Housing and independent living
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Advice around benefits and housing- who do I contact?

ScotScot Member Posts: 5 Listener
Any advice please. I've just been to see Greg Clark my MP but getting nowhere! My husband died and I was paid a Sum of money 're death in service. I live in a housing assoc property and thought it wise to put my pot of money into a shared ownership  I met the criteria for HOLD (help to buy for folk with lifelong disabilities) I receive PIP high rate and needed to be in ESA support group. I needed to be put in support group to move my purchase forward and was in regular ESA group. I called DWP every week to be told no decision made yet. I called Medical Services directly as it seemed to be taking a long time (received ESA from beg Sept 2018) and Medical Services advised that my case was closed mid Nov, passed back to ESA although it was now mid Jan 2019! I lost the level living flat I was buying as the owner got fed up waiting for me and the decision from DWP 're me moving to support group. I received a call from DWP and was placed into the support group of ESA within the hour. This delay of information has cost me the chance to help myself with my housing dilemma, my one chance of securing my future in a disabled friendly flat. My benefits stopped altogether begJan 2019 as the sum I received was over 16k and I've now used 8k paying my rent/council tax/living costs. I don't object to the rules, but had the decision that I was placed into the ESA support group in Nov 18 been advised to me, the money would have gone into the shared ownership.Im now left in a 3 floor townhouse at £220 pw and very soon the country will pick up the tab of over 1k per month for rent and council tax alone, with me in a property that doesn't meet my needs! I need advice please with who to approach, surely the DWP are accountable to someone when they make an error? It's a life changing one for me! My life has been on hold for 6 months and I need to move on. Thanks.

Replies

  • ScotScot Member Posts: 5 Listener
    Oops I'm rubbish with technology and, as usual, think I've posted in the wrong section! Can my post be moved to an appropriate section? Hello to everyone 🙂
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Scope Posts: 10,680 Disability Gamechanger
    Morning @scot and a warm welcome to the community! I'm sorry to hear about your current situation and really hope we can provide support and guidance on this. Of course I can move your post :) I will place it in housing as this seems to be the biggest element If you need anything else or would like it in a different section then please do not hesitate to be in touch!
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  • Antonia_ScopeAntonia_Scope Member Posts: 1,783 Pioneering
    Hi @scot how are  you doing today? Welcome to the community :)

    I am sorry to hear this, have you been in touch with your local CAB, they may be able to offer you some advice and support.
  • ScotScot Member Posts: 5 Listener
    Hi there yes I have. Nothing they can do to help. I've just accepted that my one chance of helping myself into suitable accommodation has gone and I will stay where I am! Such a shame but thank you. 🙂
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Scope Posts: 10,680 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @scot I'm sorry you have to stay where you are. Have you been in touch with Shelter? There are able to provide advice on housing and may be able to support you through this. I hope something can work out!
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    Scope

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  • ScotScot Member Posts: 5 Listener
    Thank you for your help 🙂
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Scope Posts: 10,680 Disability Gamechanger
    No problem @scot! Please do keep us updated :)
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    Scope

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  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 4,974 Disability Gamechanger
    It’s not clear that DWP made an error. It could just be that your phone call revealed more to them than your original request or that there was a simple delay. If you wish to challenge the DWP decision then you had one month from the date of the ESA SG decision to do a mandatory reconsideration but could still challenge it if you’re outside that if you can show their decision was ignorant or mistaken as regards relevant facts. If you don’t do this you have no possibility of showing the DWP were negligent in any way. 

    Shelter may be able to offer some basic advice about your housing options but likely no more than somewhere like Citizens Advice in this scenario. The main thing here is to challenge the start date of your ESA SG decision. This does carry a risk you could lose what you’ve gained so you will need face to face advice before deciding what to do ad the exact level of that risk can’t possibly be assessed in a forum.
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