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Thread: Frequency Of Work Focused Interviews?

  1. #1
    New Member
    Join Date
    May 2013

    Frequency Of Work Focused Interviews?

    I'm in the ESA WRAG.

    Apart from other things I suffer from severe depression & anxiety. I also have Diabetes,
    & the last time my Personal Advisor interviewed me, ('phone), she was talking as if the
    only thing wrong with me is Diabetes. In fact, I have to take 9 types of tablets each
    day & only 2 of them are for Diabetes, so that is far from the only thing wrong with me.

    I had my first 4 Work Focused Interviews at the Benefits Office, but I was so stressed
    out at them, that they said I could have future interviews via the 'phone.

    I've had 3, (so far), 'phone interviews & that in itself is puzzling me. I thought
    that people in the WRAG were 'only' supposed to have 6 WFI'S? I've had about
    7 so far.

    The woman who interviews me now wants me to have my 4th telephone interview.

    But I missed that interview as I never received her letter. (The Interview was
    for 11 am on Thursday 8th January).

    She left a message on my mobile, telling me that I'd missed the interview &
    that I should 'phone her.

    I rang her on Friday, but she was not available. Another member of staff answered
    & when she looked up my details on their computer, she said that as I had my last
    'phone interview in October, I'm not due another until April!

    I asked her if there was any details about a Thursday January 8th interview, & she
    said that there was not. Only that the interviews are every 6 Months & my next is
    in April.

    So, I'm completely confused.

    1)... If Work Focused Interviews are every 6 Months, how come my 'Personal Advisor'
    is making me have them every 2 Months? (I had one in August, 1 in October, & she
    now wants a January one).

    2)... I thought that people in the WRAG were 'only' supposed to have 6 WFI, but I've had
    7 & she now wants me to have an 8th.

    3)... If she's interviewing me every 2 Months, how come there was no reference to that,
    when the other member of staff checked on her computer? She said that my Personal
    Advisor has my next WFI down as not being until April - even though she wants to
    interview me now - in January.

    4)... I tried to 'phone her on Friday afternoon, but she was not available. I'll try again
    on Monday.

    5)... Can anyone advise me what to ask her? Is she treating me unfairly, by making
    me have WFI's every 2 Months? Am I allowed to ask for a different Personal Advisor,
    if I'm not happy with the way she is treating me?

    I'm not at all sure what to do. All I know I that the WFI's - even by 'phone - have
    me in a terribly anxious state, & if I'm only supposed to have them every 6 Months,
    I don't know why she is making me have them every 2 Months. The next one will
    be my 8th, when I thought that 6 was the most you had to have.

    Can anyone advise me as to what to say to her, when I 'phone her? Please.


  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Greater London
    Hi Colin,

    I can't really tell you about the rules because I actually don't know them, but my other half is also in the WRAG, since June

    2015 he has had a monthly appointment at the job centre plus with a personal adviser, prior to these appointments he was

    having monthly appointments with an organisation called CDG who I gather are a work program provider, this was for a

    period of 18 months, his first initial appointment was with a personal adviser at job centre plus who subsequently referred

    him to MAXIMUS/CDG.

    The problem I think with job centre plus advisors is they do not have the appropriate training to deal with people with

    disabilities or illnesses and are only used to dealing with job seekers, this may explain why there was a misunderstanding

    regarding your illnesses.

    I'm sure someone Who knows more about the rules and regulations can advise you as to whether your recent treatment has

    been within the WRAG rules.

  3. #3
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    Hi Colin,

    There are no set rules about how often you should have WFIs, or indeed any limit on numbers.

    You are expected to have WFIs for as long as you are claiming ESA and are in WRAG.

    As for the timing of these it is recommended that they should be at least evey 6 months, but even that is not hard and fast it's just a guideline.

    It is up to your individual advisor to decide what is reasonable in your particular circumstances.
    (Although I think it often has more to do with their caseload).

    Your advisor has obviously taken your needs into account at some stage, which is why you have telephone WFIs rather than having to visit the jobcentre.

    Some people have WFIs more often, some less often.
    (I know that there is at least one member on here who is in WRAG but hasn't had a WFI for a couple of years).

    Annecdotal evidence suggests that you have them more fequently at the start of your claim and then after a year or two they tend to move to six monthly.

    WFIs are just something that we have to put up with whilst we are claiming ESA WRAG.
    I don't know everything. - But I'm good at searching for, and finding, stuff.

    Migration from ESA to Universal Credit- Click here for information.

  4. #4
    Senior Member flowerangelx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    I think it is down to the discretion of the advisor.

    I haven't had a WFI for over a year. My advisor decided that he shouldn't really bother because I don't leave the house alone and would have to fit any appointments round my mums work hours..luckily he understood that!

  5. #5
    New Member
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Thank you all very much for your useful replies to my Post.

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