What benefits am I entitled to?
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Should I apply for benefits?

shazzy93shazzy93 Member Posts: 21 Connected
Newbie here. 
After a long battle of 9 years I finally saw a rheumatologist who told me I have Fibromyalgia/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and moderate osteoarthritis. I’m now awaiting a referral to pain management. 
My question is that I just cannot hold down a job because of the severe pain and fatigue and dizziness I have every day but I have battled on without claiming any kind of benefits. Do you think I should try for PIP/(and/or) ESA?  I can manage just about 3 hrs sat at a desk doing admin work but even after that I’m completely wiped for the rest of the day and evening. 
I guess I’m scared that I will be ridiculed and denied any benefits because I look ok but you can’t show how crippling every day to day is. 
Advice would be gratefully received. 
Thanks in advance 
Shaz. 😊


  • thespicemanthespiceman Member Posts: 6,408 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @shazzy93 Pleased to meet you welcome.

    Thank you for joining and sharing.

    I am one of the team of community champions who guide, inform. Help and advise new members who join.

    Please have a look at our on line benefit checker. This will give you some idea of what your entitled to.

    You can also find out more information about benefits on our website.

    Please may I suggest you speak to your local CAB for further information and advice for form filling in.

    They have expertise and knowledge in benefits. 

    Understand your situation you have come to the right place for support.  You are not alone.

    Please ask if we can advise on anything. Some one will know from our community or a member of a team.

    We are friendly. Supportive, care and share.

    Pleasure to meet you.

    Take care.


    Community Champion
    SCOPE Volunteer Award Engaging Communities 2019
    Mental Health advice, guidance and information to all members
    Nutrition, Diet, Wellbeing, Addiction.
  • jamesak62jamesak62 Member Posts: 5 Listener
    I is always worth applying for pips wit your medical history,the best advice i could  give is apply,and take form to citizen advice and talk to an adviser who knows how to fill in the form. My wife and i discovered its not what you write ,it's how you write it. Collect as much medical reports etc as you can to send with forms.Good luck
  • Ami2301Ami2301 Member Posts: 7,441 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @shazzy93 welcome to the community! 

    You have been given some great advice and links from the above posts, let us know if you need any further help :)
    Disability Gamechanger - 2019
  • steve51steve51 Member Posts: 7,175 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @shazzy93

    Welcome it’s great to meet you today 😃😃

    I am one off the “Community Champion’s.

    We are all here to “help & assist”
    any new & existing members.

    Yes I have got “chronic pain” I have already been through the same things over the past few years.

    I would be more than happy 😃 in helping/supporting you if required ????
  • shazzy93shazzy93 Member Posts: 21 Connected
    Hi Steve, 
    thank you so much!! I gratefully would take you up on your offer to help me. 
    Shaz. 😊
  • steve51steve51 Member Posts: 7,175 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @shazzy93

    No probs!!!!!!

    Where shall we start???

  • shazzy93shazzy93 Member Posts: 21 Connected
    I don’t know really - what do you suggest? 
  • steve51steve51 Member Posts: 7,175 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @shazzy93

    I suggest that we start with filling in our “Benefit Calculater”

    This will give us a good idea about what you can apply for!!!!!

    Just a small note but I have already been through “Pain Clinics” on my long journey but we can tackle that one latter if you would like??

  • shazzy93shazzy93 Member Posts: 21 Connected
    Brill Steve. I really appreciate your time. 
    Do we go to private messenging or? 
    I did the turn2us benefits calculator and it said I wasn’t entitled to anything 😐 I guess that’s it then? 
  • chockieschockies Member Posts: 61 Courageous
    Hi @shazzy93 👋🏻

    Wishing you all the best with your claim and as others say, it’s a good idea to get the help of citizens advice for your form filling in.

  • shazzy93shazzy93 Member Posts: 21 Connected
    Cheers Chockies 😊
  • steve51steve51 Member Posts: 7,175 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @shazzy93

    Yes we will need to go to our own walls to start that side off messaging.

    Don’t worry though!!!!!!

    No don’t worry we can go through it together so it won’t be the end.

    “Hopefully it will be the beginning”
  • shazzy93shazzy93 Member Posts: 21 Connected
    I do hope so 🤞🤞😔
  • steve51steve51 Member Posts: 7,175 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @shazzy93

    We will do our best!!!!!

  • shazzy93shazzy93 Member Posts: 21 Connected
    How do I pm you? 
  • steve51steve51 Member Posts: 7,175 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @shazzy93

    Sorry but what do I do??
  • shazzy93shazzy93 Member Posts: 21 Connected
    edited January 2019
    Sorry Steve - I meant how do we send private messages to each other? 
  • steve51steve51 Member Posts: 7,175 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @shazzy93

    Sorry I wasn’t sure but I am back on track now

    This is how to enter your home page & how we communicate.

    1. Click your highlighted username above my last message.
    2. On your wall you will find an empty box just below (Activity)
    3. Put your message within this box.
    4. Press “Share” & you will see this below.
     5. This will let you know straightaway.
    6. I will have notification on the left hand side.

    Please please let me know if if you have any problems??????
  • Pippa_AlumniPippa_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 5,851 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @shazzy93, and a warm welcome to the community!

    Glad to see you've had some guidance from our community members. This PIP online self-test may also give an indication of your entitlement, and you can begin your PIP claim here. Do keep us updated!
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger

    Claiming PIP isn't about a diagnosis, it's how those conditions affect your ability to carry out daily activities based on the PIP descriptors. Evidence will be needed to support a claim because they rarely contact anyone for this.

    A face to face assessment will most likely be needed so expect that. It's very rare to have a paper based assessment.

    For any other benefits it totally depends on your circumstances and with very little information it's impossible to advice. If you have worked in the previous 2 years you won't be able to claim Income Related ESA because all areas are now a full universal credit area. Claiming UC will depend on your circumstances.... household income/savings/capital, partner working.

    If you've worked and paid enough NI contributions in the previous 2 tax years then you maybe able to claim New style Contributions based ESA.

    Using a benefits calculator isn't going to help you here because it won't give you that sort of information. You really do need to get face to face advice and get a full benefits check from your local CAB.
    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.
  • shazzy93shazzy93 Member Posts: 21 Connected
    Back again!! 

    So I have finally found the courage to apply and have my PIP telephone assessment on 7 July at 3:15pm. (My lovely late mothers birthday-hoping that’s a good omen) and I’m so nervous - any advice would be most grateful. 

    Thank you. 
  • janer1967janer1967 Member Posts: 9,138 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @shazzy93 Welcome back, the best advice is to have copy of your form with you so you know what you had written. try and give real examples of how the activity affects you on a day to day eg the last time you prepared veg you cut yourself or burnt yourself when cooking, or fell when walking

    Just tell it how it is and be warned they may ask the same question in different ways and move from section to section and back  

    Good luck keep us posted
  • Adrian_ScopeAdrian_Scope Testing team Posts: 7,924

    Scope community team

    Hello @shazzy93. One of our members @mikehughescq posted some tips recently for telephone assessments which you may find useful (I've copied them below). Best of luck!

    @mikehughescq said: 

    1 - have a copy of your claim pack in front of you during the call so you can quickly refer to what you said. The assessor ought to have had a copy and read it but i suspect some are working from home at present and have limited access to technology so you can’t assume they’ve seen it.

    2 - strange as it sounds, have food and drink nearby. Most calls aren’t taking as long as face to face assessments but if it does then make sure you’ve a snack nearby.

    3 - have a copy of the PIP points system nearby. I always find this one handy at https://www.benefitsandwork.co.uk/personal-independence-payment-pip/pip-points-system.

    4 - be prepared for them to ring earlier than the time they’ve given you. Cancellations can cause havoc with their day as can people simply not answering the phone.

    5 - do not assume they know anything about your conditions. They will only know the clichės and stereotypes. It may be worth politely asking them at the outset what they know and offering them explanations if it’s obvious they don’t know much. 

    6 - the key to PIP is not being able to do things “reliably”. See the page from Benefits and Work above on this. The assessor will try to get you to give yes or no answers. You should try and resist this. They’re looking for you to say that you can do things. You need to pause and try to explain not that you can do things but instead say something along the lines of “no, I can’t do that reliably” and then explain why not e.g. you can’t do it safely, to a reasonable standard or in a reasonable time. Again see the web site about what reliably means.

    7 - take notes as you go along or have someone you trust sat absolutely silently in the background taking notes. Those notes could help a lot further down the line.

    8 - try to go in with a positive attitude to the assessor. This can be difficult but generally telephone assessments have, anecdotally, been better than face to face assessments as a number of the things which can go wrong face to face can’t happen over the telephone. They can’t watch you walking into the centre and draw wrong conclusions. They can’t conduct eye tests in poorly lit rooms and so on. 


    Senior Community Partner

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