Ileostomy/Ulcerative Colitis, benefits?

Discussion in 'benefits and housing' started by weepiper, Jul 12, 2018.

  1. weepiper

    weepiper Jock under the bed

    Hoping for someone on here to help me navigate an unfamiliar bit of the benefits system.
    My partner is currently in hospital recovering from emergency surgery to remove his whole lower intestine. He became ill quite suddenly a couple of months ago with ulcerative colitis (we didn't know he had it until he was diagnosed after being admitted to hospital at the beginning of June). He's now got an ileostomy. He's been signed off work since the 9th of June and is unlikely to be able to go back for a couple months at the earliest. His company sick pay has just run out and he's now getting just SSP.

    Where do we start with trying to get some financial help for this situation? His SSP doesn't even cover his half of the rent. Might we get Housing Benefit? Does an ileostomy count as a disability for DLA/PIP purposes? All advice gratefully received. I'm pretty exhausted by keeping everything together for the last 6 weeks or so and endless hospital visits but I'm aware I need to start finding out about this in time for him getting out of hospital (who knows when that'll happen...).
  2. 8115

    8115 sitting down is bad for you

    Neither the ESA or PIP process are diagnosis based (although they do ask what your diagnosis is) so he should be eligible to apply for both. Get started ASAP, as the money can't be backdated beyond the first date you make contact with them. PIP will not pay you until the end of the assessment process but ESA should start paying you as soon as you begin the process, you have to send in doctor's notes (what they call "fit notes", stating that you are not fit for work).

    Ring up and begin the claim for ESA and PIP (set aside some time for this phone call). What will happen next is that they will send you a questionnaire, possibly a financial/ eiligibility and then a medical questionnaire for ESA, and just a medical questionnaire for PIP. Fill these out and send them back by the due date. Send all fit notes in time for ESA or the benefit may get stopped.

    Here are guides to filling out the PIP and ESA forms . Good luck. I hope I've covered most of it. I think what I've written is correct but things do change. There is also the excellent ATOS thread here, I think it's in P and P.

    Help filling in your ESA50 form

    Claiming Personal Independence Payment (PIP) | Crohn's & Colitis UK

    ESA and PIP phone numbers to claim:

    ESA - Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)

    PIP - Personal Independence Payment (PIP)

    Last thing, I'm not sure if you can claim ESA before your SSP runs out but you can claim PIP as it's not means tested.
  3. 8115

    8115 sitting down is bad for you

    One last thing, PIP is not paid while you're in hospital unfortunately but still start the process ASAP. And yes, I'd try to make a claim for Housing Benefit but I don't know much about that.
  4. quimcunx

    quimcunx protestant traybake

  5. a_chap

    a_chap Much research has shown I am just fucking stupid

    (((weepiper))) & (((weepiper's partner))) :(

    I realise that's not in any way helpful, sorry.
    danny la rouge likes this.
  6. danny la rouge

    danny la rouge Without music, life would be a mistake.

    Sorry, no advice. But look after yourselves and best of luck!
  7. crossthebreeze

    crossthebreeze Well-Known Member

    You can claim for Working Tax Credit while you are getting SSP - this depends on both of your incomes and if he and you were working enough hours to qualify before he was signed off work. You apply for tax credits at the website.

    You won't get actually paid ESA until SSP finishes, but you can apply for ESA up to 3 months before SSP finishes (so there isn't a break where you don't get anything).

    Housing benefit (if you rent social housing) or Local Housing Allowance (if you rent privately) will depend on both of your current incomes - you can apply direct to your local council straight away, and then update them as any changes to the sick pay or benefits happen.

    If you are in a Full Service Universal Credit Area then its all UC rather than WTC/ESA and LHA/HB, but you'll get told that as soon as you apply for anything.

    PIP isn't means tested and isn't being swallowed up by UC, but he won't get payment for any time he was in hospital.

    This benefits calculator might be helpful if you're not sure if its worth applying for stuff.

    Best of luck with the whole process.
    danny la rouge likes this.
  8. farmerbarleymow

    farmerbarleymow Seagull + Chips = Happy Seagull

    I can't offer any advice, but I hope you get things sorted so you're not worrying too much about the money side of things, so your partner can concentrate on getting better. The stress of money is the last thing you need in the circumstances. :(
  9. craigxcraig

    craigxcraig Prefers 'cxc'

    Likewise, no advice but I suffer with UC and almost had my colon removed, this was 18 months or so back. Thankfully the drugs have it under control, but my thoughts and best wishes to you both xx
    moomoo, Celyn, weepiper and 2 others like this.
  10. farmerbarleymow

    farmerbarleymow Seagull + Chips = Happy Seagull

    Glad to hear you've got your UC under control craigxcraig :)
    crossthebreeze and craigxcraig like this.
  11. weepiper

    weepiper Jock under the bed

    Thanks so much for this, and to everyone else, I'll try and get started at the weekend.
  12. 8115

    8115 sitting down is bad for you

    Btw I think the council deal with housing benefit and I just found something from Shelter Scotland that says you may be able to get it backdated if you can show good reason.
    scifisam and farmerbarleymow like this.
  13. scifisam

    scifisam feck! arse! girls! drink!

    The reason he should apply for ESA even if you think he might not get it is that he has nothing to lose by applying. He will be paid at the assessment rate, which is the same as the JSA rate, until he's been assessed, but unlike with JSA he will not have to do any jobseeking activities that he really couldn't manage at the moment.

    In addition, if he turns out to be entitled to contributions-based ESA, because he's paid enough NI, and then he's assessed as being in the support group, he can continue getting ESA regardless of your own income as his partner.

    Yes, it would be worth applying for housing benefit backdated to the point at which his income reduced. You have a very good reason for not claiming earlier - he was busy being in hospital and you were busy running around visiting him - and it's not a very long delay in applying anyway.

    You can apply for housing benefit right now on the grounds of reduced income. He hasn't been awarded ESA or anything else yet, but his income has greatly reduced, and you should be able to show evidence of that.

    PIP might well apply because several of the questions are about toilet needs. It'll be pretty much impossible to fill in the form until he's home - obvs he's not even eligible while he's in hospital but you can't really get a head start on the application either, because they'll need to know what assistance (from you or someone else) and aids he needs at home and they'll want to know whether he'll need that help long term. You could call up for the form though, because his claim would be backdated to the date you phoned and you do have about a month to fill it in and send it.

    This ulcerative colitis charity has people who will help you over the phone: Disability Benefits | Crohn's & Colitis UK
    equationgirl, weepiper and Sue like this.
  14. weepiper

    weepiper Jock under the bed

    Got our housing benefit decision today. They've awarded him a sum that completely covers his half of the rent and bills, and they've also wiped our council tax for the rest of the year :) *phew*

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