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Thread: strange letter from ESA about IR eligibility

  1. #21
    thank you SO much for replying
    I was getting so damn paranoid
    the more stressed I get the worse it is

    I don't think I have a choice about sending information in
    he said he is writing to me - as of yesterday, and that the letter will say what information they require - inc bank statements
    and that I had 1 month in which to reply
    but of course that 1 month began yesterday!!

    also he said he wants statements for april each year, but in 2014 - my savings in april are a lot more than they were by August, when I began claiming housing benefit -
    because I had to move and I had to buy everything from scratch (left hub)

    so i assume i should send statements for then, too

    although i bet they will hide behind the april one

    should i get account numbers blacked out on statements?

    again sorry for all the crazy deleting etc

    i was up in night (as i can see you were also) searching through the bags where i dump every bit of paper that comes in

  2. #22

    and update
    got a phone call from same dwp man earlier
    he said he had spoken to the decision maker and they have said I am not eligible for any back payment at all
    because I was not eligible at the point of transfer - (still living with hub)

    so nada

    and the fact that I became eligible - well tough - basically
    he said it was up to me to claim it and since I didn't - because of course I had no idea it existed -

    he then went on to say I am eligible to apply currently if I want to and gave me a number to call and said I need to tell them I am reporting a change
    I asked if that would trigger a review - he had no answer for that
    he said he would put notes on my file so I can claim it back to...…………………………. yesterday!!

    I have come away to escape it all and got the phone call on the journey here
    so I am fed up as it has triggered all the anxiety back
    but at least I don't have to find all that evidence

    I am still not convinced he is correct but not sure I can do anything else
    clearly - when I was 'migrated' I was not eligible
    my only other point would be why - each year when they sent me a statement saying what I was entitled to
    and it gives the IR amount - cancelled out by the Contribution based one
    why did it NEVER mention anything about the EDP/SDP

    p'd off, tired, stressed, tearful, and now need to hold it together as am at mum's

    oh and he said I should call them today - I cannot deal with that

  3. #23
    I think he is probably right in that this round of backdating is concerned only with the error made when people were transferred from IB to ESA and IR was not looked at as it should have been. Because you would not have been eligible at that time, the error had no effect on your entitlement at the time of transfer so there's nothing to backdate for you. When you separated from your husband and reported that change of circumstances it was up to you to ask for IR entitlememnt to be considered, but I am unsure as to whether you can claim retrospectively so hope fully someone else can answer that.

    Just a thought, but if your CB entitlement would have completely wiped out any IR amount, then you were only entitled to CB and because you had no IR entitlement you would not have been eligible for the premiums in any case.

  4. #24
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    Remember this is the guy who tried to put off in the first place, until you corrected him.
    (Not his fault personally, his training is rubbish and he's only saying what he has been taught).

    Also remember that they (someone who knows more than him) contacted you about this in the first place.

    He is correct that if you did not qualify at the date of transfer you did not qualify then.
    This would take you out of the 'special' rechecking excercise they are doing - it is just they way they are doing it at transfer date only, which a lot of benefit advisors don't like.

    So moving on - Do it yourself, by the normal route which is outside of their 'special' rechecking excercise.

    He is right that you should have told them when you did become eligible, if you wanted to try for IR at the time.
    The fact that you didn't know / weren't told about it doesn't matter to them.
    He is wrong that if you apply now you can't ask to get it backdated to when you did qualify.
    That would be a change of circumstances to an existing claim, and there is no time limiting on claiming back that.
    (He probably doesn't know that and believes he is right, poor training again).

    Ring the DWP and ask them for a form ESA3.
    I'd probably just ask without mentioning this other stuff, it will only confuse them.
    (They may already be sending you one if he's done his job right, but you are probably better asking for one to be sure. I know I wouldn't trust him).

    Fill the ESA3 form in and where it asks for "What date do you want us to re-assess your Employment and Support Allowance claim from?" put the date when you did become eligible.
    Note that they ask this question because there is no time limit on backdating a Change of Circumstance, - if there was then they wouldn't need to ask this question.

    Fill in the rest of the form with your circumstances as they are currently.

    Send it back to them and let things work their course.
    They should then contact you for further information; about why you are asking for backdating and details of your circumstances at that time.

    You can download an example of the ESA3 to practice on from here:
    But don't send them that one, it's only an example to practice on. Ask them for a new one which will have an office address etc. filled in.

    As for the yearly letters, they are very confusing because they use the same letter template for both CB ESA and IR ESA and so have to do strange things to make the payments add up correctly.
    It's something they have been asked/told to change many times but haven't. And they won't be changing them now with UC on the horizon.

    PS. Have you talked to a local advisor about any of this? They can see you face to face, see your letters and paperwork, help you fill in forms, etc.
    You can find one by putting your postcode in here:
    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.

  5. #25
    I knew I could rely on you to give such a sensible in depth reply
    thank you so much

    a couple of things
    all the local advice to me is CAB
    I am sure some must be good, but my town experience is a disaster, and the next town is where I used to live so I am scared of seeing people I know

    re. the form
    he said I should ring the number he told me, and declare a change in circumstances, and ask them for form ESA 3
    he said it was very similar to what we had done over the phone

    I am very concerned about declaring a change in circumstances since I am sure that will trigger a review of my claim
    and then off we go down that yucky trail
    although that will probably happen anyway, now

    and I would still have the same issues around HB/paying back/losing HB etc

    I admire your resilience at being able to wade through all this stuff

  6. #26
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    You can see an ESA3 in that link I gave above so can see the questions it asks.

    Fillling an ESA3 should not trigger a reassessment, it's about your living and financial circumstances and not about your conditions and capabilities.
    Of course you may be due for one anyway, there is a date on your file on the DWP computer and a few months before that date it automatically flags up a referal to CHDA to start the process.

    You shouldn't have to backpay any HB.
    If they find you have an entitlement to IR ESA then you have it from the date they backdate it to.
    Having IR ESA automatically entitles you to full HB from that date. (Unless you have high savings, in which case you couldn't have claimed it anyway).
    If you get a lot of backpay then it could affect future HB payments. (I'm not sure if it would be defered (not counted) for a year).
    If you get CTR then it could affect that, CTR is down to the council and each one has different rules about it.

    I understand your reluctance to use CAB, they do seem to be struggling due to their funding cuts.
    Try putting your current details into a benefit calculator and compare the results to what you are getting now; that should help you decide what to do.
    I like this one:
    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. #27
    according to entitled to - I would go from £304.15(which covers rent and CT and living - down to £104.39 on UC a week,
    so you can probably see why that is stressing me out!!
    it doesn't include the ESA, but that doesn't cover my rent
    oh this is all like stepping across a financial minefield

    is it paranoid to believe they are doing this all to trap me
    that if I do go ahead and apply, they will use that as a reason to refuse my current PiP review
    that they will use it to take me off esa
    that it is all because they have found out I must be a bad person

    that is what is being said in my head

    this is what I read on entitled to, as counted as change in circumstances

    On Contribution-based Jobseeker's Allowance or Employment and Support Allowance and believed to be entitled to Income-based Jobseeker's Allowance or Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
    - Claim Income-based Jobseeker's Allowance or Income-related Employment and Support Allowance - (in NON UC area)
    - Claim Universal Credit (treated as a new claim) - (IN UC AREA)

    please note capitals and colours are for highlight only, not to yell at you or anyone (well apart from dwp perhaps)
    and I think I mentioned the above before, but not sure I wrote it out properly

    that dwp guy yesterday said I should be ringing for the ESA 3 yesterday/today but I really don't want to talk to them atm,
    Last edited by walker; 07-06-2018 at 12:16 PM.

  8. #28
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    First off there is nothing personal in any of this, the DWP are not out to get you.

    They are just going through the system, they don't care about any particular person.
    They haven't got time for that, we are all just numbers on paper to them.

    Don't worry about not ringing them, there is no time limit so it's not something you have to hurry with (It's already been a few years after all).
    Lets see if we can get it sorted so you are happy to do it before you do anything more.

    That calculation does not sound right at all. (or maybe you have missunderstood the results?).

    To start with, ignore that UC result - none of this would migrate you to UC, it just doesn't apply here.
    The UC result is obviously wrong anyway (Unless there is something you haven't told us, savings maybe?).

    I should note here that in the past I have done some testing of a version of that calculator for Entitledto, and it did have some issues with UC calculations unless it was a straight forward new claim. Looks like it may still be having problems with UC in some circumstances.

    At a quick guess about the UC result - remember it does not aply to you anyway.
    Obviously I don't know what you entered (I can probably roughly work it out from the results) but I suspect that your current situation as "believed to be entitled to Income-based" is throwing out the UC part of the calculation and not adding a Housing Element.
    But even without a Housing Element it's not correct for your situation.
    It seems to be the weekly UC equivalent for someone with UC-LCW (WRAG), you would have UC-LCWRA (SG).

    Just to double check something - From what you have told us your current ESA should be £110.75 / week. Is that what you are getting?

    Are you willing to share how much Housing Benefit you are currently getting (weekly or monthly) and I'll have a stab at the correct calculation.
    (I say a stab because I won't be able to include the CT properly because I'm not sure of your councils rules).
    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.

  9. #29
    yes that is the current ESA, and yes I do have savings which is what upsets the applecart
    because whereas HB counts £1 in every £250 - the UC counts £4.35

    I could show you the pdf but I am not happy putting it on the public forum

    my HB is £124.49/week which covers my rent

    I saw that you underlined that it didn't apply to me - I assume that is the bit about IR ESA would (not) count as a change triggering a NEW UC claim

    I have been wading through the gov. legislation again, re. how arrears are treated by HB
    my internet signal has been so intermittent today things kept disappearing

    how I understand it is - for income calculation it would be counted as if it had been given at the time
    and for the lump sum adding to savings, it would be disregarded for 52 weeks
    but not sure if that is right
    and when they disregard it - i assume they will still tell me i cant spend it!??!

  10. #30
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    Cheers, yes it's making possibly more sense with the savings.

    I'm in the pub now but will try to take a stab at calculation later.
    (Sometimes helps understand the DWP if you have a few beers).

    Yes, don't post anything personal or that you are not happy posting.

    Correct about this, on it's own not triggering migration.

    Again correct about the disregard, but as it is a disregard you can spend it how you like in those 52 weeks.
    There's no problem with "deprivation of capital" because it's disregarded for that as well.
    Of course any left after 52 weeks will then count fully as savings.
    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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