Universal credit is stressing me out

Discussion in 'benefits and housing' started by passenger, Jul 3, 2018.

  1. passenger

    passenger up and down...

    I have been taken off ESA and was informed I had to go on to this, seems like a hell of a lot
    of red tape and things ready to trip you up and SANCTION you to be damed in hell for iternity
    if you make one tiny mistake I am very limited to what I can do due to scitica and pains in other leg
    that i broke 4 years ago..... my question is are there others on this fron urban and can they give me any advice I am ment to look for 7 hours per day for work when tried before I really did strugle 3/4 jobs a week to apply for :( I really need some help on this other wise i worry about my mental health going down hill big time.
  2. AnnO'Neemus

    AnnO'Neemus Is so vanilla

    So they're basically asking you to treat job hunting like a full time job. Have you submitted 'fit notes' in relation to your medical issues, or are you okay with actively looking for work? If you've submitted fit notes I think you should be getting a work capability assessment to assess whether or not you should be required to look for work or not.
    farmerbarleymow likes this.
  3. AnnO'Neemus

    AnnO'Neemus Is so vanilla

    Btw, re mental health and sanctions and benefits stuff generally, try contacting your local branch of Mind as they have advice workers who help people with benefits claims, appeals, tribunals, making sure you're getting everything you're entitled to.

    Don't expect the DWP to be totally honest and upfront about benefits entitlements, they're not legally required to proactively inform you and tell you what to claim, only confirm whether or not you're entitled to what you do claim for.

    Always, always seek independent advice from a CAB, law centre or Mind advice worker or someone like that.
  4. passenger

    passenger up and down...

    I missed an ESA interview thinking my Docter had faxed a letter over but it
    did not get there in time so 3 weeks later I recive a letter saying I am off ESA
    because of this ,you can apeal but will not getting any money for up to 5 months
    I did have a very good case but now fell i`m going down hill fast.
  5. Pickman's model

    Pickman's model Starry Wisdom

    Oh passenger :(


  6. purenarcotic

    purenarcotic Conveniently Pocket Sized

    Hi passenger, I’m going to double check my UC stuff at work for you tomorrow as I think you should have been offered a particular payment if you are in the process of appeal and moved over to UC.

    Do you have a citizens advice or community law centre near to you?
    farmerbarleymow and Rutita1 like this.
  7. Jackobi

    Jackobi swallows anything

    If you missed the ESA interview (work capability assessment) and your ESA was stopped for that reason, you can submit a request for a mandatory reconsideration, and if that is refused, you can then submit an appeal. You will need to show good cause for missing the interview.

    The mandatory reconsideration should be submitted within one month of the date of the decision letter but can be submitted within 13 months.

    Until the appeal is accepted by the DWP, you would have to claim (either jobseekers allowance or) universal credit as a job seeker which is what you are doing now. If you submit a mandatory reconsideration and appeal, you will be in the same position as you are now but with the chance that your ESA will be reinstated without having to submit a new claim.

    It is not accurate to state that you would be getting no money for up to 5 months if you appeal, you will not receive any ESA, there is a big difference.

    If you missed an interview at the Jobcentre as part of your conditionality and your ESA was stopped, the same process applies.

    As others have suggested, you should contact an advice centre for assistance.
  8. passenger

    passenger up and down...

    yes i do purenarcotic
  9. passenger

    passenger up and down...

    thanks for all the advice just not felling great will read and take in
  10. purenarcotic

    purenarcotic Conveniently Pocket Sized

    Of course you aren’t, it’s shit. Will report back tomorrow for you.
  11. AnnO'Neemus

    AnnO'Neemus Is so vanilla

    Oh, bloody hell, nightmare. So sorry to hear this. Please seek advice from Mind, CAB, law centre or other advice agency asap. And also, the staff running a local food bank might be able to point you in the direction of other local support groups/organisations that might be able to help with appeals and stuff, because they will have helped so many other people in your situation before and will have experience in referring people to local advice agencies.
    farmerbarleymow and passenger like this.
  12. passenger

    passenger up and down...

    I will contact CAB and mind tomorow, do my job search so they lay off me
    fell better today I wonder how people on in life with out the help we get on here
  13. purenarcotic

    purenarcotic Conveniently Pocket Sized

    Hi passenger, sorry for the delay in getting back to you.

    You never should have been told to claim UC in the first place - if you had gone for a mandatory reconsideration and then an appeal for the ESA you could have claimed something known as 'Regulation 30' where you could have continued to receive ESA until your appeal was looked at. Law centres are aware that many people are being misadvised by jobcentres to move onto UC to job seek. This doesn't help you right now but I'm posting this for anybody else reading who may be in a similar position.

    You need to put a change of circumstances claim in ASAP as you are sick and shouldn't be being made to look for work. You can do this through the online portal if you have an account or via the phone if you don't have one. You may be able to do it via your work coach when you go into the job centre next too. I would go to the dr to get a sick note first and I would be looking to request to move into the 'claimants subject to no work related requirements' group - this is the new name for those who were in the support group for ESA. CAB should be able to help you do this if you're struggling.
  14. passenger

    passenger up and down...

    thanks for the advice purenarcotic must admit i really am felling unwell due to this
    i did call my workcouch he said do what i can till we meet again, i just can`t belive
    how nasty they are so i could have stayed on esa, just need the energy to carry on
  15. AnnO'Neemus

    AnnO'Neemus Is so vanilla

    I don't understand how this works. I remember a few years ago I was told something similar. But I said I can't claim JSA or whatever it was at the time, because that requires me to sign and say that I'm fit for work and looking for work, and I'm not, so you're effectively asking me to make a fraudulent claim and lie, and I can't do that. I think a decision was relatively swiftly overturned. But that was aaages ago before mandatory considerations and stuff.

    But it still makes me wonder how and why they would tell people to, effectively, make a fraudulent claim for JSA or whatever.
  16. AnnO'Neemus

    AnnO'Neemus Is so vanilla

    This is why it's always best to check with CAB or law centre or Mind welfare rights adviser or someone like that, someone who's independent.

    The staff at the DWP might be new, they might not be very well trained, they might be stressed out and under a lot of pressure and forget some random regulations that apply to a small number of people in rare situations... or then again they might be sadistic bastards who like to trip people up and sanction people and make them suffer.

    You don't know whether they're doing their best to help you, or struggling under stress, or whatnot, so it's always best to get help and advice from someone who's more likely to be on your side and advocate for you.

    I hope you get some of the help you need.
    farmerbarleymow and passenger like this.
  17. Jackobi

    Jackobi swallows anything

    Which ESA group were you in, support group or wrag?
  18. passenger

    passenger up and down...

    Just ESA i was in a work group thenn drive you back to jsa
    now universal credit jsa
  19. quimcunx

    quimcunx protestant traybake

    So angry just now.

    So refugee friend was working part-time in a physical job. He was getting a little bit of HB. He needed an operation that meant he wouldn't be able to do his job for about 3 months. His operation was the beginning of June.

    1. His arsehole manager told him it was best to resign on the eve of his operation, so he's missed out on a paltry month of paltry sick pay from them (this is another story but putting here for some background) and I don't know if this could also scupper his benefit claims if they pick up on it.

    2. Because his benefits were changing they're swapping him to Universal Credit so things are all lovely and vague about if he is getting JSA/ESA/HB etc.

    3. They have made him come back with more and more and more documentation, as if they are working through the form question by question without looking ahead.

    4.Now they are saying that the sick note from his GP/surgeon is not enough and they want their own doctor to assess him. I think maybe he means Atos or their replacement rather than an actual doctor.

    5. He's not had any money from them at all. Even his little bit of HB was stopped. Now the UC portal is saying it will be 30 days until he gets any money at all (it had said 16 August, then they said 10 days after approval which couldn't have been earlier than his appt on 16 August.

    There was mention of up to £400 being available for a hardship loan, but then they said that wouldn't be available until his claim was approved. That option doesn't appear on his online account as an option at all.

    What can he do? What does he need to do?

    Fucking shower of cunts.
    passenger and farmerbarleymow like this.
  20. Puddy_Tat

    Puddy_Tat hmm

    I'm increasingly out of touch with it all, but was he getting housing benefit as part of the universal clusterfuck thing, or claiming that separately via local council?

    It used to be possible to claim HB with nil income (e.g. if you'd had DWP benefits suspended) - although they would ask how you were meeting living expenses - e.g. loan from family / friends. It may still be possible to do this. Likewise if he's liable to pay council tax, may be worth claiming council tax benefit or whatever it's called this week - while that won't mean any income, it could stop the council tax bill mounting up.

    If in doubt, talk to local council HB people.

    And CAB or similar.
    quimcunx and farmerbarleymow like this.
  21. iona

    iona makes George Orwell look like a dalek

    I think you can still do a nil income form to claim HB while you're not getting any benefits, not sure if UC affects that though.

    Don't know about UC but there's a bit of info about advance payments here and here. Agree, get him to speak to a benefits advisor at e.g. CAB or similar if he can.
    quimcunx likes this.
  22. 8115

    8115 Turn left.

    My friend saw CAB and her claim went through relatively smoothly. Good luck.
  23. scifisam

    scifisam feck! arse! girls! drink!

    In Universal Credit areas housing benefit is handled via Universal Credit (the housing element of universal credit), so unfortunately you can't make a separate claim.

    If he's only going to be it out of action for three months, he wouldn't usually be eligible for ESA, which might be causing part of the confusion.
  24. quimcunx

    quimcunx protestant traybake

    HB told him he has to do UC. And they stopped paying him. He doesn't have a job to go back to. Well the (cunt of a) manager says he'll give him his job back but who knows and he doesn't want to go back anyway.
  25. quimcunx

    quimcunx protestant traybake

    As far as has concerned he's applying for jsa (element) not esa. But I thought you can't get has if you resign. His English is good but it's all very confusing even if you are British.
  26. scifisam

    scifisam feck! arse! girls! drink!

    You can if you had a good reason for resigning, and being ordered to resign should count. Don't suppose the boss would confirm it in writing? He'd have had to stop work even if he hadn't resigned, so that's another argument to make anyway.

    I wish I could help more, because I'm fine with the old system, but absolutely nobody seems to understand how universal credit works.
  27. quimcunx

    quimcunx protestant traybake

    Well he's been sent a health questionnaire and might be sent for assessment. Having seen the questionnaire it is such bollocks. Can you move a pint of milk from one table to another table? Can you push a phone button? No, can you repeatedly do anything? No how long can you stand for, walk for etc. They are clearly going to try and fuck him over.

    Someone gave him contact details for a local advisory service but I've not heard back yet on if he's been and what the result was.

    Meanwhile he won't get a penny until middle September at the very earliest so lucky he can survive on air.

    Oh and he's a lodger in someone's house so they are saying maybe he is staying with friends and keeping the HB. Fucking arseholes.
  28. quimcunx

    quimcunx protestant traybake

    Well they gave him about 600 quid for 11 july to 1 October. He had no income from end of June to 17 October.

    They have refused to give him any HB element because he lived in the same house as his landlord.

    How the fuck can that be right?
  29. Puddy_Tat

    Puddy_Tat hmm


    that sounds like it needs challenging.

    is there anything on paper about the 'tenancy'?

    what evidence can he and landlord come up with to establish that this is a commercial arrangement (e.g. has landlord had previous lodgers, or a change in circumstances that meant he needed to take in a lodger?) Can they prove the tenancy started before claiming benefits?

    housing benefit didn't used to be payable if it was considered a 'contrived tenancy' - i.e. one entered in to to claim housing benefit.

    landlord isn't a 'close relative' is he? you can't (generally speaking) claim HB if you live in parents' / other close family member's home.

    or are they trying to argue that he and landlord are a 'cohabiting couple'?
  30. quimcunx

    quimcunx protestant traybake

    They will challenge it. The landlord's partner lives there too. The LL is a student. The partner works. They did not know each other before tenancy. He was getting HB at that address before his claim for jsa triggered the move to UC. There was a rent book which was provided to UC. They also asked for evidence of split for bills paid. It was inclusive of bills but I think the LL gave them something.
    Apart from that what he did get is too little for the time between no job and university starting.


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