Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
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ESA, PIP & BASIC DISABILITY PREMIUM

JamesGeorgeJamesGeorge Member Posts: 29 Courageous
I'm on contributions based ESA, recently awarded PIP. ESA contacted me to advise of possible premiums (I knew nothing of). I spoke with an ESA advisor who completed questions on phone, he reckoned I was eligible for premiums but needed a form completing.Sent it back, heard nothing.In the mean time they stopped my ESA!  Until last week, I had received no ESA since early April.I used my overdraft and borrowed money. I called to ask what was going on. Was told that, my ESA had likely been suspended whilst Premium form being processed (?????). I was then told I'm not entitled to the premium and here lies my question/s...

Ok, I live with someone who claims lower daily living DLA but they are not my partner. However, I seemed to fit the criteria for the enhanced disability premium when I spoke to the initial advisor who sent me the form; plus from the website, I do fit the criteria as I am under pension credit age, receive the enhanced rate of the daily living component of PIP and would have thought that I am entitled to the Basic disability premium but it is this last part I do not understand. 

I just called DWP for clarity - I wanted to know if I was already receiving the Basic Disability Premium  because, if so, I am entitled to enhanced disability premium under the criteria irrespective of who I live with. . Very matter of factly, she said, yes, that's the £16.40 you get. All I have in writing is an ESA award breakdown listing:

Living expenses
extra money because of the disability income guarantee
Extra money because you are in the support group

The disability guarantee is £15.90. I thought maybe this is the basic disability premium as it's the nearest figure to the one she mentioned

I just wanted some advice, please,  on that basic disability premium. There is nothing on the website stating the criteria, only the criteria for  severe and enhanced. I'm very confused as I've been getting mixed messages from the DWP

Replies

  • JamesGeorgeJamesGeorge Member Posts: 29 Courageous
    Ps When I called last week, advisor old me I wasn't entitled to anything as perrtson I live with gets lower care  dla.

    Also, I have a feeling that contributions ESA and income ESA plays into the mix somewhere along the line but that all confuses me as I read somewhere that contributions ESA can only last for 365 days???
  • littleruthie123littleruthie123 Member Posts: 490 Pioneering
    I'm still waiting for verifcation  about similar .I have included income coming of my income every week .10.00 a fortnight. They first told me it's pension credit code I've been having taken out .I'm not quite that old yet still awaiting verdict. Hope you get some help 
  • littleruthie123littleruthie123 Member Posts: 490 Pioneering
    So confusing! 
  • JamesGeorgeJamesGeorge Member Posts: 29 Courageous
    @littleruthie123 It certainly is and they're not helpful, they make it worse by giving out conflicting information.
  • littleruthie123littleruthie123 Member Posts: 490 Pioneering
    I don't think they no themselves blooming minefield 
  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 273 Pioneering
    Hello JamesGeorge and littleruthie123

    I'd say the term minefield is about right.
    I'm hoping this will help a little:

    There are two kinds of ESA, income-related and contributory. The two kinds both have as their basis a personal allowance and if applicable, the work related activity group component (this was abolished for new claims in April 2017) or the support group component.

    Income-related ESA also contains whichever of the following three premiums  apply:

    Severe Disability premium (SDP) £64.30 pw
    Enhanced Disability premium £16.40 pw
    Carer Premium £36.00 pw.

    There are only three premiums in ESA, and there is no such thing as a basic disability premium in ESA (there is such a thing in income support and also in Jobseekers Allowance, but not in ESA.) 

    If there are dependent children, there should be some money coming in from tax credits and child benefit as well. 

    Regarding the SDP, this can only be paid if you live alone or with someone else with at least standard rate daily living of PIP or its equivalent, no-one gets carers allowance for you, and you have at least standard rate daily living of PIP or its equivalent. The definition of living alone is quite specific but open to interpretation, and I suggest you visit you nearest Citizens Advice Bureau or contact the Helpline if that is the stumbling block (as it may well be). 

    You are living alone if you don' t have non-dependants living with you, so the kind of tenancy agreement you have may be relevant. You shouldn't  for example normally be a non-dependant if you are a joint tenant - or a joint owner.

    Please get in touch again  if this doesn't put you on the right path to working this out. 

    Best wishes
    Gill_Scope
    Benefits and Finance Information Specialist
    Scope Helpline
    Tel: 0808 800 3333

  • JamesGeorgeJamesGeorge Member Posts: 29 Courageous
    Hi Gill, thank you for this. I live with my friend at his house, I have an informal financial arrangement with him to pay to live there (so, no rent book etc). He receives lower rate daily living  DLA.  Based on what you've said, I don't think I'm eligible for SDP as I don't live alone and my friend is only on the daily living lower rate.

    It's more the basic/enhanced part on the DWP website that has me confused... To receive enhanced, I had thought I was entitled as I receive enhanced daily living PIP but was unsure about the basic premium, so called the DWP 'helpline' yesterday  who stated  I am entitled to basic and enhanced. On Friday when I rang, I  was simply told, I was not entitled to anything as my friend only receives lower rate daily living DLA. 

    Based on what you've said here about there being no basic premium for ESA, I'm assuming that I'm not entitled to the enhanced premium on its own because there is no basic premium for ESA
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    edited June 2018
    There's 2 disability premiums for ESA, the Enhanced and the Severe disability premium. There's no basic premium with ESA, this only only paid on Income Support and JSA.

    The Enhanced premium is paid automatically to those in the Support Group that claim Income Related. If you're in the WRAG it's paid if you receive Enhanced daily living PIP, which you do.

    For the SDP because you don't live alone and the person you're living with only has the low care DLA then you won't be entitled to this premium.

    Enhanced disability premium will give you an extra £16.40 per week on top of your ESA and this is the one you qualify for, you won't qualify for the others.

    The Carers Premium is totally different and is paid to some claiming Carers Allowance for looking after someone and also claims a means tested benefit like ESA, JSA, IS and Universal Credit.

    All the disability premiums are explained in this link.

    Community champion and proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice i have given to members here on the community.
  • JamesGeorgeJamesGeorge Member Posts: 29 Courageous
    @poppy123456 thank you. I had thought I qualified for the £16.40 and was told so yesterday and did check that link.

     It says to receive the enhanced premium

    You must receive the disability premium or income-related ESA, and one of the following:

    • the enhanced rate of the daily living component of PIP
    • AFIP
    • the highest rate of the care component of DLA

    You’ll also receive this if you’re in the support group for income-related ESA.

    'you must receive the disability premium' - what is that? That is my query. It does not say basic so what is it? There is no information re the eligibility for the 'disability premium' which is why I questioned the basic. 


    I get contributions ESA. 

  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 273 Pioneering

    There is honestly no such thing as a basic disability premium on ESA. It does exist on income support and JSA, but not ESA. (I think that it's possible that the reason might be that the support group money plus the enhanced disability premium is roughly the same as or is more than  the disability premium on those other benefits).  Who knows how these things are worked out? 

    Gill_Scope


  • JamesGeorgeJamesGeorge Member Posts: 29 Courageous
    edited June 2018
    @Gill_Scope I'm only confused as I checked the DWP's website from that link. In the overview, they refer to the disability premium which I understand is added on to JSA. It then states. .. If you get income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) you can’t get the basic disability premium, but you may still qualify for the severe and enhanced premiums. This is their first reference to a basic disability premium and it just so happens to be in the first section that mentions ESA - purposely to cause confusion, such as mine, no doubt. Irrespective, it does not state anything about contributions related ESA (?) They then refer to basic disability premium again in the amounts section... They then switch back from using basic stating, you must receive the disability premium or income-related ESA, and one of the following:
    • the enhanced rate of the daily living component of PIP
    • AFIP
    • the highest rate of the care component of DLA

    You’ll also receive this if you’re in the support group for income-related ESA.

    This is why I have been trying to establish what the disability premium and basic disability premiums are as the DWP's terminology is changeable. I'm sure you'll understand that just as I understand there is no such thing as a basic disability premium on ESA.

    Re enhanced It is stated  that you'll receive  this if you're in the support group for income related ESA. Again, it doesn't mention anything about contributions related ESA.

    I receive contributions based ESA in the support group - does that mean I'm entitled to nothing compared to those who are automatically entitled in the support group receiving income related? 

    Have you any idea how the contributions ESA vs income ESA is worked out as I've been on contributions since 02/17, don't have a job and receive no other income that would affect ESA. I read that there is a 365 day limit for contributions so I'm completely confused about all of that. I did start a separate thread about the ESA types as I do believe I am in the wrong category but the DWP just give out misleading information. I've had all kinds of letters stating rates being changed etc and none make sense. Thanks
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Contributions based ESA is paid to those who have paid enough NI contributions in the previous 2 tax years before their claim started. Other household income doesn't affect this and neither does capital/savings. It's also not limited to 365 days if you're placed in the Support Group, you'll be paid for as long as you remain in this group. It's £110.75 per week. NO premiums are paid.

    Income Related totally depends on household income. Capital/savings are affected by this. (Anything over £6000 and it's £1 for every £250 over and £16000 means no entitlement).  This means if you live with a partner that works more than 24 hours per week you will not be entitled to IR benefits.

    If you do not live with a partner that works, you'll need to be assessed for Income Related top up by filling out and ESA3 form. Once this is done they will add the premiums on top that you qualify for. SDP must be claim seperately. ESA will then be £127.75 per week, because the EDP is automatically added on. The SDP is NOT automatically paid. If you claim daily living PIP, mid/high rate care DLA, you live alone and no one claims Carers Allowance for looking after you, then you can claim this too. £64.30 on top of the £127.75.

    As previously stated the only premiums for ESA that you need to look at is EDP and SDP, the other premiums are NOT paid with ESA. I really don't know why you keep looking at them. These websites often confuse a lot of people and it's clear that's what it's doing to you.

    So to sum it up, if you don't live with a partner that works, you'll need to ring ESA and ask them to send you the ESA3 form to assess you for the Income Related top up (premiums)
     Hopefully you'll understand this and be able to claim the extra if entitled and the relax and move on.
    Community champion and proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice i have given to members here on the community.
  • lillybellelillybelle Member Posts: 458 Pioneering
    Just a quick question:-
    if this person living with you is not your partner .
    why and how did the DWP know?
    there was no need
  • JamesGeorgeJamesGeorge Member Posts: 29 Courageous
    @poppy123456 thank you, again, but the confusion stems from the DWP website as I read it correctly throughout after your earlier input and  they definitely do alter the wording as I mentioned to Gill above. I  did accept what I was told. I only ever wanted to know what the disability premium is as the DWP refer specifically to it in order to claim ESA EDP and the only possible way for me to claim given the DWP's own guidelines was to understand exactly what they mean by disability premium in that last paragraph under eligibility. Given I've called them twice, was told the first time I'm not entitled, the second time I was told, you're entitled to the enhanced ( and you'll receive paperwork) and then nothing. I'll call back again and hopefully get through to someone who can be bothered and I'll ask about the ESA3

  • JamesGeorgeJamesGeorge Member Posts: 29 Courageous
    @lillybelle there was a need because the DWP have to know.They have to know who you are living with, regardless of whether it's a friend, a parent or a partner. It makes a difference to other benefits you may or may not be entitled to. I simply complied with what was expected of me by the DWP when completing the various forms
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Just a quick question:-
    if this person living with you is not your partner .
    why and how did the DWP know?
    there was no need
    There's every need to tell DWP exactly who you're living with. Benefit fraud could be one of them, if you don't tell them. Why keep anything from them?
    Community champion and proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice i have given to members here on the community.
  • susan48susan48 Member Posts: 2,229 Disability Gamechanger
    I told them that either my son or a friend stays with me, they were told twice you don’t need to tell us then the third time was told yes you need to tell us and fill the form in. That was done and lost the payment for living alone. The man said if we hadn’t said then a potential fraud was being committed.
    It would help us though is we actually were told the correct information from the DWP in the first place. 
  • lillybellelillybelle Member Posts: 458 Pioneering
    Did you make it clear that this person lives independently on his/ her own and has no input in your living?
  • lillybellelillybelle Member Posts: 458 Pioneering
    I can understand the situation if this was a partner etc
  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 273 Pioneering
    I think some of the confusion lies with the issue of scripts that the DWP contact centre staff have (presumably). If you ask them something not on the script on their screens, some of them will not know the answer, so they sound under-confident and you are left with the feeling that the answer they gave could well be wrong. 

    (I'm a bit old school and remember when DWP staff processed benefits AND picked up the phone, you were more likely to get someone on the phone who understood the benefit, but then there was already under-staffing, and you were very lucky if anyone picked up the phone at all).

    A disability premium would be a case in point. if you talk to an ESA contact centre person, they are likely not to know what it is because they don't absolutely need to know, as disability premiums are not part of ESA.

    Disability premium  was (and still is, for income support and jobseekers allowance, and it's sometimes added to the calculation for housing benefit too)  paid for  range of reasons.

    These are:
    The person is severely sight impaired (this is defined), or:

    they have attendance allowance, DLA PIP, long-term incapacity benefit, severe disable allowance (not paid for new claimants since 2001), the disabled worker element of working tax credits, war pensioners tax credit, constant attendance allowance, or armed forces independence payment. This premium was/ is included in the calculation of their means-tested earnings-replacement benefit. It was/ is currently £33.55 for a single person, or  £47.80 for a couple.  

    You could have a disability premium as well as an enhance disability premium and a severe disability premium. 

    Premiums have always only ever been paid as part of means-tested (otherwise known as income-related) benefit. They don't exist on contributory benefits. Premiums are currently being phased out now, and in universal credit, there are elements and amounts which are more, for  a few people, but are generally less than current benefit levels for disabled people.

    The basic premise is that people get some benefit if they are unable to work and have paid contributions, and these are restricted. They get top-ups if this wouldn't be enough to live on. Then there are also disability benefits to cover the cost of disability....and so on and so on. It is a complicated system, and maybe we need to look to other countries to see how they do this. Maybe their systems are easier to understand. I completely agree that ours is hard to understand, as each successive government tweaks the system in their attempts to make it fairer or more straight-forward (!)  and/ or to save money. 

    I hope this helps. (If this information were new to me, I would have to read it several times in the hope of getting to the bottom of it).  

    Best wishes

    Gill_Scope
    Benefit and Finance
    Scope Helpline
  • JamesGeorgeJamesGeorge Member Posts: 29 Courageous
    Did you make it clear that this person lives independently on his/ her own and has no input in your living?
    @lillybelle I totally understand your point but unfortunately it makes no difference to the DWP as far as I know. I wish it did as I live independently and the person I live with has no input in my living; however, it is imperative that you tell them of your circumstances irrespective of our reality versus the facts... as others have said, it could be considered fraud and the DWP have the right to retrieve any overpaid benefits. I'd advise you to seek further advice from citizens advice, for example, so you can be fully informed on what to do 
  • lillybellelillybelle Member Posts: 458 Pioneering
    I do appreciate your advice.
    however I am not in your situation at all.
    i am married with 3 children ( 2 still at home) and own my own home.
    i only claim Pip on both daily rate & mobility rate and ESA in support group.both are claimed legitimately 
    thankyou for your concern though.

  • littleruthie123littleruthie123 Member Posts: 490 Pioneering
    After 3 weeks of waiting. Theve said it is voluntary maintenance payments! !.as I thought  there being really unhelpful though and have too write too them and ask for blooming money back .haven't had maintenance of my ex fir 3 years! .and he was paying it from his esa!.nit amused 
  • littleruthie123littleruthie123 Member Posts: 490 Pioneering
    Welfare rights can't help me either. Apparently they don't deal with that 
  • JamesGeorgeJamesGeorge Member Posts: 29 Courageous
    @Gill_Scope thanks Gill, it helps as you know more than those who answer the phones. I've come to learn not to trust any of them and simply wait for the brown envelopes as it's only since I received my PIP award that all this confusion came about for me... They texted me asking me to call them ASAP so I panicked at first, I called, a nice chap answered  who explained  that PIP triggers other processes (of which I understand now). He processed a claim (?) on the phone, explained he'd send a form out that I needed to complete and post back. I did but never heard a thing after that. I then had my ESA payments suspended following that  call. When I called to query the back payments  twice, it was then I was given conflicting information. From all the information I have read on the DWP webpage and the help on here, I have deduced that I should be receiving the £16.40 enhanced premium but have given up on the DWP for now as they have now suspended my ESA again. I'm planning a trip to citizens advice  as I cannot cope with the additional stress they are causing me with this stopping and starting as I have had to manage on borrowing in the mean time. Thanks again for your support and persevering with me 
  • JamesGeorgeJamesGeorge Member Posts: 29 Courageous
    I do appreciate your advice.
    however I am not in your situation at all.
    i am married with 3 children ( 2 still at home) and own my own home.
    i only claim Pip on both daily rate & mobility rate and ESA in support group.both are claimed legitimately 
    thankyou for your concern though.

    I presumed you were in a similar position to me as you'd originally mentioned there being no need for the DWP to know if the person you live with is not a partner. Glad to hear you're not affected  as I had thought. 
  • JamesGeorgeJamesGeorge Member Posts: 29 Courageous
    After 3 weeks of waiting. Theve said it is voluntary maintenance payments! !.as I thought  there being really unhelpful though and have too write too them and ask for blooming money back .haven't had maintenance of my ex fir 3 years! .and he was paying it from his esa!.nit amused 
    @littleruthie123 wow, it really beggars belief doesn't it. Hope things are sorted for you soon 
  • Jaytbm1Jaytbm1 Member Posts: 72 Pioneering
    JamesGeorge , why have they stopped all ESA payments ? That doesn’t seem right. You were entitled to it but to see if you were entitled to a premium, they stopped it . No wonder people are falling behind with payments . Fingers crossed you get it sorted ASAP
  • JamesGeorgeJamesGeorge Member Posts: 29 Courageous
    Jaytbm1 said:
    JamesGeorge , why have they stopped all ESA payments ? That doesn’t seem right. You were entitled to it but to see if you were entitled to a premium, they stopped it . No wonder people are falling behind with payments . Fingers crossed you get it sorted ASAP
    Thank you @jaybm1 I'm not sure, but when I call them to ask, I get told conflicting messages. Whether or not I am entitled to a premium shouldn't Impact my usual ESA in the interim TThanks again 
  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 273 Pioneering
    JamesGeorge

    This doesn't seem to be getting any better!

    As poppy123456 said somewhere above, do make sure that if you think you should be getting income-related ESA, you have made a claim for income-related ESA. 

    To do this, you may need an ESA3 claim form. The DWP staff  at the contact centre will send you one, if you phone and tell them you want to clam income-related ESA to top up your contributory ESA. 

    Just to  confirm one more thing - "disability income guarantee" is just another term for "enhanced disability premium".

    I know; don' t ask!

    Gill_Scope


  • ESAESAESAESA Member Posts: 13 Listener
    Hi, 
    All this gargon is so confusing ..if you receive esa Cb not income related  does it affect you if your sister lives wirh you. I get Hb and Ctax benefit. I informed them she lives with me to help with care. She Don't claim anything. Was Working full time but waiting for new vacancies as contract finished . Im so confused . 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    As you've commented on a thread regarding disability premiums then these aren't paid on top of CB based benefits. You'll need an income related top up for these. For the top up it depends on household income but your sisters income if she worked doesn't count. It includes a partner that you live with.

    To receive the enhanced disability premium on top of income related you need to be in the support group for ESA. If you're in the WRAG then you need Enhanced daily living PIP or high rate care DLA.


    Community champion and proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice i have given to members here on the community.
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