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Thread: ESA - Work Focused Interview?

  1. #1
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    ESA - Work Focused Interview?

    Hello,

    I applied for ESA in Jan, got 1st payment on the 19/01, 2nd on the 02/02 and due my 3rd on the 16/02. So I have sent of the form to Atos or Maximus or whoever does the assessments, but I haven't received any appointments to attend any WFIs. Is this usual? How long is it usually before you receive appointment letters?

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    Hello Chris,

    Don't worry about this right now, it sounds like your in the assessment phase, thats 13 weeks whist a decision is made
    whether you should be in the support group (SG) or the work related activity group (WRAG) I would advise you though to
    keep coming back here, and read our posts, if your still on ESA later and get placed into the WRAG by the DWP it will arm
    you to deal with it later, people here including possibly myself will try to help or advise you, I didn't (follow my own advise
    that is) and had a bit of aggro (stress + anxiety) neither did my husband some time ago and we both got aggro.

    If ANYTHING happens regarding benefits that your not sure about let us know.

    Someone I'm sure will try to advise you as a lot of us have been there (some have even done that and worn the T shirt and
    been on the tour) and I've for one have learned we can't always deal with stuff alone, know matter how clever we think we
    are.


    The above message has chosen a layout different from the way I typed it out, I'm sorry if it is difficult to read, I've tried editing it but this made no difference.
    Last edited by Archersmate; 14-02-16 at 11:21.

  3. #3
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    Hi Chris,

    You sound as if you are on track there.

    But I'm not sure from your post if you are confusing the WCA, (Work Capability Assessment) with WFI's (Work Focused Interviews)?

    The WCA, if needed, is done by Maximus and is an assessment to see if you are capable of any work.
    The report from this is used by the DWP decision maker to help decide what to award you.

    WFI's are ongoing appointments at the Jobcentre and ask about how you are getting on and what you can do to help get back to work.
    You can be asked to WFI's whilst still being assessed, but may not be.
    You don't need to do WFI's if you are awarded ESA Support Group.

    Maximus will let you know soon if they want you to do a face to face WCA or if they will just go off your paperwork.
    They (the DWP) are supposed to have you assessed, and allocated to a group if you qualify, within 13 weeks.
    This is known as the 'Assessment Phase'.
    It often takes longer than 13 weeks, although we have been seeing more completed within 13 weeks recently.
    If it does take longer then if/when you are awarded a group component it will be backpaid to the start of week 14 of your claim.

    As far as WFI's go the Jobcentre will let you know when they want to see you.

    Good luck with your claim, do come back if you need more advice or information, and to let us know how you get on.
    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
    Is the wrag group not allowed fone interviews anymore? My adviser is insisting they are not allowed from now on. Which I am finding hard to believe if she's telling me truth.
    Last edited by Poppy2016; 16-02-16 at 00:39.

  5. #5
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    Have you been having telephone WFI's?

    Usually if you are only capable of telephone contact then you would not be capable of Work Related Activities anyway and so should be in Support Group.

    They are supposed to tailor the requirements of Work Related Activities and WFI's to what is 'reasonable' to your particular capabilities.

    It would be 'reasonable' to expect someone in WRAG to attend interviews in person.
    Last edited by nukecad; 16-02-16 at 04:59.
    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.

  6. #6
    Hi, yes. I've always had them, and when I was in the work programme a long time ago they allowed me fone interviews. I am due my esa50 soon as my 12 months are coming up. Would that help as part of my evidence? Thanks

  7. #7
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    In that case I would ask them why your advisor is saying they will not do them anymore?

    As far as I know there has been no change to legislation or guidance on this.

    It may be something your jobcentre (or your advisor) has decided on their own.
    Ask them to point to the legislation or guidance that says telephone appointments are no longer allowed and they will probably back down.

    If they don't then just like any other decision they make you can ask for it in writing and then ask for a reconsideration.

    Of course if there has been any change to your condition they they may now feel justified in asking you to attend.
    Last edited by nukecad; 16-02-16 at 22:41.
    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.

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