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UC & WCA help please

Donna_534 Member Posts: 16 Connected
I am posting on behalf of my son!
My son is 20 years old and is disabled, he has 2 long life conditions, which was diagnosed from birth, he has been on DLA since birth and in 2016 he attended an medical assessment when it was changed over PIP, his entitlement did not change when it was changed over and is still receives, higher rate of mobility and care component.
Last year, " October 2018" i had to apply for UC, i was informed by my work-coach that i would no longer claim for my son, due to his age, (19 years old) he had to claim for himself.
We applied for UC for him and attended the first appointment, my son is in a wheelchair, he is unable to walk due to the deformity to both of his feet, he is able to stand on his ankle bones with help from either me (mum) or his older brother but we have to support most of his weight, he is on high pain relief, codeine, paracetamol and ibuprofen, this is all he is able to take due to his heart condition (he has currently has 4 surgeries on his heart), his work coach advised my son that he would qualify for WCA which is a extra payment alongside his UC, and he gave me the phone number to apply. 
After several months of misses around with the forms and UC stating they had not received them, i then sent the 5th completed form recored delivery.
In May -this year, my son received a letter stating he had to attend at medical assessment on 6th June in Luton, we attended that appointment and on the 18th June my son received a message on his UC journal stating he was not entitled to WCA because he has received no points and that he no longer needs to send in anymore fit-for-work certificates, I phoned UC and asked them to send out the medical report for me to read through and the lies that was placed in the report literally bought me to tears, saying he can climb stairs, he is able to walk 200 meters, able to get out of bed without support, able to get dressed without support, even stated he cleans his own bedroom, the list goes on, what really sticks in my mind is, during the assessment my son asked the nurse doing the medical assessment ' could i please show you my feet and legs, i feel by looking at them will answer a lot of your questions?' the nurse replied ' that is not necessary, i do not need to look at your feet'.
After reading through the report i immediately submitted the first appeal ( mandatory reconsideration , after seeking advise from disability support team in my area, over the phone, who explained i must put everything in writing, explaining the problems we have experienced, and extra evidence relating to my sons condition) I did this and also supplied a letter from my sons consultant, stating that his condition will not improve there is no cure and he predicts over a 12 month period his condition will only decrease. To hand in the appeal and extra evidence was on 28th June, when we met with the chap at the job centre he was shocked and appalled with my sons results and the fact he had received zero points at the medical assessment, he read through the assessment and he also could not believe the lies stated in the report, he advised me to report the nurse in question (which i have) and i was informed that i / my son should receive a response with a decision  no later than 2 weeks, if i do not hear anything to give UC a call. 
I followed his advise and phoned UC and was advised over the phone that the dead-line for a decision is 26th July and if nothing has been placed on my sons journal by 4pm then to give a call back, at 5.55pm still nothing on the journal so i phoned UC again, which i was informed that something will be placed on the journal Monday 29th July.

What are the chances of this being over-turned at the mandatory reconsideration stage?

How long do people have to wait for a response / decision?

Sorry for a long winded post, i am very stressed with the whole situation, and no one can give me a straight answer for anything, the fact that we have deadline to appeal, yet DWP / UC are allowed to sit on this for months with no consideration to what this is doing to people.



  • Donna_534
    Donna_534 Member Posts: 16 Connected
    could you please link me up to that... Thank you x
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 29,732 Disability Gamechanger

    The chances are slim at MR stage i'm afraid. Only 18% of these decisions change and most people have to take it to Tribunal. We do hear of a few successful stories here on scope but they are very few and far between.

    If the decision remains the same then appearing in person at his Tribunal will give him the best chance of a decision in his favour. 74% of those that appear are successful.

    There's no timescale for decisions, with the MR they can infact take as long as they want. Some wait a couple of week while others wait several and more. It really depends on backlog in your area.

    For the LCWRA descriptors for mobilising then they do take into consideration your ability to self propel a manual wheelchair.

    If he's awarded LCWRA at either MR or Tribunal then he'll receive an extra £336 per month backdated to the 4th month of his claim starting from when he sent in his first fit note.

    If he's given LCW then his money will remain the same.

    Hopefully he's not waiting too much longer, keep checking his journal and the letter will be uploaded on there. Good luck.
  • Donna_534
    Donna_534 Member Posts: 16 Connected
    My son is due for surgery , but he can’t have surgery until we are moved into a 4 bedroom property to meet his needs. This is a picture of the surgery he will be having the whole process from start to finish will take 12 to 18 months. 
  • thespiceman
    thespiceman Member Posts: 6,389 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @Donna _534   Sorry to hear this.  I  am shocked and stunned by what you have going through.

    Please can I suggest you need to speak to some one like CAB. Who can advise you further.  Regarding your sons situation.

    Please can I also advise we do have members of our community who may be able to advise the situation you are in.

    One of the community champions. Is a friend of mine. I will tag her in.

    @poppy123456 she I hope be able to clarify the benefit problems you are experiencing.

    Hope she could help you here.

    Benefits are complex and confusing. You need the right information and support.

    I am not  too sure to give an answer but I do think you need to speak to either as I have said CAB or a welfare organisation.

    Please if I can help or anything you need to know please ask.

    Please take care.

    Community Champion
    SCOPE Volunteer Award Engaging Communities 2019
    Mental Health advice, guidance and information to all members
    Nutrition, Diet, Wellbeing, Addiction.
  • Donna_534
    Donna_534 Member Posts: 16 Connected
    edited July 2019
    Thank you so much. Am I allowed to upload a copy of the letter I did for my sons mandatory reconsideration? In that letter I did attach the picture to the letter and tried my best to explain how much pain he is in. 
    Hearing all the bad reports that these are not being overturned fairly and also having a nurse who did the medical assessment, lie through her teeth in her report, I don’t know how strong the report has over the mandatory reconsideration... 
  • Donna_534
    Donna_534 Member Posts: 16 Connected
    edited July 2019
    i'll have to copy & paste it wont allow me to attach

    @thespiceman @poppy123456

    To whom it may concern                                                                                                       

    RE: Recent medical report / mandatory reconsideration notice

    When I first applied for universal credit in September 2018, I was advised by my work-coach at the time to apply for “capability to work payment” I was advised that if I am registered disabled, unable to leave the house without support (I am in a wheelchair) and the amount of pain relief medication I am on because my feet are terribly deformed, along with my heart condition, this is an open and closed case that I would qualify. My work-coach gave me the number to call to apply for this benefit.

    I phoned and requested the form, after 6 weeks no form had arrived, so I phoned again, I also alerted my work-coach of this, I was advised to download and print the form from the universal credit website, I did this and sent the form back, some of weeks passed without hearing anything, I decided to call again, to find out what was happening, I was informed that my completed form has not been received, and that another form would be sent out via the post, first class. The form arrived, I filled the form out and this time I sent it back recorded delivery, which was received and signed for. After 7 weeks I still had not received any update on my journal (serval months had passed by this time) so I rang again, to be informed that, again my capability to work form had not been received, this time I gave over the date it was received and signed for, no one would give me any explanation and I was informed again that another form will be sent out to me, again this was filled in and sent back, again recorded delivery, this time I took a screen shot of when the office received it and of the signature.

    In May I received my medical assessment appointment, which was on 6th June in Luton, when I entered the room with my grandad (who drove me to the appointment and came into the assessment room because I do struggle with new surroundings and having him with me gave me the support I need), the lady explained that she is a trained nurse and that she would not make me do anything that I was not comfortable with.

    In her report it states: I keep my bedroom clean, I dress myself, I do not use aids to support getting around, but I clearly stated that: I do not clean my room, my mum does this for me, I am unable to walk around without holding onto furniture around the house including walls to obtain my balance, I do not dress myself, my older brother helps me to get out of bed, and assists me with my trousers and socks, my balance is at its worst in the morning, he supports me getting washed and showered.

    I requested that I would like the nurse to look at my feet, so she could see how badly deformed they are, which would also explain how much pain I am in on a daily bases, the amount of pain relief I am on to even get out of bed, again with help and support. The nurse refused to look at my feet or acknowledge how miss shaped / deformed both of my feet are, her reply was: I do not need to see your feet.

    I was asked to stand up, I explained that I would not stand without help and support, I was left to struggle and almost fell over, clinging onto the bed, I am unable to kneel down, I cannot move my ankles and my heels of my feet never touch the floor. I am unable to climb stairs and rely on my wheelchair to be able to get around.

    I would also like to comment on the main factors you take into account for the capability to work medical assessment:

    ·         Moving around and climbing steps – I cannot stand /walk, I have no balance, I definitely cannot climb stairs, I don’t use the stairs in my house, yet my assessment think I can climb stairs and move around.


    ·         Standing and sitting - which is totally ridiculous, I am unable to stand I have no balance without holding onto someone or something I need help /aid and support.


    ·         Reaching - yes but only from sitting / wheelchair height nothing higher than my eye level.


    ·         Picking up and moving things with either arm - my arms are not totally effected, however I am unable to lift anything heavier than a book or cup of juice, again because I cannot stand without holding onto someone or something.


    ·         Using your hands - no problem with using his hands


    ·         Speaking, writing and typing - not all the time, with the amount of pain relief and pain I am on, I struggle to retain information and stay focus, my mum has had to support / type this letter for me. My current medication is :


    Codeine: 15mg 1x 4 times a day

    Paracetamol: 500mg 2x 4 times a day

    Ibuprofen:  500mg 2x 3 times a day.


    ·         Hearing and reading - hear & reading is fine, same again, retaining information and tiredness from my heart condition, I find it very hard, also with the amount of pain relief I am on, also causes tiredness.


    ·         Seeing well enough to get around safely - get around with support / someone helping me and aids - wheelchair and splints, otherwise I would have no balance.


    ·         Learning to do new tasks - I find new tasks and routine hard to adapt too, because I get very anxious.


    ·         Being aware of hazards - depending on the hazard, will depend on my safety


    ·         Planning, starting and finishing common tasks - it takes me a while to start / finish anything due to the amount of pain I am in, and tiredness.


    ·         Coping with changes to your routine - I don’t cope with change / routine well at all, and I do suffer with anxiety in strange / new places. I need support from a family member to help and support me, also to reassure me that I am ok.


    ·         Going out on your own - there is no way possible I am able to get around on my own, I can’t even stand without support / aids, how can I get out on my own?

    I am on the highest amount of pain relief I am allowed because of my heart condition, I take

     2x 500mg of paracetamol 4 times a day

    2x 400mg of ibuprofen 3 times a day

    1x 15mg codeine 4 times a day / when pain is out of control.

    I am also waiting for surgery at Bristol infirmary hospital, which will leave me completely dependent in my wheelchair for at least 18 months, while I am having treatment, I am having a very complex surgery which comes with very high risks, this will not be a cure, there is no cure for my disabilities but to try and reduce the amount of pain I am in. I will attach a picture of the external fixators that I will be having on both feet, from the foot to just below the knee.

    The whole assessment summary is a complete load of rubbish, the information that has been put in there is completely condescending, it also states that I have only had 1 heart surgery, I can prove from Great Ormond Street Hospital, that I have had so far, 4 surgeries on my heart and I have more in front of me, I also have narrowing left ventricle and a leaking right pulmonary artery.

    I was sitting in my wheelchair for the whole of my assessment, yet the report states that I was sitting , leading anyone to believe I was sitting in a chair, I will bring the report with me. 

    I hope this gives you a better insight of my life and how hard it is for me, I would love nothing more than to be able to go out to work and support myself better, but medically I cannot do that, most of my days are laid in bed, to try and relieve my pain.


    Kind Regards

  • janer1967
    janer1967 Member Posts: 15,941 Disability Gamechanger
    This is disgusting treatment and it's about time these so called assessors are made responsible especially when it has gone to tribunal and the panel can clearly see the assessor has not been honest and is not capable of completing an assessment. In any other job this sort of conduct would lead to disciplinary action . I have been through this process myself and won my case at tribunal. This is costing more money taking all these cases to court as well as the distress caused to individuals 
    Rant over 
  • Donna_534
    Donna_534 Member Posts: 16 Connected
  • Donna_534
    Donna_534 Member Posts: 16 Connected
    @Hart86 - i have been advised to stay clear of Citizen Advise, because the government have granted them extra funding purely for these appeals, which are going into their favour and not of the clients. 
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 29,732 Disability Gamechanger
    Donna_534 said:
     i have been advised to stay clear of Citizen Advise, because the government have granted them extra funding purely for these appeals, which are going into their favour and not of the clients. 
    I've definitely not heard of this. CAB very rarely represent at a Tribunal now because of lack of funding and appeal success rate is actually increasing, rather than going in favour of DWP.

    Appearing in person at a Tribunal the success rate is 74%, which is quite high.

    It's difficult to give any advice on an internet forum because no one here knows exactly how his conditions affect him, other than what you've written above.

    If it does get to Tribunal stage, there's only one thing i will advise you to do and that's concentrate on the descriptors which apply to him and why, rather than concentrate on what happened at the assessment and before that. The Tribunal won't be interested in any of that, the only thing they will be interested in is the reasons he should be given LCWRA.

    This link will help you find what's local to you for help and support if the MR decision remains the same.

    Good luck.

  • thespiceman
    thespiceman Member Posts: 6,389 Disability Gamechanger
    edited July 2019
    Hello @Donna_534   Thank you for reply.  Happy to see @poppy123456 who has given you some well meaning guidance and advice.

    I would speak to CAB  . Citizens advice I use them for all my form filling in and have been doing so a  while now.

    I do understand what you think but it is important  to recognise the valuable work of the staff at CAB.

    They are only there to do a job despite what you heard. 

    Useful and informative.

    Please can add have you spoken to The British Heart Foundation only a suggestion .

    Might be worth talking to them to see if they can offer any support, advice and guidance . Looking at your sons benefit situation might offer what they can.

    Some organisations do have relevant information and guidance regarding benefits and any signposting.  To disability or welfare organisations to help you through this..

    Help line 0300 330 3311.


    You also mentioned mental health issues in the form of anxiety you son has.

    Many mental health organisations, charities have benefits advisors or people with knowledge and expertise.

    Looking at floating support and wellbeing. Do take clientele with additional problems or disabilities.

    Please can I just add my own personal situation on a long term disability. Born with a genetic disorder.  Plus mental health issues anxiety and depression from long term addiction.  Am clean from that but mental health is an ongoing situation.

    Got into a treadmill system of benefits continuous assessments made go on JSA and then after a year decided after assessment fit then unfit so it went on.  Back to sickness benefits another year then failure back to JSA and so on . 

    I am on PIP as well ESA.  Still have assessments but have the knowledge to deal with them. CAB helped me a lot.  

    Intervention of floating support worker from mental health charity stopped all that.  Sent letter to DWP did another claim for ESA which I should have been on.

    With much support from them this charity.

    My Doctor added should never had been on this JSA. As I ended up being ill and with the additional problems of my disability.  Am ageing fast .  

    I got told and walked over no one ever told me that I should have been applying for ESA not JSA.   

    Got told so much that it hurts .  Much of it wrong and misguided from those who should have been helping. Not hindering.

    I had Work coaches also who had no idea how to deal with me or anything.  Get the brush off and lot of not listening.

    Had ten signing on officers in six months one time. I forgot to mention that stopped once the mental health charity found out.

    I am sorry what has happened I just wanted to add I think you be wise to look at something like this.  

    I am sorry that was about me but just your sons disability and his struggle resonates with my own issues.

    I am just a community member feel angry and upset for you because I think he should have been on ESA Support group not Universal Credit.

    Looking at the criteria for ESA.  

    My view and opinion.

    The mental health charity is https://www.richmondfellowship.org.uk.

    Might not be in all areas.

    Have a look on line. 

    Wish you well and your son.

    Keep in touch.  Take care.


    Community Champion
    SCOPE Volunteer Award Engaging Communities 2019
    Mental Health advice, guidance and information to all members
    Nutrition, Diet, Wellbeing, Addiction.
  • Donna_534
    Donna_534 Member Posts: 16 Connected
    Thank you so much @thespiceman it is nice to hear from someone in the similar situation as my son. If it wasn’t for me ( mum ) who keeps fighting for him he would take the first decision that’s presented to him , he does not have the capability to fight for his rights. 
  • Donna_534
    Donna_534 Member Posts: 16 Connected
    It’s hard. I know I’m trying to predict their outcome / decision. 
    Maybe My son will be one of the lucky ones and his will be overturned at the mandatory reconsideration stage. 
    It’s the not knowing, and the advise from UC when I phone , stating ‘ oh you’ll definitely get an answer by Friday ( 26th July ) as this is the deadline. If you haven’t then please ring back. 
    If there is no deadline then why are the people answering the phone in the UC call centre informing people of this..... to be honest it’s driving me mad and setting my own anxiety off , because I cannot understand why someone like my son with such serve disabilities do not qualify.... it makes no sense. 
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 29,732 Disability Gamechanger
    I've heard of UC giving other's a deadline date but also heard of the decision exceeding that date. There's no timescales for decisions so i'm not even sure why they give deadlines.

    Please do use that link if the decision does remain the same. Also do be aware that as horrible as the future operation is they won't be able to take that into consideration because it's in the future. They will only be able to take into consideration how his conditions are now.

    Fingers crossed that he's one of the 18% that have the decision changed at MR stage.
  • thespiceman
    thespiceman Member Posts: 6,389 Disability Gamechanger
    edited July 2019
    Hello @Donna_534   Thank you for kind words. Please can I suggest and say one other important thing you may not be aware of .

    Many members have contacted their local MP.  

    Over the assessments system . They need to know. Often can be useful and getting the support. With positive results.

    Many MP's are interested what is happening to our community. 

    MP''s need to know what is the effects of the benefit system on members of our community.  Especially Universal Credit and PIP.

    Could be worth speaking to your local MP.  

    I wish you all the best and your son.  If there is anything you wish to know or ask. Please do.

    You and your son are important a valued member of our community. We do understand . Have care and concern.

    Take care.

    Community Champion
    SCOPE Volunteer Award Engaging Communities 2019
    Mental Health advice, guidance and information to all members
    Nutrition, Diet, Wellbeing, Addiction.
  • Donna_534
    Donna_534 Member Posts: 16 Connected
    Hi @thespiceman
    i have emailed my local MP this morning. Thank you again for your help & advise. 
  • April2018mom
    April2018mom Posts: 2,868 Connected
    I have also contacted my local MP. Considering telling my story on local radio as well as selling it to a local paper as well. 
  • Adrian_Scope
    Adrian_Scope Posts: 8,595 Scope online community team
    Hello @Donna_534 and welcome to the community. :)
    I'm sorry to hear what has happened with your son's WCA and that you're still waiting for the results of your MR. 
    I hope your hear today but unfortunately as has been mentioned, there isn't actually a time scale they have to adhere to for the MRs. Best of luck and please keep us updated with your progress.
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  • Donna_534
    Donna_534 Member Posts: 16 Connected
    My son got his decision today from the mandatory reconsideration, the decision has charged but without the element payment. 
    The decision maker is as bad as the medical nurse statement. I will attach a picture of a section of his report from the decision maker. 

    It states : it is in no doubt that your health conditions affect your day to day life ; these do not limit your functional abilities sufficiently for you to have limited capability for work related activity. Taking into consideration the activities the you are able to do in your typical day which include ; getting up, washed and dressed , making phone calls and walking to the park with your dogs, cook for yourself , plan and organise your own appointments and you can go out on your own , it would be reasonable for you to undertake some form of WRA as described above.   

    1) my son is in a wheelchair, he needs help getting into it and out of it 
    2) my son is not able to get out of bed without help and support from either me ( mum ) or his older brother. 
    3) he cannot get himself dressed or washed he cannot walk and he has no balance and needs that level of care 
    4) we do not own any dog or dogs I have a indoor cat ??‍♀️??‍♀️??‍♀️ 

    Why is this in my sons statement and how the hell can they state that ?
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 29,732 Disability Gamechanger
    I'm sorry to hear this. Your next step is to request the Tribunal and you have 1 month from the date of the decision to do this. You'll need to fill out the SSCS1 form and send the MR decision letter with it.

    I would definitely advise you to get some face to face advice from a agency near you by using the link i posted above.


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