Remaining politically neutral during General Election 2024


Under guidance from the Electoral Commission and Charity Commission, it's important that Scope remains politically neutral during General Elections.

While we understand that this period will see many passionate discussions and do not want to discourage open discussion, we cannot allow discussions which are purely intended to influence voting.

As ever, please make sure that your comments remain respectful of other people's opinions and keep to our online community house rules.

NHS Pensions & ill health retirement. Any tips?

Options
dekidecay
dekidecay Community member Posts: 7 Listener
edited July 2022 in Work and employment
hi there

I wanted to ask for any advice/support around 'ill health retirement' re NHS Pensions.

I am 51 and have ME/CFS, ADHD, Autism, Anxiety and depression and I have been trying to return to work after a major CFS relapse caused by autistic burnout last November. Even, working from home on a phased return has left me struggling. 

I have been using my annual leave to elongate my phased return and to reduce further sick leave (as per my contract, my pay will be halved if I take anymore).

Sadly, I have come to the conclusion that I am unable to do my job (or any other job) due to extreme fatigue - even with reasonable adjustments such as working from home on reduced hours. I've been assessed for PIP and waiting outcome.

I have initiated the process of applying for 'ill health retirement' through my line manager and occupational health dept. Both who are supportive of application. However, I am aware the process takes months and could quite easily by declined by the independent assessing body, who, I was told by the Occupational Health Dr, rarely approve IHR applications from people with ME/CFS and/or fibromyalgia. 

Any advice/support would be greatly appreciated?

Thanks
Tagged:

Comments

  • Tori_Scope
    Tori_Scope Scope Posts: 12,506 Disability Gamechanger
    Options
    Welcome to the community @dekidecay :) Thank you for joining, and for giving us some information about your current situation. I'm sorry to hear that you've been facing a number of health problems recently, and that you no longer feel able to work. 

    I haven't been through the ill health retirement process myself, but hopefully another member who has will find and respond to your post soon. In the meantime, I found this page on the Royal College of Nursing's website, which I thought you might find helpful. Perhaps you could give it a read, and let us know what you think? 
    National Campaigns Officer, she/her

    Sign our petition calling on politicians to stop demonising us
  • dekidecay
    dekidecay Community member Posts: 7 Listener
    Options
    Thanks so much Tori_Scope - really appreciate this info, thank you! :smiley:
  • DrGW0
    DrGW0 Community member Posts: 1 Listener
    Options
    Hi @dekidecay, I am in a very similar situation. I am 47 and burnt out earlier this year, and have an OH case conference coming up to discuss my future or return to work. This has been going on for months and left me in a very vulnerable state. I am now on an ASD waiting list. Do let us know how you get on!   
  • dekidecay
    dekidecay Community member Posts: 7 Listener
    Options
    Hi there @DrGW0 sorry you are struggling and I really hope you are getting support? Especially with managing the stress of a forthcoming OH case conference while waiting to be assessed ? Please feel free to direct message me if you feel I can help in any way  :) 
  • MsF
    MsF Community member Posts: 2 Listener
    Options
    Hi @dekidecay, I'm so sorry that you're going through a difficult time at the moment. I came across this website - which I thought might offer some insights into NHS IHR: 

    https://allaboutlongcovid.uk/2022/12/19/ill-health-retirement-some-good-news/

    Although the info is not about ME/CFS, but Long Covid, I thought it might be worth a read.

    I'm going through something similar - I've had ME since 2018, but due to a covid related complication, I may have to look at IHR from my NHS role in the near future. 

     Take care and hope things are progressing in the right direction. 
  • dekidecay
    dekidecay Community member Posts: 7 Listener
    Options
    Wow thanks so much for this @MsF - I really am grateful  :) 
  • MsF
    MsF Community member Posts: 2 Listener
    Options
    Hi @dekidecay, I'm so sorry that you're going through a difficult time at the moment. I came across this website - which I thought might offer some insights into NHS IHR: 

    https://allaboutlongcovid.uk/2022/12/19/ill-health-retirement-some-good-news/

    Although the info is not about ME/CFS, but Long Covid, I thought it might be worth a read.

    I'm going through something similar - I've had ME since 2018, but due to a covid related complication, I may have to look at IHR from my NHS role in the near future. 

     Take care and hope things are progressing in the right direction. 
  • dekidecay
    dekidecay Community member Posts: 7 Listener
    Options
    thanks again @MsF I'm still waiting for a decision to be made but it's been so helpful to read Alison's account as I don't know anyone else who has been through this process. Hearing her experience and the time framework has offered a glimmer of light at the end of a very long dark tunnel. It took me a canteen full of spoons and so much time to complete the forms and collate medical evidence. It then took the same amount x100 to get my OH department to complete their form and get the application sent off. Anyway thank you again @MsF :smiley:
  • Big_Al
    Big_Al Community member Posts: 4 Connected
    Options
    Hi Guys,
    I'm going through NHS Ill-Health retirement. I have been off work for nearly two years. I have Congenital Vertebral, Cardiac and limb defects. I went off with Depression/Anxiety/PTSD. Due to the fact I had 5 different Line Managers in a year and a half. The sickness procedure was 'erratic' and 'unsupportive'.
    Occupational Health were initially supportive and understanding (Nurse). However, when Ill-Health retirement was mentioned I was seen by the Occupational Health Consultant. There were promises of 'suitable adjustments' although these were not suitable for my circumstances. I was told to look at alternative roles of which I found none apart from one that required an hours travel to get to. The answer from Occupational Health "Access to work could provide transport". So instead of my 37.5 hours a week I would be looking at close to 50hrs a week.
    I have now virtually had to insist that my AW33E be submitted before my Employer dismisses me on Capability.
    When they use the phrase "should be unable to efficiently carryout their role" and "Be able to meet attendance standards laid out by the Employer" I read those words and thought "that sounds like me". Appears I'm wrong. 
    I never meant for this to be a rant! I have done 36yrs in the NHS. I (as many others) have gone beyond. Something I have learned, I needed to make more of a nuisance of myself toward Doctors and other Healthcare Professionals. Hopefully, middle of next week my AW33E will be submitted to NHS Pensions Medical Advisor/Assessor. As  I have Formal stage 2 review on Wednesday and if they actually follow policy (lol). Two weeks after I will have a Capability Panel hearing with view to dismissal.
    My top tips:
    1) Pester HCPs make them understand you life challenges.
    2) Be sure to have a Trade Union or savvy minded supporter.
    3) Read up on Employment Law via ACAS/TUC
    4) Unlike me! Be assertive with what your needs are.
    I'm sure my experience has been a total negative experience. If Occupational Health are supporting you snatch their hand off!
    By way of Disability Discrimination, I don't understand how underlying disabilities are NOT considered when applying for Ill-Health retirement.
    Ok, on a brighter note for the first time in my Adult life I get to manage my health in a positive way.

  • dekidecay
    dekidecay Community member Posts: 7 Listener
    Options
    Thanks for all of this @Big_Al - I hope that things go well for you next week. I'm sorry you've had to go through what you've been through. I really appreciate all your advice :smiley: I'm still waiting for an outcome decision to my AW33E (it's been 2.5 months since they acknowledged receiving it and I think it takes 3 months). It took over 3 full months for Occupational Health to complete my Part C and send it off. The OH consultant who I initially spoke to about early retirement had left the trust and my application ended up being passed from one place to another with me having to chase and check what was happening (which was usually nothing!). The other OH consultant (while initially supportive) would usually talk over me and shut me down whenever I spoke - limiting our discussions to the ME/CFS diagnosis only. I remember being told that "they" (the panel) would only be able to deal with one thing (one diagnosis). I remember thinking that my life would be a hell of a lot easier if I only I had to deal with "one thing" and not a combination of hidden disabilities :neutral:  ..... But like you, for the first time as an adult, I am managing my health better. I'm able to focus on my own healthcare needs instead of denying them - pushing through, masking and compensating for the benefit of others. I really wish I had been more assertive earlier on as well, that I'd worried less about how I would be perceived or judged.... but like you, I'm learning. Thanks again @Big_Al :smiley:
  • g7iqj
    g7iqj Community member Posts: 95 Courageous
    Options
    AGE 59  spine back issues  degenrative for life .   latest white paper in budget march 15 .   MORE  difficult to retire  on health  more hopes hurdles . DWP   picking on 55- 65 yrs  due to fact we disabilitys  bulk unemployed jan 2023 .  i work part time 3 days week  via agentcy   30 hours . but feb - april  quite top up with UC UNICREDIT  . COACHES trained to push u into any work u can do  ASAP  . ITS NOT  about us as humans  with disabilitys . I  dont see my self working to 66 another 7 yrs  .  WHITE  paper want  come in to 2026/2029 . THATS if  the FLAWED COROUPT TORYS win next election due by dec 2024    last dec 2019  5 years max in power parlitnment .   GET  all your eveidence , spechailists , doctors reports  etc.  APPLY FOR WCA   asap   b4 change .  RECORD the assetnment  as asseors do lie on there   PIP/    UC50, WCA reports + best luck thinck we all going need luck in future .  AS  now 2023    we live in country with 1920S 2 TIER  VICTORTIAN / NEOLIBRAIL  CAPATAILIST FAR RIGHT POLICS/ POLICY.    For the few not many  keep ur chin up . 
  • Chancer13
    Chancer13 Community member Posts: 3 Listener
    Options
    Has anyone been able to complete the process yet?

    I have just had a completely negative decision reversed under appeal, straight to tier 2, awaiting decision on PIB as was also rejected 1st time around.

    Awaiting forms and info from pensions officer now as the calculators are just so confusing.

    Hopeful of PIB @85% and IHP from 1995 & 2015 Scheme.
  • andrewkuk
    andrewkuk Scope Member Posts: 75 Courageous
    Options
    Hi - I went through the NHS ill health retirement process due to my mobility getting worse and I was made to give up my job which I loved and had worked so hard to keep going.

    It's good advice to take the Union representation (I was with Unison) as they offer independent advice and support through the process.

    I would love to say it was easy but it took from September to the following April to be successful in getting ill health retirement. This was after they asked me to see three different consultants to confirm my health conditions.

    The problem I had was how to take the pension ie how much lump sum versus monthly pension. As I was under 50 DWP told me to speak to citizens advice who told me to speak to Pension Wise who said because I was under 50 to speak to DWP! Nobody could advise the best way forward so I had to make my own decision which was very difficult as you lose part of your ESA depending on how much your pension is per month.

    I unfortunately made the wrong decision but hindsight is a wonderful thing and I have just got to continue as best I can.

    It's a very Gray area with DWP and every April when you get a small increase you lose that amount of ESA so it is pretty pointless. You're not guaranteed to get an increase every year. It's up to the government to decide. It's only been the last couple of years when we have had an increase.

    I hope this helps in some way and wish you success in obtaining your ill-health retirement.

    Kind regards 

    Andrew

  • Chancer13
    Chancer13 Community member Posts: 3 Listener
    Options
    andrewkuk said:

    The problem I had was how to take the pension ie how much lump sum versus monthly pension. As I was under 50 DWP told me to speak to citizens advice who told me to speak to Pension Wise who said because I was under 50 to speak to DWP! Nobody could advise the best way forward so I had to make my own decision which was very difficult as you lose part of your ESA depending on how much your pension is per month.

    I unfortunately made the wrong decision but hindsight is a wonderful thing and I have just got to continue as best I can.




    I'm only just 50 and would've been 49 on the date on application, can I ask what was the wrong decision?

    There doesn't appear to be anyone that is knowledgeable enough around NHS Pensions even with the union, who I unfortunately found rather useless throughout the whole process, I started to work P/T in late 2020 and have been off sick since March 2021, my application went in after my employment cased due to ill health in Feb of this year.

    I can relate to the abysmal number of assessments and paperwork that is required.

    I'm hopeful of PIB as my injury/illness stems from an injury at work some years ago.

    Thanks
  • g7iqj
    g7iqj Community member Posts: 95 Courageous
    edited November 2023
    Options
    TOOK  my small private penstion  4 yrs back & 55  2019  . LUMP  sum 25% TAX  free ,   payed 20% tax  on 75 % penstion value .  REST  tax year 2019- 2020 . MASE  sure my total earnings  less £12.750 . FROM  part time work class  1 (paye )  IN  may 2020  HAD BIG TAX REBATE .    THAT  then  4 yrs back . NOW  current  OFF SICK  claim UC  unicredit . failed  JOKE  UC50,  wca /// MR .   AWAIT  TIBUNRAL DATE .  FAILED because flawed corourpt reporting by  CHDA (HCP)  DID  not report what put on UC50  MISSED LOT OUT &    USED  old chestnut  PROBALLY  Which i cant  SElf propel manual wheel chair .  SO  did not ward 15 points , MOVE/ MOBILISE .  or award   LCWRA.  DISPITE mr scan spechialist report  says max move mobilise 20 meteres with aid stick /// stand 1-2 min .      DWP  joke like twist rules to suit them   & TORY / CON  off govertnment    (AUSTERITY )  to pay for few "0% soceity rich mans TAX , OFFSHORE AVATION , TAX , CUTS .   FLAWED COROURPT  TAX OFFSHORE  SELFSERVING //// TORY CONS . OUT OUT OUT BY DEC 2024  ELECTION DEAD LINE    SHRED DISABILITY WHITE PAPER 2023   IN BIN/ SHREDDER
  • Chancer13
    Chancer13 Community member Posts: 3 Listener
    Options
    so just to put the cat amongst the pigeons........

    Anyone heard of 'Section 406 of the Income Tax (Earnings and Pensions) Act 2003'

    Payments or benefits provided to employees on account of injury or disability are exempt from income tax and national insurance. 

    Would pension payments due to disability not be tax free in that case, or does the word 'employee' make the difference? 
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 55,928 Disability Gamechanger
    Options
    Chancer13 said:
    so just to put the cat amongst the pigeons........

    Anyone heard of 'Section 406 of the Income Tax (Earnings and Pensions) Act 2003'

    Payments or benefits provided to employees on account of injury or disability are exempt from income tax and national insurance. 

    Would pension payments due to disability not be tax free in that case, or does the word 'employee' make the difference? 

    This isn't the same thing and any pension is taxable income. The same if you claim New style ESA, it's taxable income.
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • g7iqj
    g7iqj Community member Posts: 95 Courageous
    Options
    IF  u claim pip (PIP)  not means tested ,  does not effect ur  UC UNI CREDIT CLAIM . BUT  if you claim  industrial injurys benefit . THIS  is  means tested  & AFFECTS   UC  unicredit .  YEY BOTH ARE DISABILITY BENEFITS .    IF  u over 55 payed least  35 + yrs CLASS1 NI (PAYE) CLASS1  . ITS what you payed in for all ur working life . BUT  flawed corourpt tory cons GOVERNT  dont look it like that .    
Complete our feedback form and tell us how we can make the community better.
If we become concerned about you or anyone else while using one of our services, we will act in line with our safeguarding policy and procedures. This may involve sharing this information with relevant authorities to ensure we comply with our policies and legal obligations.

Find out how to let us know if you're concerned about another member's safety.