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Thread: Esa mandatory reconsideration

  1. #1

    Esa mandatory reconsideration

    I have requested a MR as I did not attend the ESA assessment in May. I was being re-assessed (I was in the support group). I have not claimed any benefit since then. Do I need to send a fit note from the GP to cover me since May when I was found fit for work?

  2. #2
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    Yes, get fit notes, but you don't necessarily need to send them in yet.
    You can send them now if you want to, and you can do it online to make it easier: https://www.gov.uk/send-fit-note
    Whatever you do keep them safe, and keep copies if you do send them by post.

    I assume that your ESA has been stopped altogether?

    It will help us to help you if we are clear just what has happened here (It's been a while since May):
    • You failed to attend a WCA, that's clear enough. (But it might help if you can explain why you didn't go).
    • They should have sent you a form BF223 to ask if you had 'Good Reason' for not attending.
    • Did you return that form, but they subsequently rejected your reason? Or did you not get/return the form?
    • So you have now asked for a MR of that decision that you didn't have good reason for not attending?

    Is all that correct?
    Dates when each of those things happened might also help if you have them.

    Assuming that is what has happened then you should wait for their reply to the MR, and if they still refuse then it's time to appeal to the First Tier Tribunal.

    Provided that you have not claimed Universal Credit in the meantime then once your appeal is lodged with the court you can then ask for ESA to be put back into payment (at assessment rate) pending the appeal being heard.
    If you want backpaying for the time since your ESA was stopped then you will need to provide (or have already provided) the fit notes to cover that period. (No fit notes, no backpayment).

    If you do claim Universal Credit in the meantime then things get a bit more complicated with the backpayment of ESA - and you cannot (normally) go back onto ESA once you have claimed UC.

    To give better advice for your particular circumstances it would also be helpful if we know more about your ESA.
    You say that you were in Support Group, but-
    • Was it Contribution Based or Income Related ESA (or both)?
    • Were you transfered from Incapacity Benefit to ESA?
    • Did your ESA include the Severe Disability Premium? (£65.85 a week).
      If you don't know then if you tell us how much ESA you were being paid we should be able to work it out.
    • Do you also claim DLA/PIP?
    • Do you live alone?
    The answers to all of those could be important as to what you should do, and what should happen, next.
    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
    Where do I begin?

    I will answer your questions bit by bit - this process is too much for me.

    I was dreading the ESA re-assessment this year.

    I experienced similar problems transferring from Income Support to ESA. I went without any income for about 18 months, I think, but I can't remember the dates clearly. Eventually, I was transferred onto Income Related ESA (SG) in May 2015. I struggled to complete the ESA 50 form and a home assessment was arranged - the DWP were trying to help me at that stage, I think, as I was struggling with the ESA 50.

    Somehow, I managed to get a detailed letter to the DWP from a supportive GP (for which I was charged), which the DWP received the day BEFORE the scheduled home assessment, and I was transferred to Income Related ESA (SG) based on the letter. There was no home assessment, as the DWP said the letter (4 pages) from the GP would be sufficient. The letter focused on the impact of my medical issues on the relevant 'descriptors/ activities' (is that terminology used for ESA - I think I may have expressed that incorrectly), for me.

    I realise the situation has changed since 2015. There are far fewer people eligible for the SG now - the DWP has clamped down on the number of ESA applicants entering the SG.

    This year I was on Income related ESA. Transferred from Income Support. I do not claim DLA/ PIP. I live with my parents. No, the ESA payment did not include SDP. I received £128.45 per week. The breakdown was £73.10 & £16.80 & £38.55 = £128.45.

    I will answer the rest of your questions shortly, if that is OK with you.

  4. #4
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    Take your own time, we know it can sometimes be difficult.

    You've already told us a lot more than some people can about your ESA and living situation, that helps clarify things.

    I'm still assuming that the rest about your failure to attend a WCA is as I outlined above, but a few rough dates might help a bit more.

    From what you say it looks as if you should not have been asked to a face to face assessment this time either.
    But they are lazy and just send one to everybody without checking first, and then you have to argue that you can't go.

    So the advice about waiting for the MR decision still stands.
    If that doesn't change anything then we can tell you what to do next. But I don't want to load you down with too much to think about all at once.

    PS. Actually there are more people getting SG awards nowadays than did previously.
    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 for replying.

    I was not well at all earlier this year. I have ME, Fibromyalgia & MS (amongst other issues) & I was experiencing a really bad flare that lasted about five months - it was a really scary time.

    I did call Maximus (?) and ask for a home visit for the assessment but they wanted a letter from my GP. I wasn't well enough to see my GP at the time and I tried to explain this. I did call the GP surgery, but I spoke to a new locum who did not know me and did not understand what I was asking for or why. It was too much for me to go through my medical history with him at the time, over the phone. I did get the form B223 but I did not open any post during this phase because I was very unwell & my fatigue was extremely intense during day hours. I did not realise I had missed the one month MR deadline. My regular GP is back working at my surgery (he runs 2 practices) and has said I can get another letter/report similiar to the one I received in 2015. I spoke to him on the phone well over a month ago, but I am struggling to push things on.

    I would like to pursue the MR although it is well over a month. I know my chances are low, but my regular GP will write a good letter/ report to help me. Should I claim UC in the meanwhile (ESA is my only benefit)? Or is the amount received on UC lower than ESA? I did an online 'chat' with CAB last week & they told me not to apply for UC because if I was successful with the MR, I would receive a lower amount.

  6. #6
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    Before a longer answer I do need to ask-

    Have you reqested an MR?

    Your first post said you had, but your last post says that you missed the 1-month.

    So did you make an MR?
    And if so did they accept it? or reject it for being late?
    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
    Oh God. I have called the DWP and they have said I need to send in a written request with medical evidence - my GP's letter/ report. I don't know if they have rejected the request or not. It is definitely over the one month period though.

  8. #8
    I see you have added a thread (?) about migration from ESA to UC. Do you think I should make a UC claim? I have called the DWP about the MR and they have said I need to write in with some evidence to the address on the last letter I received from them.

    So I'm not really sure 100% if my MR request has been accepted - I just assumed it was. I am worried.

    Any advice on whether I should make a UC claim will be much appreciated in the meanwhile? Thank you.

  9. #9
    I suggest you follow what they said, if the MR request was done over the phone I am not sure if that counts, which might have been the reason they told you to do it in writing.

    So a written request for reconsideration alongside the GP supporting evidence.

  10. #10
    Thanks worried33.

    Nukecad: Should I apply for UC or wait to see if the MR is accepted (I seem to have made the assumption it was accepted)? I will send the medical evidence in writing for the MR and see what happens.

    If applying for UC, would I need to have the medical evidence prepared for that as well? I don't know if it is a good idea to apply for UC at this stage before I know if my MR has been definitely accepted or declined? Thank you in advance.
    Last edited by leo12; 09-18-2019 at 10:16 AM.

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