I have tried and failed to get help with this issue from, my local MP, Citizens Advice, Mental Health Social Worker. So here I am on this forum.

I have real difficulty currently with an ESA claim and really need help. Here is a short summary of what has happened so far:

ESA claim made 17th March 2016

Assessment Date for Work Capability Assessment: 16 November 2016, Inverness.

Outcome of Assessment: Assessment terminated by Assessor, reason given, I was being difficult.

My position: I have been diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder. This condition affects my ability to communicate under pressure, to follow logical sequences and to respond appropriately to others. It appeared to me and to the mental health social worker who accompanied me to assessment, that the Assessor took my behaviour personally, but did not understand my mental health condition, which is actually a Psychiatric Illness. So essentially, the assessor was not adequately trained nor did not understand a Psychiatric Problem.


Current situation with benefit;

I am still on assessment rate. The DWP have informed me that they are waiting on Health Advisory Board to advise if this can be passed on scrutiny. I have sent a letter from my Psychiatrist which details my difficulty to DWP who have forwarded it to Health Advisory Board. This letter details my condition and how it would affect interview presentation. I have been classified as a UCB (unacceptable behaviour) by Health Advisory Board.

Health Advisory board have rejected the letter from the Psychiatrist, saying that they do not have enough info/evidence from that letter to pass on scrutiny. Pass on scrutiny would mean that I would not have to go through more trauma with interview.

HAB have now written to my GP, asking for a report. The GP has not seen me in over seven months, as I have been referred to Psychiatry for treatment. I have also had great difficulty getting what I need from this GP in the past, he refused a referral to Psychiatry until I brought a social worker with me to another appointment with him and then he made the referral. I am concerned that the GP's evidence will not be enough because he is not treating me, but the Psychiatrist is, and that I will be hauled in for another assessment by the Health Advisory Board due to insufficient evidence to pass on scrutiny. I have an appointment to discuss this with the GP tomorrow, but with my condition and being on my own, it is going to be tough to get through, to express what I need without getting wound up or without losing the plott, or coming across as difficult! I am having to do all of this on my own.

I do not feel able to go through another assessment like the last one. I was ill for one week after it.

To make things even more difficult, I am seeing two Psychiatrists. One is a locum, who stands in for the main Psychiatrist, who works part time. (sigh!) The letter I sent to the Health Advisory Board was from the locum Psychiatrist. I suspect that is why it was not accepted as evidence.

I am currently struggling to live on £71 per week. I am not even getting that, as I am having social fund loans deducted and a housing benefit overpayment also deducted, which is leaving me with around £57 per week to live on. I have contacted the benefits section and been informed that this is the lowest reduction that can be made on the benefits I am on.

I wonder if ANYONE can help me with this or point me in the right direction so that I could sort this issue out and get the benefit entitlement that I need to get well. I cant possibly go out to work in this condition, but I am beginning to think it is the only way round getting food to eat and to be able to put electricity on my meters. However, I have been unable to hold down a full time job most of my life, and have only recently begun to understand why.

maybe there is someone out there who has been through this and knows the ropes, or has some suggestions. I have tried to contact Benefits Advisory Services in my area, there are none, and I have also gone down the route of mental health advocacy, there is a 5 month waiting list in my area, I applied to them in October last year, they wrote back last week and told me I was still on the waiting list.

Any advice other than going to any of these agencies will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks.