Results 1 to 7 of 7

Thread: Change From a Carer to ESA/PIP?

  1. #1
    New Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
    Posts
    11

    Change From a Carer to ESA/PIP?

    Hi, I would be grateful for some advice. I've been a carer for my dad for the past 20 years (currently claim CA and UC). Unfortunately my own health has deteriorated and yesterday one of my consultants phoned me to let me know that he doesn't think that they can do much more for me and I need to live with my conditions. My dad thinks it's about time I claimed my own sickness and disability benefits as he knows I am struggling to look after him. I am concerned about how should go about this as I am sure the DWP would rather take money away from me than give me more! I do think that I would probably qualify for both sickness benefits and PIP. If I did decide to give up caring for my dad and claiming other benefits how do I go about it? What would the financial implications be? Thanks in advance for any advice.

  2. #2
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    Posts
    10,481
    Hi scrapps,

    For UC
    As you are already claiming UC you simply need to inform them of a 'Change of Circumstances', there is a button for it on your UC account Homepage.
    You need to tell them that you have become to ill to work.
    https://www.gov.uk/universal-credit/...-circumstances
    Also tell them that due to your consultants decision, you want an immediate referral for a Work Capability Assessment.
    It would probably be better if you have a consultants letter about their decision that you could show to UC.

    (Just to note here that if you have been diagnosed with a terminal condition then there are special rules and the following doesn't apply).

    They will ask you to supply fit-notes from your doctor. Just tell the doctor that you need them for UC.
    Whilst not strictly needed it's easiest just to go along with it, get the fit-notes, and give them in, it fits in best with the UC 'system' so easier all round.

    Normally you have to have been supplying fit-notes for 28 days before they will make a referral, so you may have to wait.
    But a referral can be done sooner if your work coach agrees; so ask for an immediate referral to save some time if you can. (If you don't ask you can't get).

    Once referred for a WCA you will get a UC50 questionaire to fill in and post back.
    You will usually then get an appointment for the assessment itself, which will most likely be done over the telephone.
    The target time from the referal, through questionaire/assessment, to a decision is 13 weeks, and they have been hitting that target in UC with first time referrals.

    Remember that a WCA is NOT about your medical condition(s) as such - it is only about how/why that prevents you from working.
    (The clue is in the name- "WORK CAPABILITY").

    The decision will be one of 3:
    1. Fit for Work, nothing changes and you carry on as before.
    2. Limited Capability for Work (LCW), you will not be expected to look for work, you will be expected to go to the jobcentre once every 3 months, but there is no extra money.
    3. Limited Capability for Work and Work Related Activity (LCWRA) you will not be expected to look for work or go to the jobcentre, and will get extra money.
    If you don't agree with the decision you can ask for a Mandatory Reconsideration from the DWP, and/or appeal to the independent tribunal.

    PS. You can still get Carers Allowance/UC Carer Element during this process and even afterwards.
    You can be a carer and claim your own sickness/disability benefits, as long as your being a carer doesn't contradict the reason(s) why you are unable to work.
    At the moment the money you get for CA should be being deducted from your UC, and then the UC Carer Element added.
    Stopping claiming Carers Allowance should not change the UC Carer Element, you don't have to be getting CA to get UC-Carer Element.
    If you do stop caring 35 hrs for your dad though you should tell UC and the UC-CE will then be removed.

    For PIP
    The process is similar except that it's a brand new claim.
    You phone them to apply. (You don't need fit notes). https://www.gov.uk/pip/how-to-claim
    They send you a questionaire.
    You then usually have an assessment, again probably by phone.

    PIP is not about working, it's about how you can manage your daily life, and get about.
    Many people with PIP work as well.
    Again though it's not about any condition(s) as such, but about how that condition affects you.

    Having CA does not affect PIP, other than if being a carer contradicts your reason(s) for qualifying for PIP

    For Both
    I suggest that you may want to get help with the questionaires, and anything else that comes up, from a local benefits advisor.
    You can go into more details with them than you can on a forum, some will even fill in the questionaire for you based on what you have told them.
    And sometimes that helps because the DWP can then see you have had professional assistance.
    You can find advisors local to you by putting your postcode in here: https://advicelocal.uk/find-an-adviser

    There's a a fair bit to digest there.
    Please come back if any of it's not clear or if you have more questions.

    EDIT- Just reading back your previous posts I realised that this is a joint UC claim with your husband.
    It doesn't change any of the advice above, unless perhaps if your husband already has UC-LCW/LCWRA, but it's the sort of thing that you should mention because it may affect other things 'UC'.
    For instance if your husband does any work.
    If you get a LCW or LCWRA element added in your UC then that would give your UC claim a 'Work Allowance', which is an amount that can be earned before UC is affected.
    In a joint claim both partners can benefit from that work allowance, not just the partner with LCW/LCWRA.
    Last edited by nukecad; 20-01-22 at 08:07.
    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.

  3. #3
    New Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
    Posts
    11
    Morning, thanks so much for your reply. It is really appreciated and really put my mind at rest. It is a lot to digest but I shall work my way through the advice. I think I will wait until I get a letter from the consultant before contacting the UC online. He's from UCL Hospital in London as my local surgeon referred me onto there and he is referring me back to my local surgeon. I assume I will get a copy of the letter.
    Fortunately my conditions aren't terminal.
    I do have a joint UC claim with my husband who also gets ESA and doesn't have to look for work. My CA is deducted from the UC as well as my husband's ESA and the other money like the carer element is added.
    I will get back to you if I have any more questions.
    Thanks again.

  4. #4
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    Posts
    10,481
    That's fine, and it simplifies things.

    As your husband also has ESA then that must be CB ESA (as you say the money for that gets deducted from UC).
    That gives him LCW/LCWRA in UC anyway, so you already have that 'work allowance' on the joint claim.

    Do you get a LCWRA element already paid for him with UC? (£343.63, Check your last UC statement breakdown but I'm pretty sure it will be there).
    That would also mean that his ESA is Support Group.
    If he doesn't already get LCWRA in UC then there are a few possible scenarios, but I'll leave them unless you say you don't have it.

    If there is already a LCWRA element then you wouldn't get any extra money if you got LCWRA as well, because you can only have one LCWRA element in a UC claim.
    But if you got LCW/LCWRA you wouldn't have to look for work yourself.*

    Now the funny/interesting part -

    *I realise that being a carer for your dad means you don't have to look for work anyway, so if there is already LCWRA on your UC then going through a work capability assessment yourself is a bit of a waste of everyones time, not least yours.

    But if you stopped being his carer then you would have to look for work unless you got your own LCW/LCWRA.

    And stopping being your dads carer would mean that both the CA and the UC Carer Element would stop being paid.
    So by telling them you are no longer caring for your dad you would lose money.

    So unless you have to give up caring for your dad then you are better off staying as you are now.
    Last edited by nukecad; 20-01-22 at 15:02.
    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.

  5. #5
    New Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
    Posts
    11
    Hi, thanks very much for that. I checked our UC claim online and we do get the extra LCWRA element of £343.63 added to the UC.
    I think after what you said I will carry on being a carer as we can't afford to lose any money.

  6. #6
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    Posts
    10,481
    Just another point I've realised.

    You can't have both LCWRA and a Carer Element in UC, unless its a joint claim and one partner (your husband) has LCWRA and the other partner (you) the Carer Element.
    That is what you should have at the moment, one with LCWRA one with CE.

    I'm not entirely sure what would happen if you got your own LCWRA as well.
    I think that both should still be paid, LCWRA for your husband and Carer Element for you - but would the UC system recognise that if you had your own LCWRA?

    I still think it's best for you to stay as you are.

    Another thought does occcur though, and it's about you dad and what he gets/might get. (these simple questions about benefits do tend to snowball).
    What benefits does he currently get?
    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.

  7. #7
    New Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
    Posts
    11
    Yes, we have exactly what you said. My husband gets the LCWRA and I get the Carer Element in UC.

    My dad gets pension credit, housing and council tax benefit, and DLA (mobility and carers component.)

Similar Threads

  1. PIP & carer's allowance
    By garynbuckley1 in forum Benefits - help & advice on disability benefits, incapacity benefits, ESA and DLA
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 07-05-15, 20:43
  2. PIP, Carer's Allowance, State Pension, Pension Credit
    By tattymama in forum Benefits - help & advice on disability benefits, incapacity benefits, ESA and DLA
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 08-11-14, 23:52
  3. Change of circumstances letter address to my carer?
    By NeurologicalNed in forum Benefits - help & advice on disability benefits, incapacity benefits, ESA and DLA
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 20-09-14, 13:11
  4. PIP - carer got letter, is it an indication?
    By Conceptual in forum Benefits - help & advice on disability benefits, incapacity benefits, ESA and DLA
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 07-07-14, 13:27
  5. Claiming PIP, as a carer?...
    By Aironic in forum Benefits - help & advice on disability benefits, incapacity benefits, ESA and DLA
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 23-11-13, 02:28

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •