Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
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ESA contribution & income related and housing benefit

Hi,  I hope someone can help.  I applied for housing benefit for the first time in June 2019.  I was unaware I could get housing benefit so have sstruggled for years to pay full rent and council tax.  When I sent in the housing benefit forms to the local council I was receiving contributions based ESA with a small elelment £26.41 of income related top up (which has been the case since I was migrated over from incapacity benefit).  I also receive an inherited pension from my late husband which obviously DWP & the local council now about.  I sent in all the forms and was delighted to receive housing benefit.  Unbeknown to me in July 2019 (1 month after) DWP decided to change the income related element I received to total contributions base.  I rang DWP ESA  last week and asked why and was told it was beause I would get more on contributions based than I would get if they gave me income related? Today I have been informed that my housing benefit has stopped and I now have to pay full rent and will also end up in a lot of arrears but not a penny of my money has changed since I sent in the original housing beneift forms in July 2019.  It appears that the DWP ESA change in my ESA has caused all of this.  The rep at DWP said my housing benefit should not be affected because it is not really contributioins based it is because I was migrated over from incapacity benefit and thats what they doie put people like me into that group but it has because the council are saying that I no longer receive any income related ESA so my housing benefit has stopped.

I have been in the support group for over 10 years now, never in the WRAG and I was migrated from incapacity benefit to ESA as a matter of course a couple of years back. My most recent letter states that I am in receipt of the disibillity income guarantee but no one seems to know or understand what all the new terminologies mean.  Now I have lost the housing benefit I am going to really struggle financially and would like to know if any advisor can shed any light on this and help.

Many thanks

Replies

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

    Regarding your ESA. My first thoughts here is that your pension is being classed as income for your ESA claim. May i ask how much ESA you receive per week?

    The disability income guarantee is otherwise known as the Enhanced disability premium, which is £16.80 per week single person claim and is automatically paid to those claiming ESA Support Group Income Related.

    I'm also wondering how you were able to claim housing benefit because all areas are now a full Universal Credit area and have been since December 2018. Claiming housing benefit is only possible in certain circumstances, such as if you're claiming a severe disability premium in another benefit.

    You don't mention claiming a disability benefit, do you claim PIP daily living or DLA mid/high rate care?



    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.
  • Rosie666Rosie666 Member Posts: 6 Listener
    Hi Thank you for replying.  My ESA is £111.65 per week and £26.40 of that was classed as income related the rest was classed as contributions until the change DWP made in July 2019.  I am in receipt of enhanced PIP for both care and mobility.  My pension is from my late husband and obviously I declare it to DWP. 

  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    The £111.65 per week is all Contributions based, no part of that claim is Income Related. I can only assume that the pension you receive from your late husband is classed as Income and reduces your ESA £1 for £1.

    Regarding the housing benefit, i'm not totally sure on this so I would advise you to speak to an advice agency near you for a full benefits check because speaking to a DWP rep for benefits advice isn't really the best thing to do because they mostly read from a screen.

    Put your postcode into this link and it will tell you what advice agency is near you for that advice. https://advicelocal.uk/

    When you do go for that advice, i'd advise you to take all of your paper work with you and then they'll be able to take a look at advise you accordingly.


    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.
  • Rosie666Rosie666 Member Posts: 6 Listener
    Thank you for all of your help much appreciated.
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Scope Posts: 10,652 Disability Gamechanger
    Welcome to the community @Rosie666! Please let us know if we can do anything else to help. :)
    Community Partner
    Scope

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