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Do I still attend Tribunal if DWP sent me letters saying they've re-assessed my case and paying ESA?

Hi,

As per title, I 'failed' assessment @ Croydon in February last year, tried to appeal but that was turned down too, so it has gone to tribunal.

I got notified last July that I was on waiting list and it'd be approx 7 months, last month I finally got tribunal hearing date of next week (21/2).

Despite being helped by Citizens Advice, the DWP representatives on the phone told me something different each time I phoned them (re non payment as my benefits were stopped). Eventually I got a backdated sick note from my GP from the time I "failed" - that was in September.  I have also been getting same sick notes from GP from then each month.

Last year, I got notification from DWP about when my sick note was finished and I needed a new one, but in December the letters from DWP changed.

I got a letter in Decemebr saying they "have looked at my claim again following a recent change. From 2018 your Employment and Support allowance will be £73.10 a week". Since then I had no requests for sick notes and also no payments from the DWP(?).

I got further sick notes from my GP and sent them off and received payments, I got another letter which said my benefit would be £71.10 from April 2019, then another letter on 6/2/2019 saying the same as above ("have looked at my claim again following a recent change. From 8/1/2019 your Employment and Support allowance will be £73.10 a week".

I have received and forwarded to DWP my sick notes from my GP that covers me until April of this year, but I am totally confused.

1) Do I still have to attend Tribunal hearing next week?
2) If so, why(?) have I recevied letters from DWP saying they have looked at my case agian?

Background:

Have been pateint of local Community Mental Healthcare for past 30 years, in 2007 I was diagnosed with rare learning disability and registered as special needs, put on higher rate (£100pw) benefit - no contact with local Jobcebtre / DWP needed, benefit paid every week for years no problem..

This remained the same until 2012, when new regime of assessments started, each 'assessment' I failed, but 'won' every one upon first appeal. Never had to attend tribunal.

Higher rate of £100 pw week continuously paid.

Many thanks for any help anyone can give.

Kind regards
Andy

Replies

  • wilkowilko Posts: 1,237Member Chatterbox
    Hello @ Dillon, I would phone the tribunal service.of you have their number on any letters for an update regarding your need to attend and phone the DWP for clarification on the matter also. For anyone to say yes or no would be a folly so phone and get the answers you need.
  • dillondillon Posts: 3Member Listener
    Thank you for your reply.

    I went to the CAB about this and my representative phoned the DWP to ask for clarification.

    The guy @ the DWP said the letters were to confirm payment of emergency ESA and the Tribunal would determine what ESA group I should be in.

    The reason why I'm confused is because when I first started sending the DWP my sick notes (Sept last year), all I got in response was letters telling me when the current sicknote expired - this continued for 3 months until December.

    In december the DWP sent the letter saying they had looked at the claim again and from April 2018 I would get £73.10pw - BUT the payments stopped and I didn't receive anything in January(?).

    I find it difficult to trust what the DWP say in the phone, in August last yerar I asked for clarification as I haadn't received any payment for 6 months.

    1st call - I was told I'd get emergancy ESA as my case was going to tribunal.
    2nd call - 2 weeks later, they said I'd only get emergancy ~ESA if I provided a sick note.
    3rd call - sick note was 'lost' even though it was sent recorded delivery
    4th call - I shouldn't be on emergancy ESA but universal credit

    At this point I said I wanted to make a formal complaint because each time I phone up I get told something different to the previous advice. Next day, I got a call from ESA @ Belfast and they paid me backdated ESA from the time of my failed assessment 6 months earlier..

    Unbelievable - it's like these people can do or say whatever they want...totally disgusted by this whole 'procedure', it's an absolute scandal...
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 7,236Member, Community champion Brian Blessed
    Hi,

    The money you're receiving from DWP is assessment rate. The reason is stopped was because you didn't continue to send in the sick notes. You will need to attend the Tribunal next week and then a decision will be made on your claim. If a decision goes in your favour then once DWP accept the award you won't need to send in any further sick notes.
  • BenistmonkBenistmonk Posts: 177Member Talkative
    edited February 12
    The letter you got in April is a standard letter sent to everyone on benefit, it shows how much benefit has gone up and how much you will get for the new tax year. It does not mean the DWP has changed their minds on your decision. 
  • dillondillon Posts: 3Member Listener
    Hi,

    The money you're receiving from DWP is assessment rate. The reason is stopped was because you didn't continue to send in the sick notes. You will need to attend the Tribunal next week and then a decision will be made on your claim. If a decision goes in your favour then once DWP accept the award you won't need to send in any further sick notes.
    I only stopped sending the sick notes as I got a letter from the DWP saying they "have looked at my claim again following a recent change. From 2018 your Employment and Support allowance will be £73.10 a week".

    The letter you got in April is a standard letter sent to everyone on benefit, it shows how much benefit has gone up and how much you will get for the new tax year. It does not mean the DWP has changed their minds on your decision. 
    Yes, I got one of those too, I also got letters saying they looked at my claim again - see above.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 7,236Member, Community champion Brian Blessed
    DWP often send letters that make no sense. The £73.10 per week is assessment rate.
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