Should I have weekly work advisor meetings if I have a doctor's note? — Scope | Disability forum
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Should I have weekly work advisor meetings if I have a doctor's note?

Claire1964
Claire1964 Member Posts: 16 Listener
edited May 2018 in Universal Credit (UC)
I have a condition called X linked hypophosphataemic rickets. I am going through a rough patch and have signed on for Universal credit with a three month doctors note but my advisor is making appointments for me to see a disability work advisor. I have to attend weekly meetings even though I have a doctor's note. Is this right? Any advice greatfully received. 

Comments

  • JennysDad
    JennysDad Member Posts: 2,299 Disability Gamechanger
    Just saying hello and welcome to you, Claire @Claire1964. Benefits are not a specialism of mine, I'm afraid, but there are plenty of good people here who will respond to your post in due course.
    In the meantime, bear with us, and don't hesitate to ask us any questions or tell us anything more about yourself that might help us to help you.
    Warmest best wishes to you,
    Richard
    @JennysDad

  • Claire1964
    Claire1964 Member Posts: 16 Listener
    Hi Richard,
    Thank you for the welcome.
    Claire

  • SugarCoated
    SugarCoated Member Posts: 53 Courageous
    Hi we recently applied for UC too and I've been handing in 1 month sick notes. My work coach has called me in only to hand in another sick note and put my work search hours to 0. I suffer from depression and anxiety and other health problems so said I couldn't go and see anyone at the moment. She's not suggested anything at the the moment but seeing her in a couple of weeks to give in another sick note. Also you can have telephone interviews with advisors message your work coach on the journal if you can't go in. I don't know too much about UC as claiming for the 1st time. But I know they offer phone interviews.
    Hope you get this sorted
  • Claire1964
    Claire1964 Member Posts: 16 Listener
    Thank you. I have a note for three months but I am being asked to attend weekly.
  • Matilda
    Matilda Member Posts: 2,610 Disability Gamechanger
    I hope that @BenefitsTrainingCo will be along to advise you.
  • Sam_Alumni
    Sam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,682 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi I have passed this onto the benefits company :)
    Scope
    Senior online community officer
  • BenefitsTrainingCo
    BenefitsTrainingCo Member Posts: 2,628 Pioneering
    Hi Claire,

    There is nothing which requires UC work coaches to excuse claimants from all conditionality when they have submitted a sick note, however it is within their discretion to call you in for as little or as much as they deem appropriate - therefore it may be worth discussing with the Work Coach what difficulties you have in coming to the meetings with the disability adviser and asking for example that they be conducted on the phone instead.

    If your condition is going to persist for some time, if your work coach has not already done so, you should ask for a UC50 to be assessed for Limited Capability for Work in general, so that you would then be excused from conditionality.

    Hope this helps.

    Kind regards

    Mary
    The Benefits Training Co:
    Paul Bradley
    Michael Chambers
    Will Hadwen
    Sarah Hayle
    Maria Solomon
    David Stickland
  • BenefitsTrainingCo
    BenefitsTrainingCo Member Posts: 2,628 Pioneering
    Claire1964,

    Unfortunately as Mary says, there is nothing to stop a work coach insisting on you meeting work-related requirements, like having to attend interviews at the Jobcentre (for the first 14 days of a sick note they can't make you look for a job, but even that may not apply if you've previously failed a work capability assessment). So as my colleague suggests, I would negotiate with your work coach and explain any problems you're having as a result of having to attend, eg how it is affecting your health. You could ask to have telephone interviews instead if that would help - or anything else which you feel you need as an adjustment due to your condition.

    Jobcentre Plus, like all services, has to comply with the Equality Act, so you should explain to your work coach if the meetings are causing you problems or are difficult to attend.

    Because you're going to have the sick note for more than 28 days, I'd also considering asking for a UC50 to be sent out, but that does depend on whether you think this bad patch is likely to be long-lasting. If you go through the work capability assessment (WCA) then that allows you to be assessed as to whether you should be someone with limited capability for work-related activity (which would mean no conditionality), limited capability for work (work-focused interviews and work preparation would still apply) or whether you are fit for work (when you can still negotiate about what you have to do, but would have to look for work).

    Will
    The Benefits Training Co:
    Paul Bradley
    Michael Chambers
    Will Hadwen
    Sarah Hayle
    Maria Solomon
    David Stickland
  • Claire1964
    Claire1964 Member Posts: 16 Listener
    Thank you. What is a UC50? And where do I get one? I have a congenital condition, X-linked Hypophosphataemia. It is getting worse as I age. I am going through a very nasty divorce and relying on the £70something (I haven't even received it yet) Universal Credit. I am also looking to start back to work (I haven't worked since 2013) but my condition is so unpredictable day to day that I don't know what to apply for. I was thinking part time but I don't think that I could afford to live on part time wages. Do you know of any employers who are inclusive and happy to adapt to a person's circumstances.
  • Pippa_Alumni
    Pippa_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 5,799 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Claire1964, here is a link to the UC50 form.

    Part-time work sounds like a great idea: you may be interested in Scope's Support to Work service. If you haven't already, you may also like to apply for PIP, as this benefit is not means-tested. Working tax credits may also be an option for topping up your income if you do become employed. Hope this helps, and best of luck- I really hope you find something that works for you!
  • Claire1964
    Claire1964 Member Posts: 16 Listener
    Thank you Pippa....I will check out the link now. Much obliged. 

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