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ESA obtained by fraudulent means


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A friend of mine telephoned a hour ago in a total mess. Like me, she has cancelled her ESA appeal because it is taking so long to sort out, and that in the interests of sanity, feel that it is better to claim JSA instead.

 

She received a letter this morning from the DWP requesting her attendance at the local JC+ to 'discuss' her claim for ESA. She telephoned them thinking that it had something to do with her cancelling the appeal. She was however told that it was relating to the claim itself and what she put on it.

After about 15 mins the DWP rang her back and asked her to bring any documentation she has to substantiate her claim that she has the disabilities with walking, sitting etc as she has stated.

 

This sounds wierd to me. Would you think that she is being investigated over what she put on the ESA50 and how her life is affected by her illness. Logic to me is that if she can prove (and that is what they are asking for) that her statements on the ESA50 are true, then they will have to allow her ESA despite failing the medical.

 

Or is it more likely because she like me, have given up the appeal and started to claim JSA because of the stress involved? If so, I am probably in the same boat as her.

 

Is this the new chapter of looking at fraudulent claims to ESA - fail the medical, give up or lose the Appeal, and then be accused of lying on the ESA50 to get the benefit in the first place - no doubt also a requirement to repay it all?

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I'm sorry that people are giving up on ESA. I know - oh, believe me I know! - it can be a long hard old process. But you shouldn't feel compelled to claim JSA instead as that will, in the long run, do you far more harm than this protracted process...

Best wishes

Rae

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Hi Rae, thanks for saying this - I nearly c'n'p'd the comment which I made on your 0 - 9 - 0 thread about the war of attrition waged against against the sick and disabled (the low hanging fruit). I'm sad to read that people are giving up - thanks for being an inspiration to us all.

My comment:

It is not only just my opinion, but it seems that Atosh are vindictively sending new ESA50's to everyone who successfully passes the appeal and/or tribunal - it smacks of a "war of attrition" being waged against the disabled and ill - furthermore this is a waste of financial resources (tax dollars) by a private contractor who apparently has been taking liberties above their remit under the social security and welfare legislation. The truth of the matter is that it is in fact the Government and DWP who have frame-worked the legislation in such a way that this becomes an obligation on Atosh - the harrassment is inbuilt and Atosh are just a complicit (self-intrested) instrument of torture IMHO.

The tribunal takes so long that re-assessment is already imminent when the tribunal has been convened - and thus they are able to perpetuate the suffering inflicted against us. I think that this could be grounds for judicial action under the UN conventions protecting the rights of the ill and disabled - the previous and current governments are on thin ice already because the convention states that deprivation of income for these groups is inhumane (possibly prejudice when sanctions are being applied).

 

They are causing untold harm to the most vulnerable and I've had another nervous

Breakdown
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thanks to their persecution and (media abetted) vilification.

I'm starting to feel a bit better, best regards, Paul. (LR)

I'm not a qualified welfare rights adviser, but I'm planning on becoming one. I'm no substitute for more competent advice from trained CAB and welfare rights workers - [URL="http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/benefits-tax-credits-minimum/127741-benefits-advice.html"]see this post[/URL] by Joa, great advice and links! I've been running a Crisis Loan campaign and help since Jan 2007 . See my annotations c/o "theyworkforyou". I'm also currently interested by the recent DWP Medical Services reform and the effect this is having on valid claims, seriously - someone needs to be keeping a suicide count.

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If people on incap ben & who've also been awarded DLA fail the ATOS medical & are deemed fit to work, is their DLA award also stopped at the same time?

 

If so, might it make sense then to claim JSA instead of going for the medical, in order to 'protect' an existing DLA award ?

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I dont want to see anyone give up either. I know its a financial nightmare. However, right back in Feb this year i was determined I would win my appeal and on Tuesday i did. In 10 minutes. It was just a solicitor and a doctor. I gave the receptionist a report from my consultant psychiatrist and a copy of the drugs prescribed. LOL - they must have read the report before I went in because it mentioned in there a violent incident my illness got me involved in (I was the victor) and they couldn't have been nicer to me! You need to remember its all about how you were at the time of the report, so think of a few examples - I won because they asked me to state an incident where an upset to a planned and assisted routine had come about - so I used the example of a Job Centere pathways interview that got cancelled. I had to attend on my own because of this and it was a nightmare and the interview couldn't go ahead. What with that and my partner saying that around that time, and today, I needed assistance to get going with daily routines etc, it really went ok. They said the repot I provided was most helpful. I am an outpatient at the local community hospital and my therapist told me that once the solicitor sees that its a done deal.

 

The best bit - when they said to wait outside for the girl to type up the decision - I opened the door to the broom cupboard instead of the exit!¬I guess that sort of confirmed things for them.

 

Hope this helps anyone with similar problems.

 

I dont know when or how I'll get this extra money and back pay. Does anyone know? I'm almost too afriad to ring and ask in case its tempting fate. You know, how bloody dare you ring and ask such a thing, here have another form for ATOS.

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Hi daveydavey, in response to your post: It is a possibility that a failed WCA can then be referred to the DLA department, we have an example of this through another member called "mazbck". Her son was a victim because the DWP & ATOS contract says that the medical examiner may report to other benefits agencies if they think this appropriate to determining eligibility. I fail to see how a WCA can be used to determine eligibility for DLA because this is a completely different benefit which looks at supporting participation in work as well as being "out of work". E.g. Someone in a wheelchair but works a full weeks work should receive financial support for an adapted vehicle to get them to the workplace, s/he in return is contributing via his/her taxes to the economy more than the support amount. Mazbck eventually won her case after a long appeal with help from her M.P. and M.S.P. The backdated payment then took about 2 months to materialise. Hey, why don't they just kill us now and be done - they can't because some of us believe in going down fighting and taking as many of our attackers with us.

 

Regards, Paul. (LR)

I'm not a qualified welfare rights adviser, but I'm planning on becoming one. I'm no substitute for more competent advice from trained CAB and welfare rights workers - [URL="http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/benefits-tax-credits-minimum/127741-benefits-advice.html"]see this post[/URL] by Joa, great advice and links! I've been running a Crisis Loan campaign and help since Jan 2007 . See my annotations c/o "theyworkforyou". I'm also currently interested by the recent DWP Medical Services reform and the effect this is having on valid claims, seriously - someone needs to be keeping a suicide count.

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Jackieandwayne, I'll reply soon - I loved your post but I need a fag before replying.

Best regards, Paul (LR)

Edited by loan_ranger

I'm not a qualified welfare rights adviser, but I'm planning on becoming one. I'm no substitute for more competent advice from trained CAB and welfare rights workers - [URL="http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/benefits-tax-credits-minimum/127741-benefits-advice.html"]see this post[/URL] by Joa, great advice and links! I've been running a Crisis Loan campaign and help since Jan 2007 . See my annotations c/o "theyworkforyou". I'm also currently interested by the recent DWP Medical Services reform and the effect this is having on valid claims, seriously - someone needs to be keeping a suicide count.

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Sorry jackieandwayne, I'm still too ill with an eduring mental health problem. May I just comment that whereas political attack dogs such as Chris Grayling are suggesting that everyone shall be re-assessed by a medical, this is male bovine manure of the first order. A well written ESA50 can get you into the support group or avoid future ESA50's. A diagnosis is hard to obtain, the shrinks are so non-committal until the patient has either proved it or been sectioned for a while. It's all too little too late.

I have Asperger Syndrome and I also support my niece who has Borderline Personality Disorder including paranoid delusions and psychosis. Even with my disabilities I was still forced into a long and detracted battle with my council to rehouse my niece, I moved her near to me because she had been raped on many occasions and a victim of violence in her own home town. My council (after a year of the homelessness duty - when they were obliged to find more secure housing) tried to shove her off the homelessness duty by asking her to sign a "behaviour agreement" - I was calm and said that a person suffering delusional thinking cannot be reasonably expected to understand the implications of signing this contract. I said to my niece that she mustn't sign this, the man from the council said that it must now go to the county court, I replied by saying, "go ahead and bring it on, under the Homelesness Code of Guidlines for Local Authorities published by the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister 2002, your council has contravened five directives. I'll see you in court where I shall win the case for my niece and then I'm taking this to the Local Government Ombudsman to obtain compensation for the distress they've caused a vulnerable and disabled person".

The final result was that my niece got rehoused (the council had her in temporary and most unsuitable hostel type place for a year already) into her own self-contained flat with support staff during the weekly hours. The moral of this story being, if someone has genuine needs, then they are worth fighting for.

 

Kindest regards, Paul (LR)

Edited by loan_ranger
punctuation, corrections

I'm not a qualified welfare rights adviser, but I'm planning on becoming one. I'm no substitute for more competent advice from trained CAB and welfare rights workers - [URL="http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/benefits-tax-credits-minimum/127741-benefits-advice.html"]see this post[/URL] by Joa, great advice and links! I've been running a Crisis Loan campaign and help since Jan 2007 . See my annotations c/o "theyworkforyou". I'm also currently interested by the recent DWP Medical Services reform and the effect this is having on valid claims, seriously - someone needs to be keeping a suicide count.

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If people on incap ben & who've also been awarded DLA fail the ATOS medical & are deemed fit to work, is their DLA award also stopped at the same time?

 

If so, might it make sense then to claim JSA instead of going for the medical, in order to 'protect' an existing DLA award ?

 

Whilst there has been cases of the ESA WCA report being used as evidence to stop/reassess DLA claims. It's just a piece of evidence and so can be challenged. If the rest of your evidence is good enough there shouldn't be a problem and in the vast majority of cases there isn't.

 

Still early days on this one, which will probably only really kick off as an issue (if it does) after the big ESA migration @ DLA renewal time.

 

 

@ GRUMPYOLEMAN

 

Whilst there is 1 (and I mean 1) case of DWP taking this line on the Benefits & Work forum (closed until Sept so you can't check) I think you should tone down the paranoia and do some searching (may be contact an advice line) to give you a better indication of what this is all about.

 

Remember they will at present be covered by a sick/fit note saying they can not work so will be intelligible for JSA. There is middle ground in JSA with restrictions on job types etc but that would require a fit note filled in with what work the doctor thinks they can do.

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.

 

Whilst there is 1 (and I mean 1) case of DWP taking this line on the Benefits & Work forum (closed until Sept so you can't check) I think you should tone down the paranoia and do some searching (may be contact an advice line) to give you a better indication of what this is all about.

 

Remember they will at present be covered by a sick/fit note saying they can not work so will be intelligible for JSA. There is middle ground in JSA with restrictions on job types etc but that would require a fit note filled in with what work the doctor thinks they can do.

 

Hi, I have now had a look at my friends letter which I will be honest, has left me even more confused.

 

She has to go for an interview next week at the local JC+. She has been asked to supply any documentation she has from other medical personel ie, consultant etc, and to take either a copy of her repeat prescription or a list of the drugs that have been given to her by her GP.

I also had a look at her ESA50 and the ATOS assessment report.

 

After talking this through with her (and I never knew anything about this), she has admitted to me that whilst she does have some physical disability, it is nothing as bad as she has described on the ESA50. Her GP has given her a sick note and continues to do so for this 'disability' that she has described to him (she says that anybody can get them from him!! - even to the point of ringing up for one).

 

I will admit now that she has tried it on but come unstuck at the ATOS assessment.

 

I have told her that when she has this interview, she should be honest with them and admit that she exagerated her condition, but only to the extent that will fit in with what her GP has written on the sick note, to get the benefit (she has already cancelled her appeal and now claims JSA).

 

In her defence she says that she wouldn't get it if she had been honest in the first place.

 

Ummm - I really don't want to get involved with this, as the way it is going she could be found to have made a fraudulent claim and have to repay it all, and that the GP is likely to face problems with the evidence she will give.

 

So I presume that the moral in this story is that you should never overplay your illness to the point of maybe saying that you can manage things even though you find it difficult.

 

I have never heard of this before and it is worrying, if they suspect that after the ATOS medical, the details on the ESA50 are either overstated or exagerated maybe to the point of criminality, then you maybe charged with benefit fraud.

 

Finally and to cause herself more problems, like me, she has told a lot of white lies in order that she can get JSA. She is ill, and does have difficulties and really in all honesty should be in the Work Related Group. But with the restrictions imposed re JSA, she has said that she is able, willing and available to take on any full time job.

 

I hope for her sake that she is not precluded from both benefits if it all came out in the wash!

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