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Thread: backpayment not disregarded

  1. #1

    backpayment not disregarded

    In September the DWP asked for up to date info on my finances in relation to my ESA
    I sent them all bank statements etc

    They have taken 7 weeks to respond and have reduced my ESA by £5 a week

    as usual their idea of the 'explanation' has no detail
    and nothing adds up to the figures they have used

    HOWEVER

    earlier in the year I got a substantial back payment from them, they told me at the time it would be disregarded, but have never said as much in writing

    in my letter to them this September I provided evidence of said back payment, in a separate account - and highlighted where it had been transferred and used (has to go through current acc.)

    Apart from that money, my finances are considerably lower than last year due to paying many solicitors bills for divorce

    SO
    it is clear they have counted the back payment as money in savings, but confusingly seem to have taken just sufficient off to keep me below the £16k - stating I have £15500.00 (even though with the back payment, I am over)

    I want to ask for MR
    I am so frustrated because they say I can ask for information and I clearly wrote on the letter, and on ALL relevant statements , that I understood the back payment to be disregarded
    and I ALSO asked for them to tell me in writing how long that amount would be disregarded

    I am so sick of the stupid standard letters and responses that don't answer questions and don't follow what they say they will do

    could someone please tell me if I am wrong in all this or if I am justified in going to MR
    thank you

  2. #2
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    It depends on the amount of your backpayment.

    Backdated payments from the DWP for 'official error' are disregarded for the life of the ESA claim if the payment received was more than £5,000.
    If it's less than £5,000 they are disregarded for 52 weeks only.

    Any interest made on the backpayment will not be disregarded and will count as savings in the normal way.

    A reduction in ESA of £5 a week says that they have taken £7,250 into account as savings (6,000 + 5x250) and disregarded the rest.

    (If they were counting £15,500 as savings then the reduction would be £38 a week).
    Last edited by nukecad; 10-24-2019 at 02:52 PM.
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  3. #3
    sorry I have not been very clear

    the £5 is IN ADDITION to the amount they already deducted

    in their letter in September they listed what savings I had which they had been working from

    the difference is my new CURRENT savings have gone down by more than £2000
    so surely the esa should have increased by at least £8 (8x250 less)

    but instead it has gone the opposite way
    so they MUST have counted the back payment

    the payment I got was over £5k, but I do not know if it was counted as an official error or not since they never gave me a proper explanation for it despite me asking

    ed.
    YES nukecad - their reduction is now £38/week

  4. #4
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    Looks like it's MR/appeal time then, at least that should force a clearer explanation from them.
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  5. #5
    There is two possibilities, either they think you intentionally spent the money to get more benefit. Or not disregarded the backdated payment, I agree with nukecad, do a MR.

  6. #6
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    Hello Walker

    As a last resort, you could try involving your MP, explaining how they (the DWP) have been ignoring your written requests for a clear explanation.

    I had to do this a few years ago, as my written requests for an explanation, regarding my ESA being stopped after returning from a two week holiday(of which they were informed) were being ignored. My MP's intervention, did result in a written reply.

    Although, of course your MP's mind may be on something else at the moment beginning with B.....

    I hope you get it all ironed out soon.

  7. #7
    ha ha Buble

    I am contemplating writing to complaints rather than MR
    because I don't believe an MR will explain anything
    all it will do is either change the amount up/down or keep the same

    I have just looked again at my amounts and there may be something in what Worried says
    because if I factor in all the amounts I have withdrawn from the backpayment they could have included them all
    except one
    and all of them bar two are payments to another bank acc. because I was helping my son pay for his wedding
    but since he is in a different country I could only transfer money to him rather than paying for 'goods' directly

    although I still believe it is wrong for them to include as these were all payments from the back paid amount and I indicated
    that VERY clearly on my bank statements

    for goodness sake
    I am not trying to get more money than is due
    and I was only able to help my son because of that back payment
    and they had told me on the phone it would be disregarded and could be spent however

    but of course I have nothing in writing

    also correction it is down £7/week not £5
    Last edited by walker; 10-24-2019 at 04:44 PM.

  8. #8
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    When it's disregarded you can do what you want with it and deprivation does not come into it at all.

    The fact that you did put it in a seperate account should have made things simpler.
    I assume you transfered the money to your son from that account.

    As for the rest.
    All I can think is that maybe they think you should have spent the disregarded money before touching your other savings?

    I'm not sure what the law or their own guidance says about that, but I suspect it's time to look it up.
    If they are trying it with you they'll no doubt try with everyone.
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  9. #9
    I get what you are saying Nukecad
    but the account I have the back payment in is a savings acc. and I can only spend it online if I transfer it through my current acc.

    but I had great big arrows on 6 months of statements, showing the amounts

    if I had used that same amount from my other savings, then I could understand they would say as you have -
    but I didn't
    I did not pay anything for the wedding from my 'counted' savings,
    the reason those savings have gone down is purely solicitor costs

    I am in a very poor state mentally right now (again!)
    and I can honestly say these people make me become so unsafe

    my crisis team have suggested getting an advocate but as you know I managed the back payment stuff myself - well actually only because you were there 'by my side' throughout.

    I think it is the feeling of impotence against them
    they do what they like, say what they like and take as long as they like

    every time I ring them I shake and panic
    I have enough fear in my life from my mh and they just add more and more to it

    I feel if I call them tomorrow and ask for an MR, then back it up with a letter - it will take another bloody 7 weeks
    then they will give the same result, then it will be tribunal

    It is too much, too too much

  10. #10
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by walker View Post
    the account I have the back payment in is a savings acc. and I can only spend it online if I transfer it through my current acc.
    I suspect that is the problem.

    Once it was transfered your currrent account they have probably (unreasonably) regarded it as normal savings and not disregarded backpayment?
    So in that case you would have to justify if it was 'reasonable' spending.
    I'm guessing.

    Take a few days off and get your head back together, it's no good challenging them when your head is confused.
    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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