Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
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esa income related or contribution based

RubydooRubydoo Member Posts: 10 Listener
Im pretty sure i already understand the difference between ESA support group and work related (im not able or required to work and this has been the case for almost 10 years and i am in the support group). I also understand the difference between the contribution and income based elements of it.

The problem as i see it is that i have remained on contribution based throughout and purely because i worked previously and paid enough stamp in the 2006/7 tax year. Surely contribution based ESA runs out after one year automatically moving onto income related (i have no savings and have been in receipt of housing benefit and council tax etc throughout) Its the disability premium i feel ive been missing out on and the fact that that then secures the warm home discount (disability premium is only paid in relation to ESA income based and not contribution based - though i know there are other benefits that attract the disability premium too).

I can see that for some people, perhaps those with a partner (in work) or savings that remaining on contribution based is a good thing but in my circumstances it just seems like im being penalised for having worked previously. I would appreciate any advice. thank you

Replies

  • steve51steve51 Member Posts: 7,175 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Rubydoo

    A very very big welcome to you to our online community/website I do hope that we can help you with this ???

    I'm very sorry to hear about yourself & your current predicament.

    I hope that you don't mind but I will pass you over to our Benefit Advisory Service and they will be able to hopefully help you out with this ???

     Please please come back to me if you experience any further problems !!!!

    Hi @BenefitsTrainingCo

    Can you please help me with this ESA post ???

    Many thanks.
  • CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,257 Disability Gamechanger
    edited September 2017
    Hi Rubydoo and welcome

    Have you tried putting your details into one of the on line benefit calculators ?

    You may be entitled to ESA(IR) top up, for this you would need to complete an ESA3 financial check form.
    You do not say whether you also claim PIP.

    Disability premium does not secure the warm homes discount in all cases, you would need to check with your supplier. You can apply for the scheme if you are on a low income, worth a try, but no guarantee of getting it

    CR
    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • RubydooRubydoo Member Posts: 10 Listener
    hi, yes the disability premium is always showing on benefit calculator and and as an amount on my housing benefit breakdown but i still dont get it. I was on incapacity benefit for first 3 years or so, so in fact in my view, should have been transferred to income based ESA from the start. i do get lowet rates of DLA but know this doesnt entitle me to the disability premium - rather that income based ESA would
  • RubydooRubydoo Member Posts: 10 Listener
    Just to add to the fun (LOL) im profoundly deaf (so cant ring the BA) and though ive written to the BA several times about this issue and queried with the council the fact the disability premium is showing on its calculations ive never has a satisfactory answer/explanation. The government website seems to support my assertion that ESA contribution phase can only ever last 12 months? 
  • CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,257 Disability Gamechanger
    Sorry I missed it. You are in SG which means that  you stay on ESA(CB)

    It is frustrating when the council shows these things and the theoretical " what the law say you need to live on "
    the only way to get the premium is if you can get an IR top up you have nothing to lose by filling in an ESA3

    Part of my benefit journey started because of the breakdown on the council forms.
    I chased it but got nowhere, I put in ESA3 got nowhere. Tried to claim carers couldn't get CA but had underlying entitlement to CP but couldn't get  that without IR top up everything said I should get the premiums etc except for the DWP. They don't make it easy. I ended up having to go to CAB. Long story short, they got it for me.
    So maybe try CAB to see if they can help.
    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • BenefitsTrainingCoBenefitsTrainingCo Member Posts: 2,692 Pioneering
    Hi Rubydoo,

    Your contribution based ESA only ends after 365 days if you are in the work-related activity group. If you are in the support group you continue on ESA C for as long as you are in that group.
    However, when they introduced ESA they got rid of the disability premium for this benefit so nobody on ESA gets it. The only premiums that can be paid in ESA IR are Severe Disability Premium (for those on PIP daily living component or DLA middle or higher rate care, who live alone and don't have anybody claiming Carer's Allowance for looking after them) and the Enhanced Disability Premium which is paid as part of ESA IR for those who are in the support group and/or receive enhanced rate daily living PIP or higher rate care DLA. 
    ESA C only for those in the support group would get £73.10 personal allowance plus £36.55 support group premium to total £109.65 per week. Those who get ESA IR in the support group would have an additional enhanced disability premium of £15.90 giving them a total ESA IR amount of £125.55 per week (if single and have no other income).
    If you are only getting ESA C of £109.65 and you will live alone and have no other income you should apply for ESA IR for the additional premium.

    Lee
    The Benefits Training Co:
    Paul Bradley
    Michael Chambers
    Will Hadwen
    Sarah Hayle
    Maria Solomon
    David Stickland
  • RubydooRubydoo Member Posts: 10 Listener

    Thanks for your detailed response Lee though Im still a little confused as you say at the beginning of your second paragraph "when they introduced ESA they got rid of the disability premium for this benefit so nobody on ESA gets it." but then you finish by saying "If you are only getting ESA C of £109.65 and you will live alone and have no other income you should apply for ESA IR for the additional premium."

    I do live alone and receive the £109.65 ESA C and my personal circumstances have not changed over the 10 years that i have been unable to work and of course the BA and local council have always been aware of this (im in receipt of housing benefit etc). So the gist of my argument (and the reason i am so thoroughly frustrated) is that the disability premium should therefore have been added automatically. Its not like i missed out on an additional premium because i failed to tell them of a change of circumstances (i appreciate the BA could not be held to account in such circumstances), its the fact that it has been aware of my situation all along, as have the council (and they work in tandem) who continues to include the disability premium amount in its 'how much the law says you need to live on'.

    I dont want to complicate the issue further and it is perhaps a secondary point in many ways but the fact that i was automatically transferred from IB to ESA about 7 years ago (so not having worked/paid stamp/contributed for the 3 years prior to moving to ESA) should perhaps have been the time that i was moved to ESA IR (so not not CB in any case) or at least my circumstances (ie long term incapacitated) having been 'flagged up' in some way to ensure that i received what i feel i was/am entitled to.

    Thanks again






  • CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,257 Disability Gamechanger
    Everyone that was moved from IB to ESA automatically went on to ESA(CB)
    The DWP did miss a lot of people that should have been entitled to ESA(IR) top up at the time, you may be one of them.
    Sorry to say that you may have a fight on your hands getting it. You can submit an ESA 3 but may be better to get advice form CAB etc.
    I have heard that the claim can be completed over the phone, but as yet I have only done so with IS10 which is for EDP.
    Summing up, you need to be in receipt of ESA(IR) in some form to get any of the premiums

    CR
    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • RubydooRubydoo Member Posts: 10 Listener
    Thanks for your second response CockneyRebel, sorry im new to this or indeed any type of forum and didnt know how to respond to both you and Lee at the same time - so sorry if you might have though i was dismissing your advice! Yes have spoken briefly with CAB and in the past ive always found them 5***** but unfortunately the volunteer that i saw last time seemed a little overwhelmed by the complexity of my dilemma. Im deaf so cant ring the BA myself and of course you dont always want to share your personal details with family especially when youre struggling to make ends meet. However i did (reluctantly) ask my daughter to ring the BA a few days ago and whilst she was met with a very unpleasant/unhelpful man (who at one point told her i was 'lucky' to be in the support group - yea great its a real achievement, im so pleased about my level of incapacity!!) he did eventually agree to send out the ESA 3 form that you mention.Thanks again
  • RubydooRubydoo Member Posts: 10 Listener
    ive just re-read my last reply and need to just mention that although ive 'joked' about the man that said i was 'lucky' to be in the support group, it actually really made cry. Horrid little man
  • CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,257 Disability Gamechanger
    Not a problem, we all started somewhere.
    It must be hard for you, I do have some hearing loss but I would be lost in your situation.
    CAB might be helpful filling in the form, although it is straight forward, ( sorry that might sound patronising )
    Please do come back if I can be of any more help. :)

    No excuses for DWP A***hole, courtesy used to come free when I was born. I did have a conversation with one of the phone operators this week. His response suprised me a bit. He told me he was expecting to be shouted at ! and this was early in the morning. It must be hard going to work everyday expecting people to shout at you down the phone.Needless to say, I was probably responsible for many people being on hold for a while on that day.

    CR

    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • steve51steve51 Member Posts: 7,175 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Rubydoo

    I'm so sorry that you are still having big big problems !!!!

    Please please let me know if I can help you in anyway ???

    Yes as I have got a "Brain Injury" with "Hidden Disabilities"

    I always have to "Justify" my "Disability's" everyday !!!!

  • BenefitsTrainingCoBenefitsTrainingCo Member Posts: 2,692 Pioneering
    Rubydoo,

    Hello, I'm so sorry about the response you got from the DWP. That's awful. There is no reason for them to be so unsympathetic. The fact is, lots of people like you who get contribution-based ESA which is indefinite can actually lose out because of not getting income-related, just as has happened to you. Do complain about the response you got, if you feel up to it (or get your daughter to do so, perhaps).

    So, just to clarify. There is no ordinary disability premium in income-related ESA. There never has been. There's no ordinary disability premium in Housing Benefit either if you are on ESA, but maybe have another look at the letters and see if they are referring to a different premium?

    You are getting £109.65 cont ESA which is made up of:

    £73.10 
    £36.55 (support component)

    If you were previously on incapacity benefit (IB), then you shouldn't have lost out: if your IB was worth more, you should have got the same amount in contESA as you were getting before. But that tends to have less effect over time as your cont ESA rises anyway each April.

    But CR and others are right, it's still possible that your entitlement to irESA has been missed. 

    The premiums you might be missing out on are:

    enhanced disability premium - you are entitled to this because you are in the support group, it's £15.90 a week. If you have no savings and you don't have any other income then you are definitely missing out on this, and I hope you get it, and some arrears (backdating) too!

    severe disability premium - this could apply if you get the middle rate care component of DLA or the standard or higher daily living component of PIP, you live alone and no one gets Carer's Allowance for you. That is a lot more money - £62.45 a week - but obviously whether you are entitled depends on your situation.

    If you are entitled to both, you get both. Presumably the DWP have known about your situation all along so if they don't backdate your entitlement, I would complain & challenge the decision. Benefit decisions can be revised (changed) at any time if there was an official error (eg evidence the DWP failed to take into acccount...).

    If you get any irESA at all, you should be passported to full HB. That means you get the most Housing Benefit possible for your circumstances, without the LA having to do a separate calcluation.

    Do let us know what happens!

    Will

    The Benefits Training Co:
    Paul Bradley
    Michael Chambers
    Will Hadwen
    Sarah Hayle
    Maria Solomon
    David Stickland
  • RubydooRubydoo Member Posts: 10 Listener

    Thank you Will,

    I found this on rightsnet.org.uk and hope its ok that ive copied and posted Dan Manville's advice here - i incorporated it into my ESA3 form/appeal and will most definitely let you (and others struggling with the same issue) know.

    3 APRIL 2017, 12:23 PM#95

    Dan Manville
    forum member

    Mental health, Wolverhampton CC Welfare Rights

    Send message

    Total Posts: 1683

    Joined: 15 October 2012

    LORRAINE P - 03 APRIL 2017 07:43 AM

      Does anyone have an approach that is consistently working with cases like these?

    I submit that pursuant to schedule 1 para 13(a) of the ESA (Transitional Provisions, HB & CTB) (Existing Awards) (no 2) Regulations 2010 you were under a duty to enquire whether xxxx was entitled to Income Related ESA at conversion and having not done so there are grounds for an any time revision on the basis of your ignorance of a material fact. DMG para 45414 refers. I would therefore request an anytime revision of the decision of xxx that ESA is payable from xxx as you were ignorant of his entitlement from the date he migrated.

    works every time

  • BenefitsTrainingCoBenefitsTrainingCo Member Posts: 2,692 Pioneering
    Hi Rubydoo,

    Just to clarify, the additional premium I referred to when claiming ESA IR is the "enhanced disability premium" of £15.90, (which is different to the "disability premium" that isn't paid in ESA) that you should get when in the support group. That's normally the difference between ESA C and ESA IR unless you are entitled to Severe Disability Premium as well. i hope this clarifies the matter, although I understand it can be very confusing.

    Lee
    The Benefits Training Co:
    Paul Bradley
    Michael Chambers
    Will Hadwen
    Sarah Hayle
    Maria Solomon
    David Stickland
  • RubydooRubydoo Member Posts: 10 Listener
  • TopkittenTopkitten Member Posts: 1,263 Pioneering
    I get confused by the ESA benefit as a whole. I used to be on income related but now I have received my inheritance I don't qualify. However, I will still evidently receive some benefit though I have yet to receive any paperwork about it.

    I don't think anyone understands it properly. I informed my local chemist when picking up a prescription and they said I had to pay now. Then I collected another one from a different chemist and they said I didn't have to pay because of my age. It's just a mess.

    TK
    "I'm on the wrong side of heaven and the righteous side of hell" - from Wrong side of heaven by Five Finger Death Punch.
  • CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,257 Disability Gamechanger
    TK, sorry for being indelicate, how old are you ?

    CR
    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • TopkittenTopkitten Member Posts: 1,263 Pioneering
    I'm not secretive, lol!

    I am 60, 61 in a couple of months.

    TK
    "I'm on the wrong side of heaven and the righteous side of hell" - from Wrong side of heaven by Five Finger Death Punch.
  • CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,257 Disability Gamechanger
    Only asked because of your prescription is free over 60

    CR
    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • colettidudecolettidude Member Posts: 1 Listener
    Rubydoo. Almostly totally unrelated but you mentioned that you were profoundly deaf. Have you considered the conical implant on the nhs? I work with 2 people that have had it, one was 50% 90% deaf  (maybe worse) and the other nearly 100% both ears. Both had fantastic results and agree it was a real benefit to their everyday life. The almost 100% deaf one has heard music for the first time in 35 years and has never been happier. Sorry to be off topic but hope i wasnt out of place suggesting it. Take care
  • Nett61Nett61 Member Posts: 3 Listener
    Hi, both my friend & I both claim E. S. A in the support group from incapacity only she gets I.R & for the couple of years I've been getting C.B so the other wk she asked me to ring the Esa because she thought I should be on IR due to the fact I get enhanced rate of pip for care & mobility due to my fibro myalgia, cyclical vomiting syndrome & my MS, so I rang today & they are sending me a form to fill in but unfortunately my auntie passed away & about September last year 2017 she left me & my brother £5.000 each, so my question is will that make a difference in swapping to IR Esa many thanks
  • CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,257 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello nett and welcome

    Savings below £6000 are disregarded for ESA (IR) The form they will be sending is ESA3 which is just a financial check. ESA (IR) depends on your household income and savings. ESA and PIP are separate benefits although PIP can mean that you are entitled to extra amounts if you are on a low income and receive an IR element. of ESA.

    CR
    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • matthew04matthew04 Member Posts: 14 Listener
    Can anyone help after 23 yrs of working for a large bank my contract was ended on grounds of ill health for the first time ever I applied for benefits , I am married with 4 children but when I first applied my husband wasn’t working due to an accident he had st work where he nearly lost his left hand , I was awarded ESA CB based and placed in support group I was getting £109 a week and was also awarded PIP for both daily and mobility no one told me I was entitled to anything else or asked me what other income we had coming in as I had never claimed a benefit I assumed that what they advised me was correct we really are struggling and have huge mortgage arrears including council tax and gas and electric but now reading this it seems I should have been entitled to ESA IR top up and I could have had interest paid on my mortgage I have been ill with worry since 2015 due to this can anyone help me and advise me what I should be in regards lesley 
  • CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,257 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi Lesley

    Probably best to get f2f advice from CAB or welfare rights etc

    You might be entitled to an IR top up, for this you will need to fill in an ESA3 form which is a financial check

    If you are have trouble with gas and electric bills you might try

     http://www.britishgasenergytrust.org.uk/uploads/A SHARED PROGRAMME OF GIVING - BGET website.pdf

    CR

    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • susan48susan48 Member Posts: 2,229 Disability Gamechanger
    @CockneyRebel,
    thats a great bit of information, the energy trust.
    i wasn’t even aware such a thing existed to help people.
    im sure lots will be interested in this 
     :) 
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