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Prescription costs - ESA income related

Hi there, I hope you are all going okay during these uncertain times. 

I'm currently receiving income related ESA therefore my prescriptions are currently free. I live with my partner so can anyone please clarify if he is able to have free prescriptions too? We aren't married. 

Thank you ?


  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 28,573 Disability Gamechanger

    I'm assuming your partner isn't working and you're claiming ESA as a couple, with your partner added to your claim. Is that correct? If so then you will both be entitled to free NHS treatment, which includes prescriptions.
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 28,573 Disability Gamechanger
    edited March 2020

    In that post you stated you've been claiming ESA since 2019, is that correct? If it is then you must be claiming New style ESA because claims for the old legacy ESA (Income related) we not possible from December 2018.

    As New style ESA is based on your NI Contributions then it's in your name only and your partner won't be added to your claim. This also means that neither of you will be entitled to free NHS prescriptions because Contributions based benefits doesn't automatically entitle you to prescriptons.

    May i ask if you're claiming UC with your partner?

  • Ems81
    Ems81 Member Posts: 20 Connected
    Hi [email protected] 
    No he works full time so I always assumed he wouldn't be eligible for free treatment or prescriptions. But someone mentioned to me that he would be eligible so I checked online and the NHS guidance does mention that partners are eligible but I couldn't see any info on what their employment status should be. 

    Thank you for your quick reply 
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 28,573 Disability Gamechanger
    As advised your New style ESA doesn't automatically entitle either of you to claim free prescriptions. If you've collected prescriptions recently and they do checks then it's possible you'll be sent a fine in the post for claiming free prescriptions when you're not entitled.

    You need to look at the NHS low Income scheme here. If you think you qualify you need to fill out the form and send it back.

    Only those claiming Income related ESA with their partner added onto their claim will automatically qualify. You can't add a partner to a New style ESA claim.

  • Ems81
    Ems81 Member Posts: 20 Connected
    Yes that's me. I moved in with my partner at the end of last year as his house is more mobility friendly for me. And yes I'm claiming new style esa but have completely got myself in a tizz and keep calling it income based. We don't claim UC as I don't think we would qualify for it. 
    I've had a prepaid prescription certificate that has just run out so I'm so glad that I've had this clarified! I'll be ordering another one now that I know my prescriptions aren't free.

    Many thanks ?

  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 28,573 Disability Gamechanger
    You're welcome, i'm glad i could help you. Take care and stay safe!


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