Moving onto ESA from Incapacity Benefits

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Sunshine Meadows

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http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/MoneyTaxAndBenefits/BenefitsTaxCreditsAndOtherSupport/Illorinjured/DG_10018913

If you couldn’t work because of illness or disability before 31 January 2011, you may be receiving Incapacity Benefit. Since 31 January 2011 no new Incapacity Benefit claims have been accepted. You should claim Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) instead.

Changes for people already claiming incapacity benefits

Your claim will be reviewed if you are getting one of the following benefits:

 - Incapacity Benefit
 - Income Support paid because of an illness or disability
 - Severe Disablement Allowance

Jobcentre Plus will write to you when your benefit claim is going to be reviewed. Not everyone will be contacted at the same time. This started in October 2010 and is expected to be completed in 2014.

Until your claim is reviewed you will continue to get your current benefit, as long as you still meet the conditions for that benefit.

This change will not affect you if you:

 - claim ESA already
 - are due to reach State Pension age before 6 April 2014
 - are already over State Pension age and get Severe Disablement Allowance

How your claim will be reviewed

Questionnaire

Jobcentre Plus will send you a questionnaire to complete. This questionnaire will ask about how your long term health condition or disability affects your ability to complete everyday tasks.

You must complete this questionnaire with as much detail as possible and return it by the date requested. If you do not, your benefit may be affected.

Work Capability Assessment

The information you give will help to decide if you need to attend a face-to-face assessment. This assessment will help find out:

    what you are able to do
    whether you might be capable of work

If you are asked to attend an assessment, you must go and take part fully. If you don't, your benefit may be affected.


Customers moving onto ESA from incapacity benefits

You'll be told whether you're in the Support Group or Work-Related Activity Group after the review of your claim to:

  - Incapacity Benefit
  - Income Support paid on the grounds of  illness or disability
  - Severe Disablement Allowance

Your benefit will be transferred automatically and there will be no break in the payments you receive.

If the amount of incapacity benefit you get is more than the amount of ESA, you’ll get a top-up payment. The amount of benefit you get won't rise until the amount of ESA catches up with the amount of the top-up payment.   

If the amount of incapacity benefit you get is lower than the amount of ESA, you will get more money. Your money will increase as soon as you move to ESA.







(edited for formatting - KK)




« Last Edit: 05 Sep 2012 01:50PM by SunshineMeadows »

RococoSoul

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http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/disabledpeople/financialsupport/dg_10020535

'If you already receive Incapacity Benefit, you will continue to receive it'.

Now I'm confused. Isn't everyone being changed over to ESA, the guy from CAB even told us as much. So why is DirectGov contradicting this?

Or have I got it wrong somewhere?

 >erm<
People take different roads seeking fulfillment and happiness. Just because they're not on your road doesn't mean they've gotten lost.

hossylass

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no, its direct.gov that have it wrong - the tossers.

Its a joke that they cant even keep their systems up to date...

hossylass

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We'd be partying in teh flaming streets if they were leaving us alone >lol<

KizzyKazaer

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It looks like a crucial sentence was omitted on that particular page (not the one linked to in the OP) - the full wording is this:

Incapacity Benefit and Income Support, paid because of an illness or disability, has been replaced with Employment and Support Allowance for new claimants only.

If you already receive Incapacity Benefit, you will continue to receive it.


Technically this is correct - you will indeed continue to receive your IB, but every existing IB claimant will eventually be re-assessed for ESA, between now and 2014. I have submitted feedback to the DirectGov site to advise them that their page needs updating to include this important information  ;-)

RoseRodent

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Is there anywhere we can get a list of who gets reviewed when? The anxiety is overwhelming for many people, and if I could reassure my friend that his area is not being reviewed next week then he may be able to leave the house rather than being too scared to approach the front door in case there is a DWP envelope there.

RococoSoul

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Thanks for clarifying that lol. Now, I'm in reciept of higher rate IB, so what will be my entitlement if I change/qualify for ESA based on this rate? Sorry, struggle to keep up on here with my ikkle phone  >lol<
People take different roads seeking fulfillment and happiness. Just because they're not on your road doesn't mean they've gotten lost.

KizzyKazaer

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No cut and dried answer for that one at the hypothetical stage, I'm afraid, as ESA is a very different benefit to what it's replacing... To start with, there's the two separate groups that claimants will be placed into  ('Support' and 'Work-Related Activity') which each attract different rates. See this thread for the general idea:

http://ouchtoo.org/index.php?topic=2100.0
« Last Edit: 16 Feb 2012 08:54PM by KizzyKazaer »

RococoSoul

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 >doh< Thanks lol. I'm getting in a tiz as everything I've been told outside of the group has been conflicting. Thanks guys  >bighugs<
People take different roads seeking fulfillment and happiness. Just because they're not on your road doesn't mean they've gotten lost.

KizzyKazaer

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It's easily done - let's face it, even the Government haven't settled on absolutes for everything to do with ESA yet!

Is there anywhere we can get a list of who gets reviewed when?

Rose, I'll see what I can find out tomorrow  :-)

Sofie

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Thanks for clarifying that lol. Now, I'm in reciept of higher rate IB, so what will be my entitlement if I change/qualify for ESA based on this rate? Sorry, struggle to keep up on here with my ikkle phone  >lol<

You won't be left worse off than you are now. So, if the ESA rate is lower than IB, you get the IB rate.

KizzyKazaer

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That's correct - there will be a 'transitional' payment.  This from the DWP's pages for advisors and intermediaries:

No one who is reassessed and moves from their existing benefit to Employment and Support Allowance will see a reduction in the level of their benefit entitlement at the point of change.

Where appropriate, a transitional addition will be added to the claimant’s normal Employment and Support Allowance entitlement to help ensure that their overall benefit entitlement is protected. The transitional addition will be an amount equivalent to the shortfall between the existing benefit entitlement and ESA entitlement



KizzyKazaer

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I also found this:  (italics are mine)

Q. When will claimants be reassessed?

A. We will write to claimants at the start of their reassessment journey and follow this with a telephone call to the claimant.

The date claimants will begin reassessment is based on the date they would have participated in a Personal Capability Assessment. Where a claimant does not have a scheduled PCA, for example where they were exempted from having repeat assessments for their incapacity benefits, a PCA date will be set by Jobcentre Plus.

To ensure all cases are handled effectively and efficiently for claimants between now and 2014 dates may have to be adjusted (we call this ‘smoothing’). This smoothing means that, whilst the PCA can be used as a guide for when a claimant may start reassessment, in some cases it may be before or after this date.

Q. Why have some claimants been selected for reassessment before their PCA is due?

A. Legislation allows us to select a claimant who is in receipt of an incapacity benefit (Incapacity Benefit, Severe Disablement Allowance or Income Support paid on the grounds of incapacity) to start reassessment - which includes the Work Capability Assessment - at any time on or after 1 October 2010.

To manage the reassessment as efficiently as possible, Jobcentre Plus intends to select claimants in the order they would otherwise have been called for a Personal Capability Assessment in connection with their incapacity benefit claim. However, the final date for selection is based on the information held on our systems and the capacity of Jobcentre Plus and their partners locally. This will mean that, for some claimants, the reassessment will start soon after they have attended a Personal Capability Assessment and others will be reassessed near or after the date of what would have been their next scheduled Personal Capability Assessment.

Hurtyback

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However, many people are being assessed before the expected date, whilst others are waiting considerably longer. I'm afraid it really seems to be 'pot luck' Rose  :-(

sherbs

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Hurty, if you have been medically retired due to ill health / disability, i really hope you wont be expected to find a job / work again, as isn't this the point of being ill health retired ? as you cannot work ? or am i dreaming this (possibly, as have been having weird morphine induced dreams recently)  >yikes<