Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
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On 1/2 pay, want to leave job & claim SSP then ESA

Hi 

Could anyone help me please? 
I have a spinal condition which has left me disabled. I receive specialist care from the neurology hospital in London and have many more operations to come as well as bowel issues and an expected stoma bag to be fitted. 

I have tried my hardest the past 3 years to maintain my employment and my employers have made 'reasonable adjustments' and I have seen an Occupational Health Dr. At the time I wanted to carry on working and taking sick leave when needed. He was supportive of this and wrote the report to that effect and included I am protected under the Equality Act 2010.

My situation now is that I've been off sick for 3 months following major surgery. This surgery has not worked and it would be impossible to do my job now. My pay has just gone down to half pay and i'll go to SSP in June. 

I dont want to return to work, having done the sums my partner and I can survive in his wages plus ESA (I already get pip) 

My questions are; 
1. If I have a meeting with my employers and we all agree I'm incapable of doing my job despite reasonable adjustments will I think claim SSP until applying for ESA
2. If I resigned whilst still on half pay and went to the GP when my current sick note ends will I then just send future sick notes to DWP to receive SSP until being able to claim ESA? 
Basically I'm concerned, would I be sanctioned if I left my job even though I'm physically unable to do it? 

I have an appointment to see the CAB and am waiting for a call from my union rep to get further support and guidance, I'm just very anxious as work are starting to ask questions about possible return dates (currently signed off for 3 months) 

Thanks
Alpine

Replies

  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi,

    SSP is paid by your employer for 28 weeks, with a fit note from your GP, it's not paid by DWP. https://www.gov.uk/statutory-sick-pay

    3 months before this is due to end you'll be able to start a claim for New style ESA but you'll need a fit note from your GP and your SSP1 form from your employer to be able to claim this. Payments won't start until your SSP ends but claiming 3 months before means you shouldn't be left without money once your SSP ends.

    ESA pays £73.10 per week and is paid for 365 days unless placed into the Support Group and then it's paid for as long as you remain in that group, you'll also have an increase of money from the 14th week of your claim if placed into this group.

    Claiming Universal Credit and SSP is possible but because it's a means tested benefit then you will need to claim as a couple with your partner. Whether you'll be entitled to claim anything will depend on both of your circumstances, such as income/savings and capital. Hope this helps.

    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.
  • Alpine88Alpine88 Member Posts: 13 Listener
    Thanks for your reply. 
    It sounds like I would be better off to remain employed and receive SSP for the set time until I can apply for ESA. Otherwise I would have to apply for UC and my partners income would be taken into account? 

    If I was to put a claim in for UC is there a time limit of how long to wait to put a claim in for new style ESA?

    Thanks
    Alpine
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    For UC because it's means tested then yes your partners earnings and your SSP would be classed as income. Using a benefits calculator and putting both of your details into it will tell you if you're entitled to anything because your earnings will reduce your UC entitlement by 63%. https://www.entitledto.co.uk/

    New style ESA and UC are different benefits but if you apply for New style ESA as well as UC there's no financial gain because the ESA will be deducted £1 for £1 from your UC amount.

    The only difference is that New style ESA isn't means tested and you would receive class 1 NI credits towards your state pension but for UC you receive class 3. There's no timescales to apply for New style ESA if you apply for UC first, other than New style ESA is based on your NI Contributions in the previous 2 tax years from working.

    Either way, you will need to claim SSP from your employer for 28 weeks, with a fit note from your GP.



    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.
  • Alpine88Alpine88 Member Posts: 13 Listener
    Hi

    Ok thankyou for your help.
    What would the scenario be if I quit? How long from quitting my job would I have to wait until I apply for ESA?

    Thanks
    Alpine
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    edited January 2020
    No problem,

    Why would you want to quit your job rather than claim SSP, it pays more per week than ESA does, so that would make no sense at all. If you're entitled to SSP then your employer must pay you this first.
    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.
  • Alpine88Alpine88 Member Posts: 13 Listener
    Just because it feels wrong doing this when I've no intention of going back? 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    edited January 2020
    Sorry but that makes no sense. You've worked, so if you're entitled to it your employer must pay you SSP.
    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.
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