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Thread: advice appreciated ESA

  1. #1

    advice appreciated ESA

    Hello I am hoping someone here might be able to clarify something, mine and my partner's situation doesn't seem to be covered in any of the advice websites.
    My partner has been on ESA for about 4 years. Initially he was put in the work related group and got contribution based and a top up income based as I wasn't working. After a year (or whenever the new time limit came in) he was moved to income based only due to the time limit rules.
    At some point after that he was reassessed and moved to the support group.
    But we continue to have only received income based, presumably because I was not working and it was higher.
    I have been offered a job - it is only part time and short term, but I think it is manageable and I would really like to do it.
    As I understand it because he is in the support group he is entitled to still get contribution based ESA, even if I am earning.
    But all the information states you will continue to get contribution based if placed in the support group - and he isn't currently getting contribution based. It doesn't seem to account for people moved to the support group after the initial 365 days.
    Does anyone know if it will just switch back to contribution based when he informs them I am starting work? Or does it mean he reached the time limit previously, and despite being moved to the support group, he is no longer entitled.
    It is all very confusing, but obviously I won't be earning much, and am likely to lose other benefits too. Chances are we will actually be worse off, but I'd like an idea of how much worse!

    Thanks for any advice.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    As long has his claim has remained unbroken from the beginning ("about 4 years ago") he should be OK to receive the SG (CB) rate which is £108 a week regardless of how much you earn. Though, if your wage is going to be very low you and he may qualify for Income Related top up(s), perhaps housing benefit at the least.
    If you have some idea of what your wage is likely to be you should contact your local CAB or any similar adviser in your area and ask for a (projected) benefits check. You obviously don't want to jump from the frying pan into the fire, so this would be your wisest move.

    All the best with it.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    So long as he didn't close his ESA claim at any point (which is unlikely), your partner's entitlement to Contributions Based ESA payments restarted when he was moved to the Support Group.

    It's worth checking the most recent letter your partner received about ESA. His Contributions Based ESA entitlement may well be showing in the income part of the breakdown of his Income Related ESA. If no Contributions Based ESA is showing, I would suggest he contacts DWP to clarify his Contributions Based ESA position.

  4. #4
    Hi Thanks for the replies. Seems like your responses were how I had understood it.
    Just confusing because I also would have expected the contributions based (with income top up) to have restarted when he moved to the support group. But all the letters just say 'income related'. When the original ones had a breakdown of the two different components.
    But it sounds like he should be entitled, he worked continuously up until he got ill so he has made contributions for many years, we may just have some fun and games sorting it out!
    I tried using two online calculators to work out what else we might be able to get - both came up with totally different answers
    Guess I will probably have to claim for HB/CTB/TC and just wait and see. What complicates it even more is that the job doesn't have regular hours - so each week my pay will be different, and some weeks none at all. I can foresee terrific fun getting the benefit offices to understand that! I had a career before my partner got ill and if it wasn't a great opportunity to start making my way back into it, now the children are all much older, then it probably wouldn't be worth all the bother

  5. #5
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    West Cumbria (Lake District)
    Sounds like you are looking forward to the challenge of getting to grips with the DWP and the often confusing benefit systems.

    From your 2 posts already I'm sure you are going to do well at it.

    I've only started recently, and if you have the stamina it can be interesting and rewarding to find out whats going on and hopefully help others navigate the maze.

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