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Mutual Support. Employment and Support Allowance 13 October 2013. Making A Claim For ESA. You first claim ESA with a medical certificate from your GP. This will be accepted until the DWP carry out their medical assessment, called a work capability assessment (WCA)

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mutual support

Mutual Support

Employment and Support Allowance

13 October 2013

making a claim for esa
Making A Claim For ESA
  • You first claim ESA with a medical certificate from your GP. This will be accepted until the DWP carry out their medical assessment, called a work capability assessment (WCA)
  • The WCA can be any time after the 13th week of your claim. Many people wait far longer for an assessment
  • The WCA will usually be a face to face assessment, carried out by a ‘health care professional’ employed by ATOS
  • If you are entitled to ESA you no longer need medical certificates, but you may be reassessed regularly under the WCA
employment support allowance
Employment & Support Allowance
  • ESA introduced in 2008 to replace Incapacity Benefit (IB) and Income Support (IS) on basis of disability
  • All new claims from that date were ESA. Around 2.25 million people were already receiving IB/IS/SDA
  • People receiving ESA would be placed in either work-related or support group, based on severity of their condition. This would determine whether they were expected to undertake activity to return to, or move closer to, employment
  • The medical tests for ESA have changed three times since 2008
employment support allowance1
Employment & Support Allowance
  • ESA is a benefit for people between the ages of 16 and state pension age, who cannot work due to sickness or disability, and who are not in receipt of Statutory Sick Pay (SSP).
  • There are two types of ESA:
    • Contributory ESA is available to those who have paid enough NI contributions; and
    • Income-related ESA for people on low income and capital (such as savings).
employment support allowance2
Employment & Support Allowance
  • People who receive ESA will either be in the ‘Support Group’ (where individuals do NOT have to take part in work-related-activities) or the ‘Limited Capability for Work’ group (where individuals will have to do some WRA.
  • Applying for ESA – when applying for ESA you will have to show that you are unable to work due to sickness or disability. You will fill in your ESA 50 and supply a sick note and or other evidence.
  • You will usually require a Work Capability Assessment.
employment support allowance3
Employment & Support Allowance
  • The WCA comprises two tests:
  • A Limited Capability for Work assessment (face to face medical with a HCP to see if you are able to work.
  • A Limited Capability for Work-Related Activity assessment (usually done at the same time as the LCW assessment, to see what level of benefit you might need, and what help you need to get back into work).
employment support allowance4
Employment & Support Allowance
  • Part of the work capability assessment is comparing your condition to the ESA ‘descriptors’. These descriptors look at any physical and mental problems that you may have due to sickness/disability. You must score at least 15 points on these descriptors to be eligible for ESA and to get into the Support Group.
employment support allowance5
Employment & Support Allowance
  • If you are found eligible for ESA, you will be assessed to see if you fall into the Support Group or the LCWG. Again this is assessed using descriptors, albeit a different set.
  • After these two stages you may have to have a ‘work focused health assessment’ to identify any problems you may have in the workplace.
  • This will only be done if you are likely to be in the LCWG.
employment support allowance6
Employment & Support Allowance
  • If you are placed in the LCWG you will have a ‘work focused’ interview, to produce an action plan for what you can do to get back into work.
  • Whether you are eligible for ESA, and what level you will receive, will then be decided.
  • ESA only lasts 12 months.
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