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Thread: No WCA Decision (5 months)

  1. #1
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    No WCA Decision (5 months)

    Hello everyone, newbie alert.

    Now, i'm posting about a friends situation, not mine. I don't think she has the mental focus to ask for help on here, so hopefully you can give some advice, guidance and maybe some reassurance that I can pass on.

    I do have my own issues but have been back to work for over 4 years and myself claim Working Tax Credits (Disability Element). My issues will probably start when i'm transferred over to Universal Credit in 2019.

    Now, my friend...

    She currently receives ESA and has done for many years. She lived with me for a long time but moved into independent living alone 17 months ago and is coping with support of friends. The reason she claims ESA is purely for mental health - she has no major physical issues.

    She attended a WCA in June and she has heard nothing so far. Her money has remained the same. The lady that dealt with her was in a wheelchair and made my friend feel like she was capable as she had no physical issues. Despite this, the WCA lasted around two hours.

    She has two main concerns - firstly losing £30 a week. She has done so well to cope and live in her new home - the loss of £30 will be very damaging. She is very frugal, but still has a nice home - albeit very very small, but it is enough for her. She has achieved a lot in 17 months that she never thought she could which could go against her as before, I looked after her. The £30 loss would be a major hit, although i'd do my best to soften that blow, even if it means I would then have a tighter budget.

    Secondly, the expectation to work. She has never worked and is in her early 40's. She doesn't have the capability to hold down a job. She is too fragile and needs too much support. I'd love to think their was an ideal job for her with the right support, but not many employers will do that. The problem is, she comes across as somebody reasonably capable on the outside because she has a good mask - she's had years of practice.

    She helps out at her local church with the running of groups, but again in a supported role. It's what people don't see that's her problem - not getting up and out some days due to the depression, the anxiety even when she doesn't have the pressures of work and the panic attacks. She has little support from mental health services as they don't have spaces, give six weeks counselling or don't know how to deal with her. She has counselling through a Christian charity, so she has little back up if they turn around and say she is fit for work.

    I'm hoping it doesn't come to it, but she may need to appeal and suffer whilst the appeal is heard, but it's difficult to see when presented with the evidence how she will be successful in the appeal, despite personally knowing that she isn't capable of work and the stress it can bring.

    So, its it normal to take 5 months for a WCA decision? She won't phone, she hopes they'll just go away.

    I won't ask about how to appeal etc - i'll ask when required, if required.

    Any other advice?

    Thanks for your time.

  2. #2
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    Firstly I'm not sure what you mean by losing £30 a week?

    Are you are referring to the 'cut' that came in last April.

    It is not in fact a cut to existing claims, it only applies to brand new claims made after April.

    Existing awards, or new claims made before April are not affected at all.

    Secondly
    Five months is a long time not to hear about a WCA decision.

    She does need to ring them and ask what is happening.
    It may well be that a letter to her got lost.
    If she is still being paid the same then it's quite possible that she has been awarded the same again and has just not got the letter.
    I'm intelligent enough to know that I don't know everything.
    But I'm good at searching for, and finding, stuff.


    Migration from ESA to Universal Credit- Click here for information.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for your reply nukecad.

    She has been told that if she fails the WCA, she will lose the extra £30 approx that she started getting from week 14 and go back to £73 with JSA and have to start looking for work. (Looking around it will be £29.05 which is her Work Group Premium)

    I'll try and get her to phone. She's worried if she phones she will just remind them about her and they'll be on her back.
    Last edited by GSD17; 11-02-2017 at 08:08 PM.

  4. #4
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    I’m sure she should get more premiums than that on ESA? But yeah I agree if she has HAD her WCA and her money hasn’t changed I’d be pretty sure she’s been kept in the same group, still best to call them though, if it’s easier for you then you can do it? Just call them and tell them your calling on her behalf, they’ll ask if she’s there and just tell them she will only talk to Do security, after that they will talk to you (only for that call)

  5. #5
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    Thanks for the response RobcarerT.

    It sounds about right - £73 + £29 - She says she gets something like £102 a week, plus HB and CTB.

    I'm not sure she'll go for me talking to them but I can suggest it.

  6. #6
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    I understand now, she's currently in WRAG and is worried about being found fit for work and having to claim JSA/UC instead.
    That's always a worry for those having a reassessment.

    It's unlikely that they have just forgotten about her WCA report for 5 months and not decided anything yet. (Although it has been known to happen).

    It is much more likely that they have forgotten to send the letter, or it got lost in the post.

    It may even be that she has had a letter but that she didn't realise that it was the decision letter.
    Sometimes its just one line burried in a much longer letter.

    This happened recently to another member here, they had sent off an ESA50 and then got a letter setting out their payments which hadn't changed.
    It was ony on a second, closer, reading that it was seen to actually be the decision letter from the reassessment.
    http://www.youreable.com/forums/show...l=1#post136664

    Ask if she's had any letters from the DWP since her WCA, and if she has then have a careful read of them.
    Last edited by nukecad; 11-02-2017 at 11:06 PM.
    I'm intelligent enough to know that I don't know everything.
    But I'm good at searching for, and finding, stuff.


    Migration from ESA to Universal Credit- Click here for information.

  7. #7
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    It doesn't do and it's definitely not worth worrying about something that hasn't happened yet, regarding this benefits system, as long as her payments continue she is still on the benefit. But has nuke points out it wouldn't hurt to check the mail, just maybe the decision has already been made - and delivered, or if it's really an issue causing a great concern you can always ring them.

    Should it come to the situation where the benefit has been stopped there's always plenty of advice to be found here, have a look at following link of how to start to go about the MR/Appeal Process.
    https://www.disabilityrightsuk.org/a...econsideration

  8. #8
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    I’m sure she should get more premiums than that on ESA?
    There are only two Premiums open to the OP;
    The EDP, and they would need to be in Support Group to receive that.
    And:
    The SDP, and they would need to be in receipt of the required DLA/PIP component to receive that.

    So, there is nothing more available to them.
    Last edited by Jard; 11-03-2017 at 12:09 AM.

  9. #9
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    It would be very possible she's had the letter and either not opened it or mis-understood it. It's happened many times before. I'll see if I can get her to look again.

    She/we will need the advice on hand here if she has failed the WCA. Must find out first if she has had a letter. I'll contact her and see if she will see me in the next day or so.

    Thanks.

  10. #10
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GSD17 View Post
    She/we will need the advice on hand here if she has failed the WCA.
    I think that is very unlikely after 5 months.

    The DWP can be slow about things, but not when it comes to stopping someones benefit.

    That's the one time that they can be relied on to act quickly.
    I'm intelligent enough to know that I don't know everything.
    But I'm good at searching for, and finding, stuff.


    Migration from ESA to Universal Credit- Click here for information.

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