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DWP told me I will not be invited for work capability assessment

I was recommended to see my hospital benefits adviser but I am unable to get an appointment till after a month of the due date to send my completed ESA50.

I was told at the hospital to phone the DWP and request a deferral.

I phoned the DWP and I was told that I will not be required to attend a face to face assessment and implied that they will perform a paper assessment, they just want the form back to update their records, he told me not to worry about seeing my benefits adviser.  He asked me about any new new conditions which I gave him over the phone.  He sounded reassuring, I told him that I don’t trust the DWP following bad press, he told me not to believe everything I read.  He told me that I must send the completed form on time and they cannot defer.

In my last face to face assessment two years ago – surprisingly by a very compassionate and understanding DWP doctor –  the doctor wrote ‘The available evidence suggests improvement is unlikely in the longer term’.  Could this be the reason the DWP are carrying out a paper assessment as they assured me? Or are the DWP trying to mislead me and not seek professional advice so that I fail the ESA review?  


  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 11,794Community champion Disability Gamechanger

    The person you spoke to can't tell you whether or not you'll have a paper based assessment, it's not for that person to decide. It will be the health assessment advisory service that decide that and this can't be done until your form is returned.

    When you receive an ESA50 form it must be returned no later than the date stated on the letter, failure to return it will see your benefit being stopped and you'll likely be found fit for work. They can't defer the review process. They are less strict on the returning of the form if you're claiming for mental health and it's noted on the computer with DWP.

    Even though at your last assessment it recommended "longer term" you'll still need to be re-assessed, whether that's paper based or face to face.

  • BenistmonkBenistmonk Posts: 326Member Pioneering
    I wouldn't trust the DWP either but when a member of staff tells you that your assessment will be done on paper, I would be inclined to believe it because he did not have to inform of this.
  • April2018momApril2018mom Posts: 1,183Member Pioneering
    I don’t trust the DWP.
    Having said that, you probably will be asked to have a assessment done on paper. When you get a copy of the form, make sure that you read the questions carefully and send it back before the date on the letter. Unfortunately they can’t delay the review process.
    Our claim was for physical impairments. The person who you talked to has no decision making power. Only the health advisory board has the ability to decide.
    Until you return the paperwork they basically can’t do anything. 
    Good luck!  
  • BenistmonkBenistmonk Posts: 326Member Pioneering
    Either way the ESA50 has to be completed and returned within the time allowed, so it makes no difference what the OP was told by the DWP. 
  • spb1612spb1612 Posts: 5Member Listener
    I had my assessment (WCA) end April and have just been told by DWP over the phone that I shall remain in the support group, I inquired about my next assessment and they told me it will be in 36 months (3 years), this is the maximum they can give me they said.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 11,794Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    The time they tell you is just a guide. They can re-assess you anytime from 3 months.
  • spb1612spb1612 Posts: 5Member Listener
    edited May 30
    The time for reassessment they gave me in 2017 was correct, I have never been reassessed prematurely. Thanks for the warning.

    They do like to keep us on our toes!
  • Adrian_ScopeAdrian_Scope Posts: 2,475Administrator Scope community team
    Hello @spb1612, thank you for coming back to update us, it's great that you got your decision so quickly and your support group status has remained! :)
    Senior Online Community Officer
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