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Thread: WTC with Disability Element - Change of Circumstances - Universal Credit

  1. #11
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    Good to hear that the accepted the NI conts and allowed the NS ESA claim, and that you got assessed LCWRA.

    Could you tell us how long in weeks it was from your f2f assessment to the date of the decision?
    (They've been up to 9 weeks last year but it looks from what you say that it may have gone down again, unless you were just lucky).

    Did they tell you how long till your next assessment, I notice that it isn't stated on the UCD81?

    To your questions:

    so I think I should get the extra UC money in my 5th monthly payment
    As this is a new claim the first LCWRA element payment should be included in your 4th payment.
    (It's when you apply for limited capability on an existing claim that its the 5th).

    Now, what do I do about the ESA side of things? Does this decision put me in the Support Group for ESA purposes?
    Yes that should happen automatically now. But as you say you may want to send ESA a copy of the UCD81 to make sure.
    The current SG rate is £111.65, going up to £113.55 in April.
    The ESA will be paid fortnightly and deducted from your monthly UC payments.
    (Be aware that as 4 weeks is not the same as a calendar month there may occassionally be a month where there are 3 ESA payments to deduct, but overall the money will still be the same that month).

    NS ESA will continue for as long as you are in Support Group.
    It only stops after 52 weeks if you are in WRAG.
    (So if you get put into WRAG at a future assessment then it will only be paid for 52 weeks, unless you get back into SG again).

    The situation with any backpay from your employer is a funny one with UC.
    They treat any backpayment (whatever it's for) as income for that monthly AP, and so it usually stops payment of UC that month.
    If it's over £6k (probably not for holiday pay) then it will count as savings and thus reduce future UC payments as well.

    Council Tax Relief is also a funny one.
    It's run by the council not the DWP, and each council has it's own rules, some have had their council tax payments go up drastically after migrating to UC from ESA.
    It all depends on the particular council.

    As you say UC is not smooth at all at the start with all the different things to consider, which is the source of many/most complaints about UC.
    But you seem to have handled it well and hopefully things should be smoother in a month or so once it all settles down.
    Last edited by nukecad; 15-02-20 at 17:18.
    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.

  2. #12
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    Thanks for such a quick response. In answer to your questions:

    3 weeks from f2f until decision (and I only got 4 days notice via post to attend the f2f - suppose good in some ways as less time to worry about it).

    No indication anywhere of what I've seen you call in other posts the 'prognosis date'. I'm not bothered about finding out at the moment and wouldn't asking for a date prompt them into doing something they might not otherwise do?

    Good to hear it should be 4th UC payment not 5th which for me will hopefully mean next payment in mid-March for me.

    And good also about the SG and increased rate of ESA.

    Backpayment I mentioned would be in high hundreds ......... if successful

    Will send printed copy of UCD81 to ESA then. Issue of UCD81 stops the need to send in further sick notes as you know, but as another would've been due next week I can see ESA asking for this via post as they've done before if it takes weeks for UC to tell ESA under the standard procedure.

    Did actually phone ESA on Friday to see if telling them over phone might work. Read out the first paragraph of my UCD81 to adviser which as you know says,

    "We’ve decided that you have limited capability for work and work-related activity. This means we won’t ask you to search or prepare for work.

    But she was adamant that because it didn't say Support Group it meant they'd put me in the WRAG. Obviously both ESA terms not UC terms. Nevertheless it introduced doubt into my mind and she ended up being quite rude saying we're never going to agree. She couldn't/wouldn't even tell me if hypothetically there are still two rates for ESA. Hence my post on here yesterday for absolute clarification.

    Definitely worth suggesting to others they check council tax relief when moving to UC. My payment went from the normal £29 to £98 the next month and only after pro-actively contacting council have the remaining payments this council tax year been altered so correct amount will be paid overall. Still out of pocket in cash flow terms though.

    I think I'm quite financially literate and despite some severe mental health issues, can normally look at things like the above, albeit slowly and come back to it the next day if necessary. Transition from SSP to ESA and UC must be quite a common occurrence yet it's been highly stressful and fraught with problems. Other issues I had early on included having to accept claimant commitments in my journal to look for work when I was clearly signed off sick, very unwell, and awaiting a WCA. Queried this and the 'work coach' said it was just a standard commitment which couldn't be changed on the system and basically if I didn't accept it I wouldn't get any money.

    Good things are the few questions I've asked via the journal have been answered quickly in the journal and when I met work coach f2f to take in ID docs, advance was offered to see me over first couple of weeks and the money was in my back account within the hour.

    Do have another issue involving overpayment of WTC. Told them about change of circumstances on day of change but they went on and paid me out more WTC, a full 7 days after my UC application. You can't get WTC and UC at same time is their argument (correct) and seemingly that I should have provided a running commentary on the ins and outs of all my various benefit applications. I questioned using a form TC846 and gov gateway. That was rejected.

    Asked for it to be looked at again and this time sent medical evidence of my mental health state at the time, continuing to argue I met all my responsibilities and they didn't. Also on a technical point that their systems shouldn't allow WTC to be paid once UC claimed. Weirdly, it's fine for me to receive ESA and WTC for an overlap of 5 days.

    Used the online equivalent of the WTC/AP form for the second appeal, and uploaded scans of medical evidence document. They say you can only question the first decision once, so not sure how to proceed if second appeal turned down. Any thoughts from anyone, particularly on the appeals process?

  3. #13
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    3 weeks is not bad seeing how long they have been taking.

    Looks like you got a numpty phone jockey, LCW/LCWRA are the correct terms in the ESA legislation. (WRAG/SG are entirely made up by the DWP because they didn't like the implications of Limited Capability).

    Other benefits continuing is a very common problem.
    They always class it as an overpayment of UC though.
    That's because with UC all overpayments have to be paid back, even if it's entirely their fault/official error.
    There is a lot more to that, they are even claiming old overpayments of old benefit that they couldn't claim under the old benefits rules because it was official error - that's not got to high court yet but will and they"ll lose again.
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  4. #14
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    Thanks for previous reply on 16/2 nukecad. Even more numptiness this week with DWP still demanding another sick note despite the UC decision and me sending DWP a copy of the UC decision letter in post which they acknowledged receiving. 52 mins on the phone and I'm still not certain they know what's going on. Insisting they'll be no change in my ESA rate. Will just have to wait and see what payments are actually made going forward I think.

    On another matter, looks like I might now be successful in getting old employer to pay out outstanding hols pay of about £1k plus several hundred in what is effectively compensation for the monies being paid so late. The single payment would wipe out my UC for the month it's paid. The £1k being hols pay is obviously earned income for UC purposes. What about the compensation monies? Any possible way it could be argued to NOT be earned income? It's tantamount to a gesture of goodwill I suppose. Thoughts welcome?

    Thanks

  5. #15
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    My only thought on that is that it would still be income whatever it's for; but probably not worth bothering yourself about as long as it's all paid in the same UC month.

    If £1k income is already going to wipe out UC for that month then another couple of hundred can't wipe it out any more can it?
    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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