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  1. Hello, My mom has just received a letter from Atos asking her to telephone to arrange a medical (within 2 days of receipt of letter). Now my mom is in no state to be calling them, we are dealing here with severe mental health issues and she doesnt speak to anyone, she doesnt even know we have a letter! She has recently been referred to the Mental Health Team and we are awaiting contact from them. When the questionnaire arrived, a local agency helped me complete the form on my mom's behalf and they said she will need a home visit if a medical is needed. The Job Centre recently wrote regarding a 'back to work' meeting, I called them and explained the situ and they called me on the day of my mom's appointment and I explained to them that my mom could not speak with them, they were great and said they would do the same thing next time they needed another one of these meetings. y worry now is, how do I handle the telephone call when I ring Atos, any suggestions. I notice on another thread that maybe I should have enclosed a letter with my mom's questionnaire asking for details of the 'qualified healthcare professional' who is assessing my mothers questionnaire. Any help is greatfully received.
  2. On Wednesday, 4th Nov 15, a JobCentre Workcoach at Seven Kings Jobcentre, instigated a full scale row with me about my apparent job search failure, even though I applied for 33 vacancies for period 21/10/15 – 4/11/15 - so she's clearly insane and her judgement is off at best and worst she doesn't listen to reason nor pay attention to months of evidence. (This is my 2nd complaint against this particular Work Coach for bullying – the first complaint being the 10th September 2014) She battered me about why I hadn't secured interviews for the amount of jobs applied for, I explained that many job sites sold advert slots to recruitment agencies, and that many jobs aren't offered to me due to me being over qualified, and too old for entry-level posts. At precisely 12:40pm, she aggressively challenged me and said “If I'm so experienced, then I should be in work” - and she didnt mean it as a compliment either, she was goading me, doing her absolute best to wind me up, and she's clearly a lunatic of the highest order and unprofessional to boot. I mean, does she really think that repeatedly bashing out the same questions really helps motivate jobseekers or changes a job-market fluctuation situation that's completely out of my control – it doesn't. The 'Work Coach' also kept banging on about her 'job coach' credentials, she told me she was a qualified job coach (seems the majority of DWP staff do this too, but from what I've seen they don't have the skills/knowledge required to coach anyone) . Is the DWP sure they should be using self-appointed titles, as I thought their titles were Compliance/Customer/Client Advisor?? although the Work Coaches seems to think its fine to promote themselves and bully others.... (It seems the title of 'Work Coach' is an official title according to the DWP). She then turned to giving low-level CV tips, 'advising' that I should change it so its 'targeted'. Well, I've removed 4 positions to make it so – but this has now left a huge gap of 4 years employment that is tough to explain to interviewers, hmmm, great advice She then threatened to repeat the same pathetic questioning every time I attend my signing day, and I'm not being spoken to like that, nor will I stand for her ridiculous threats and told the Jobcentre, I will take this to the highest complaints level as this is the 2nd time these pathetic power games has occurred and the 3rd advisor complaint put forward by myself, although I couldn't be bothered to take it to the maximum complaints stage last time, but I will now.
  3. Hi all, I am considering starting an action against the DWP/Jobcentre in a County Court. A brief synopsis is as follows: I claim Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) and am in the Work-Related Activity Group (WRAG). I am required to take part in a "work-related interview" every six months. At my last "interview" my work coach offered to conduct the "work-related interview" over the phone instead of in person. However, when I asked the Jobcentre staff to fulfil this offer recently they simply refused. I asked for the Jobcentre to make a reasonable adjustment in this respect due to the fact that I suffer from various health problems and getting to the Jobcentre is unreasonably difficult for me. This was denied. Is this a matter for a County Court that needs to be issued against the DWP or is it a Employment Tribunal matter because the Jobcentre could be described as an "employment service" for the purposes of the Equality Act 2010: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2010/15/section/56 If this does go to a County Court what are the chances I will have to pay the other side's legal costs? I suspect the DWP/Jobcentre will aggressively defend this. Many thanks in advance.
  4. I've been asked to attend an 'information session and interview' at my Jobcentre. It's a group thing looking at CVs, training and other opportunities to help people get back to work. Afterwards there's a one on one interview with an advisor to review your JSA and for you to give details about what you've done to find work. The letter goes on to say that if you can't show you're doing enough to find work 'a decision will have to be made concerning whether you are eligible for JSA'. It seemscurious it doesn't use the usual 'your claim may be referred to a decision maker etc' wording.... I'm just wondering if anyone else has been to an in-house JCP session like this with a personal interview afterwards, or if anyone can give me an idea what to expect?
  5. Hi Bakatcha, The reason why I am contacting you is connected with my own dilemma with INGEUS!! I have been out of work for sometime & it's tough. The job centre has placed me on a mandatory work program with INGEUS & sadly it's lasted longer than expected. My advisor is using unorthodox ways to find work for me and somewhat intrusive. My advisor thinks it's a good idea if he watches me use the computer when I search/apply for jobs and he also wants me to possibly visit INGEUS on a daily basis. He also thinks it's a good idea if he applies for vacancies without me performing this task and I strongly disagree with that! He even suggested that I sit down with him & log onto my email account so he can check all the jobs I apply for each week, unacceptable in my opinion and I wondered what you make of this.
  6. Please can someone offer some advice! I have worked for my Company since 2012 and as a single Mum, have been in receipt of housing benefit since that time. Last month, I had a conversation with my local council who told me that I have an overpayment of housing benefit totalling almost £4,000! This, I admit is my fault as I failed to inform them of a change of hours in my job. I was told that I would no longer receive any housing benefit until the overpayment was paid off. I supplied the council with wage slips and P60's for the last 3 years and thought that was that. The company I work for is small and this morning I have opened the post and there is a letter enclosing an EQ1 form which basically implies that I am being investigated for fraud! Can anyone please offer some advice, I've gone into meltdown!
  7. Saw the latest bully and she was late to her own appointment so good start and then she whined I had no work history and claimed volunteering would help yet I've had short term jobs and forced labour previously, she claimed I had no references inspire of my CWP and WP ones - what's the point of these schemes of even the Jobcentre don't acknowledge them?????? Plus wittered on about work trials as selling yourself at interviews she went into bully mode once I showed her my evidence of a previously accepted format to all the other staff I had seen ipreviously and claimed I needed to account for every 35 hours worth and had to let her have a copy but I forgotten the legal reasons why to deny her and she said I had to so as to cover her selfe and so she had s copy of my log so I said it was blackmail and she lied it wasn't - what else do you call withholding payment to get a copy and I said she could have it under duress so I'm far from happy with her. I am sure that they can't legally keep copies of my job search but it'll help if someone has any links to provide? Plus how easy is it to say I want a different troll? Doesn't help that I'm reminded of a traumatic event sometimes
  8. I'm currently not working, due to ill health, and am in receipt of ESA. Although I don't feel completely ready to start working again, I'm finding it really difficult trying to survive on the benefits, so am looking for part time jobs. I am subscribed to the DWP/JobCentre Plus website called `Jobungo', and have noticed several job offers detailing opportunities for working from home s e.g. data entry/typing documents/stuffing envelopes. Can anyone tell me if these sites are legal and safe, or are they all/mostly phishing traps? Or, does the fact that they are on the approved `Jobungo' jobs site, provide satisfactory validation? I have 3 main concerns. One site asks for an upfront £26.00 Registration payment. If I proceed, is it likely that I will get the promised work? Secondly, if the work doesn't then materialise, would I get my money back, and would this be straightforward? Lastly, a few years ago, I clicked onto a link to a similar `work from home' site. It turned out to be bogus, and my email account was hacked. (My email provider then blocked my account, and it was a long process proving my innocence, and getting access again). Before I contact JobCentre Plus/DWP, has anyone got any advice or experience of this? If so, are there specific companies in this field to steer clear of, and conversely, any companies with good records? I'm desperately hoping someone can help. Little Eva
  9. Hello Everyone, My friend has her first work programme appointment on the 24th June 2013 and was unable to attend due to being very anxious, being sick and had panic attacks! I rang Ingeus and spoke to her Employment Advisor, he was busy when I rang so I left a message that is was important he call back because it was to do with my friend's appointment and that she was unable to attend that day! He did call back and I duly answered the phone call, I told him why my friend was unable to attend and if she can have another appointment date and that I will come with her, I've explained about her anxiety and panic attacks and also told him her advisor at the Job Centre knows of her circumstances as I've had to cancel an appointment she had with her job centre advisor before, I requested that my friend will need a private room as she will not cope being in a room full of people! All what we asked was granted and I also told Ingeus advisor to send me a letter to confirm my telephone conversation with him! Today a letter arrived there was no mention of speaking to me nor mentioned about requesting for a private room all the letter says! 'We have attempted to contact you by telephone but was unable to reach you. We have therefore arranged an appointment for you on such a date etc, etc. I couldn't believe what I was reading' Good job I wrote a letter confirming my telephone conversation with him on the 24th June and mentioned everything we spoke about, I've kept a copy of course and sent the letter to him! I need to write a letter to him about the letter I've received today not mentioning anything of our telephone conversations, my brain has gone pickled at the moment and I want to be careful how I write the letter! He has lied and also not stating the fact of out conversations has anyone come across this sort of problem with Ingeus it will be good to know about them a bit! Thanks helen
  10. Am I able to have someone with me when I have an interview at the jobcentre? Have heard I have my interview tomorrow regarding my rapid reclaim and I am really worried about it. The person I would take would be my best friend. Thanks
  11. A leaked staff memo at the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) appears to show the government is still struggling to roll out its flagship welfare programme, universal credit (UC), across the UK. More Here: http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/oct/27/universal-credit-leaked-memo-scheme-rollout
  12. Hi I'm doing a 6 months course and have been told by the college I'm starting my course at that JOBCENTRE will pay for my fares there and back. I kept all my fares and gave them to the Jobcentre 2 weeks ago. Jobcentre said they will NOT pay my fares and it cost me LOTS! I can't afford to pay for this course back and fourth. They put me on this course so why am I paying for it?!
  13. Hi everyone, I was wondering if you could help me. My sister is a single mother to a child who is 1,5 years old. She started claiming Income Support while working 10 hours a week. She increased her hours and has been working for 15 hours a week since September 2013. She went to JCP in September for an appointment and informed the adviser that she was now working 15 hours a week. Her Income Support stayed the same I think. Now she had another appointment in January 2014. I went with her. She spoke to the advisor and said she is working 15 hours a week. The adviser said she is still entitled to Income support and even did a calculator to show her how much she would be better off if she was working 16 hours a week - increased her working hours by 1 hour. The adviser was aware of how many hours she is working. We talked about this at least for 30 minutes there. Then she was asked by JCP to post her wage slips. This was February I think. She posted her wage slips. Then few days ago (April 2014) she received a letter saying they over payed her since January 2014 and she has to pay Income support back. She is a single mother with a baby and can't afford to pay this back. My question is, whose fault is this, she reported how many hours she works and enquired if she is entitled to Income support, she was told for quite a long time that she is entitled. Now they want it back. She can't afford to pay £1000 or more back now when she's lost income support as well. I always thought if it's JCP mistake then she shouldn't have to pay it back. She never withhold any information so how come they didn't calculate it months ago, instead of waiting for months and now wanting all the money back? can someone please help me and advice me on what to do? I am quite upset as JCP just make mistakes so much and people who end up with no money have to pay them back when they are supposed to help people in difficult situations, instead they make their situation worse. thank you
  14. Hi there. My son and his partner are joint claiming Jobseeker's Allowance. I hope someone who has Jobcentre experience can help me out. We have a two part question - first part is relating to appointment scheduling, and the second is about funding for training. I'll stick to the question about scheduling in this post. Their normal signing day is on a Tuesday in the a.m. However, at their last appointment 2 weeks ago, their Jobcentre adviser told them that he was going to be absent from their next scheduled fortnightly appointment due to a training course he had to attend. So, he said the next appointment would be scheduled for the following Friday. He wrote in both of their "My Work Plan" booklets, on the appointment timetable, that their appointment was set for Friday 25/07/2014 at 09:00 and signed his name. Fast forward to today 23/07/2014 and my son telephoned their adviser directly to speak about funding for a training course. Adviser said he was "just about to call" himself as my son and his partner had missed their Tuesday signing appointment. Son explained what he had told them, and also what he wrote in their work booklets, at their last Jobcentre appointment. First of all, the adviser did not comment on this. He simply stated "You should have come in on Tuesday. You need to sign every 2 weeks." My son kept his cool and repeated why they had not attended. The JC adviser then sounded a bit flustered and gave two "sorry"s in the middle of a garbled sentence about their being some confusion. He then asked if my Son & partner could attend later today - they confirmed this was convenient and attended. At the appointment, adviser said "they have some paperwork to do. But not to worry - it's for me, not you!". He clicked onto a screen on his monitor and then posed the question to them "Why did you fail to attend your last Jobcentre appointment?" then paused for a verbal response from son. Again, son repeated what he had just explained on the telephone. He also directed the adviser to the page in their booklet with Friday's date/time and his signature. Adviser then typed a paragraph or two summing up what had happened. The title of the screen on his computer was something akin to "Give the reason why you failed to attend your last appointment". At this point, son asked adviser if this could negatively impact their claim for JSA? Adviser said (cheerfully) "Very possibly!" and that after he had typed this up, it would be sent to a decision maker and it was now out of his hands! Son then asked, given that the Jobcentre now informs them that they should have attended on Tuesday, should they also attend Friday's scheduled appointment? Adviser laughed and said no, "we wouldn't make you come twice in a week!". What should we think about this? Adviser said the decision should be made soon and we would hear back reasonably quickly. It's totally unfair and it seems like constructive dismissal to me. Any advise would be very gratefully received as we would like to get a head-start in case of a sanction.
  15. Hi, I'm on JSA and currently attending the Work Programme at Ingeus. My question is about my JSA Agreement, I looked through the site yesterday and the replies to a similar question just confused me as there were so many different answers. My JSA Agreement states I have to apply for 2 jobs per week. Yesterday my Advisor at the WP told me I had to apply for 8 jobs per week (3 more per week than I have currently been applying for - I was told to apply for 5 per week when joining the WP). As I live in one of the areas of the highest unemployment in the UK; applying for 8 jobs per week is pretty much mission impossible. I was struggling to apply for 5 per week. I was also told to set my sites lower and apply for entry level jobs! My questions are: is my JSA Agreement still in effect?- I read conflicting advice about this when looking for an answer yesterday. I can't remember if I signed an agreement with the WP Provider but I must have done. Can the Advisor I'm dealing with (who seems to be a right a/hole) get my JSA sanctioned if I'm unable to apply for 8 jobs per week? I will appreciate any replies/advice given. Thanks
  16. A Selection Of Especially Stupid Sanctions - article dated July 2013 You can read much more by following the link.... http://birminghamagainstthecuts.wordpress.com/2013/07/13/a-selection-of-especially-stupid-sanctions/
  17. Hey guys First of all I think I should fill you in on the full story, I would like answers from people who know the answer, please no guess work as that might end up getting me nowhere. So recently my Jobcentre adviser changed due to my old adviser going off to manage a different age group, I went in there this morning (having applied for 23 jobs in the last fortnight) and she asked me how my job search was going, I said "yes not bad, I've applied for 23 jobs so hoping to get lucky on one of those" and she replied with "yes, because you will be due to go off to a work programme soon". Now, I do not receive Jobseekers allowance due to my partner working full time I am entitled to no benefits at all apart from my NI stamp for a pension which I will probably never see. So my question is, can I be forced to attend one of these "work programmes" if I am not claiming Jobseekers allowance? The reason I ask is that a few years ago I did have to attend one of these and let me tell you it gave me absolutely no help at all and I think I may be forced to sign off if this is the case. On another note, it would be helpful if someone could tell me if I am entitled to ask for a change of adviser? The reason being that I have been going there for 10 months now and have seen just about every adviser in the building, none of which have ever had a problem with my job search as I usually manage between 15 and 25 jobs every 2 weeks and they can see that I am genuinely trying to get myself back into work. My new adviser however is a completely different story and no matter what I do or how many jobs I apply for nothing seems good enough for her and she does not possess any ounce of a helpful attitude, rather just giving me a hard time when I'm doing exactly what I should be doing. Thanks Jay
  18. Yes I went into the jobcentre plus office today in Nottingham to chase up a late payment i had to make a call on one of their phones a 0845 number, no joy I had, after I went up to one of their guys sitting behind the desks and asked why 2 phones had been removed of the wall, he told me they are eventually getting rid of all of them, and jobseekers would have to make their calls on their mobiles or home phone, this really shocked me , how are people going to be able to afford to ring the 0845 number on their mobile when often you are waiting for them to answer your call , sometimes takes up to half hr, ive only a capped mobile, i get free calls, but it doesn't include this number ,ive no home phone, this government is a complete joke ,the cutbacks are a disgrace. ..I thought that was the purprose of the jobcentre phones it was so you could ring for job vacancies or enquire about work related stuff and chase up payments like myself etc. .Its just getting worse they are trying to bleed us dry, the workers and the unemployed. .I know I wont be voteing for the tories ...
  19. Hi, I recently received a letter about having to go to an appointment with the 'employer adviser', something to do with Wage Incentive Week, for people who have been claiming JSA for 6 months or more, which apparently starts next week. It says I have to bring my CV with me. I was just wondering what this is likely to involve and is it mandatory? Thanks.
  20. In yet another humiliating court defeat for Iain Duncan Smith, thousands of sacked Jobcentre staff may be entitled to compensation due to an employment tribunal ruling that they were unlawfully sacked. Story http://johnnyvoid.wordpress.com/2013/03/27/jobcentre-illegally-sacked-thousands-of-workers/ As the article states I wonder if IDS will attempt to retrospectively change the law on this one.
  21. On a particularly good day I applied for a temporary job with an employment agency and my application is being processed. I've not been well since but have let the application continue just to see what happens. The employment agency have asked for the details of the jobcentre I have been dealing with. I am claiming ESA, and initially claimed via the internet and by post (disability precludes using the telephone) and have never attended an office or building apart from an ATOS medical, so what are the jobcentre details that the employment agency are asking for? Also, why do the employment agency want these details? Do they tell the DWP that you are registered with them and looking for work? I am very worried that if so the DWP will decide I am too well to be on ESA and reassess me or whatever with the intent of saying so. I know that I would be supported by my social worker and GP as to being too unwell to work because I have been unwell and under the crisis team but even so, can do without the stress so would tell the employment agency to cease my application and take me off their books if the DWP are informed of me being there. I'd hoped I could stay on the books and then over time would be told what vacancies there were and I could assess whether I was well enough for any position and then if taking one would of course tell the DWP myself immediately. I am not sure why the employment agency want 'my jobcentre' details now when no job has been offered or taken though. Thanks in advance.
  22. I am currently in the planning stages of moving house but it all relies on whether or not my JSA will be effected. I am currently living in Hampshire with my parents but due to personal reasons its become a strain, so naturally when my friend offered me his spare room I was more than overjoyed, however as I am currently unemployed I rely solely on my JSA until I can find a job, which believe me I've been trying hard to find. Also another issue is that he lives near Birmingham. I know I can switch branches, and I know a little about it thanks to the thread which lead me to this site. /showthread.php?339288-Changing-Job-Centres Although I'm concerned it wont be as easy as switching to a centre close by, I can't go to an appointment in the new centre until I live up there but I cannot live up there till I know my benefits are safe. It would help me greatly to have input from you guys and I hope there's a way to make it possible.
  23. Hi, Long story short i signed on today (JSA) and a different adviser saw me, asked me if i'd thought about work experience etc then ended up booking me in for a group session about it next week. It's a group session for 18-24 year olds (i'm 25 by the way ) about work experience. I was just wondering if anyone's gone to one of these before and if so what are they like. Is it just a case of turn up, sit there, listen then go home? Cheers, Liam
  24. Hi im not even sure if im posting in the right place but I need to ring upton jobcentre in the morning and the only number is the general 0845 number, ive tried sayno0870 but there is no number for upton though they have given me 01603 248701 which is a better general number. I was wondering if anyone a: has a local number for upton (0151 etc) or b: if anyone knows that if I ring the 016 number to jobcentre switchboards wether they will put me through to upton. if anyone could help would be so grateful, thanks
  25. Can anyone offer me advice on what I might expect from an interview under caution? Got the letter today and very worried. Is it true they rarely prosecute if you admit and offer to pay back?
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