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  1. OK, guys, I should have posted about this a good bit back but it has made me very ill! I struggle to cope with everyday life never mind something as serious as this. The back story. I have been on incapacity Benefit since 1998 and was moved to ESA in March 2013. I was placed into the WRAG and attended my first interview. I was puzzled as to why i had to go for regular interviews but went anyway. At the first interview, I was advised that I was in the wrong group. I asked if it made any difference to my money and was told no that i would get the same amount so i said i didn't mind doing the odd interview. On following interviews my support worker said that i should appeal and i told her that it was ok. In December 2013 i filled in a reassesment form and told her that i would appeal following that if needed because i was getting too stressed and was missing appointments due to my disability. In March 2014 my ESA suddenly stopped and when i rang up about it i was told that it only lasted 12 months as i was on contribution related ESA. They assesed me for income related ESA but i was unsuccesful. Now it was panic time and i kept ringing etc etc etc. My argument with them was that I was placed in the wrong group and that at no time was i told that it only lasted 12 monmths hence why i did not appeal it. I was also told that it was too late to appeal and that i would have to wait for the December 2013 assesment to come through ....... i was in sheer panic and got nowhere! IN late August 1014 i received a letter stating that my ESA would start from that date and that i had been placed into the Support Group. Later i rang and asked when my backdated benefit would be paid and was shocked to hear that because it was the DWP that initiated the reassesment they did not have to backdate and that as far as they were concerned my benefit started in August 2014 and that was that. I sent in a letter etc etc but got nowhere. Earlier this year i rang yet again to find out how the long drawn out process of looking at my complaint was coming only to be told that it wasn't!! Seemingly when they got my letter of complaint they did a mandatory reconsideration and upheld their decision. When i explained everytring to the guy on the phone hge was great and told me to appeal the Mandatory Reconsideration as it was within 13 months which in special cases will be allowed by the Tribunal. Luckily for me the Tribunal accepted my appeal even though the ESA tried to have it thrown out due to time restraints. I go tommorrow and need any tips you guys can think of asap. Facts of my case At the time i was moved from IB to ESA i was on the following benefits and rates etc etc. 1. I was on high rate mobility and medium care on DLA 2. I was rated at 50% disabled with IIDB 3. I was registered disabled with my council 4. My wife was receiving Carer Allowance and could not work 5. I was in a specially adapted Council home thast had a washroom and lift In march 2013 using all the medical evidence available they put me into a fit for work group. Via a reassesment in December 2013 using exactly the same evidence they put me in the support group. If i had been told my ESA would be stopped i would have appealed the first decision but was not given any information. I was sent this advice and nowhere does it say about any time limit https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/sick-or-disabled-people-and-carers/employment-and-support-allowance/while-youre-getting-esa/about-the-esa-groups/ My argument is that they made a mistake (march 2013)which they corrected(August 2014 via reassesment Dec 2013) by no pressure or appeal from me. When they told me it was too late to appeal the first decision they misled me because the cut off point is 13 months (in special cases) and i would have been succesful. I was clearly entitled to ESA and if they had done their job correctly my benefit would never have been stopped in March 2014. Also they really took their time with the reassesment, in fact even though i was ringing constantly ATOS only contacted my GP in mid August 2014!!!! So i will bring up that id they had prcessed the reassesment in a reasonable amount of time this stoppage of benefit would not have happened. Soooooooooooooooo after all that guys i am going to the Tribunal to ask for the decision of August 2014 be backdated to the date of the reassesment in December 2013 and so have my benefit given to me that was stopped between March 2014 and Late August 2014. I will also say that this would never have happened if i was given the correct information about appeal time scales. The law they use to cover them for not backdating is :---- Welfare Reform Act 2007, sections 1(3)a and (4). Welfare Reform Act 2007, section 8 Social Security (Employment & Support Allowance) Regulations 2008, reg 19 I know it is all last minute but if any of you know of anything at all that i can do to counter them etc please lmk asap. I don't have to go until tommorrow afternoon so will be watching this thread. Thank you so much!
  2. HBOS should repay millions of pounds to depositors in the failed Christmas saving company Farepak, after being found to have played “hardball” in the months leading up to its collapse. A High Court judge warned that the bank, now part of Lloyds Banking Group, risked being seen to have acted “unacceptably” by forcing directors of Farepak to take £10m from customers in a matter of weeks, despite knowing that the company was heading for insolvency. While fully exonerating directors of Farepak, Mr Justice Smith pointed the finger of blame at HBOS for precipitating the collapse of the company with overall losses of up to £35m for 120,000 depositors. Justice Smith said: “I would suggest that HBOS [...] seriously consider whether or not they ought to make a further substantial contribution to the compensation fund. It seems to me that what happened here, whilst apparently legally acceptable, might not be regarded in the public’s eyes as being acceptable.” The judge was speaking after the case brought by the Secretary of State for Business, Vince Cable, to have seven Farepak directors banned collapsed. Mr Cable’s department was roundly criticised for errors in preparing the case. The prosecution, led by the Insolvency Service, had relied on witness statements which were unfairly “slanted against the defendants”, said the judge, listing statements from City figures such as Oliver Hemsley, chief executive of broker Numis and David Farrow, then at ABN Amro, all of which were tainted in some way. Justice Smith said he did not believe the witnesses were dishonest but they had not seen crucial pieces of evidence. The seven former directors of Farepak, including Sir Clive Thompson, former president of the CBI, are now expected to pursue the Department for Business for millions of pounds in costs. Link; http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/banksandfinance/9347400/HBOS-took-Farepak-cash-in-knowledge-company-was-heading-for-the-brink.html
  3. Hi There Just a little note about me for 3 years have suffered with Chronic Pain of the lower back and neck heading into my wrists, i am on high quantities of morphine to balance the pain, I am under a pain clinic which i go regularly , and awaiting operations on my wrists. I worked up until a year ago @ at £20,000 a year job, i gave it up due to ill health this was accepted with myself and employer. After a year of being on ESA assessment phase and having my ATOS medical which proved me healthy, on then appealing which again proved me healthy I now have to go to Tribunal, i understand that this is a common occurrence, but after receiving my appeal documentation back i feel as though they are going to say no at the tribunal, could anybody advise on timescale, whether i have to claim JSA or that they will keep me on the assessment phase, any help would be appreciated.
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