Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
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Made a huge mistake

Unfortunately yesterday I made a huge mistake. I meant to claim PIP but claimed Universal Credit, I didn't even realise until a lady phoned today wanting to know why I was claiming UC when I'm ESA in support group. I explained I regularly make these mistakes partly my medication and neurological reasons. She told me I had to phone ESA people and get them to stop my claim being closed or I'd be on Universal Credit. Fortunately I was able to get through to ESA and they confirmed my account is still open and they have left a message not to close my account but my anxiety is in overdrive now, I can't stop thinking about it, what if, what if, what if they close my ESA and I'm on Universal Credit I don't know what I'll do. Has anyone been in this situation before? Will ESA close my claim? I'm panicking so much

Replies

  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    edited January 7
    HI,

    It maybe too late because once you hit the submit button to claim UC then your claim will have been sent. This is why there's a warning on the screen before you do this, to warn people that once they claim they can't ever go back to the old benefits.

    If it is too late then it may not be the end of the world because your ESA support group award will be honoured in UC and you'll be placed into the LCWRA group. LCWRA for UC pays more than ESA support group. There's also an extra £90 per month in the standard allowance until April 2021.

    Although UC isn't perfect, it's not all bad and remember we only really ever read the bad stories.

    May i ask which ESA you're claiming? Is it all income related or is part of it Contributions based?

    Just so that you know, to claim PIP you need to ring the claims line on this number. 0800 917 2222 It can't be claimed online.


    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.
  • Ross_ScopeRoss_Scope Posts: 4,131

    Scope community team

    Hi @Holly35

    Thanks for posting, sorry to read this has distressed you a bit. 

    Mistakes happen, I would try not to dwell on it too much, and thankfully you were able to get through to ESA to stop them cancelling your claim :) 

    They took your call, left that note and you mentioned you'd given your reasons for making an innocent mistake, so everything should be fine, I understand why you are worrying though but please try to relax :) 

    Regarding your anxiety, are you able to effectively manage this? You might find this self-help information from Mind helpful.

    Will you be making your application for PIP?
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  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Although the person that accidently made the claim for UC, like yourself, they were claiming tax credits, where as you're claiming ESA.
    It really depends on whether the stop notice was sent to ESA. If it was then you may not be able to reverse the situation. I think for this you'll need to wait to see what DWP say regarding the situation.
    I'm assuming because someone rang you, that you actually submitted the claim for UC? Is that correct?


    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.
  • Holly35Holly35 Member Posts: 24 Courageous
    Thanks so much everyone. 

    I submitted the claim before anyone called me. I thought I was claiming PIP so ignored the message. My mind likes to play tricks on me. The lady who phoned me was a Universal Credit worker. 

    When I phoned ESA they said my claim was still live and the person I spoke to also sent an email to the processing centre to get them to stop the closure so I hope they can stop it.

    Thanks so much everyone it's horrible being alone with nothing but your own thoughts especially in these situations 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    You're welcome. Please do let us know the outcome because it could be useful if someone else posts regarding this.
    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.
  • Tori_ScopeTori_Scope Posts: 5,020

    Scope community team

    I can imagine it's difficult to put it out of your mind @Holly35. Are you able to do anything to distract yourself? Is there something you can do that usually calms you down? 
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  • Holly35Holly35 Member Posts: 24 Courageous
    I was contacted by Universal Credit this afternoon to say that ESA were continuing my next payment but I will need to check with them again the day after I receive my payment that my ESA claim is still live, fingers crossed. They also shut down the inadvertent UC claim which I suppose means I will have nothing if ESA also closes. I'm trying to stay calm but it's a struggle to be honest, I need heavy doses of valium. 
  • Tori_ScopeTori_Scope Posts: 5,020

    Scope community team

    I know it's easier said than done, but try not to worry too much about it for the moment @Holly35. When is your next payment due? 
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  • Holly35Holly35 Member Posts: 24 Courageous
    I know it's easier said than done, but try not to worry too much about it for the moment @Holly35. When is your next payment due? 
    Hi, managed to get through to ESA yesterday and my claim is still open also got the uprating letter today but my Housing benefit was cancelled so I've got to try and get that back up again. I'm still unsure because I was told there's a 2 week run on so I suppose my ESA could still close next week? 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    There's a 2 week run on for ESA and housing benefit. If your housing benefit has just been suspended then you should be ok but if it's ended completely this could cause problems.
    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.
  • Holly35Holly35 Member Posts: 24 Courageous
    Thanks for your help. I did manage to find this. I suppose the DWP have withdrawn my UC claim hence the uprating letter dated the 11th 4 days after the UC claim and as yet no letter confirming my ESA will end. I suppose now it's a matter of dealing with the council. I sent them an email with the uprating letter as proof of my ESA entitlement now just hope they accept it and reinstate HB. 
  • Ross_ScopeRoss_Scope Posts: 4,131

    Scope community team

    Hopefully you hear back from the council soon @Holly35

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  • Holly35Holly35 Member Posts: 24 Courageous
    Hopefully you hear back from the council soon @Holly35

    They have reinstated my Housing Benefit entitlement after I sent them an email of a screenshot of the UC journal confirming the UC was closed and my ESA claim remains intact. If the Universal Credit lady hadn't phoned the next day I wouldn't have known any better. 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    I'm glad it's all been sorted and your benefits will continue as normal. Thanks for updating us.
    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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