What exactly does work related activity group mean?

  • 14 Replies
  • 13693 Views

lew247

  • *
  • Bronze Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 16
Had my ESA medical last week and today got the letter stating the result
I have been placed in the Work Related Activity Group
Unfortunately it doesn't spell out in simple words exactly what that means or what it comprises of.

I intend to ask them on Tuesday when they open for a copy of the report and see how they came to that conclusion, not sure what I have to ask for but I'll figure it out.
I just don't know at the moment what exactly it means and if its worth appealing or asking them to reconsider

devine63

  • *
  • Guest
Hi Lew

this means that you are not expected to look for work right now, but you are expected to be moving in the direction of working at some point (some kind of work, not necessarily what you have done before).   So for example you may be asked to think about what training would be helpful.
More information here:
http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/MoneyTaxAndBenefits/BenefitsTaxCreditsAndOtherSupport/Illorinjured/DG_171894 
regards, Deb

RoseRodent

  • *
  • Charter Member
  • Diamond member
  • ****
  • Posts: 393
Funnily enough I was about to ask about this myself. It's never really been followed up as to what they are looking for at the WRA interviews. It seems 99% about making sure people attend and 1% looking at your CV. I have yet to hear of anyone being asked to do anything other than a CV and talk about what work they may be able to do. I have certainly not heard of anyone being helped with any of the barriers to the type of work they want to do, for example in my case a barrier to work is that people who do what I would be in the best position to do to enable me to earn more than 60 a week while not doing hours I cannot manage is that people then tend to visit others' homes to do it. I can't go to non-accessible homes. People can come to me, but my home is... well, it's a poor person's house, and people who pay private tutoring rates don't like that, they like antique rooms with antique tables in them, clean carpets (with my powerchair in the hallway it takes all of 6 fine days or 1 rainy one to make it look like the carpet hasn't been cleaned for years) and no stuff in them. It is also a self-employed career, and I don't know enough about that to do it, but doesn't sound like they help with that. It's all about getting you to admit you can work in a call centre really and then preparing you to work in a call centre from the sound of things.

Are they prepared to deviate from the standard path of what constitutes WRA, or is it set in stone as to what that is?

Sunshine Meadows

  • *
  • Global Moderator
  • Super Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 8037
Lew,

Welcome to Ouch Too

In general being put in the Work Related Activity Group means what Debs and Rose  said and also that you will be probably be expected to attend up to six Work-Focused Interview (WFI)at the Jobcentre. The interviews with a adviser a supposed to help you move towards work by thinking about what you might be able to do and what help is available. My experience of the interviews was straightforward, we just talked about jobs I might like and be able to do, and also why my previous job had become no longer suitable. I had an interview every month and then was told I would be reviewed again in two years.

In terms of the benefit you get if you get Income Based ESA you should get paid benefit as long as you are still in the WRAG, but if you get Contribution Based ESA the government has time limited to a year.

devine63

  • *
  • Guest
Hi Rose

Another way to offer personal tutoring might be to rent a small office / room somewhere suitable : then it can be accessible for you and your students.  The cost of doing this it should be possible to claim back through not paying tax on that part of what you earn, since it is a legitimate business expense.
As for where: a local college or library might be willing to rent an office by the hour or there are lots of those business park type places where you can rent an office space - though they don't always rent by the hour, so you might have to search a bit for one that does.   Alternatively there are places which rent meeting rooms by the hour (including some hotels).
regards, Deb

Hurtyback

  • *
  • Charter Member
  • Super Hero Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 5800
Hello and  >welcome<  Lew. I am interested to hear whether you actually get your 'Statement of Reasons' as I, and others, have been having difficulty with this.

Monic1511

  • *
  • Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2494
Hi Lew

If you don't feel that you are able to do any of the things like seeking training, preparing CV and that you should be in the "support group" have a look at this post with the criteria http://ouchtoo.org/index.php?topic=2155.msg17049#msg17049
You need to remember that if you appeal the decsion to put you in the WRAG the DWP does have the right to look at your whole award again so if the evidence was weak you could even end up being found fit for work  >yikes< >doh<.  I know its unlikey but this is the DWP we are talking about.

Some Jobcentres call you in every 2 weeks others every 6 months to see if your any better and are able to consider doing some sort of training to help you get job ready (don't scream, its the system)
Best wishes
Monic

lew247

  • *
  • Bronze Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 16
Thanks for the info
I'll give them a call tomorrow and ask for the statement of reasons and follow it up with a fax for the same
I'll let you know how I get on

Sunshine Meadows

  • *
  • Global Moderator
  • Super Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 8037
Quote
I'll let you know how I get on

Lew,

Please do because over the past year people posting about personal experiences has helped others have a better idea of what is going on and how it feels. When you have time also take a look around the message board we have allsorts of threads here  :-)

RoseRodent

  • *
  • Charter Member
  • Diamond member
  • ****
  • Posts: 393
Another way to offer personal tutoring might be to rent a small office / room somewhere suitable : then it can be accessible for you and your students.  The cost of doing this it should be possible to claim back through not paying tax on that part of what you earn, since it is a legitimate business expense.

Unfortunately my earnings would be too far below the appropriate tax thresholds for it to make me any money. If I rented premises to teach in I'd earn 2 an hour, and with an ability to work about 8 hours a week that's not enough for the petrol money to get me to wherever I teach. I can't get into doing state schools as they need someone full time to cover 10 or more schools, I can't get into private schools because they want a different qualification which A: I cannot afford to do as it's 2,000 and is not covered by grants, loans or anything similar, and B: it has residential weeks in London, which is way too far to go and full time days while you are there. I can't think of any other way I could get free premises.

devine63

  • *
  • Guest
Hi Rose

do you know anyone with similar skills?  ANy chance you could job share or operate like a casual staff agency to provide the hours for state schools as you were saying?     Do you know anyone who might let you borrow their office or meeting room after hours without charging you?
regards, Deb

lew247

  • *
  • Bronze Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 16
That was very quick
I got the following
 Medical Report Form
Decision Makers Scoresheet
and a double sided statement page

I have to say on reading it I'm actually impressed, the doctor has filled in a lot of it correctly
however there are a few things in there that he says I said that I definitely didn't, and I have the audio recording to prove it once I get an adaptor lead for the Dictaphone at the weekend I#ll put it on the computer, then I can get rid of the background noise and transcribe it (don't worry I'll leave the original recording untouched)

He skipped over a couple of things, like bowel incontinence... he did ask about this in the medical but changed my answers in the report.

However I did get 15 points so I'm quite pleased already, I just have to decide now if I appeal it or not
I have arranged for someone in CAB that's good at these to help me decide, she's going to have a read of the report and listen to the tape.

But all in all the report is nowhere near as bad or as wrong as I was expecting.

devine63

  • *
  • Guest
Hi

excelllent news that you got your stuff through

I don't know if it helps - but according to the experience of one of my friends, just having incontinence (he has a lot of other issues too and is a wheelchair user) was sufficient to put a halt to his medical - the medic left the room and came back and said the assessment was over.

I personally believe every doctor involved in this process should be held to account - so if he lied or adjusted your answers in recording them, I would encourage you to challenge that!

regards. Deb

RoseRodent

  • *
  • Charter Member
  • Diamond member
  • ****
  • Posts: 393
Hi Rose

do you know anyone with similar skills?  ANy chance you could job share or operate like a casual staff agency to provide the hours for state schools as you were saying?     Do you know anyone who might let you borrow their office or meeting room after hours without charging you?
regards, Deb

I don't know anyone full stop! Not having been out much for a number of years and not living in a city where I went to school I know almost literally nobody. Bear in mind I've been trying to arrange this for about 6 years, there isn't a lot I haven't thought of.

devine63

  • *
  • Guest
hi Rose

it was not clear from your earlier posts that you have been trying to sort this problem for such a long time, or that you are operating in a context where you are unfamiliar with people and places - sorry if my comments were unhelpful, as I usually do, I was just generating ideas which might (or might not) be useful.    Bets of luck with trying to sort it out!
regards, Deb