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Support Group but letter asking to attend Office Interview.


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Hi all,

 

I was hoping that you good people could offer any advise. My son was placed in the ESA support group. The claim was made November 2013 and he was finally placed in the support group in September 2014. We received a letter today titled Notification of Office Interview. I thought with him being placed in the support group that they could not harrass him.

 

I can't upload he letter so I will typr it out below:

 

An office interview has been arranged

 

We would like you to attend an interview at: xxxxxx with xxxx.

 

What to do if you cannot keep this appointment:

 

If you cannot keep this appointment, or wish to report any changes in your circumstances, please contact me on xxxx.

 

Why it is essential that you attend this interview

 

This interview has been arranged because your circumstances may have changed and we need to ensure your payments are correct.

 

Following this interview, we can arrange for you to see a Work Coach at the Jobcentre. They will be able to support you in considering your options for returning to or starting work. They can help with;

 

Training to get the right job

Work taster or work experience

Discuss permitted work and how that can help you

The best way to search and look for work

 

What you need to bring to the interview

 

Passport

Driving license

Photo ID

 

AND

 

Last 3 months bank statements.

 

When you arrive at xxxx Jobcentre you will need to take a seat etc etc....

 

Do I have to take my son to this interview? My son is autistic and he can not cope with these kind of situations. Any help will be greatly appreciated.

 

Many thanks

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I assume this is for the local JSA? If so they may have got things wrong or their system has. I also assume the letter makes no reference to your son being on ESA Support Group? If so, what I would do is either phone and ask if this letter was correctly sent or copy the letter and state on it that your son is in the ESA SG and query the validity of the request as you have done here on this site. Let them clarify the situation and not try to second guess them.

 

 

I was put on the Work Programme but I complained because I had clearly stated on my ESA 50 form that I couldn't attend things like this because of my depression. The form is a legal document and as I had signed it I protested why they had put me in the ESA WRG. I was put in the Support Group and taken off the Work Programme. However even though the people who ran the WP were told about the change many many times they kept on sending me interview requests and other mail. Recently I got a letter requesting me to an end of WP (it last 2 years) interview at the JSA. Even though top management of the DWP had dealt with this even the government system had me down as still on the WP right to the very end. If it looks wrong, assume they are wrong, give your reasons and make them clarify the situation.

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:newhereplease help:

 

This is a routine compliance interview. Nothing to do with the component of employment n support that your son receives, or shouldn't be! But Jobcentreplus have included an added extra; support into work. Isn't that kind of them? Not! :mmph:

 

Reasons for compliance interviews include;

 

Random checks selected by a computer,

A check to sort a minor irregularity with a claim, often an undisclosed change of circumstances,

A check cos Jobcentreplus/Local Authority need more details about a claim.

 

The initial compliance interview is mandatory. Your son's benefit can be suspended and eventually terminated if he fails to show, unless you're his Work n Pensions Appointee and can go in his place. But it doesn't have to be at the time and Jobcentre stated. If the request can be justified by your son's autism, you can ask for an earlier or later appointment, a private room, or a home visit. You've a good argument for a home visit if his Atos assessment didn't involve a face to face interview.

 

Part two is one of several Jobcentreplus initiatives to 'help' recipients of employment n support with the support component into work. At best the letters confuse claimants as to whether appointments are mandatory. One version I've seen threatens illegal sanctions! No matter. Once the compliance bit's done, smile sweetly, and say 'thanx but no thanx' to the interviewer. If there's a dispute refer him/her to;

 

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/number_of_claimants_in_esa_suppo#incoming-566688

 

Best wishes to both of you, Margaret. :panda:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Hi all,

 

Thank-you all for your help, it is much appreciated.

 

I have to deal with everything from the DWP for my son because he does not truly understand his disability and could not cope dealing with these issues himself (I guess that is what the DWP are hoping for). One question - Margaret you mentioned if I was my son's Work n Pension Appointee then I could go to this interview in his place. I have called the DWP many times in relation to his benefits and have never had any trouble with them dealing with me. Can I declare myself his appointee or do I have to apply to become his appointee?

 

Reading the reasons why they summon people to a compliance interview I would either assume it's a random check or maybe a check on the hours he does on a course he is enrolled in at the moment. The course he is enrolled with is at a local college that he has attended for 4 years. He was on a course for 3 of those years run for special needs adults in supported learning and through that he has developed a love for numbers. It has taken time and a lot of support but he achieved passes in his level 1 and 2 entry level functional Maths and his tutor called a meeting with us and suggested that he could potentially achieve a good pass grade for GCSE Maths. That is the course he is on this year, they have been fantastic and he has a support worker and other support and so far so good. I was just wondering if they may be querying his hours at college doing this course. I'm sure that I have not read anywhere that 3 hours at college a week can be a problem for ESA. Can anyone advise on this please?

 

Oh and I will be asking for a home visit or if possible if I can go to the interview in his place. He was not seen for a face to face with ATOS. It took them 10 months to sort out his claim and we received a letter saying he was placed in support group, no date as to when he will be reassessed (another trick to keep people on tenderhooks all the time).

 

Many thanks

X

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Thank-you very much Antone and Nystagmite, it's much appreciated.

 

My son is luckier than most, he has his family and will never go hungry or homeless whilst we are here to care for him. I worry about the future though when we are no longer here. I'm ashamed of my country, truly disgusted that this government has done to the most vulnerable in our society.

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My wife had a similar letter,signed by WORK COACH ,she is in the support group.I do believe that they are not entitled to see bank statements if they are on contribution based ESA.Its probably just to put pressure on to get one to come off ESA.Sounds like a different take on asking support group people to go in to see work coach which they donot have to do.Support group cannot be mandated to attend to see work group.In my wifes case they cancelled the meeting.However you have to go in to see compliance officer.

Living in the wild windy west of Ireland

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My wife had a similar letter,signed by WORK COACH ,she is in the support group.I do believe that they are not entitled to see bank statements if they are on contribution based ESA.Its probably just to put pressure on to get one to come off ESA.Sounds like a different take on asking support group people to go in to see work coach which they donot have to do.Support group cannot be mandated to attend to see work group.In my wifes case they cancelled the meeting.However you have to go in to see compliance officer.

Hi all,

 

Thank you for all your replies. We went to the meeting and it was a benefit review. She asked very basic questions (checked address, who lived in the house, single or not, asked about savings, bonds, investments and property etc). Quick check on payments in/out of bank account (I believe they were probably checking if my son has the average lifestyle of a 21 year old; debits for trains, debits for restaurants/pubs, shopping, phone contract etc...my son does not have the lifestyle of an average 21 year old). She mentioned the work interview and I just said it would not be appropriate at this time. She was OK with this and confirmed his participation would be voluntary.

 

Have a great Xmas to all x

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