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Thread: ESA (cont based WRAG stopped after 1 year) but now called for medical

  1. #1

    Question ESA (cont based WRAG stopped after 1 year) but now called for medical

    Hi there,

    I've just found this site and desperately need guidance so please help. (Apologies if posted in the wrong place!)

    I was on Incapacity Benefit for years (automatically entitled due to high rate care and mobility on DLA) and last year had to transfer over to ESA. My claim was assessed and I was put into the WRAG although I felt I should have been in the SUPPORT group but as I was too unwell to appeal at the time, I reluctantly accepted entry to the WRAG. However, as I was on contribution based ESA, this was stopped after 1 year, which was back at the beginning of September. My last payment was on 12/09/12. I'm not eligible for income based ESA as my partner works.

    Prior to this in June this year, I submitted a supersession request letter as my health had deteriorated considerably since I'd initially submitted my claim in 2011. I was asked to complete a new ESA50, which I did and this was sent off in early August. Since that time, I've heard nothing more, until today! Atos have just phoned me to ask me to go for a medical but I'm undecided whether to attend and this is where I need guidance please ........ I feel very unwell and therefore, I'm not sure I could actually cope with the trauma/anxiety of going for a medical assessment (although my carer would accompany me) but in any event, I am actually financially better off by NOT receiving any ESA payment - I now receive housing benefit, council tax benefit, additional tax credits plus free NHS prescriptions, eye tests and dental treatment. I wasn't getting any of these things before when I WAS getting the ESA. It does seem very odd to me that one benefit is stopped, yet I am now better off than I was when I was actually receiving it!

    My question is this - can I tell Atos that I don't want to attend the medical and wish to withdraw my ESA claim? If so, what reason should I give? Somehow it doesn't seem appropriate to tell them that I'm financially better off without their ESA payments, but that's the truth. My only concern is that I've just sent my DLA renewal form off (I've been receiving DLA for about 6 years now and have always been on both HIGH rate care and mobility) and I'm concerned that if I withdraw my ESA claim, this could jeopardise my DLA renewal claim, which I don't want it to do. I have a motability car which is up for renewal in March and I couldn't manage without it so obviously, I don't want anything to affect my DLA renewal.

    Any guidance would be truly appreciated. Many Thanks.

  2. #2
    davewhit
    Guest
    you need expert advice if I was you I would not go to the medical then the claim would just end. WE know from questions asked in parliment that if you just drop esa there would be no affect on your dla but if you failed the esa test it might affect your dla claim

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    Oct 2012
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    South of Brum, East of Cardiff, North of Paris
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    Quote Originally Posted by davewhit View Post
    you need expert advice if I was you I would not go to the medical then the claim would just end. WE know from questions asked in parliment that if you just drop esa there would be no affect on your dla but if you failed the esa test it might affect your dla claim
    A point well made!

    Many ESA claimants that also have MRC/HRC and/or HRM - DLA are closing down their ESA claim for this very reason. The risks involved in not being awarded ESA are too great.
    They are sensibly choosing to claim JSA instead as DLA is an in work/out of work benefit thus 'protecting' their DLA entitlement.

  4. #4

    Question

    Thank you for your replies.

    I'm in such a quandary over this because I am so concerned about losing my DLA but on the other hand, friends and family are saying to me "just to to the Atos medical for ESA because you've got nothing to lose as you are already NOT receiving any ESA payments"! If only it were that simple!

    When I was transferred from IB to ESA, I never had a medical and was automatically put in the WRAG. The supersession I've asked for was due to a deterioration in my medical conditions and because I felt that I'm eligible for entry to the support group, which of course is not time limited to the 365 days. The suggestion about not going to the ESA medical assessment is what I had been thinking of but I'm not entirely sure how this will work in practice? At the moment, Atos are expecting me to phone them back to arrange an appointment for the medical (I didn't have my diary when I spoke to them earlier). Shall I just not call them back and if they write to me ignore their letters and or phone calls? Or perhaps I could just phone them and say that I've changed my mind and wish to withdraw my supersession claim?

    I just want to do whatever is easiest and will definitely NOT affect my DLA renewal claim going through at the minute. If I just ignore them (Atos), surely there will come a point when they write to me to say that my supersession claim request has been closed down? Obviously this won't affect me financially because I stopped receiving any ESA payments over 3 months ago. Do the ESA team contact the DLA people and tell them that I refused to attend for a medical? If so, wouldn't the DLA assessors think it's odd that I didn't go which could then affect my DLA renewal?

    So sorry to wang on but I just want to be certain that I make the correct decision. Thank you

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