Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
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Esa assessment :result esa stopped

Hi i need some advice i have been in the support group of esa for three years and have only ever been to a health assesment once during the initial claim after being declared medicaly unfit for work by my employers medical assessment  and being put in the standard rate of care and enhanced rate of mobility by pip before that assesment + a full medical report by my doctor including letter stating i could not walk more than 20 meters without pain and having to stop inbetween. Two weeks before christmas i was informed by letter that my esa had stopped and that i must claim universal credit online . I phoned and asked what the hurry was to get me transfered to universal credit as iam in the support group of esa and cannot work . I was told i had made a claim for universal credit .i said no i have not .they checked the system and said it said i had made an online claim . I said impossible .he checked the system further and discovered no such online application.he reinstated my esa with no gaps. Afew days later i received a health assesment form .i phoned and asked why i had to fill this in again he .he replied we do this any time and dont need a reason . I filled it in there have been no changes to my condition other than i was confirmed as having chronic pain and my medication has been strengthened since last assessment . Also they stopped my severe disability premium as my daughter who hass depression anxiety and agoraphobia does not have income awaiting pip assesment ectr and is classed as a none dependant . I get a letter telling me to go for a health assesment . My neighbour drives me and my 14 year old  son who is my carer  to the appointment and waits outside in the car . I am kept waiting in the waiting are for an hour and a half after showing id  and confirming my arrival .about half way through this wait im in agony crying as sitting hurts more and standing hurts slightly less id been standingbin agony moving from one foot to the other in agony .i went to the desk again and asked for somewhere to lie downas i was in so much pain. i was told there wasnt anywhere and she said do you want to leave ? I said no and went back to waiting .i was so self contious that i had started to cry and that all these lines of seated people in front of me were gawping as i hobbled and had tears streaming down my face that i asked my son to put my hood up . I was still crying as i walked into the interview room and explained i was in agony for having waited so long . After the assessment in which  i was told my my son would have to go to my neighbours car and wait there during .because of his age .i was walked through the office part and out through the front door to be closer to the front door. On sunday lastweek i get a call from a lady telling me that i had had my esa stopped as i was able to do things i said i could not she said like walk 200 meters or more when i said 20 as i could attend the centre .i could sit in the car for the 45 min journy to the centre (its not its 30 mins tops on a bad day ) i said i did these thing with extreme pain and discomfort and that i thought these thing were measured by how much pain im in to do them and whether i could repeatedly do them . I was told im in to much pain for my conditions (including chronic pain ) and that they beleive i have greatly exagerated my lack of mobility based on the assesment which had various outright lies in . I asked for a manditory reconsiderstion two days later as i had scored no points been told how much pain i should be in basically called a liar without outright saying it and deemed fit after denying basic human right to lay down to stop pain . I asked if the cctv footage of me in so much pain and crying could be included in the  manditory reconsideration she did over the phone without me seeing the full assesment she said no its not relevant and wont change the outcome as you still did it . Are they allowed to do this to people ? 

Replies

  • BenistmonkBenistmonk Member Posts: 343 Pioneering
    Hi i need some advice i have been in the support group of esa for three years and have only ever been to a health assesment once during the initial claim after being declared medicaly unfit for work by my employers medical assessment  and being put in the standard rate of care and enhanced rate of mobility by pip before that assesment + a full medical report by my doctor including letter stating i could not walk more than 20 meters without pain and having to stop inbetween.


    Two weeks before christmas i was informed by letter that my esa had stopped and that i must claim universal credit online .
    I phoned and asked what the hurry was to get me transfered to universal credit as iam in the support group of esa and cannot work . I was told i had made a claim for universal credit .i said no i have not .they checked the system and said it said i had made an online claim . I said impossible .he checked the system further and discovered no such online application.he reinstated my esa with no gaps.


    A few days later i received a health assesment form .i phoned and asked why i had to fill this in again he .he replied we do this any time and dont need a reason . I filled it in there have been no changes to my condition other than i was confirmed as having chronic pain and my medication has been strengthened since last assessment . Also they stopped my severe disability premium as my daughter who hass depression anxiety and agoraphobia does not have income awaiting pip assesment ectr and is classed as a none dependant . I get a letter telling me to go for a health assesment .


    My neighbour drives me and my 14 year old  son who is my carer  to the appointment and waits outside in the car . I am kept waiting in the waiting are for an hour and a half after showing id  and confirming my arrival .about half way through this wait im in agony crying as sitting hurts more and standing hurts slightly less id been standingbin agony moving from one foot to the other in agony .I went to the desk again and asked for somewhere to lie down as i was in so much pain. I was told there wasn't anywhere and she said do you want to leave ? I said no and went back to waiting .

    I was so self contious that i had started to cry and that all these lines of seated people in front of me were gawping as i hobbled and had tears streaming down my face that i asked my son to put my hood up . I was still crying as i walked into the interview room and explained i was in agony for having waited so long .


    After the assessment in which  i was told my my son would have to go to my neighbours car and wait there during .because of his age .i was walked through the office part and out through the front door to be closer to the front door.

    On sunday lastweek i get a call from a lady telling me that i had had my esa stopped as i was able to do things i said i could not she said like walk 200 meters or more when i said 20 as i could attend the centre .i could sit in the car for the 45 min journy to the centre (its not its 30 mins tops on a bad day ) i said i did these thing with extreme pain and discomfort and that i thought these thing were measured by how much pain im in to do them and whether i could repeatedly do them . I was told im in to much pain for my conditions (including chronic pain ) and that they beleive i have greatly exagerated my lack of mobility based on the assesment which had various outright lies in .


    I asked for a manditory reconsiderstion two days later as i had scored no points been told how much pain i should be in basically called a liar without outright saying it and deemed fit after denying basic human right to lay down to stop pain . I asked if the cctv footage of me in so much pain and crying could be included in the  manditory reconsideration she did over the phone without me seeing the full assesment she said no its not relevant and wont change the outcome as you still did it . Are they allowed to do this to people ? 

    Paragraphs makes it easier to read, I hope you don't mind, someone should be along soon to help you.
  • Tarpuk4Tarpuk4 Member Posts: 34 Connected
    They act like gods and they get away with lying on the forms. They don't write what you say and I really don't know how they are allowed to get away with this. IsntI that fraud xx
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi,

    Did you send evidence to support your claim? They rarely contact anyone for this and the onus is on you to make sure it's sent.

    When you requested the MR did you put this in writing stating what you disagree with, and the reasons why you think you should be placed into the support group? As you're claiming for the Support Group under the descriptor mobilising then they will consider your ability to use a self propel wheelchair. So you'll need to also prove when you're unable to do to this.This is part of the criteria for mobilising.

    Most MR decisions remain the same so you'll most likely have to take it to Tribunal. If you don't claim UC in the meantime then once the Tribunal accept your appeal then you'll be able to go back onto assessment rate of ESA but you'll need sick notes from your GP to be able to do this. They will also need to be back dated to the date you were found fit for work.

    If you claim UC then you won't be able to go back onto ESA. Waiting times for MR decisions can be anything between 2-8 weeks.




    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.
  • donewithitdonewithit Member Posts: 3 Listener
    I had already been assesed for exactly the same disabilities with the same carer needs  and medication at the same assessment centre with the same walking distance and i stood the whole time then too and arrived in taxis then too i was put in the support group that time and have been for the three years since . The only new evidence is that i was diagnosed with chronic pain and had my gabapentin increased to maximum ammount . I cant sit for long without extreme pain they already previously had a letter from my doctor stating i couldnt walk more than 20 meters .from the first assesment i have chronic pain a curve of the spine bulging discs and vitamin D defficiency and pain over the achilles heel area .also pain in my nuckles not fingers and poor grip . These are exactly the same symptoms ive always had . They said they sent for my medical record they did not my doctor has not been contacted by dwp at all . In this assesment i was penalised because they kept me waiting for an hour and a half with tears streaming down my face and refused me place to lie down . I cant bathe myself stand sit by myself and need help to bathe dress and go to the toilet . Yet this time i scored no points what so ever and the assessor blatantly said i could walk sit stand unaided without difficulty when i had been standing the whole time she said i declined to be tested for upper and lower body function when she never asked me to do more than put my finger and thumb together on each hand and then  grip her fingers for seconds based on this and her visual of my wrists she assesed me  to  not have any problems with my hands or wrists and to be in too much pain for my ongoing conditions and that i had greater mobility than stated . I cant use a wheel chair i cant pull myself up using aids or sit myself stand myself or stay in the seated position without severe pain 
  • donewithitdonewithit Member Posts: 3 Listener
    The reconsideration was done over the phone i did explain every point i had  to the young lady. but explained i hadnt had the full report yet only the highlight letter and said i would probably have to add to it

    .upon receiving the full assesment there are even more outright lies and the assessor didnt write down half of what i said and what she did write down she embelished to sound nothing like i had discribed

    i intend to send in a written manditory reconsideration too incase the young lady  on the phone doing the manditory reconsideration didnt write everything i said correctly

     .i intend to get full up to date medical reports sent in and something about the fact my doctor has not been asked for my medical records by dwp as stated

     .i will also send proof from my sons school that indeed they know he is my carer approved him taking time off to take me to the appointment and that he is registered with young careres

     as the assessor has stated she doubts the school is aware he is my carer as their would have been further investigation by the school whetever that is meant to imply .

    And that she beleives i may have exagerated my care needs and range of mobility based on her assessment

    .she didnt let me finish explaining my typical day she kept interupting and taking the converstion in different directions we never got back to it she said i refused lower body examination and upper body examination when in fact she never asked me to do anything

    her whole assesment is based on the doctor not oroviding medical records and me traveling by car in the seated position for the assessment and the false statement that i could sit indipendantly stand indipendantly and had no trouble standing to be assessed or any apparent discomfort how can they get away with this ?
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    You can put a complaint into the health assessment providers.
    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.
  • BenistmonkBenistmonk Member Posts: 343 Pioneering
    her whole assesment is based on the doctor not oroviding medical records and me traveling by car in the seated position for the assessment and the false statement that i could sit indipendantly stand indipendantly and had no trouble standing to be assessed or any apparent discomfort

    how can they get away with this ?


    Easy, they are a law unto themselves, that is how they get away with it. Next time you have an assessment, phone a few days before the assessment and ask for it to be recorded, that should give them enough time to arrange it. That will put a stop to their lies.

    Meanwhile you can make a complaint if you know the name and registration No of the HCP. 

    https://www.nmc.org.uk/contact-us/complaints-about-us/ 

  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    edited February 2019
    I dont know what to say other than I feel so bad for you.

    I can relate entirely 100% to the waiting room experience, with ATOS assessments usually the waiting room was empty, but on my maximus assessment it was a lot of people and I kept felt I was been stared at etc. I have massive anxiety issues, also when the manager came in to discuss my request for a recording which wasnt actioned she talked loud and the door was left open with everyone outside listening and staring, horrible experience.

    I initially asked if I could wait at home and they phone me 5-10 mins before the assessor is ready but no they want you for some reason to have to wait in their waiting area.

    Sadly what poppy says is true, I think that rule is absolutely disgusting and I honestly do not know why the mobilisation aids has not yet been challenged by anyone on a judical level, I just dont understand how its considered acceptable to "pretend" someone is able to use a walking aid they dont have access to and then assess their mobility based on that.

    The assessor is supposed to however not assess you with such an aid if you provide them a valid reason for not having that aid.

    e.g. good reasons for not using a wheelchair.

    1 - A HCP has told you to not use a wheelchair for "any" reason.
    2 - Your property is not suitable for a wheelchair
    3 - You have tried a wheelchair and wasnt able to use it safely.
    4 - You have a health condition that makes using a wheelchair unsuitable.

    For me 1,2,4 all apply.  But on every single WCA I have had they get ignored by the HCP, however to be fair to the DWP on all the assessments the DM has overuled them and correctly applied the rule, except the most recent assessment, however that was because the HCP recommended LCWRA anyway but via regulation 35 not the mobility descriptor.

    So send in the MR written, state your reasons why you disagree, so give them good reasons why you cannot use a wheelchair, and if you feel regulation 35 applies, then also give reasons for that.  If the MR is declined, then do a appeal and state the reasons on that as well.

    The MR will very likely be declined, when you request an appeal, they will probably do another reconsideration decision anyway, but will look at it in more detail as they will take it more seriously with the appeal, so if you appeal there is a chance of a reversal decision from the DWP if you lucky, but if they decline again then it will be sent to the tribunal service where you are likely to be waiting over a year for a hearing.

    Best of luck.
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