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The problem is proving it has significantly worsened. I think that counts even after the 6 months. Just checked the gov.UK site and if you have failed a WCA you can only reclaim at all if either it is a new condition or an existing one has got a lot worse.

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news.

Roll on 2020 if we last that long

 

https://www.gov.uk/employment-support-allowance/eligibility

Edited by fletch70

Any opinion I give is from personal experience .

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Most of the people you speak to, (in shops mostly) are just staff and are rarely anything to do with management. When I volunteered, the management were mostly upstairs doing admin stuff. They won't, as mentioned accept CVs.

 

A very good point. I have a book on writing sales letters somewhere. Ill have to dig it out. The author mentions that if you write a sales letter or brochure promoting your products or service, no matter how brilliantly written, constructed or designed, it is no good if it does not get into the hands of the person making the purchasing decisions, often the business owner.

 

Why do JCP advisers think a CV is any different in principle?

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Why do JCP advisers think a CV is any different in principle?

 

The same can be said for cold calling (either in person or by telephone) and spec letters. There may be a very few occasions when such tactics work, but they are few and far between. Applying for genuine vacancies that are being advertised have a far better chance of returning a result for the effort expended.

 

The difficulty is in identifying the genuine vacancies and also where they are being advertised.

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But that's you. Your conditions aren't the same as everyone elses.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Actually they are a lot worse then people I know claiming ESA.

 

 

Sorry to post and run (well walk slowly) but am about to do my daily 15 min walk in the cold to the nearest bus stop - if I can get my legs to work that is

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It's not a competition, I was just asking for advice on what to do?

 

 

No its not but you do seem to be pinning your hopes on claiming ESA for anything. Why not try part time retail work and see how you get on, or even volunteering (you can do this whilst claiming JSA) and then if you really cant do the work you would have proof.

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Madamfluff

 

While I am not having a go at you personally I can see several flaws in your argument. I am sure you are only trying to be constructive

 

1) On what is you assertion that you know several people less ill than you who claim ESA ( is it ESA main phase or assessment phase?) . Naturally many conditions affect differeing people differing ways - for example some may be able to cope with change while for others it may cause hours or days of complete inactivity.

2) No illness affects the same people the same way

3) Some people you think are not as ill as you may in fact be far more seriously ill than you realise.

 

I do not see that the OP was trying to claim ESA for anything but because this Governments benefits regime is broken and designed to break people . Maybe it is aimed at helping the sickest in society but how sick is sick. There are stories of people volunteering on JSA and then being sanctioned for failing to complete enough job searches or apply for enough jobs. Volunteering may not be possible for many reasons, lack of positions, costs involved in transport , hours available . On a purely political note, why should commercial businesses be propped up by the good will of volunteers , all the charity shops are staffed by volunteers yet there they have paid managers, paid fund raisers and highly paid chief executives. Let's not kid ourselves , they are based on a capitalist model.

Even in the NHS much is done by volunteers, for example WRVS, volunteer drivers etc etc.

 

One measure makes us the 5th richest country in the world and we have rely on volunteers

Any opinion I give is from personal experience .

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I'm back at Ingeus tomorrow and was having a look through the letter I was sent by my adviser. It says: "Complete mock interview sheet and bring this to appointment. Bring list of 20 CVs you have handed out to employers in person, with employer name, contact name, dates etc. Bring Universal Job Match details to this appointment, with all details of advertised jobs applied for."

 

Then on the back there's a passive aggressive statement that says if I don't take part in this, I could be sanctioned for 13 weeks etc.

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Sounds like a Mandatory Activity Notice, but we would need to see a scan of both sides of the letter (minus any identifying personal information) to confirm if it is valid.

 

There had been a series of Job Seeker's Directions being issued by another provider, that on closer inspection turned out to be fake. The matter was raised with a higher authority and I understand that these JSDs are no longer being issued.

Note: Only a DWP/JCP Employment Officer can issue a JSD.

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They cannot possibly call 20 employer and ask if xxx has applied for a post or given in a CV...if they did that would be one person tied up for a morning. Think about it logistically. They are trying to intimidate you.

 

I would also include any administrative time spent in searching legislation regarding job seekers etc as part of the time spent in job hunting.

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I think it is very easy for us to say do this or do that, people can even advise on what the law is however it is always the person involved who has to make the final decision. We can advise on legislation however people do not always get that right and in addition it is not us who may have to face the possibility of being sanctioned and the stress that incurs. Even if the sanction is lifted and the money paid it is not us who have to survive on that reduced money for however long it takes.

 

My instinct is always to fight them however sometimes practicalities take over-this has been seen on these boards when people are frankly entitled to a greater level of disability benefit but stay with the award they have for fear of losing that.

 

Clearly if you are already sanctioned and have nothing to lose the decision is somewhat different

Any opinion I give is from personal experience .

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This site is called The Consumer Action Group. It's raison d'etre, as I understand it, is to enable members who choose to register on it to share their experiences, offer help, advice, guidance and moral support with fellow members who are struggling with issues that infringe upon their rights.

Members who have experience, or taken the time to get a reasonably good understanding or grasp, of the legislation and rules surrounding particular issues, may, if they choose, share that experience or understanding as far as they can see their way, or are able, to do it. Others may, and invariably do, put us right should we digress or err.

This does not mean that members who ask for such help, advice and guidance are obliged to take it. The one point on which we are in agreement is that, in the final analysis, the member decides what course of action to follow, knowing full well what the consequences of doing so, or not doing so, might be. The help, advice or guidance offered merely persuades or dissuades the member to or from going further, asking for more details and clarification, and pursuing a course of action that s/he leant towards in the first place.

Fighting together with a shared understanding of the practicalities and consequences involved is hard enough but it has to be better than fighting alone against unknown or seemingly insurmountable odds.

Not sure how advocating or suggesting that the site should forsake it's very raison d'etre is any sort of a solution to the concerns you highlight. As a continuing member and contributor of long standing you can't, surely, be of the opinion that your fellow members do more harm than good.

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It was an observation, not aimed at anyone in particular. I think that sometimes, in their haste to offer advice and experience , it is very easy to forget that it is the pster who actually needs to deal with the potential fallout. This is particularly important with DWP and/or other benefits such as HB where the people who work in these departments are either unaware of the legislation or under pressure not to apply the legislation correctly in the hope that a proportion will give up the fight. Hell even some of the so called advice agencies disagree on the interpretation of the law where benefits are concerned

 

All I was saying is that in our eagerness to offer experience and advice we forget that we are not the ones that face the hardship if and when the agencies get it wrong.

 

When people are desperate they will clutch at straws and as such I think it is always best to try to give clear and balanced advice with pros and cons

 

It is also often the case that the people asking the questions miss out some salient points , hence the reply from Mr P is spot on, without actually seeing the letter accurate advice can not be given

Any opinion I give is from personal experience .

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After all the fuss with the CV's, she printed out 20 more, typed up a cover letter and printed 20 of those and sent me away with 20 envelopes to put them into. She said I have to bring them to my next appointment and she'll mail them to shops for me. I get home, start folding the letters to slip into the envelopes and notice that my adviser has made 3 typos on my cover letter. Seriously.. :evil:

 

She also tries to sign me up for more workshops and I tell her that I don't know that I'll be available for the next few because I have to go and get 6 B12 injections over the next two weeks and don't know what days/times the clinic will book me in for when I go. She says, "they should be able to work around you." ...I phoned my Doctor's office on the 12th to make an appointment and I have to wait until the 28th to actually see a GP. So, no.

 

Lastly, she books me in for a mock interview. Before Christmas, I was sent away with a mock interview worksheet and I filled it out and brought it in and she didn't even look at it. Now, I have to go to a mock interview to "get a feel for what the interview process is like" even though I have been interviewed before. My most recent interview went well enough that they hired me on the spot (the only reason I had to pass on it was because my bank account hadn't been sorted out yet - which ingeus was supposed to help me with before sending me to interviews, but, whatever) so I don't think I need help in the interview department

 

*Forgot to mention that she asked if I'd brought my Universal Job Match info with me. I said yes and gave her the login number. She asks for my password and I motion for her to let me type it in on her keyboard. "We're not allowed to let you use our computers." I sit there and say nothing. If she wants to access my account, I'm going to be the one typing in the password. She's not allowed my info. Eventually she caves and WATCHES ME as I type it in. Wtf?*

Edited by Kxo
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Well done is all I can say

 

Does she not know how the NHS works these days- even if you ask them to work round you they end up cancelling you and making it more inconvenient.

 

I hope you have a bank account sorted now, there are supposed to be more basic bank accounts available now

 

As an ex victim of In Training where they tried to tell me I had to apply for jobs ( I was on ESA in WRAG) I can tell you that of course you can use their computers, they have whole rooms full of them for searching's etc. I do hope you tell her that you found errors in the letters

 

I know I was not popular at in training because I was suggesting things to people that they didn't like such as one older guy who was sanctioned for not applying for enough jobs. He was a few months away from retirement and not in great physical shape so I suggested he got a fit note from the GP and claimed ESA instead.

 

I do have some sympathy for some of the people working there as they have targets to meet otherwise they will be out on their ear and I was in the group of 'problem' job seekers , some of whom quite honestly were playing the system and being open about it - I lad said he would do this till they sanctioned him then sign off and continue to work for his mate!

Any opinion I give is from personal experience .

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I am relieved that your worst fears were not realised and that you were not sanctioned for the fuss about handing out CVs. It sounds like she is now going to do all the hard work and the posting for you which is good of her.

 

It will come as no surprise to many that her work is sub-standard. If it were me, I would fetch the whole lot back to her at the next appointment, point out the errors and suggest that anyone reading them might regard you as being illiterate and consequently disregard your application. If the thing is going to be done in your name it might as well be done right.

 

Each and every activity that you are expected to participate in should be notified to you in writing on a Mandatory Activity Notice (MAN). One MAN for every one activity. The MAN should give details of the activity, why you have been asked to do it, how you are expected to benefit from it and details of the time and place to attend. You should also be given reasonable time to make any necessary preparations including rearranging it if other commitments prevent you from attending. If that is not done then the MAN can be ignored and there is nothing they can do about it. Haven't you raised this issue before and was it not discussed?

 

You also raised the subject of UJM a week or so before Christmas and it was discussed. It was also discussed on one or two other currently active threads. I thought that you were determined not to allow Ingeus access to your account. I think you should stick to your guns and put your foot down with a firm hand on this issue.

 

I could hardly believe what I was reading about you involving then in setting up your bank account. Don't tell me that you are giving them details of your bank account. Banks themselves are only too happy to open accounts for prospective new customers.

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I could hardly believe what I was reading about you involving then in setting up your bank account. Don't tell me that you are giving them details of your bank account. Banks themselves are only too happy to open accounts for prospective new customers.

 

No, the thing is, they were supposed to make sure I had a bank account before they started sending me out for interviews. I didn't have a bank account because I had no photographic ID and most banks wouldn't allow me to open an account without one. Eventually, after taking it up with the job centre, they helped me and phoned DWP and got me a letter with my name, address and proof of income(?) on it. Now, I have a bank account. Ingeus didn't help with it at all.

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Each and every activity that you are expected to participate in should be notified to you in writing on a Mandatory Activity Notice (MAN). One MAN for every one activity. The MAN should give details of the activity, why you have been asked to do it, how you are expected to benefit from it and details of the time and place to attend. You should also be given reasonable time to make any necessary preparations including rearranging it if other commitments prevent you from attending. If that is not done then the MAN can be ignored and there is nothing they can do about it. Haven't you raised this issue before and was it not discussed?

 

Absolutely. At the moment I'm on CWP with Groundworks and for the last 3 weeks I've had no MAN letters issued beforehand for my placement. I could have mentioned this after the first day but I've let them dig their own grave for 3 weeks - at 4 days a week placement that's 12 counts so far of their non-compliance with DWP requirements. I've also asked others on the course and they too haven't had any MAN letters issued so the actual count of non-compliance could be quite high. Tut tut.

 

I did mention it vaguely last week and the two 'advisers' were very uneasy, to say the least :) In the space of about a minute I had 3 different explanations why the MAN's hadn't been issued and it was obvious they were in a panic as they'd been caught out by someone who knew the guidance (I'm a former DWP manager and long-time member here).

 

I'm refraining from reporting them to DWP Contracts at the moment as I may be taken off my current excellent placement - among friends - due to the charity not dealing with Groundworks anymore..I may hint that if they can somehow 'wangle' my staying where I am for the duration of my course I might not report them. They don't play by the rules so I'm not averse to a little bit of blackmail :)

 

Regarding the WP contacting employers who you've applied to, I would assume they can't, unless THEY found the vacancy for you. The DWP are not permitted to seek feedback from employers unless it's a 'matched' vacancy ie one they found for you and the WP have to abide by 'the policies' of the DWP - which I take to mean 'If the DWP can't do it then neither can they'.

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not that I know this for sure as with the new ESA rules but common sense dictates that after 13 weeks on EPS (extended period of sickness) you can make a reclaim for ESA regardless I know it says new or worsening condition but if you tried and still have a health condition or a health condition that appears thatyou feel makes you to have limited capability for work then reclaim as a new condition though you have had depression before if circumstances make your depression appear then it can be seen as new in the context of the EPS as long as it fits the descriptors

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I can't see that the Providers can demand full access to your Universal Jobsmatch Account!! And I certainly would not allow it.

 

I record all my jobsearching info on UJM, because it's easier, plus I have problems with hand writing. When I go to sign on, my Jobcentreplus Advisor enters a numeric code, which gives her very limited access to my Work Activity section, where I record all information - there is an option within UJM which you tick to either allow or disallow JCP Access. The Jobcentre itself cannot demand access to your UJM Account, it's up to you, so the Providers sure as hell cannot. If you don't want them having access, especially the full access that giving them your login & password gives, then write out your search details or use Word, Wordpad or whatever to record your info and bring it on a memory stick, email it, or stick it on something like Google Drive or Dropbox.

 

I don't know if providers systems allow access to google drive, but it's been a pain at my jobcentre, because the version of Firefox all their systems have is blocked from accessing google drive as its "out of date" It is a bit worrying that JCP Systems are all using out of date browsers, since an out of date browser is more at risk of being attacked, falling victim to viruses/malware etc.

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I can't see that the Providers can demand full access to your Universal Jobsmatch Account!! And I certainly would not allow it.

 

I record all my jobsearching info on UJM, because it's easier, plus I have problems with hand writing. When I go to sign on, my Jobcentreplus Advisor enters a numeric code, which gives her very limited access to my Work Activity section, where I record all information - there is an option within UJM which you tick to either allow or disallow JCP Access. The Jobcentre itself cannot demand access to your UJM Account, it's up to you, so the Providers sure as hell cannot. If you don't want them having access, especially the full access that giving them your login & password gives, then write out your search details or use Word, Wordpad or whatever to record your info and bring it on a memory stick, email it, or stick it on something like Google Drive or Dropbox.

 

I don't know if providers systems allow access to google drive, but it's been a pain at my jobcentre, because the version of Firefox all their systems have is blocked from accessing google drive as its "out of date" It is a bit worrying that JCP Systems are all using out of date browsers, since an out of date browser is more at risk of being attacked, falling victim to viruses/malware etc.

 

I have brought her lists of jobs I've applied for, verbally told her what jobs I've applied for and went through every website I use/have used to job search, yet she still demanded my UJM login info. I only gave her the login number, not the password. I typed the password in myself, much to her dismay. She seemed unimpressed that there was no real way to tell what jobs I'd applied for from my activity history on the site (you really just have to take my word for it, unless I applied via CV from the UJM website) and kept asking me questions as if she was trying to trip me up. Really bizarre behaviour for someone who is supposed to be helping me.

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I was back at Ingeus today for a mock interview with a male adviser and then had an appointment with my own adviser. It was all fine but then she said I have to come in once a week, for four weeks, and sit at their incredibly slow computers and job search for two hours. I can job search at home, so, to have to travel 30 - 45 mins (depending on mode of transport) to get there is a huge waste of my time and their money. It says on the letter that these are mandatory appointments, but why? I don't see why I have to travel two towns over just to do something I can do from the comfort of my own livingroom.

 

And, again, I need to go and get B12 injections (Mon, Wed, Fri) for the next two weeks and I told her this and she said "I'm sure they can work around you" :evil: It's taken me 16 days to get an appointment with a doctor and she thinks I can magically free up 6 appointments for myself that don't interfere with my unnecessary job search appointment. Seriously...

 

*Forgot to add that she made my job search appointments for Monday's, even though...*

Edited by Kxo
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I have tried and better tried to understand why they do the things they do. If it isn't what my research tells me, which I must not repeat, I don't know.

 

As someone on medication, it isn't as if employers are going to be falling over themselves to take you on anytime soon.

 

I thought they couldn't interfere with medical treatment or make you forego medical appointments, or that too might be my imagination.

PS: Have you tried discussing those issues/concerns with your JCP adviser?

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I have tried and better tried to understand why they do the things they do. If it isn't what my research tells me, which I must not repeat, I don't know.

 

As someone on medication, it isn't as if employers are going to be falling over themselves to take you on anytime soon.

 

I thought they couldn't interfere with medical treatment or make you forego medical appointments, or that too might be my imagination.

PS: Have you tried discussing those issues/concerns with your JCP adviser?

 

I haven't, but I will! I hope they see it my way because my adviser is passive aggressive as **** and acts like she's doing me a favor by letting me change an appointment time so that I can go to a Doctor etc. It's ridiculous.

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This may sound stupid, but does anyone know if you can actually claim ESA (temporarily) for B12 deficiency? I wouldn't usually bother, but with Ingeus trying to set me up with 5/6 appointments a month, I honestly don't feel like I can do it and if I simply don't go, my benefits will be affected because they were mandatory appointments. I'd rather be on ESA for 6-8 weeks while my health gets sorted and continue to job search without Ingeus breathing down my neck.

 

To explain further: before Christmas, I received 6 hydroxocobalamin injections and they didn't seem to help. My blood test results confirmed that, after only a month, my levels have dropped again. The Doctor said they're at 90 and that the normal range is 500 or above. My folate levels are also just above half the normal range, too. I sleep for 11/12 hours a night and still manage to fall asleep for the odd 30 mins throughout the day, I get dizzy quite easily, low mood, little-to-no energy, I forget the simplest things, my hands/feet are always freezing, I get palpitations and probably more things I forgot to list. Because of this, I've been booked to have 3 injections a week for 2 weeks, then, 1 a week for 4 weeks and we'll see from there. Yet, Ingeus expects me to work all of this around them? :???:

Edited by Kxo
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