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Contributory ESA ends - what now?


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Having been 'migrated' from Incapacity Benefit to ESA I found myself in the Support Group,but my wife was placed in the WRAG group.

 

My wife's Contributory ESA has now expired after 12 months,and we were led to believe she'd qualify for Income Based ESA and got the form filled in and sent off,but now there seems to be a problem.

 

Having spoken to the DWP it seems that I carry on receiving my Support Group £110.85 p.w. but my wife's Income Based ESA is now only worth £1.70 p.w. to a total of £112.55 (which doesn't seem like much for 2 people to live on?)

 

The DWP advisor said that we should have been told that if I'd have claimed Income Based ESA instead of my wife that it would have been worth an extra £15 a week due to my Support Group status - some sort of 'support component'.

 

Why would it matter which of us claims Income Based ESA?

 

Shouldn't the DWP have told us who should claim what when we requested the form a month ago?

 

None of this seems to make any sense to me,the DWP have been suspiciously vague about it all - is there some way to check what we're entitled to that doesn't involve asking the DWP?

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It seems that our being on ESA (me in the ESA 'Support Group') makes no difference to our income at all then,that we just get the basic £112.55 a week between us,the same as we'd have got on Jobseekers if we'd been found to be fit for work?

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:star cannibal:

 

Either of you can claim an income related top up of employment n support for you and your wife, but for two reasons it might be better for you to be the main claimant.

 

Even though your wife's no longer in receipt of payments cos of time limiting she'll retain her entitlement to a contribution flavoured award of employment n support. Means that should her condition deteriorate she may become entitled to payments of employment n support with the support component.

 

In a very complex area of benefit administration Jobcentreplus may be less :???:.

 

It's impossible to calculate benefit entitlement accurately over an internet forum cos there's too many variables. But assuming no other income or savings above £6,000, as a minimum you and your wife should receive;

 

Personal allowance for a couple is £112.55 per week plus

 

One support component of £34.80 per week (even if both partners are entitled to an income related component Jobcentreplus only pay the higher one) plus

 

An enhanced disability premium at the couple rate of £21.75 per week (cos one of you is entitled to a support component)

 

You can check the rates for employment n support, and any other benefits you may be entitled to at;

 

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/benefit-and-pension-rates-april-2013-leaflet

 

And there's a downloadable and printable copy of the ESA3 form at #7 of;

 

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?387812-ESA-365-limit

 

Do you know whether Jobcentreplus have already processed your wife's claim? If not, and at risk of further confusion, she may wish to consider withdrawing it so you can be the main claimant.

 

Best wishes, Margaret.

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