What benefits am I entitled to?
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Fibromyalgia diagnosis. I'm not sure I can return to work, can I claim for anything?

denwms22denwms22 Member Posts: 1 Listener
Hi my names Denise, I’ve recently been diagnosed with fibromyalgia and mild psoriatic arthritis. 
My symptoms started over a year ago, while working at a hospital looking after patients with dementia. I’d had bad joint pain and a bad back due to a fall for years.  
But as I was nearing my 40th birthday, things started to change. To be honest I thought my aches and pains where due to me getting older. But I started having widespread pain all over my body, I became sensitive to touch, and I became and still am very depressed. 
I stopped working at the hospital due to it being to much for my body to handle, I went back to where I used to work before as a support worker for adults with learning disabilities (which I love) as its a slower pace, and I thought I could handle it. 

I love my job, but I my body can’t handle it anymore due to the constant pain, which is making me depressed. 
I’ve been off work now for 6 weeks, and to be honest I really don’t know if I can go back! 
So I’ll get a wage for 10-12 weeks then after that nothing only ssp. 
But what do I do for wages after that?

Can anyone help me? Can I claim for anything?
I have no idea?

thank you for taking the time to read this x


Replies

  • calcotticalcotti Member Posts: 2,125 Pioneering
    This tool can be helpful
    https://dwp-benefits-checker.shorthandstories.com/step-1/index.html

    You will be looking at Universal Credit and/or PIP initially with possibility of claiming new style ESA when SSP runs out (although if claiming UC the ESA is deducted from the UC so doesn't increase your overall income). Also Council Tax Reduction from local authority.

    Entitlement to UC and CTR will depend on your household circumstances.
    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 6,533 Disability Gamechanger
    Absolutely would not recommend that link @calcotti. It is allegedly an official site and a benefit checker and yet... it's neither. 

    1 - it's not a benefit checker. It essentially does a bit of gate-keeping before pushing you towards the benefit checkers on gov.uk which are... not holistic and therefore not very good. 

    2 - The coat of arms logo at the top left is Crown Copyright, and appears on all official Government websites.  If you click on the logo on an official site, it sends you to information from the National Archives about Crown Copyright. There is no such link on the “benefits checker”. 

    3 - It's run by Shorthand. Literally no information about what data they collect and who they give it to. Blatant GDPR issues. 

    Frankly I would not touch it with a very long barge pole. 
  • Tori_ScopeTori_Scope Posts: 4,959

    Scope community team

    Welcome to the community @denwms22 :) Thanks for asking your question.

    Are you familiar at all with PIP and UC, as calcotti has mentioned above? Some people find that a benefits calculator helps them to understand what they may be entitled to.  

    I'm also wondering whether you've been able to access any support for your mental health? I can imagine that being in pain, and having to make some life changes, could really take its toll. Have you shared this with anyone? 
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  • calcotticalcotti Member Posts: 2,125 Pioneering
    Absolutely would not recommend that link @calcotti. It is allegedly an official site and a benefit checker and yet... it's neither. 

    1 - it's not a benefit checker. It essentially does a bit of gate-keeping before pushing you towards the benefit checkers on gov.uk which are... not holistic and therefore not very good. 

    2 - The coat of arms logo at the top left is Crown Copyright, and appears on all official Government websites.  If you click on the logo on an official site, it sends you to information from the National Archives about Crown Copyright. There is no such link on the “benefits checker”. 

    3 - It's run by Shorthand. Literally no information about what data they collect and who they give it to. Blatant GDPR issues. 

    Frankly I would not touch it with a very long barge pole. 
    That’s an interesting take, Mike. I am only aware of it because it was announced in DWP Touchbase email (around March I think)
    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.
  • calcotticalcotti Member Posts: 2,125 Pioneering
    edited July 1
    calcotti said: That’s an interesting take, Mike. I am only aware of it because it was announced in DWP Touchbase email (around March I think)
    Gone back through my emails. DWP Touch base for 19th March
    Universal Credit benefits checker
     We have launched a new benefits checking tool to help people who think they might be eligible for Universal Credit. It takes a few minutes, and doesn’t require any detailed information, nor does it process or store personal data. It is an easy first step for anyone who is unsure whether they want to start a claim.

    I have inferred it is an official, or officially endorsed, checker (although I don't know why it's not hosted on a gov.uk address).

    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 6,533 Disability Gamechanger
    To be clear, I am fully aware that it is an official DWP site. 

    However, it gives no appearance of being so; does not actually do what it says it does and is run by a company who have zero experience of benefits and who appear to have blatantly disregarded a number of relevant standards and manage to give the impression it’s a scam site.

    It is a pernicious further little experiment in privatising that which should be public. So, as I say, putting aside my ideological objections, there are sound reasons for simply not using it i.e. it doesn’t actually do benefit checks.
  • calcotticalcotti Member Posts: 2,125 Pioneering
    mikehughescq said: It is a pernicious further little experiment in privatising that which should be public. 
    Completely agree with that,
    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.
  • calcotticalcotti Member Posts: 2,125 Pioneering
    With apologies to OP for no t being directly relayed to their question - I note the benefits checker now because no promoted by DWP as part of their campaign to encourage people to switch to UC
    https://www.understandinguniversalcredit.gov.uk/working-for-you/could-universal-credit-be-for-you/
    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.
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