Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
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ESA to UC then back to ESA?

If you claim contribution based ESA support group and after awhile, need to claim income based UC. If your circumstances change again can you revert back to claiming your ESA contributions based suport group award?

Replies

  • calcotticalcotti Member Posts: 1,149 Pioneering
    If you claim new style ESA and are awarded it you will continue to receive it even if you later apply for UC. The amount of UC you receive will be reduced by by the ESA. You would therefore get fortnightly ESA payments and monthly UC payments.
    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.
  • littleacornlittleacorn Member Posts: 152 Pioneering
    To clarify I have been claiming ESA contribution based for 5 years and in the support group with no UC claim as Im not entitled to it as I live with my partner who works. However as a change of cicumstances I may have to claim UC to increase my income as I may soon be on my own.  What I want to know is if in the future my cicumstances revert back to living with my partner will my ESA claim revert back to being contribution based in the suport group only or will I have to make a new claim for ESA?
  • woodbinewoodbine Member Posts: 3,721 Disability Gamechanger
    @littleacorn I think you can only take one step at a time tbh.
    my advice is given freely and is correct to the best of my knowledge.
  • calcotticalcotti Member Posts: 1,149 Pioneering
    edited March 3
    To clarify I have been claiming ESA contribution based for 5 years and in the support group with no UC claim as Im not entitled to it as I live with my partner who works. However as a change of cicumstances I may have to claim UC to increase my income as I may soon be on my own.  What I want to know is if in the future my cicumstances revert back to living with my partner will my ESA claim revert back to being contribution based in the suport group only or will I have to make a new claim for ESA?
    Your contribution based ESA will not stop when you claim UC. It will continue unchanged and you will, if entitled, get a monthly UC top up payment.

    Rather than claim UC you can, if you prefer, ask to have your ESA reassessed on an income based basis and could get an income based ESA top up to the contribution based ESA. However If you need help with rent you will need to claim UC because you will not be able to claim Housing Benefit.

    Do you claim a disability benefit as well as ESA?
    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.
  • littleacornlittleacorn Member Posts: 152 Pioneering
    @calcotti yes I get both PIP enhanced.
  • calcotticalcotti Member Posts: 1,149 Pioneering
    @calcotti yes I get both PIP enhanced.
    In which case, if you will be living alone and nobody is getting carers Allowance for looking after, asking for your ESA to be reassessed for an income based top up will give you more money than applying for UC unless you are going to have to claim help with rent in which case you will have to apply for UC. However, even then, if you can afford to pay some of the rent initially you could ask for the ESA to be reassessed for income based which would include the Severe disability Premium. If you then apply for UC for help with rent your UC entitlement would include the SDP transitional amount increasing your entitlement by £120/month. However ESA may take a while to reassess so you may not be able to afford the delay.

    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.
  • littleacornlittleacorn Member Posts: 152 Pioneering
    @calcotti Thanks for the info. It is amazing how if you dont know your options you can end up worse off which really shouldnt be the case but hay ho. It now might be the case that as my relationship seems to be coming to an end I may have to stay put for awhile until covid settles down then look at moving out. In the meantime can I ask for a income top up now as my now ex is not financially supporting me any more?
  • calcotticalcotti Member Posts: 1,149 Pioneering
    If you are separated while still living in the same property you can claim as a single person but obviously you need to be prepared for DWP to ask some questions about your circumstances, your living arrangements and finances.
    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.
  • littleacornlittleacorn Member Posts: 152 Pioneering
    @calcotti thanks once agin you have been very informative.
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