Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: Migration from ESA to Universal Credit - the facts.

  1. #1
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    Posts
    7,806

    Migration from ESA to Universal Credit - the facts.

    Scroll down or click these links for more info on:


    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Here's a quick recap of what is actually happening with ESA and migration to Universal Credit at the moment.

    As of the current time: (July 2019).

    The whole country is now 'Full Service' Universal Credit for new Income Related benefit claims.
    (Any new claim for an Income Related benefit now has to be Universal Credit - Unless you have the SDP paid with a benefit, or did have it in the previous month)

    Nobody is being made to change from Income Related ESA to Universal Credit - yet.
    (This is called 'Managed Migration' and will happen, but for most it's not happening yet).
    (It will start in July 2019 for a pilot of 10,000 claimants, it will start with IR benefit claimants in Harrogate).

    Contribution Based ESA will not change to Universal Credit. All Contribution Based benefits stay outside of Universal Credit.
    (It is only Income Reated benefits that will migrate).

    It does not matter which ESA group you are in. - The only criteria is Income Related or Contribution Based.

    It is possible to have CB ESA with a Universal Credit top-up.
    (Just like you can have CB ESA with an IR ESA top-up).

    In the future those who change from IR ESA to Universal Credit by 'Managed Migration' will not get any less money.
    (There will be 'Trasitional Protection' to make sure you don't get any less money than your ESA and other IR benefits as a total).

    BUT

    You can be changed from Income Related ESA to Universal Credit if you have a 'Change of Circumstances'.
    (This is called 'Natural Migration').

    This CANNOT happen if you have, or are entitled to the Severe Disability Premium on any benefit.
    (SDP with ESA, IS, JSA, or HB).

    Not all 'Changes of Circumstances' will trigger a migration to Universal Credit.
    (For instance a change of health circumstances that moves you from WRAG to SG, or vice-versa, should not trigger a migration to Universal Credit).

    It will only happen if you need to make a brand new claim for an Income Related benefit.
    (For example if you are claiming HB but move to a house to a different local authority area you will have to claim UC-Housing Element in the new area, a brand new claim).
    (If you move house in the same Local Authority area this does not apply, you can stay on HB. It only applies if you move to a different Local Authority).

    Being found Fit for Work at a reassessment may be one such circumstance, (but you may have a choice).
    (See : What happens if I have to claim UC during an ESA Mandatory Reconsideration?).

    Contribution Based 'New Style' ESA WRAG ending after 365 days is another 'Change of Circumstances' that also counts.
    This is because after 365 days CB are over you technically have to make a new claim for Income Related benefit. So this would have to be a new UC claim.
    BUT
    If you still have 'Old Style' ESA CB WRAG then you can still change to IR WRAG by means of an ESA3 once the 52 weeks are up.
    (After December 2019 there will be no 'Old Style' ESA CB WRAG awards left).

    There is no 'Transitional Protection' for 'Natural Migration' by a change of circumstances, but new laws means you should not end up with less money.
    You could end up with substantially more, it all depends on your individual circumstances.
    See Will I be worse off on UC than ESA?
    You need to check carefully before considering any house move, particularlarly you housing costs and any Council Tax Relief which may be different at the new house.


    Those are the main points about migration from ESA to Universal credit at the current time.
    Obviously it does not cover all the little wrinkles, that would just get too long and complicated.

    And yes, the DWP are making some wrong decisions about it. (They always do with something new).
    If they do get something wrong then of course you can still ask for MR and appeal.

    This thread will be kept closed to posts, to keep it clear of distractions, but I will try to keep it up to date.
    Last edited by nukecad; 07-26-2019 at 08:38 AM. Reason: Updated July 2019.

  2. #2
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    Posts
    7,806

    Moving House and Universal Credit.

    Will moving house mean that I have to claim Universal Credit instead of ESA?

    If you have SDP with any benefit then you cannot claim UC in any circumstances.
    If you don't have SDP then:

    If you already claim HB and move within your current Local Authority you can stay on your current benefits.
    If you are already claiming Housing Benefit with them you can keep claiming it even for a different property.
    This DWP memo, A7/2018, issued to Local Authorities in September 2018 explains it.
    https://www.gov.uk/government/public...al-authorities
    See in particular paragraphs 9 and 10. (my highlighting)
    Change of address within an LA area

    9. If an existing HB claimant moves home within the same LA area, a new HB claim is not required and LAs may continue to award HB based upon the change of circumstances. A claim to UC is not needed if the claimant moves house within the same LA area.

    10. It is only when a claimant moves out of the LA boundary that an HB award ends and a new HB claim would have to be made but is prevented by the UCFS rules. This means that a UC claim must be made for housing costs instead.
    Certain 'Sheltered' or 'Supported' housing can also still claim HB - but check that carefully, not all sheltered/supported housing qualifies there has to be a level of care included.

    Making a new claim for UC housing element will mean that any existing IR ESA award (and any other IR benefit) would be 'Naturally' migrated into UC as well.
    ESA would be migrated to UC with a Limited Capability for Work element, or a Limited Capability for Work Related Activity element.

    This should not trigger a new Work Capability Assessment on it's own, but you will still have to have your regular reassessments just like anyone with LCW or LCWRA.

    GO TO TOP
    Last edited by nukecad; 07-26-2019 at 08:16 AM. Reason: New legislation Jan 2019.

  3. #3
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    Posts
    7,806

    Will I need to have a new Work Capability Assessment if I Migrate to UC?

    If you have SDP with any benefit then you cannot claim UC in any circumstances. (Until you are Managed Migrated).
    If you don't have SDP then:

    You do not need to be reassessed just because you Migrate from ESA to Universal Credit.

    NOTE- This does not apply if you make a new claim for UC during a Mandatory Reconsideration, that is a new claim and not a 'Migration' - see the next post.

    You may need to be reassessed though if your health circumstances have changed, or if you were due for a reassessment anyway.

    It's quite rare for the Jobcentres/UC to get this wrong now, but it may still happen that they say you need to be reassessed just because you migrated.
    (Some of them still don't seem to understand that a 'Prognosis date' is not an 'end of award date').

    THAT IS WRONG.
    The DWP have argued that this is not against the law because the primary legislation says that they can reassess at anytime.
    However UC legislation says that they should not reassess just because someone has been migrated to UC.

    Insisting that you have to be reassessed before they will migrate your ESA Limited Capability element into UC is against the law.

    The Legal bit-
    "The Universal Credit (Transitional Provisions) Regulations 2014" Regulation 19 clearly states that if you are migrating from ESA WRAG or ESA SG to Universal Credit then you should automatically be awarded the UC equivalent (UC-LCW or UC-LCWRA) with no need for a new assessment.

    Transition from old style ESA
    19.
    —(1) This regulation applies where–
    (a) an award of universal credit is made to a claimant who was entitled to old
    style ESA on the date on which the claim for universal credit was made or
    treated as made (“the relevant date”); and
    (b) on or before the relevant date it had been determined that the claimant was
    entitled to the work-related activity component or to the support component.


    (2) Where, on or before the relevant date, it had been determined that the claimant
    was entitled to the work-related activity component

    (a) regulation 27(3) of the Universal Credit Regulations (award to include LCW
    and LCWRA elements) does not apply; and
    (b) the claimant is to be treated as having limited capability for work for the
    purposes of regulation 27(1)(a) of those Regulations and section 21(1)(a) of
    the Act.


    (3) Unless the assessment phase applied and had not ended at the relevant date(a),
    in relation to a claimant who is treated as having limited capability for work under
    paragraph (2)–
    (a) regulation 28 of the Universal Credit Regulations (period for which the LCW
    or LCWRA element is not to be included) does not apply; and
    (b) the LCW element is (subject to the provisions of Part 4 of the Universal
    Credit Regulations) to be included in the award with effect from the beginning
    of the first assessment period.

    (4) Where, on or before the relevant date, it had been determined that the claimant
    was entitled to the support component–

    (a) regulation 27(3) of the Universal Credit Regulations does not apply; and
    (b) the claimant is to be treated as having limited capability for work and workrelated
    activity for the purposes of regulation 27(1)(b) of those Regulations
    and section 19(2)(a) of the Act.


    Continues...
    (My higlighting in red).
    http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2..._311216_en.pdf
    End of Legal bit.

    If you migrate and they say you must be reassessed before getting a Limited Capability element paid with your UC to you then:
    • Politely tell them that they are wrong, ask to talk to a supervisor, and quote that regulation 19 at them.
    • If they still won't listen then ask for a Mandatory Reconsideration, (they will tell you there is no MR because they have not made a decision, again bullshine), - insist that they have made a decision not to award you a Limited Capability element and you want to challenge that decision.
    • If they grant the MR then again quote that regulation 19 at them, in writing.
    • If they still won't grant an MR then it's time for appeal, and a written complaint to DWP, (and your MP).


    Of course if they send you a UC50 anyway then there is not a lot that you can do other than fill it in and send it back.
    Once the reassessment process has started you can't stop it.

    You should still MR/appeal to get the element added from the start of your UC claim if they haven't added it from then.

    GO TO TOP
    Last edited by nukecad; 07-26-2019 at 08:17 AM. Reason: Updated March 2019.

  4. #4
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    Posts
    7,806

    What happens if I have to claim UC during an ESA Mandatory Reconsideration?

    New Claims for ESA.
    New claims for ESA should not need to claim UC during a Mandatory Reconsideration.

    New ESA claims will be 'New Style' Contribution Based claims and so outside of UC.
    If you need to ask for MR on a CB ESA claim then you can claim 'New Style' CB JSA whilst waiting for the MR result.
    (Unless you have already been on CB ESA assessment rate for 6 months or more, after 6 months on a CB benefit CB JSA is no longer payable).

    Reassessments for ESA.
    ESA claimants that are found Fit-for-Work at reassessment have a choice.
    They will (almost always) need to make an Income Related claim, which will now be Universal credit.
    However if you have SDP, or had it in the previous month, then you cannot claim UC and so can still make a new claim for IR JSA during the MR, and then go back to IR ESA during appeal.

    So what are the choices? (If you don't/didn't have SDP).
    1. You could claim nothing during the MR and go back onto ESA if/when you appeal (They will try to tell you that you can't).
      This should then backpay for the time that you were on MR, but you do need doctors fit notes (MED3) for that time to get backpay for it.
      .
    2. You could claim UC (and ask for an advance payment).

    I now recommend that in most cases you should claim UC, and possibly ask for an advance payment, for the following reasons-
    • Everybody with IR ESA will be migrated to UC in the coming years anyway, so why not get it over with now while you have the chance?
    • If you tell them when claiming UC that you are waiting for an ESA MR/appeal then they won't make you do any jobsearching. (There is now a question where they ask about that on the UC application).
    • You will initially get the same money as you would with JSA or ESA assessment rate during the ESA appeal.
    • If you win at MR or appeal than that decision will automatically get added to the UC as an LCW/LCWRA element and your money reinstated as it would have been with ESA. It would also be backpaid.
    • The amount you would get paid with UC and an LCW element is the same as IR ESA WRAG, within a penny.
    • The amount you would get paid with UC and a LCWRA element is higher than IR ESA SG with the EDP.
      Remember if you have the SDP you cannot claim UC.
    • Any other Income Related benefit you have (Housing Benefit, etc.) will be migrated to UC when you claim it, no need to change those to low income grounds. (Again this will happen anyway in a couple of years).
    • If there is any question about whether ESA would be paid during appeal, because of a previous fit for work decision, this becomes irrelevant. UC will be paid anyway.
    • If you should lose at MR/appeal then you are already on UC and it would just continue to be paid, as a jobseeker. No need to make a new claim.

    The big difference will be that you get paid monthly instead of fortnightly, and that all your IR claims are in one place so you don't need to deal with different departments, and any future changes to your circumstances are much easier to deal with.

    Which you choose to do will depend on your personal circumstances and Finances.
    I suggest that you check carefully how claiming UC would affect you.
    See a benefits adviser, use one of the online benefit checkers, or ask on the forum, we'll need details of what you claim already.
    In particular Council Tax Relief can be a problem with some councils, and you may have to pay more Council Tax if you claim UC. (Unfortunately we can't realy advise about that, you'll need to ask your particular council or a local to you benefits adviser. The online calculators can usually also cope with that).

    Always bear in mind that if your tribunal fails then you will have to start a Universal Credit claim anyway.

    Also remember that if you are found FFW your council will be told and your HB and CTR will stop.
    If you chose not to claim UC then you need to get both these changed to a 'low or no income' basis, if you do claim UC then the CTR is still with the council and you need to get that changed.

    GO TO TOP
    Last edited by nukecad; 03-18-2019 at 01:54 PM. Reason: Advice changed as UC rollout progresses.

  5. #5
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    Posts
    7,806

    Getting an Advance Payment of UC

    Government info. on getting a UC advance payment.
    https://www.gov.uk/guidance/universal-credit-advances

    That is kept updated if/when things change.

    GO TO TOP
    Last edited by nukecad; 01-23-2019 at 07:41 AM.

  6. #6
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    Posts
    7,806

    Can you get free prescriptions with Universal Credit?

    The quick answer is yes, but only if you have low or no other earnings, a child element, or a Limited Capability element.
    (UC can be paid to wage earners, so free healthcare is not an automatic entitlement for all UC claimants).

    https://www.nhsbsa.nhs.uk/help-nhs-p...-prescriptions
    Under the 'Benefits' section says:
    If you’re getting Universal Credit, your entitlement to free NHS prescriptions depends on your earnings for the most recent assessment period. You’re entitled if your earnings during that period were:

    • £435 or less
    • £935 or less if your Universal Credit includes an element for either:
      • a child
      • limited capability for work


    ‘Most recent assessment period’ means the assessment period that ended immediately before the date you claim free NHS prescriptions. It runs for a calendar month.
    Note that there is no box on the back of the prescription to tick for Universal Credit:
    The patient declaration on the prescription form does not yet include Universal Credit. You should tick the Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance box and show your Universal Credit award notice as proof that you’re entitled.
    Here's a link to the NHS Choices page about UC and health costs:
    https://www.nhs.uk/NHSEngland/Health...al-credit.aspx

    GO TO TOP
    Last edited by nukecad; 01-23-2019 at 07:41 AM.

  7. #7
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    Posts
    7,806

    What about Permitted Work?

    There is no concept of Permitted Work with Universal Credit.

    UC is a benefit that can be paid if you are working or not.

    What happens is that any earnings above your 'Work Allowance' are deducted from your UC at 63 pence in the pound.
    (ie. For every pound earned over your Work Allowance, loose 63p of your UC)

    If you have a Limited Cabability element, (either LCW or LCWRA), then your Work Allowance (from April 2019) will be:
    • £503 if you don't have a Housing element included with your UC.
    • £287 if you do have a Housing element included with your UC.

    So if you have a Limited Capability element you can work and earn those amounts without it affecting your UC.

    Always remember that any work that you do may have an effect on your next WCA if it contradicts the reasons for your Limited Capability.

    GO TO TOP
    Last edited by nukecad; 01-23-2019 at 07:42 AM. Reason: Allowance updated

  8. #8
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    Posts
    7,806

    Will I be worse off on UC than ESA?

    You will always get the same or more on UC than you did with ESA

    This is a simple comparison of the IR ESA and Universal Credit rates for a single person over 25 with Limited Capability who is migrated to UC.

    If you are 'Naturally Migrated' now to UC, you may get more money or the same as you get now.
    NOTE- Since 16th Jan. 2019 you cannot be 'Naturally Migrated' if you have the SDP with any 'work replacement' benefit. (You cannot claim UC at all if you have SDP with ESA, IS, or JSA).

    If/when you are 'Managed Migrated', sometime after July 2019, then your money (from all IR benefits) is guaranteed not to decrease.

    This comparision does not show Housing element, Carers element, Child element, Work Allowance, or anything else UC.
    There would be too many variables to do all that.

    I am using 52.143 weeks per year to calculate UC weekly equivalents. (365/7 - Ignoring leap years).

    ESA rates: (2019/2020)
    Personal allowance = 73.10
    WRAG component = 29.05 (Not paid if you first claimed after April 2017).
    SG component = 38.55
    EDP = 16.80
    SDP = 65.85

    UC rates:
    Personal allowance = 317.82
    LCW element = 126.11
    LCWRA element = 336.20

    Results:
    ESA Group
    + premium(s)
    ESA
    Weekly amount
    £
    UC
    Weekly equiv.
    £
    Weekly Difference if
    Naturally Migrated
    (Now)
    Weekly Difference if
    Managed Migration
    (Whenever that starts)
    WRAG
    (After Apr 2017)
    73.15 73.15 +0.00 +0.00
    WRAG
    (pre Apr 2017)
    102.15 102.16 +0.01 +0.01
    WRAG+EDP+SDP
    (After Apr 2017)
    138.95 73.15 Migration Blocked No Diff. (Protected)
    WRAG+EDP+SDP
    (Pre Apr 2017)
    168.00 102.16 Migration Blocked No Diff. (Protected)
    SG 111.65 Contribution Based. Remains ESA. Not migrated.
    SG+EDP 128.45 150.51 +22.06 +22.06
    SG+EDP+SDP 194.30 150.51 Migration Blocked No Diff. (Protected)

    As you can see if Natural Migration would leave you worse off it is now blocked and you can't claim UC.
    When it comes time for Managed Migration that is protected and so you will not be worse off.


    SG only is aways Contribution Based, if there is an IR entitlement then it gets the EDP automatically.
    It is not possible to get WRAG+EDP(only), you would qualify for SDP as well.

    CB ESA stays outside of UC.
    If you have CB ESA with an IR top-up (premium) then the CB stays outside and the IR top-up (premium) becomes a UC top-up.
    If this applies (CB ESA with a UC top-up) then whatever is paid as CB ESA is deducted from your 'standard' UC LCW/LCWRA payment, leaving the same payment overall.

    If you want to then when it comes time to migrate to UC you could close your CB ESA claim altogether and just claim UC instead.
    If you did that you then only have the one claim to deal with, but any savings/capital or income that wouldn't affect CB ESA will affect the UC.

    If you have already been Naturally Migrated UC and have lost the SDP because of that then there will be 'Compensation' for what you have already lost, plus a 'Transitional Payment' added to your ongoing UC payments.
    This should happen sometime later this year, but it's not been finalised yet just how much these payments will be. See IMPORTANT UPDATE below.


    Remember that this is only a simple comparison for a single person, other elements of UC may come into play depending on your circumstances.
    Use one of the online benefit calculators to check your full circumstances and benefits.

    There may also be a change to any Council Tax Relief that you get once you have migrated to UC.
    As this is under the control of each council, and each council has different rules, it is impossible to say here just how that might affect you.

    GO TO TOP
    Last edited by nukecad; 07-26-2019 at 08:03 AM. Reason: Rates updated to 2019/2020

  9. #9
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    Posts
    7,806

    Block on claiming UC if you have SDP.

    As from the 16th January 2019 the law has changed so that you can no longer claim Universal Credit if you have SDP. You will be able to claim 'Legacy' benefits instead.

    The block on those with SDP claiming UC is done by means of a 'Gateway Condition' which will block Natural Migration to UC if you have SDP.
    There is also a clause allowing legacy benefits, such as Housing Benefit, to still be claimed if this applies to you.

    If you have already migrated to UC and so lost your SDP see the next post:

    GO TO TOP
    Last edited by nukecad; 07-26-2019 at 08:42 AM. Reason: New legislation July 2019.

  10. #10
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    Posts
    7,806

    Compensation for lost SDP.

    LATEST July 2019-

    New legislation has been passed and gives details of what those who lost SDP due to Natural Migration will be paid as a "transitional SDP amount" (that's what they are calling it).
    The amounts are as follows:

    Single claimant:
    1. £120 If you have LCWRA in your UC.
    2. £285 If you don't have LCWRA in your UC.

    Joint claimants:
    1. £405 if you had Higher SDP (both entitled) and no person has has become a carer for either of you since you claimed UC.
    2. £120 If (1) doesn't apply and you have LCWRA in your UC.
    3. £285 If (1) doesn't apply and you don't have LCWRA in your UC.

    The above amounts are conditional on no one having become a carer for you since you claimed UC.

    There is also a clause about if you didn't have LCWRA after migration but were awarded it later.

    These figures are still woefully short of what has been lost during Natural Migration (and what will be protected/given during Managed Migration).

    In the simplest case of a single claimant with SDP they will have lost £190.28 a month, the TA in the legislation is £120.
    Which still leaves a shortfall of £70.28.
    That shortfall is roughly the EDP, which has been left out entirely and is not being compensated for.
    (But the gov. can trumpet that they are compensating for the SDP and all is well).

    They are supposed to be already processing these transitional SDP additions, and backpayments.

    However this compensation still does not comply with last years High Court ruling which said that the disparity in TA/TP between Natural Migration and Managed Migration is unlawful, (ie. the protection should be the same for both), so expect it to be back in court again.

    GO TO TOP

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    NOTE: This thread will be kept closed to avoid distraction.

    If you do find it Open it is because I am updating or adding something.

    Please do not post here.
    Last edited by nukecad; 07-26-2019 at 08:45 AM.
    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.

Similar Threads

  1. ESA to Universal Credit under 'managed migration'
    By SwingateLane in forum Benefits - help & advice on disability benefits, incapacity benefits, ESA and DLA
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 12-22-2016, 03:54 PM
  2. Universal credit?
    By birdwatcher in forum Benefits - help & advice on disability benefits, incapacity benefits, ESA and DLA
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 05-21-2015, 10:32 PM
  3. Universal credit
    By kate h in forum Benefits - help & advice on disability benefits, incapacity benefits, ESA and DLA
    Replies: 25
    Last Post: 02-16-2015, 09:47 PM
  4. SDA migration to ESA - credit where it is due
    By buble48 in forum Benefits - help & advice on disability benefits, incapacity benefits, ESA and DLA
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 06-30-2014, 11:00 AM
  5. Universal Credit
    By StueyR in forum News and general discussion
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 05-04-2013, 03:17 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •