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Why cant I just have Contribution based ESA and not IR ESA?

BaileybBaileyb Posts: 5Member Listener
Hello
My husband and I are on Contribution based ESA and we would like to just have C-_ESA and not have IR-ESA we are happy just with getting the Contribution based.
Can the DWP force us to fill out a ESA 3 form that we are not interested in filling in as we dont want the income related ESA and are ok with what we have got.
What happens if someone doesnt fill out the ESA 3 form? We really just want to be left alone.
My husband recently had to fill out another ESA 50 form even though he meets the criteria for the SEVERE GUIDANCE category.
Hope you can advise.

Replies

  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    Hi,

    You don't have to fill out the ESA3 form but if you're entitled to something then i'm not sure why you wouldn't want to claim the money you maybe entitled to.

    ESA reviews can take place anytime from 3 months. If after this assessment once a decision's been made if they decide he meets the criteria for the severe conditions group then no further assessments will be needed and it will state this on the decision letter. If it doesn't then he will continue to be reassessed in the future.
  • BaileybBaileyb Posts: 5Member Listener
    Hi There
    Thanks for your comment.
    We prefer to be on C-ESA as it is less restricitng than being on IR-ESA. We believe that we get the full amount that we are entitled to so dont want to have to fill out a very intrusive form such as ESA 3 for money that we are not entitled and dont need.
    I think the ESA 3 form is just another form to control people with and is extremely long and asks for far too much information. I feel this is unnecessary.
    And my husband is entitled to be in the SEVERE Guidance category as he fits the criteria.
    Thanks again


  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    You don't have to fill out the ESA3 form if you don't want to, that's entirely your choice.

    As for the severe conditions group for ESA then if he's placed into this group then it will tell him on the decision letter once it's received. If he's currently been placed into the Support Group through regulation 35 rather than the support group descriptors then he won't be considered for the severe conditions group.
  • BaileybBaileyb Posts: 5Member Listener
    \hanks for letting me know that we dont have to fill out the ESA 3 form that was sent to us recently. Hopefully the DWP wont keep harassing us about it. As they love harassing vulnerable people.

    As I have said my husband fills the criteria for SEVER GUIDANCE. however I think the decision makers are at times extremely incompetent and dont know their job. There have been times when i have had to phone them and let them know their errors and mistakes more than once. So if they dont put my husband into the SEVERE GUIDANCE category even though we have been advised that he should be in it by a  Welfare legal advisor who said he fits it, then once again the DWP dont know how to do their job properly.



  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    My advice would be to write on the form that you don't wish to be assessed for any income related top up and then sign and return the form, otherwise they may continue to pester you.
  • dottaylordottaylor Posts: 21Member Listener
    Hi please could anyone advise me,iv been on contribution esa for 12 months and it’s due to run out,,so I asked for it to be reassessed I was advised I could do this as I’m in lwcra on mental health grounds.
    yesterday I went for my assessment and if I pass it will they put me back on contribution or could I be put into support group regards dot
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    dottaylor said:
    Hi please could anyone advise me,iv been on contribution esa for 12 months and it’s due to run out,,so I asked for it to be reassessed I was advised I could do this as I’m in lwcra on mental health grounds.
    yesterday I went for my assessment and if I pass it will they put me back on contribution or could I be put into support group regards dot
    Hi,

    I'm a little confused by your question because you say your contributions based ESA is about to run out and they you say you're claiming LCWRA. which is support group. When you're in this group there's no time limit to Contributions based, it's paid for as long as you remain in that group.

    Can i just ask you to please confirm which group you're in?
  • dottaylordottaylor Posts: 21Member Listener
    Hi yeah I’m in the LCWRA contribution based but I don’t get support element and it only lat 12 months I’m really confused to be honest 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    edited November 6
    dottaylor said:
    Hi yeah I’m in the LCWRA contribution based but I don’t get support element and it only lat 12 months I’m really confused to be honest 
    LCWRA is not limited to 12 months, LCW is limited to 12 months.

    The easiest way for me to know which group you're in is to ask are you receiving £73.10 per week, if so then this is LCW. If you're receiving £111.65 per week then this is LCWRA.
  • dottaylordottaylor Posts: 21Member Listener
    It’s defo lcwra because it says it on the top of my letter,I get £73.10 a week,,,it runs out after 12 months but because I’m on lcwra I can reapply,I don’t no why iv not got payment for support thanks for your reply,just wish I could understand it,think il ring um up tomorrow x
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    Something isn't right here and you need to ring them tomorrow. LCWRA is £111.65 per week and is not time limited to 365 days.
  • dottaylordottaylor Posts: 21Member Listener
    If that’s the case and they’ve made a mistake will they back pay me,oh by the way they said it’s the new style esa don’t no if that has anything to do with it urgh thanks I really appreciate your replays x
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    Yes you will be owed money if you are definitely in the LCWRA group and not the LCW group. It makes no difference being new style esa.
  • dottaylordottaylor Posts: 21Member Listener
    Hiya,,,iv just looked at mt paperwork again and this is written,,,limited capability for work related Activity group(not  revised to support group) employment and support allowence

    i am unable to revise the decision placing you in the work related Activity group.This is because you do not meet any of the criteria for support group,,
    sorry for the long letter please could you advise me thank you x
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    This means you are in the LCW (work group) and not LCWRA (support group) because the decision maker said you don't meet the criteria for the support group. When was the MR decision made please?
  • dottaylordottaylor Posts: 21Member Listener
    March  this year or round about that time 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    You do have 13 months to request the Tribunal, with good reason. They are correct that your money will stop once you reach 365 days because you're only in the LCW group.

    May i ask do you claim Universal Credit as well? Or do you live with a partner that works?
  • dottaylordottaylor Posts: 21Member Listener
    I live with my hubby and don't claim universal credit
  • dottaylordottaylor Posts: 21Member Listener
    My hubby took retirement 2 months ago 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    Would that be early retirement with a works pension or state pension? Do you have savings/capital of more than £16,000?
  • dottaylordottaylor Posts: 21Member Listener
    Start his state  pension in 2 weeks no saveings of16,000
    and gets a private pension of a couple hundred a month
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    Do you rent or own your own home?

    If you own your own home then based on that then it's unlikely you'll be entitled to any Universal credit. You would need to claim it as a couple because it's a means tested benefit and his state pension and private pension would be counted as income when calculating any UC entitlement.

    Standard couples allowance is £489.89 per month, with his state pension and private pension then this would reduce your UC payment to zero.

    You maybe entitled to council tax reduction but all local councils have their own criteria and you will need to apply through your local council.

    Put both of your details into a benefit calculator just to check. You'll need to make sure you put his private pension down under other income. https://www.entitledto.co.uk/

    Do you claim PIP? if not,  This isn't means tested but whether you'll qualify will depend on how your conditions affect you.

  • dottaylordottaylor Posts: 21Member Listener
    Thank you so much you have been very helpfull and I appreciate it,
    il see what happens now as iv just had another assessment for esa reapplying 
    and see what the outcome is xx”

  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    You're welcome. If the decision remains at LCW then you can appeal that and the first step to this is to request the mandatory reconsideration (MR) and you'll have 1 month from the date of the decision to request that. If the decision remain the same after the MR then it's Tribunal.

    They will of course continue to pay your NI credits towards your state pension once you reach the 365 days but you'll continue to have future assessments even when just receiving NI credits.
  • dottaylordottaylor Posts: 21Member Listener
    You certainly no your stuff thank you 
    🙂
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    You're welcome and thank you! :)
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Posts: 5,837Administrator Scope community team
    Thank you for all your advice here @poppy123456, and a warm welcome to the community @dottaylor. :)
    Chloe
    Online Community Officer
  • BaileybBaileyb Posts: 5Member Listener
    Thanks poppy for the advice. How come you know so much about this?
    I am hoping that they wont pester us about filling in the form as I cant see anywhere on the form where you can put I dont want to be assessed for income related top up. Along with the form there is a piece of paper which states that if the partner is working 24 hours a week then dont need to fill out the form just sign this  paper and send it back or if that is not the case then fill out the form.
    So we dont want to do either. I hope this doesnt mean that his ESA doesnt not get cut off as we were forced to send in a ESA 50 form which we sent in recently and so we are just waiting on news from that.
    he hasnt been put in the SEVERE GUIDANCE category yet as the last ESA 50 form was filled out in 2015. Which he got a paper assessment and didnt need to go to face to face. We are hoping that he will not be asked for a face to face assesment as he picks up germs easily in public and so wont attend.
    If the DWP are so malevolent that they will cut off his money for not attending then that will have to be that unless we can appeal against that decision?
    I cant understand why they are allowed to get away with this kind of degrading and despicable treatment of people. Why isnt there an independent body who can challenge them and stop them from behaving in this monstrous way?

  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    You're welcome. My knowledge of the benefit system comes from my own personal experiences and further extensive research, purely to help others like yourself.

    Whether or not you chose to be assessed for the Income related top up is entirely your choice. If you'd rather not be assessed then they can't force this on you. Depending on your circumstances, you may not even qualify anyway but i can't say for sure without knowing all of your circumstances and that's not always possible on an internet forum.

    You could send the form back with a letter stating you don't want to be assessed, sign the form and that's the end of that.

    The Contributions based ESA will not stop because you chose not to be assessed for the income related top up. As long he remains in the support group that will continue to be paid.

    As for the next reassessment then if he does need to attend a face to face assessment and he refuses then yes, he will very likely be found fit for work for failing to attend. If this happens they his ESA will stop and he will need to give his reasons for not attending. The MR process is first, followed by Tribunal if that fails. The Tribunal will be because he failed to attend the assessment and not to determine which group he should be placed into. If the Tribunal goes in his favour then his file will be returned to the health assessment and the process starts all over again. He won't receive any money while waiting for the Tribunal.


  • BaileybBaileyb Posts: 5Member Listener
    Well I cant understand why someone who cannot attend a face to face assesment due to ill health should be punished for this. This is monstrous and it seems like we no longer live in a fair and just society which can treat vulnerable people in this way. We have already explicitly made it clear on the ESA 50 form why he cannot attend face to face assessment. There is even a hospital letter stating that he is not up to going to hospital appointments. Due to his condition being irreversible its pointless to go to hospital appointments.
    So if the DWP can get away with this behaviour and no independent body is able to challenge their behaviour then there is no hope for this country. It is no wonder that people have been driven to despair and even suicide.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    I can only tell you the rules, a Tribunal will tell you exactly the same as i did and they are totally independent to DWP.

    Most people have face to face assessments, whether it's at home or at an assessment centre. You can request a home assessment if he can't attend the assessment centre but a letter from his GP will most likely be needed, stating the reasons why he can't attend the centre.

    Paper based assessments are rare but hopefully he's be one of those rare ones. Good luck.
  • dottaylordottaylor Posts: 21Member Listener
    edited November 18
    Hi poppy hope you are well,I finally had another assessment last Tuesday my hubby went with me,after a few days I requested for the assessment report,she put things in like I cannot socialise,or never go out on my own etc,,but then says further along that she thinks I will be capable for work,,on my last assessment I got something called reg 35 which put me on LCWRA would that rule still apply from my last assessment,hope you understand,regards dot x I’m just waiting now for the result from decision maker 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    dottaylor said:
    Hi poppy hope you are well,I finally had another assessment last Tuesday my hubby went with me,after a few days I requested for the assessment report,she put things in like I cannot socialise,or never go out on my own etc,,but then says further along that she thinks I will be capable for work,,on my last assessment I got something called reg 35 which put me on LCWRA would that rule still apply from my last assessment,hope you understand,regards dot x I’m just waiting now for the result from decision maker 
    I'm not too bad, thanks for asking. Any decision made on this claim will overrule the decision made on your last assessment.

    Take a look towards the back of the report where it states LCW and LCWRA information to see what is says in there and please let me know.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    edited November 18
    @dottaylor In response to your post on my wall, thanks for the kind words.

    In the report because it says there would ne no substantial risk to you or anyone else if you were found capable of work means that reg 35 doesn't apply to you, which means it's likely you will be found fit for work.

    Even though it states you're unable to go out alone because of your anxiety reg 35 doesn't apply because they think there wouldn't be any risks, if you did go out alone.

    The work capability assessment assesses you're ability to do any type of work, regardless of what that work is or where it is.

    You will of course need to wait for the decision but they usually go with the recommendations in the report, it's rare for them to go against it but it can and does happen.

    If the worst does happen and you are found fit for work then your ESA will stop on the date the decision is made. Please do come back and start another thread and i'm sure someone (if not myself ;) ) will advise you further.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    If you could post on here rather than on my wall, it's easier to reply. If the decision is fit for work then your first step to appeal is the MR and you'll have 1 month from the date of the decision.

    Also be aware that if you don't claim a severe disability premium in with another benefit then DWP will advise you to claim Universal Credit. If you claim UC then you won't be able to go back onto ESA and anytime in the future.

    Your ESA won't be paid while you wait for the MR decision to made. If you don't claim UC then you'll be able to go back onto assessment rate for ESA (with a fit note from your GP) once the Tribunal have accepted your appeal but this could take a few months, maybe longer.

    If you're claiming housing benefit, this will also stop if you're found fit for work but you can claim this through nil income but you'll need to contact your local council.

    Just to add my advice further, not being able to go out alone doesn't mean that reg35 will apply. You need to state why you think reg 35 applies and what risk you are to yourself and others.

    Good luck!
  • dottaylordottaylor Posts: 21Member Listener
    Make you laugh dont they,evidence there to prove it makes me very distressed to go out or travel on buses,,,how will they expect me to travel to work,amongst other things 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    Sadly, it happens a lot. However, lots of people do successfully get placed into one of the groups without any problems, we just don't hear about the good stories.

    May i ask if the evidence you sent in just stated you get distressed when out alone or did it state why you get distressed as well?

  • dottaylordottaylor Posts: 21Member Listener
    On the doctors letter of evidence it states I get very distressed when I go out or when I have to meet people it also says how it effects me ie panic attracts crying feeling paranoid do you think that would help 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 14,930Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    Before you can do anything you need to wait for the decision to made. Once that's made then you need to put the MR request in writing stating the reasons why you think you should be in the support group. Mention reg 35, why you think that applies. Adding some real life examples will also help.

    Letters from a GP aren't the best evidence to send because a GP very rarely knows how your conditions affect you, they will only usually know the basics like what medication you take etc. I'm not saying don't send it, you can certainly send it.
  • dottaylordottaylor Posts: 21Member Listener
    Thank you,,I also sent 3 written letters of evidence from my family on how it effects me here’s hoping 
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Posts: 5,837Administrator Scope community team
    Thank you for all your advice here @poppy123456

    If you need anything else @dottaylor then please do let us know. :)
    Chloe
    Online Community Officer
  • dottaylordottaylor Posts: 21Member Listener
    Thank you Chloe,will do 👍
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