If we become concerned about you or anyone else while using one of our services, we will act in line with our safeguarding policy and procedures. This may involve sharing this information with relevant authorities to ensure we comply with our policies and legal obligations.

Find out how to let us know if you're concerned about another member's safety.


im writing this for the person more or less in his own words as it’s less confusing for responses- ive also added stuff i thought relevant hes asked me to write the following. He urgently needs help SO PLEASE HELP.

I have a medical assessment for ESA next week (JAN 10TH). Long term illnesses, 15 years, first assessment! Appointment has been cancelled once to find an advocate, and cant be cancelled again?

Date also got changed by maximus end for recording purposes. i suffer from alcoholism, severe depression, severe social anxiety/ social phobia/ BDD (body image issues) and paranoia relating to these issues., and obsessive issues. A few years back I was attacked and had to have 3 face operations, one major one/ facial reconstruction. Zygomatic osteomony- a few years ago which worsened his depression and image issues. Because I never go out, and has no support network and no friends or family to help, his room is such a state I didn't want a home visit, which may have been a mistake.

* I didn't want a home visit as my shared accommodation (own room) is Dirty/A mess/extremely small (8x8 feet) that assessors and him and an advocate couldn’t fit. I am was also paranoid that people could hear the conversations, assessors wouldn’t want to come in, and people wouldn't fit- recording equipment sitting down close proximity etc.
There are some questions below to any experts. please help us/him and offer any other tips etc?

1URGENT! NOT SURE REGARDING MY ESA50 FORM: my first ESA form i filled in was a longtime ago 6 years (as was transferred from incapacity benefit) Confusing as recently i had to make a rapid reclaim (a new claim technically linked to the old claim) , and had to have MIND fill out my details over the phone. I didn’t get sent out a form. Maximus have only sent the appointment time. So i don’t even know where i stand in regards to this ESA50 form? SO HAS THE ESA50 form been filled in or not? over the phone? IVE BEEN TOLD I'M AT A GREAT DISADVANTAGE IF I HAVEN'T FILLED IN AN ESA FORM? WHAT ARE MY OPTIONS ???

2 Will the LACK OF HOME VISIT LOSE ME POINTS/FAIL? Can it still be changed? We have been told not (appoint. 10th Jan) will I be penalized for actually going to appointment be penalized for going to appointment? i.e he can go out etc?

3 RECORDING- Do i ask them to test the recorder? what happens if the recorder doesn't work or is not set up etc? CAN I REFUSE? DO I SECRETLY RECORD AS WELL??

4 ADVOCATE/HELPER (NOT PROFESSIONAL) from my doctors is coming along (only met him 3 weeks ago a mice guy): HE IS NOT CLUED UP AND NAIVE regarding assessments (not his vocation) i.e his suggestions are ‘just be honest, cant assume they are trying to trick you etc;’ thinks I'm being paranoid and not to believe all you read on the ‘net, when shown information from these forums.

*I’m worried i might end up fighting him as well as the tribunal i.e they may put pressure on me me or ask trick questions, and he may ‘side with them’, thinking I'm just being awkward due to my issues. i.e may try to persuade /suggest etc. he may mistakenly end up fighting their corner

5 This is the information we have/are collecting:

A summary of my medical problems
D criminal Solicitor report – he got arrested over a (minor) disturbance related to his conditions- judge accepted this
E civil solicitor report- he was put in hostels twice due to vulnerable person type behavior, homeless, not taking care of himself etc
F Photographic evidence of living conditions.

Is it enough, will it help, is there more i need?

does he need to put down his knee problems and hernia problems?
1 full acl ligament rupture, meniscal tear of left knee?
2 Hernia, awaiting operation?



  • Angel40
    Angel40 Member Posts: 34 Connected
    Hiya. Im new here but my fiance and i had our first esa assessment five weeks ago. My advice to you is to answer every question as negativily as physically possible, you need to take medical evidence of EVERY issue, even if you think its minor. Tell the assessor how limited you are ( they will ask you details of daily life in fine detail) tell them EVERY detail that you suffer with eg depression, cant get out of bed etc. They will want to know how ABLE you are. We were literally examined for an hour to the degree of how long does it take crossing the road, how many times a week do you go out, do you go shopping or who does?

    Be at LEAST 10 minutes early or you will not get your appointment and may have benefit stopped. The staff watch you in the waiting room too to assess your illnesses eg if you get aggitated etc so be careful 
  • BenefitsTrainingCo
    BenefitsTrainingCo Member Posts: 2,622 Pioneering

    1) about your rapid reclaim, I don't think this is anything to worry about. It may even not be related to your assessment.  People on ESA are unfortunately quite frequently called to assessments again. If you haven't been sent an ESA50, then you can't be penalised for not sending one in. 

    2) re the home visit - if you need one, you should insist on one, and raise the Equality Act 2010 if you are refused. Obviously though you have to think carefully about how you would feel about having it at home, given the situation. If you want to continue with the assessment (tomorrow, I realise), then it is important to explaln how you got to the venue and any help you needed. As Angel40 says, they may well ask you questions about how often you go out, and how you cope, in any case, so be sure to explain if you wouldn't normally be able to do this and cover how you are planning to manage it. 

    3) recording - don't secretly record as that would only lead to problems later. 
    The Benefits Training Co:
    Paul Bradley
    Michael Chambers
    Will Hadwen
    Sarah Hayle
    Maria Solomon
    David Stickland
  • BenefitsTrainingCo
    BenefitsTrainingCo Member Posts: 2,622 Pioneering
    Sorry claimant1 - splitting this up as it is rather long. Back to 

    3) if you want to record, then you must ask in advance, so given the timing you would need to contact them today.  Have a look at their frequently asked questions. 

    4) about the advocate - you don't have to follow his suggestions. It's best to explain how you are on your worst days, how often you have problems, and to remember the assessment is about various activities and whether or not you have problems with them - not about your conditions, but how your conditions affect what you can do. The advocate isn't there to speak for you, anyway. You can thank him for being there, for moral support and safety, but explain that you are going to do this the way you see best.

    5) any evidence of how conditions affect the activities would be useful - think of some stories of things that you have or haven't been able to do. You can look at the activities here (in appendix 1).

    I would mention your knees and hernia, but you need to link them to any problems you have which relate to the activities - eg mobilising, standing or sitting.

    I also think that you might be someone who should be treated as having limited capability for work (and maybe limited capability for work related activity too - the support group) because of the risks involved if you were found capable of work. So mentioning the way that you live and the problems you've had in the past is relevant. You can read more about that in Appendices 2 & 4 of this factsheet.

    As Angel40 says, expect to be asked lots of questions, some of which may not seem relevant, and expect your behaviour  - eg how you walk, sit and stand -  to be noticed. Give as full as picture of how your life is limited by your conditions as you can, and explain any risks (to yourself or anyone else) that would be involved if you had to work and/or do work-related activity (eg go to compulsory training courses).

    Good luck.

    The Benefits Training Co:
    Paul Bradley
    Michael Chambers
    Will Hadwen
    Sarah Hayle
    Maria Solomon
    David Stickland
  • Alex
    Alex Scope Posts: 1,305 Pioneering
    Hi @claimant1,

    How did the assessment go?


Complete our feedback form and tell us how we can make the community better.

Do you need advice on your energy costs?

Scope’s Disability Energy Support service is open to any disabled household in England or Wales in which one or more disabled people live. You can get free advice from an expert adviser on managing energy debt, switching tariffs, contacting your supplier and more. Find out more information by visiting our
Disability Energy Support webpage.