post by: SteveX on 26 May 2014 06:15PM
RIP :(

That's another MURDER that should be pinned on IDS.   
Title: Re: ESA Question
Post by: Hurtyback on 26 May 2014 07:56PM
I'm so sorry to hear this Becca. My thoughts are with you and all her family and friends  >bighugs<
Title: Re: ESA Question
Post by: feehutch on 26 May 2014 09:23PM
I'm so sorry  >bighugs<
Title: Re: ESA Question
Post by: auntieCtheM on 27 May 2014 07:36PM
Title: Re: ESA Question
Post by: Becca7 on 27 May 2014 10:09PM
Thanks. I appreciate your support.