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  1. I am posting to get some advice, in regards the DLA TO PIP transition, as I have heard a lot of concerns with the medicals. Basically, My husband stopped work 9 years ago due to mental health PTSD caused by his work accident, he was retired from work in 2009 due to permanent ill health with a work pension and (after many appeals and a long fight) he was awarded a Industrial Injuries Disablement benefit for life assessed at 60%, this was in 2011, he was also awarded short periods of DLA, he was assessed for HRC Care and low rate Mobility for indefinite period (this I understand replaced the life time awards). He is placed in the Support group for the ESA he receives and he is 50 years old. My concern is that in 2011, he was assessed by his Psychiatrist and put on long term medication, and then transferred back to his GP as they have long lists for patient in Leicestershire for mental health care under a Psychiatrist, since that time his diagnosis has changed to Schizoaffective disorder with Anxiety, he does not go out, answer the phone or even associate with anyone much. I don't know when his transition will take place but my concerns are: 1)Will he be required to attend a medical and can they refuse to do a home visit? 2)what will happen is they come to do his medical and he is not answering their questions or able to, due to his illness? 3)I AM THE appointee used by the DWP for his benefits, so will this be honoured and what if they say not I can not fill in his forms etc. I know my husband is not able to speak to them on the phone, he will not even answer the kids phone calls, let alone the DWP? He does not go out, and sleeps due to his condition and medication most afternoons, only will ever eat if he has food prepared and we can not go out, as he sweats profusely and causes embarrassment if we have tried, to take him to a café etc.! I am concerned that his condition will worsen due to this assessment and any help is greatly appreciated so I can prepare for this transition to PIP. The GP is not very good, and he has a CPN but as he does not go out, they have not bothered to come and see him, just giving a card just in case there is a emergency as they are short of staff, so don't know what support they can or will give in the application, he is on medication, which is taken 3x daily only if he is given this and supervised. Thank you
  2. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/benefit-sanctions-against-people-with-mental-health-problems-up-by-600-per-cent-a6731971.html 609% is a massive increase and shows how flawed the current system is. I have seen with my own eyes how the work program can affect people on ESA with mental health issues who have been found fit to work react to some of these pseudo psychiatric workshops they are now pushing on people.
  3. How can an EA sort out the mental health issues with defaulters and debtors? Having started a thread some time ago maybe now that this part of EA discussions is now active maybe some of you would like to read up on this here http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?441693-Mental-Capacity-and-debt It is a good thread with plenty of links and information, it goes in to detail how to deal with MH issues and debt, if this type of information could be inserted into the EA's common practise and standards that would be an achievement by them. What do you think?
  4. Whilst looking to help a new poster I came across this very good PDF and I am hoping it will be of some use for the forums if so please feel free to read share and use it. It is a very good document about how debt could/should be handled in 12 steps and 12 questions from The Royal College of Psychiatrists and has many case studies for reference and has the names of some well known DCA's EA's and other institutions. This is a 2nd edition of the document and was published in November 2014. It will pay anyone reading the attachment to read it entirely before posting thoughts back....... Your thoughts please
  5. The Money Advice Liaison Group (MALG) has today published its updated guidelines on mental health and debt. The Good Practice Awareness Guidelines for Helping Consumers with Mental Health and Debt, now in a third edition, are designed to help creditors, councils, debt collection companies, enforcement agents and advisers. They help those people working with borrowers experiencing mental health conditions and debt, where their condition affects their ability to manage money. MALG Good Practice Awareness Guidelines for Helping Consumers with Mental Health Problems and Debt These voluntary Guidelines (Edition 1 November 2007, Edition 2 November 2009 and Edition 3 March 2015) indicate good practice in the treatment of individuals with debt and mental health problems and deal with best practice in the management of debt when a consumer is already in financial difficulty. Lending, Debt Collection and Mental Health 12 steps for treating potentially vulnerable customers fairly.
  6. I have worked for my current company over 10 years and have been a successful manager for over 8. 10 months ago my unit ceased trading due to rental contract renewal issues. I transferred to another unit as manager to run that for it's final 3 months (same rental contract renewal issue) and then moved to another unit in a different town. I unfortunately suffered a stress related mental breakdown and was signed off work with depression after attempting suicide. When I was well enough to return to work I felt I was still not strong enough mentally to return to work as a manager so requested that I might take a voluntary demotion to deputy manager at a different unit for the sake of my health. This was agreed verbally and in my letter to personnel I explicitly stated that I was requesting a demotion from manager to deputy manager. Fast forward 2 months and I have just been informed that there is no room for a 2nd deputy manager at the unit I am at, and that my position is actually a shift manager. 6 months previously at this unit there were 2 deputy managers and I was introduced to all the staff & management team as the new deputy manager but I have yet to receive a new contract. There is no difference in basic pay, but there is a large difference in potential bonus. If I decide to move on from this company, my CV will look awful having the drop from manager to shift manager, the drop to deputy manager will look bad enough. So my question is, is the verbal agreement worth the paper it was written on? can they refuse to honour it and not give me the position of deputy manager?
  7. Hey lovely Caggers Just after some advice on how to help my daughter, if you don't mind. She was in a private rented flat but cut the tenancy short, we agreed with her landlord (I was the lead tenant although I didn't live there because she's under 18) Housing benefit was paid up until the date her tenancy officially ended, a month after she'd physically moved out. She stayed with her ex's family until ending up in a hostel with her young baby when her ex headbutted her. Nice eh? there was some overlap between the housing benefit on her flat and the housing benefit she got while in the hostel. She accepts she should have told the original council that she'd moved but at the time assumed her landlord would do it. there's been an overpayment & we're happy to pay it for her. My issue is the council have already passed it to debt collectors (the overpayment was only in July) She's now in a house of her own with her little one and is doing a fab job a as a mummy, but... Question is, seeing that she's only 17, living on her own with a baby and being treated for anxiety and depression, do you think the council would take the debt back from Jacobs and allow us to pay it in full for her direct to the council? I don't trust jacobs not to have whacked charges on top but the last thing she needs is the threat of 'bailiffs' knocking on her door, as they've called themselves. There's no court order that we know of. She lives 4 hours away so it's not like I can just go with her to the council to sort it. I wish she lived nearer but it's her choice and she wants to stay where she is TIA!
  8. Hi all. I am really hoping I can get some help and advice here. I really don't know where to turn and CAB havnt been that much help. I received a fine back in April for nonpayment of TV License. I was utterly stupid to stop paying it but I can't go back in time now. I was paying off £20 a fortnight but ended up not paying one time due to financial problems and thinking I would pay double the next fortnight. The time came and I couldn't. I received a letter from Swift saying if I didn't pay or make an arrangement, they would send people out. I made the arrangements with them to pay £20 a fortnight again but due to my mental health problems, I defaulted, again stupid. Last Friday, I had a letter pushed through my door at 6:40am saying if I don't pay £412 they would be back with a locksmith. I went to the CAB and they said the only thing I could do was to get a health letter from my doctor but they want to charge £25 for it and I simply do not have that kind of money. I can't even afford to buy a cheap pair of trainers to replace the ones I have now that the sole is practically hanging off of. My heads all over the place, I am scared every time the phone rings or there's a knock on my door. I have been diagnosed with Severe Clinical Depression amd Severe Anxiety even though its bordering more on Bipolar. I have 2 young daughter aged 5 and 2 and I am married. Most of the stuff I have here doesn't belong to me I.e on HP as we couldn't afford to buy our cooker and washing machine outright when our old ones eventually broke. My husband is claiming JSA for us as I got refused ESA even though I have mental health issues, a gap in my spine and other back problems. What do I do? I know not to let them in but I can't physically cope with them knocking on the door and any threatening behavior that I know will happen. I know it will make my suicidal thoughts even worse. Sorry for the long post, just wanted to get everything in. Also, if there are any spelling mistakes, blame my silly phone
  9. I today went to see the mental health team regarding my stress and anxiety. The guy i spoke to said i probably have health and social anxiety and could probably do CBT therapy to help. Will i get a letter from them showing my diagnosis??? Because i will need this for my ESA appeal.
  10. Hello, For the past 6ish years I've been experiencing what you could call mental health issues (depression/anxiety like symptoms) due to various past and present reasons and have never felt the need or brought my self to seek help. I have finally decided to and I am slightly concerned on what the implications could be, (part of the reason I have never sought help). Basically I know that it is in my best interest to inform my employer once I have seen someone, but do I have to? They have quite an 'old school' approach to everything so I worry that they could just see me as a liability. I haven't had any time off and will not in the future due to this, i'll still be fully capable to fulfil my capacity at work. Is there anything to stop them from doing this? Bearing in mind that I will not be signed off probation for another 2 months. Also I never disclosed any of this during my interview as in my honest opinion I didn't think I had any problems.
  11. I have been living on incapacity benefit and disability living allowance for a number of years due to severe mental health issues I am currently being hit with around £80 worth of charges from Santander at least every 2 months, sometimes I am being charged £25 for going overdrawn by 99p It has been going on for a few years and due to my mental health problems have just been letting it happen as I didn't know anything could be done about it I recently found a forum on Money Saving Expert and was amazed to find I could reclaim this money, so have requested the last 6 years of charges list Fingers crossed, if i research enough and know what I'm talking about I might be successful! I was hoping someone might have experience of financial hardship claims with mental health issues as grounds for a refund This month its £75, being on benefits that's a large chunk of my money I feel like I've really been taken advantage of as a 'vulnerable' adult (I hate calling myself that, but quite obviously I am) If anyone has any advice I would really appreciate it Thank you in advance!
  12. My 28 year old daughter suffers from severe depression and attempted suicide last year. She is under the doctor and mental health team and is making some progress. She has a agreement with Regal Credit to clear a NAT WEST overdraft from when she was at Uni but actually thought she was repaying another debt she has to BMI Healthcare. However she received a couple of letters from a company called Credit Style in February and as she is not really up to dealing with this I called them about it and they asked that she send a letter giving me permission to deal with this which we did. We went on holiday straight after and came back to a CCJ CLAIM FORM with £500+ interest added on. I acknowledged the form and am now about to defend it. Daughter has signed a letter giving me permission to deal with it which I will send with the form. Now question is best way to defend it. I believe that banks etc are supposed to keep debts to Mental Health patients in house so she ideally would like the debt returned to them so she can negotiate directly with them.
  13. I will start this off by explaining that I have bipolar disorder, anxiety and OCD, all of which I receive medication and treatment for. I also have a history of self-harm. I started working for a supermarket a year and a half ago, and in my application i stated that I believed to suffer from a disability, my condition being mental health issues. I was also upfront about this in my face-to-face interview. I started off working in the clothing department of the store and my manager was great with me, understanding of my condition and knew i saw a psychiatrist and attended group therapy. I have my ups and downs in work, but last December I was overwhelmed with stress and anxiety and cut my arm during my lunch break. One of my colleagues bumped into me after I done it and noticed the blood from my arm and I was sent to the hospital to get stitches. The 'People Manager' of the store recommended I take a few days off after the incident. In March, me and two others were moved to other departments due to cut backs and poor sales. I was moved to the bakery department and have struggled mentally since then. The job itself isn't hard at all, it's the amount of work that stresses me. There are 5 in on the dayshift, but only me on the back shift. There used to be two on the back shift, but they cut it down to save money, so I am doing work for two people. I always feel harassed into doing over time and during the summer I was on my own (as usual) on a busy Saturday and really struggled. One of the managers saw me and was concerned about me and I confided in her that I was really stressed and because I self-harm, it was doubly worse working unsupervised in an environment with knives etc. The manager sent me home and I was asked to see an occupational therapist a week later. The occupational therapist told me that it was unacceptable that I had brandished a knife and threatened to cut myself. I told him that that never happened. He said it didn't matter and if my behaviour wouldn't change I would be out on my arse without a leg to stand on, and would struggle getting a job in this climate and without a good reference. When I spoke the 'People Manager' (head of personnel) about this, she said the occupational therapist shouldn't have used that language, but that the points he made were true. She said she has a duty to ensure I am fit for purpose and can do the job they pay me to do. She said she has to protect staff and customers from the aftermath of my self-harming as no-one should have to see that. She told me she would be monitoring me very closely for the upcoming months. This happened at the end of August and ever since then it had bugged me. I have always been upfront about my illness and unfortunately one co-worker and my old manager saw my arm after I had self-harmed last December. I feel terrible that they saw that, but my fellow workers don't even know about my self-harming, and I wear long sleeved blouses that cover up my scars. I am very hard-working and polite, but I have told my manager repeatedly that I struggle on my own and I never get any help. When I wanted to move to a different department my manager wouldn't let me as she says I'm one of her best workers. I am also annoyed at how they added me "brandishing a knife and threatening to cut myself" on that busy Saturday during the summer. Am I being discriminated against or are they right and I just can't see it?
  14. Hi, wondered if anyone can help my daughter. She has been off work for the last month with mental health problems. She has been diagnosed with bi-polar and borderline personality disorder and the employer knew about the bi-polar before taking her on and she has worked well there with just a few very short absences for the last two and a half years. However, she has had a bad episode and has had the services of a crisis care team at home and psychiatric care. At the beginning of the illness she was too ill to telephone the college so I did keep them informed telling them at the beginning of the week she wouldn't be in that week and on the Fridays to tell them about the probable non attendance for the coming week. For the latter part of her absence she has been e-mailing them (as advised by the Crisis Team rather than ringing which was causing her more stress). I have been taking in the sick notes as best I can with a full time job, getting them in in the second week of the certified dates. In short, we have been doing our best to keep them informed but apparently this has not been completely within their 'policies and procedures' and on Friday daughter received an e-mail stating they would only pay SSP for the whole absence, not the normal sick pay received by others if they'd managed to play exactly by the stringent rules. They sent a letter on Monday 11 November by post asking daughter to attend a meeting to discuss situation 1 p.m.on Wednesday 13 November. This wasn't received till the Wednesday at 11 a.m. and would have given her 2 hours to get a colleague to attend and prepare and in any event this kind of meeting would be inappropriate given her illness and contributed towards more stress, surely 2 hours notice is not sufficient? My question is, are they within their rights to do this? They 'champion' equality and diversity but this seems to be lip service when now faced with this situation they have so little empathy. Employer has also rung the mental health clinic asking for details of the case without permission. This new situation has put the situation back causing daughter more worry and stress. Can anyone give me their take on this? Sorry for long post. Many thanks.
  15. I took out a 12 month gym contract which is being dealt with through Harlands. I have called the gym and they just said 'no worries just give your membership card back and cancel your direct debit with your bank and call Harlands to cancel' but I fear it may be a little more complex than that??! My 12 month contract is until August 2014 but I have since been diagnosed with agoraphobia amongst other mental health conditions so, needless to say I cannot go to the gym. Im awaiting therapy but the wait is currently approx 15 months so my health is not likely to improve any time soon. So, I have emailed Harlands explaining my situation and advising them I can forward a copy of my letter from my Consultant Clinical Psychologist detailing the conditions he has diagnosed me with. My query... What are my chances of them cancelling the membership? Will I end up having to pay loads of money out? (Im not working due to my illness at the moment also so cant afford it either) And, If they tell me to go forth... is there anything else I can do or try to get out of the membership? Any help or advice greatly appreciated.
  16. Press release by Public Law Project http://www.publiclawproject.org.uk/documents/press_release_WCA_assessment_discriminatory.pdf Case numbers http://www.osscsc.gov.uk/Decisions/forthcoming3JPs.htm DWP Twitter Response (who wasn't expecting this?) https://twitter.com/dwppressoffice Press coverage: http://mind.org.uk/news/show/8895_victory_for_welfare_campaigners_as_judges_rule_controversial_disability_benefits_procedure_is_unfair http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2013/may/22/fitness-work-tests-mental-health-unfair http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-22620894 Twitter
  17. Hi, In March I made JD Williams/Reliable Collections aware of my mental health difficulties, while attempting to negotiate repayment of my debt to them via email. Eventually, they insisted that I call them to discuss things, but I refused and said I would prefer to communicate by email. After that, they stopped replying. To my knowledge, guidelines say they're meant to keep debt in-house for customers with mental health issues. Is this correct? If so, what courses of action are available to me now they've sold they debt to Fredrickson (I don't seem to have received a Notice of Assignment from either party).
  18. Hi. Brand new to the forum and just hoping to run my situation past everyone for feedback. I was put under suspension for Gross Misconduct for policy infringement (nothing that involved anyone else and nothing like theft). This initial suspension caused a serious breakdown this however led to a Psychiatric diagnosis of amongst other things OCD which according to my mental health professionals and my GP completely explains my erratic behaviour. I was on sick leave for a couple of months but my companies HR department were kept fully aware of the diagnosis and any changes in treatment. My therapist etc assured me I have done remarkably well and I made the decision myself to come off sick leave and face a disciplinary hearing. When I went through the hearing the interviewers had no information at all about my medical condition, which I tried to explain now appeared integral to my behaviour, They consulted with HR and told me they would adjourn the meeting for further investigation with my GP and Psychiatrist. I had a letter requesting permission to access medical records for which I gave my full consent ( I had already filled in another of these forms weeks earlier but though better than pointing this out). I also had complete faith in my medical team. There was a short telephone interview with a Occupation Health firm hired by the company which entirely focused on my ability to return to work. When the meeting was reconvened I was basically told that they had looked at the research but that I was dismissed, no questions or interview just go. I then found out that not one of my medical professionals had been approached for information. To make matters worse a letter arrived at my GP 2 days after the hearing requesting medical information (it was dated 2 days before the meeting). I've had legal advice that I should appeal and am awaiting a reply but I'm just looking for feedback about the rights and wrongs of the situation.
  19. Within the last week I was sectioned by the police and taken to a secure mental health unit. I was allowed home and the crisis team who visited me have have indicated that there is a long journey ahead of me with treatment and medication, meaning that for the first time in 25 years I'm unable to work. (it appears from initial assessments that I've not been overly well since 1992, but have built up numerous coping and concealing mechanisms which have given the appearance to the outside world of relative normality) I have been particularly '"less than well" since the beginning of february this year, and since then I agreed to arrangements from a couple of doorstep agents collecting debt (both from utility companies) approaching £350 per month. There are additional debts and last years council tax is in the hands of the bailiffs. We now have a limited family income of under £1800 per month with a few young children. There are also a few other issues that have a financial bearing, including faliure to SORN the car at the beginning of the year when I became unable to drive (the car wasn't used but for some reason I just wasn't in the correct mental place to SORN), and a number other outstanding debts. No-one in the family smokes/drinks/used drugs etc, we have no telly, no landline, and have cut all spending to the bone over the last 12 months. At the moment I'm really unclear where to go from here, or who to contact to get things worked out in the right way so any advice would be really appreciated. I feel that were just about treading water at the moment, but in-laws are very kindly propping us up by helping with children's uniforms and clubs etc. I hope I've been as clear as possible here, I may not to be able to reply quickly to posts as I have quite a lot of appointments with the Mental Health Teams and the assorted medications that I've been started on have altered what my usual perception of normality is. Many thanks
  20. Morning all, I have recently been diagnosed with 2 serious mental illnesses and am starting the long road to recovery... The two illnesses, Bipolar disorder and Schizoaffective disorder, are now being treated, but I am concerned about divulging this information to an new potential employer... I have a job offer, but no start date as yet.. I understand that I must, by law declare this to the DVLA or face £2000 in fines for not doing so, but is there a legal obligation to declare these disorders to my new employer and, if I did, what should I expect from them? Has anyone had experience of doing this? Many thanks xxx
  21. BHAFC

    Mental health issue

    Does anyone have experience of being treated for agoraphobia on NHS? Mine has not been very good....I was referred for treatment sometime ago - had to wait about 9 months for an assessment apt with a therapist - and was then told I would need to travel 10 miles to their centre......they do not do home visits - this was despite being told by my GP that they would come to my home and take me out....... Rang GP and he said there was nothing more he could do - although he did ring the MHT and got the same response as I did. Stumped now as to what to do. I live alone and do not have anyone in a local radius that can help out. GP said only option would be to go private but at £50 a session minimum that is way out of my reach.
  22. Hi, any advice would be appreciated, My partner who suffers from psychotic episodes signed up for a 2 year contract with 02 when he was unwell, he was already a customer of theirs but renewed in the shop one day. Anyway we had to take the phone of him because he was convinced his calls were being recorded because of the paranoia he suffers, I cancelled all his DD and I took the phone of him and just forgot about it for the last 7 months. He received a letter this week of a debt collection agency demanding nearly 600 pounds, he is worried sick about this and is concerned they will come knocking on the door for the money which is highly stressing him out. He never used the phone for calls etc as he only had it about 3 days. Can anyone offer me advice about what I can do about this, should I call o2 or the DCA Thanks
  23. What is the criteria for severe mental impairment (SMI) when it comes to council tax exemption please? I do meet the other criteria of receiving ESA. I was told by someone it's done by IQ. I had my IQ tested when I was at college and was told by the Ed Psych that he can't work it out because my results for various tests are all over the place. There's nothing on my council's website. They just give a form for disability discount; but that's the one for adapted properties.
  24. A NEW mental health service for veterans and reserves has been launched in East Yorkshire. Specialist nurses in the region are helping military veterans get help for a range of conditions, including depression, whether they are related to combat or not. The Veterans Outreach Service found many ex-military workers struggled to talk about mental health problems or found it difficult to approach their own GP. Now, Humber NHS Foundation Trust is providing specialist nurses to cover the region, chat to veterans and work with them to get the help they need. http://www.thisishullandeastriding.co.uk/Service-brings-mental-health-care-barracks/story-18088468-detail/story.html
  25. Britain's growing debt problems are causing mental health problems, relationship breakdown and family discord, Citizens Advice has said. The majority of those in debt claimed that their money worries were harming their health, according to the charity. In a survey of people experiencing debt problems, three out of four said they had an impact on their mental health, while half said it was causing their work to suffer. A majority of those surveyed said money worries caused problems with a partner, while one in three said they had a detrimental impact on their relationship with their children. The findings from Citizens Advice come as a nationwide poll by YouGov suggests that one in three families will go into debt over the Christmas period. The survey suggests that as many as one in 10 lose track of their spending over the festive period and will rely on credit cards or overdrafts to fund spending. It is estimated that outstanding personal debt in the UK now stands at £1.4 trillion, including outstanding mortgages. Link: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/borrowing/9755389/Debt-is-affecting-our-mental-health-say-three-in-four.html
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