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NeilB Member Posts: 26 Connected
edited October 2018 in Universal Credit (UC)
Hi, Ive recently moved to a new area only last week to be closer to my little boy who has cerebral palsy, he lives with his mum. The previous trip to see him was nearly two hundred miles, unfortunately I'm disabled due to a workplace accident in 2016 and my employer terminated my contract as I couldn't continue my contractual duties. Im current claiming PIP which I've just been awarded it went to a tribunal and I won my case. Im also claiming ESA which was in its self a nightmare because of the assessor told lots of untruths at the face to face assessment same with the PIP case which was eventually overturned with the help of the Citizen Advise and unfortunately further face to face assessment which I dreaded. Im also claiming Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit as well. In my previous property I was claiming housing benefit through the local council but have been advised that this area is under full Universal Credit. 
I have rang the DWPs various departments and given them my new address details, after this bit of a long winded explanation my question is could I put a claim in for housing benefit under Universal Credit or would my ESA stop as well ?.
Im terrified that if this is the case I've read that if you put in a new claim for Universal credit and are disabled or sick you will be asked to go for a face to face assessment and with my previous experiences this that fills me with dread.


  • Sam_Alumni
    Sam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,673 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @NeilB
    I have asked @BenefitsTrainingCo to take a look at your question and hopefully they can help, alternatively you could speak to someone on the Scope helpline on 0808 800 3333 or get in touch with the Citizens Advice Bureau.
    Senior online community officer
  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 273 Pioneering
    Hi NeilB

    If you're in a full service universal credit (UC) area now, you won't be able to claim housing benefit. Housing costs are paid as a housing element (called a housing costs amount) of universal credit - so the same local housing allowances are paid as before,  but by the DWP as part of UC.

    The main factors that trigger a UC claim are specific changes of circumstance like a couple splitting up or starting to live together and a claim to any one of the six "legacy" benefits. Legacy benefits are income support, income-related ESA, income-based JSA, two kinds of tax credits and housing benefit. 

    So your choices, unfortunately, are either to manage without any rent money - or to claim universal credit, whereby your ESA will stop. One idea would be to do a benefit calculation (see ) and then work out whether you have more income on your present benefit or with universal credit.

    Bear in mind there is a 5 week wait before you get the first universal credit payment. 

    You might want to check this out with the local Citizens Advice in your new area - they will be keeping an eye on what is happening regarding UC, so might be best placed to offer advice.

    I hope this clarifies the situation a little. 


  • Sam_Alumni
    Sam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,673 Disability Gamechanger
    Thanks @Gill_Scope

    Senior online community officer
  • NeilB
    NeilB Member Posts: 26 Connected
    Hi Gill, Thanks for your advise I thought that this might be the case.
    Unfortunately it fills be with dread having to go through potentially the same experiences I had both with PIP and ESA.
    I think an appointment with CAB is the way forward as things stand, once again thanks for your kind help.

  • BenefitsTrainingCo
    BenefitsTrainingCo Member Posts: 2,622 Pioneering
    Hello NeilB

    There are 2 types of ESA;
    Firstly, for those who have paid sufficient national insurance contributions there is contributory based ESA which has now changed it's name to 'new' style ESA, they are the same benefit. 

    Secondly, for those who have not paid sufficient contributions there is income related ESA.

    People can receive just one or both types of ESA depending on their circumstances. 

    Contributory based or 'new' style ESA is unaffected by Universal Credit. That is you can still claim this benefit even if you are in a  full service area.  It is only income related ESA that has been replaced by Universal Credit. 

    To find out which type of ESA you receive you can telephone ESA and ask them directly. 

    Even if you are on income related ESA, a move to UC should not trigger a medical assessment.  The decision on your ESA claim e.g. if you are in the work related or support group should carry over to UC.  This can however be missed so it worth detailing which group you are in on your UC online journal. 

    As you said however an appointment with the CAB is probably the best way forward.

    Good luck


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  • NeilB
    NeilB Member Posts: 26 Connected
    Hi Maria, 

    Thats really interesting I’ve been claiming contribution based ESA since last February and since my last face to face assessment I was placed in the support group, so what your saying is that if I move over to universal credit it shouldn’t trigger a new medical assessment.
    My local CAB have a drop in appointment on Thursday I plan to give them a visit. 
    Thanks for your kind help, makes me feel a little better.

  • debbiedo49
    debbiedo49 Member Posts: 2,904 Disability Gamechanger
  • NeilB
    NeilB Member Posts: 26 Connected
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 31,209 Disability Gamechanger
    Moving to UC may trigger a new assessment at some point in the future, however, as you're claiming Contributions based ESA this isn't part of UC and you need to make sure that you don't get moved across to UC with your ESA claim. Further advice is needed because DWP could move you to UC for your ESA.
  • NeilB
    NeilB Member Posts: 26 Connected
    Hi, That makes sense, will see what CAB say on Thursday, it’s all very complicated, I just really want to stay away from anymore assessment if I can, the lies from the ATOS assessors were quite appalling and caused lots of additional stress which compounded my existing depression and anxiety.

  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 31,209 Disability Gamechanger
    Even with staying on ESA you can be reassessed at anytime.


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