Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
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SDP - what a mess - please help :(

Hi, so this is going to be quite long, but if you can bear with me, I'd be ever so grateful for some help.

So, I went to the CAB for some budgeting advice earlier this year, and while there they advised me that I should be entitled to SDP. I do live with another adult, but she it's not classed as living with a non-dependant as I am a lodger.

I applied and finally have had a decision... they have refused on the basis that I live with my foster carer...

My current landlord has been someone who has also cared for me since I was about 15. The caring is very limited now as i have separate carers so she just steps in if required. She is in no way related to me, and we never had any kind of fostering arrangement even when I was agreement teen.
My CPN applied for my original benefits (in 2010) and she put on them that she was my 'foster carer' - which was untrue but I guess to her it she didn't know what else to write.
Due to it never being a foster placement, nor any relative, I have always lived under 'lodging' rules - certain parts of the house is shared/got my own room/set amount of rent/tenancy agreement etc.

However, DWP are now saying that as I live with my foster carer, I am unable to get SDP.

Can I apply for an MR? If so, how do I prove/what do i send as evidence that I never was fostered? I am almost 30, so even if I had been formally fostered as a child, all that would be finished and I'm an adult in my own right, surely...?

Confused and lost, and any direction or advice would be appreciated!

Many thanks!

Replies

  • SmedleySmedley Member Posts: 60 Courageous
    I can't answer your query, but sending you love and hugs as I am equally confused & lost in my own situation !! 

    Very good luck, I'm sure someone will be able to help, hopefully Xxx 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi,

    I think the issue here is that your landlord was someone that cared for you since you were 15. Have you lived with this person since you were that age? Did the person ever claims Carers Allowance for looking after you? 
    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.
  • Incywincy21Incywincy21 Member Posts: 9 Listener
    edited August 2018
    Thanks, Smedley, I appreciate your good wishes... and hope your situation gets sorted too.

    Hi Poppy123456. I have lived since 15 with her, though she has never claimed carers allowance and the whole time I have been an adult (even before benefits) we were on a 'lodging agreement' rather than anything else.

    Mentally, I cant handle moving, and couldn't possibly afford to live alone/in my own home anyway as i'm under 35 I can only get a house share allowance of LHA so I'd have to be a lodger somewhere... hense she agreed I could lodge as a formal arrange mentioned rather than the upheaval just to share with someone else... Does that make sense or have I waffled too much?

    Apologies, and thanks so much for your replies! X
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    I think the reasons they have refused is because your landlord used to be your carer, even though she didn't claim carers allowance for looking after you. You're now trying to claim a benefit because you say you live alone but you're still living with the person that was you're carer.

    As you claim PIP, you would be entitled to the 1 bedroom rate of LHA rather than the shared rate, even though you're under 35. 

    If you did move out in the future and the area you're moving to is a full universal credit area then you won't be able to claim housing benefit, it will be UC and then your ESA would transfer over to UC. 
    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.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Out of curiosity your foster carer/landlord were they claiming child benefit for you when you first went to live with 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.
  • Incywincy21Incywincy21 Member Posts: 9 Listener
    Thanks poppy123456.

    To be fair, DWP haven't asked for much detail aboit the landlord. They dont know any of the circumstances. All they have refused on the grounds on is that my previous form said the same person was my foster mother.

    No, no child benefit or carers allowance...

    Just seems a complex issue. It was more 'staying with a friend' when I moved in, but then of course said friend went off to university, and I stayed to be a lodger with their parents. 

    Ah well, not to worry.

    Thanks again Poppy123456.
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