Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
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Cannot get ESA

kieranrochekieranroche Member Posts: 1 Listener
Hi I hope you and families are safe today. Please help - I worked paying full NI for around 30 years. I Became unwell - Bipolar and diabetes due to stress etc. I had not used benefits system before so (foolishly now) didnot sign on for a year NOW I am informed due to that having insufficient NI over last 2 years I cannot get ESA . Can anyone advise eg could I claim “credit” the DHS refer to for this one recent year of no NI - it seems grossly unfair. My Doctor will verify I couldnot sign on due to illness.
Best k


  • poppy123456poppy123456 Community champion Posts: 18,500 Disability Gamechanger
    HI and welcome,

    To claim New style ESA then you must have paid enough NI Contributions in the tax years April 2017 to March 2019. Unfortunately, you will not be able to claim NI credits for that lost 1 year. If you are worried about your pension then new pension rules mean that you only need 35 years of NI for full state pension.

    Whether or not you're entitled to claim Universal Credit, will depend on your circumstances. If you live with a partner that works then you'll need to claim as a couple. As it's a means tested benefit then savings/capital and other income will affect the amount you're entitled to.
    Community champion and proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice i have given to members here on the community.
  • Abdi_ScopeAbdi_Scope Member, DPO Posts: 95 Courageous

    Hi @kieranroche - thank you for sharing your experience and taking the step to reach out. We have pages which are grouped under particular subject headings - you may find useful advice here also . Have a look at Disability Benefits section. Thanks for being part of our Community :smile:

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