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Thread: ESA to UC Transition advice.

  1. #1

    ESA to UC Transition advice.

    Hi All,
    I am currently transition from ESA to UC, and am Ind esoerate need of advice and confirmation of my rights in the process.
    I recently moved (1st October) in to a full service universal credit area. I previously received ESA Support group and housing benefit, and have therefore been forced to make a new claim for universal credit in my new area.
    My ESS was in the process of being reassessed, I had submitted an ESA50 and was waiting for the resolution of a complaint to CHDA before getting a decision/face to face assessment date.
    My understanding of the regulations was that as of the datebof my UC claim, as I was in receipt of SG ESA, that entitlement would automatically transfer to my UC claim, meaning I would receive the LCWRA component immediately, and would not have to provide fit notes to prove I am unfit for work.
    At my first meeting with my work coach in relation to my UC claim today, I have been told that I will have to provide fit notes, and that if my reassessment date for ESA has already passed, I will not receive any LCWRA component u til I've had a work capability assessment. As far as I know the work coach is wrong about this, and I should automatically receive the LCWRA regardless of my reassessment date having passed, as I still receive ESA and have not been found fit to work.
    If anyone one has any advice on the legal aspects of the process, and what I'm entitled to in terms of LCWRA, and wether I should have to provide fit notes, that would be an amazing help. Also any practical advice as to what my next step is, do I submit a fit note and start a new WCA process? Who should I complain to? And how do I make sure I get my full disability entitlement on my claim straight away?
    Thanks in advance for any advice anyone can give!

  2. #2
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    You have come to the right place.

    I have already covered the legal aspects of this in a thread dedicated to the migration to UC from ESA.

    In particular you are correct and they are wrong.
    Your existing entitlement to Limited Capability should transfer automatically from ESA to UC.
    No need for sicknotes, no need for a UC50, no need for a new WCA. (But you may be due one anyway).

    We still occasionally still see story like yours where they don't seem to know this, but we used to see it a lot in the past.

    I'm guessing your particular problem is because you are awaiting a new assessment for ESA, and some UC case managers still do not understand that your limited capabiity continues until that decision is made.
    (Some still seem to think that the Prognosis date is an award end date).

    Anyway here is a direct link to the legal situation on this: (You might want to read the rest of that thread as well).
    https://www.youreable.com/forums/sho...l=1#post133915

    I suggest that you ask/tell whoever is telling you this that they refer to a Decision Maker with regard to that Regulation 19.

    We had a similar case about a fortnight ago and once they knew what regulation to quote at them they backed down within a day and awarded Limited Capability from the start of the UC claim.
    (Sorry can't just put my finger on that thread at the moment).
    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
    You are right and they are wrong.

    Read Nukecad's excellent post here:

    https://www.youreable.com/forums/sho...l=1#post133915

    and make a note in your journal that you are currently in the support group and this should be automatically transferred to UC. You can quote the legislation in Nukecad's post.

    I am presuming that you were on income based ESA but please check that your award letter to see if you were on contribution based ESA with an income based 'top up'.

    If you are then the process will be slightly different but your support group should still be honoured.

    edit: Note to self - type much quicker!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I try my best

  4. #4
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pmlindyloo View Post
    edit: Note to self - type much quicker!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    LOL, I must have started before you cos I spent some time searching for that old thread.

    Here it is, slightly different to this one as it also involved a tribunal decision, but it shows that quoting Reg.19 at them got it sorted within a day:
    https://www.youreable.com/forums/sho...l=1#post147410
    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. #5
    Thank you very much for your replies, good to have the legal aspects confirmed and to know I'm not going mad!
    In terms of action going forward, I have already left a message on my UC journal quoting the regulation to my case manager, and requesting a call back from them, as the work coach told me they were the person that actually authorized payments and would decide my eligibility. I had, previous to my appointment today, quoted the regulation in my journal, and quoted the regulation again in the appointment, as well as showing a printed out copy, but again the work coach refused to acknowledge this applied if my reassessment date has passed.
    Would my best course of action to be again quote that regulation on the journal to my work coach, and ask for a decision maker to look at that? Should I attempt to get the fit note, or refuse on the basis I shouldn't need one? Who is it that actually assigns me as unfit for work/in receipt of LCWRA, can the work coach do that?
    Thanks again!

  6. #6
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    The work coaches seem to be a half-way decision maker, so don't have the training/or power to do what a DM can do.

    If you look at that case from 3 weeks ago it was only when the DM got involved that they all learnt something.

    So yes, insist that it goes to a DM level, if that still fails which it shouldn't then there is always MR/appeal.

    With the fit notes then if you can get them (and why shouldn't you) then send them in "under protest".
    You can send fit notes online now if you can scan or photograph them.

    The only person who can find you fit for work is a Decision Maker, and then only following a Face to Face assessment.
    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
    Thanks again, I had read the general information post before, it's really very good, very helpful and was what originally confirmed in my mind I was correct about the transfer, having had conflicting advice from ESA and UC.
    I have sent the following messages to my work coach/ case manager in my UC journal.

    Further to our conversation earlier concerning my transition from ESA to UC, and the implications for benefits I receive and having to provide fit notes, I have confirmed my prognosis date. I have also contacted C.A.B, and done through research from various sources about how the process should work in my case. All of this has confirmed that I am correct in my assertion that I should automatically, from day one of my claim, be classed as unfit for work without the need for fit notes or jobcentre appointments, and I should receive the LCWRA component immediately in my first payment, due to the fact I was in receipt of ESA when making my UC claim. This clearly states in Regulation 19 of the Transitional Provisions act 2014, the peice if UK law that governs what happens to someone in my position. This regulation applies regardless of my prognosis date, as the prognosis date is not a claim end date, and I cannot be refused the LCWRA component of UC unless I have been found fit to work by a Decision Maker after a face to face assessment
    As you disagree with this, I would like my case to be I elevated to a Decision Maker immediately, so that they can review my case and I can receive my full rights under the law, including receiving the LCWRA component without having to provide fit notes.
    I would like to add I fully appreciate that you have only told me what you have been trained in, but I respectfully argue that that training/information you have received is contrary to the laws that apply.


    2018 at 4:16pm I would like to urgently request a phone call from my Case Manager, regarding my transition from ESA (support group) to UC. As per Regulation 19 of the Transitional Provisions regulations ( https://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/.../regulation/19 ) as I was in receipt of ESA Support Group, I should immediately be classed as unfit for work, and receive the full LCWRA component of UC in my first payment, and until such date as I have been assessed as fit to work and that legal entitlement ends.
    Today at my first meeting with my work coach, she has told me that I will have to start a new work capability assessment and have to provide fit notes, and that if my initial date for ESA reassessment has passed, I will receive no LCWRA component in my UC. This is clearly wrong, I should not have to provide fit notes to prove I am unfit for work as I already receive ESA. I would like a phone call back urgently to confirm I will receive the LCWRA component, and not be required to provide fit notes.

    Should those messages cover all my bases for now?
    Thanks again for the invaluable advice, really helps!

  8. #8
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    You seem to have covered it and stated the law to them, all you can do is wait for their reaction.

    (TBH I would have quoted reg. 19 in full at them, so they didn't have to look it up.
    But I'd leave that for now and see what they come back with before sending anything else).

    I also don't think I would have said the bit about the training.
    Remember that you are going to be dealing with your Case Manager for a long time so it's not really a good idea to put their nose out of joint at the start by telling them that they don't know their job. (Even if it is true).
    Your CM will learn they were wrong without you telling them, and will then have learned something that will make things easier for others in future.

    One thing to note is that although they will give LCWRA from the start of your claim don't automatically expect payment for the LCWRA element in your first UC payment, it may not be there.
    It will be backpaid, but they are/have been having trouble passing the information/authorisation between the ESA and UC systems.

    The UC system was never designed to 'talk' to other benefit systems, so it has to be done 'by hand'.
    (Like most of UC it was all rushed out to cover only Jobseekers and the rest was 'leave it till we need to').
    The reports are that they are getting better at it as they see more migrations, and will need to be when they start migrating everybody, but they are not quite there yet.
    Last edited by nukecad; 10-11-2018 at 11:53 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.

  9. #9
    Hi again,
    Thanks for the response, I have no received a number of replies from my work coach, which are as follows:

    As explained to you yesterday, your case manager will be contacting ESA to obtain details of your ESA claim. If you are in the support group, your extra element will be added when your case manager makes your assessment on the 31st of October.

    I did not disagree with you that you are in the support group. I outlined the process of what would happen if after contacting ESA your case manager found out you are not in the support group and the process of starting a WCA through us.

    If you need a payment before your assessment period ends we can help you apply for an advance either in the office or over the phone. Alternatively you can do this yourself through your account.

    A decision maker would not decide whether to add the support group element to your entitlement, that would be your case manager after she has had that information back from ESA. I have messaged your case manager your concerns.

    I have continued to insist that my case is elevated to a Decision Maker. Am I within my rights to demand that a decision maker looks at it? Or is my work coach right in arguing that until my CM has assessed me I have to submit fit notes and nothing can be done?
    Thanks again, sorry for the seemingly neverending questions!

    EDIT:
    Latest reply from my work coach:

    I think there is some confusion over what was explained to you yesterday. I am not provided with details of your ESA claim, that information is requested by your case manager and sent to her. She then takes that information into consideration when deciding your entitlement. I made you aware that if you were found to not be in the support group what the process would be with us through UC and that you should have a fit note just in case.

    You do not need a decision maker to look at your claim as your entitlement has not been decided yet. A decision maker has nothing to review. Your case manager has until the end of your assessment period to decide what your entitlement is and if at that point your support element is not included you can ask for your claim to be looked at. At this stage there is nothing to look into until the end of your assessment period.

    Should I continue to insist a decision maker looks at my claim now?
    Last edited by AskewUrchin; 10-11-2018 at 12:53 PM.

  10. #10
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    All that seems fair enough.

    Like them I think that you may have misunderstood what you have been told.

    They have accepted that you are entitled to UC-LCWRA from the start of your UC claim.
    They are not disputing that at all.

    But at the moment they need the 'official' form (an MGP1) from ESA to be able to put it on the UC system 'officially'.

    Until they get that form then 'officially' they can't add the LCWRA to the UC claim - but unofficially they know that they will be doing so once they do get the form.

    This is a quote from a Freedom of Information request about how the process works:
    When an MGP1 is received, case managers are instructed via prompts in the UC
    system to input the previous Work Capability Assessment decision to ensure the
    correct amount of UC is awarded.
    So they are not disputing anything that you say, they are just waiting for the paperwork to come through from ESA.

    The rest of what your Work Coach said to you is just the standard speech they have to give to everyone about the process of claiming LCWRA with UC.
    Your Work Coach knows it doesn't apply to you, but had to say it anyway or they will get a reprimand for not doing their job.

    There is nothing you can do at the moment to speed things up, everyone is just waiting for that MGP1 form to come through from the ESA to UC.

    Once they get that form and enter the details then everything will be 'official' and you will have UC-LCWRA, which will be backpaid to the start of your UC claim.

    You will have to accept a Claimant Commitment, but don't worry about it. (I've seen them so know what they do).
    It is poorly worded and the first box says-
    "I'll do everything that I can to find work or earn more."
    The main point to note there is the "everything that I can" - they accept that you will have LCWRA when the paperwork comes thorough so "Everything that I can" is "nothing" and they won't give you anything to do.
    Last edited by nukecad; 10-11-2018 at 01:47 PM.
    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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