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strugglin

Good Friday 2019: ESA due but not paid into bank account

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Hi,

 

Not sure if this is exactly the right place for this, but I'm hoping someone can offer me some reassurance or advice.

 

My fortnightly payment of ESA (which usually goes into my account like clockwork every other Thursday overnight into Friday, even during holidays) has not shown up in my account this morning (Good Friday). I obviously can't ring the DWP to ask why as it's now the Easter holiday, so now I have an anxiety-filled long weekend ahead of me. 

 

I realise it *might* just be a late payment, or even my bank experiencing some kind of delay showing transactions, but here is where it gets complicated:

 

I was in receipt of DLA where the award was up for review and so as DLA is being phased out I was 'invited' to claim PIP. I did so and the claim was unexpectedly handed on to ATOS (in the guise of IAS).

 

I am housebound, and all my previous DLA claims were assessed on paper by DWP due to the severity of my disabilities being recognised by the DWP Decision Maker. My GP therefore had requested a paper assessment as a matter of course, but for unexplained reasons ATOS would not allow me one and were trying to bully me into taking a very long journey at very short notice to an assessment centre.

 

After receiving their summons to attend I asked for a home assessment as a compromise but this was flatly refused with no real reason given.

 

I received my second and final 'opportunity' to attend but I just could not do this under any circumstances, and so I decided to withdraw this current PIP claim until I can get more evidence and support to back me up for a home assessment, and then make a fresh PIP claim.

 

I informed the DWP of this and as expected my DLA award was duly stopped with the last backdated payment due on 1/5/2019,  and everything seemed to have been sorted (if unsatisfactorily from my point of view). In the meantime, my local MP became involved and wrote to DWP and ATOS in an attempt to intervene on my behalf in time for my new claim (which I hope to get up and running by the end of May).

 

I was not made aware at any time that declining to apply for PIP after being on DLA for over a decade would have any effect on my current ESA claim (indeed the annual benefit rate letter I receive for ESA states that DLA is disregarded when assessing ESA rates), but it does seem like a very strange coincidence that I don't receive the very next ESA payment after closing the DLA claim (I *did* receive my next-to-last DLA payment as normal last week, however).

 

Am I just worrying unnecessarily and connecting dots that don't exist?

Has involving my MP put the DWP's collective back up?

 

I'm obviously not going to starve before next Tuesday, but without going into too much detail extreme anxiety with panic attacks is only one of the many conditions I suffer with and I do find this very worrying and stressful which only makes my health suffer.

 

Thanks for any replies.

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Posted (edited)

Thanks for that Andy. So I should actually have been paid *yesterday* (Thursday), according to that. Great.☹️

 

Still doesn't rule out a potential DWP late payment I suppose but perhaps I'll have to hope it's a problem with my bank.

Edited by strugglin
clarification

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I wonder  if the DWP central records system has detected a benefits change due to DLA/PIP issue and has flagged this up on the ESA claim.  Therefore the payment has been blocked until someone from ESA has been able to look into whether a change of circumstances could affect the ESA claim.

 

If the payment had been processed by ESA, it would have gone into your Bank account yesterday.  

 

You will need to call ESA on Tuesday and try to resolve. If it is purely an admin issue, ESA can generate a same day payment to your Bank.


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Hm, this is what I'm worried about unfortunately. The last thing I need at the moment is ESA giving me extra hassle as that is now my only source of income. I suppose the best I can do, if the payment has actually been blocked, is to explain that I withdrew the PIP claim because ATOS were unwilling to accommodate my disability because I was unable (rather than unwilling) to attend, and that I intend to make a new claim as soon as possible.

 

Thanks.

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Keep going

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What can happen, is that closure of another benefit claim, can trigger a flag to be applied. When I say, payment is blocked, I don't mean that ESA are now not going to pay you, unless you go through many hurdles, because you did not attend a DLA/PIP assessment.

 

The flag being applied could just be to ask whether any change to your circumstances has happened. For example, if you had moved address, living with a new partner etc. Any change that directly affects an ESA claim. 

 

I am sure a call to ESA on Tuesday will be able to resolve this.


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OK, thanks uncleb, that's reassuring. I have in fact only just now (this morning) received a letter dated 11/4/19 acknowledging that I withdrew the PIP claim and DLA ended (ten days after this happened), that informs me that I must inform ESA that I have done so (this is after *not* being told I should do this when I closed the claim over the phone 🙄), so that's hopefully all that this is and an explanation will sort it out.

 

Thanks again all, I'll pop back in on Tuesday (or Wednesday, if they keep me on hold until then) and let you know what happens.

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If your ESA claim includes the Severe Disabilty Premium, you will lose that part of your ESA claim, as you qualified for SDP because of the DLA claim.


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Posted (edited)

No I'm fine there, I wasn't getting that (EDIT: Hm, perhaps I ought to have been, we all know how they dislike telling us these things) , but good to know.

Edited by strugglin
extra blah

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that informs me that I must inform ESA that I have done so

 

There was an Upper Tribunal decision on an overpayment of SDP paid with an ESA award  due to either DLA or PIP ending (can't remember which?) recently that held that the claimant was liable because they failed to inform ESA that the qualifying benefit had ended. Basically they should have known the SDP payment was wrong and taken steps to actively stop it

 

Bit of a big change that one as previously it would more than likely to be written off as an Official Error by the DWP as ESA should automatically receive a stop notice when the qualifying benefit ended. Really depends on how long it went on for though..... I noticed a few years ago that I was still getting SDP for a few months when my DLA award was lowered. Called them and they said not to worry official error  

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A quick butchers at my entitlement letter doesn't mention SDP, just the Support Group bonus, so hopefully I'm in the clear there.

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They've probably just updated the letters sent out to reflect that decision rather than anything sinister - amazing how quick  the DWP can move when it's in their favour (sic). If it stops people unwillingly/unknowingly accruing an overpayment then I say it's good thing!

 

On the PIP claims don't delay on the new claim waiting to gather evidence for a home visit as you'll just face the same problem. Seriously don't!

 

You really shouldn't have withdrawn you 1st PIP claim and fought the home assessment as recent rulings on PIP conversions and FTA (failed to attend) a PIP Face to Face decisions won at 1st tier tribunal (which I think you stand a decent chance at) now put DLA back into payment until the PIP assessment happens when ever after the fact that might be.

 

Don't beat yourself up over it and if you can CAB or Local Council or other advice services would be

well worth contacting to see if they can rescue this... put you in a better position.  Just get that new PIP application in!

 

On home visits......

 

There's a magic list of conditions in the ATOS internal guide - which automatically get offered;

 

1, a home visit

2, after a fight tentatively offer a taxi  

3, refuse 1 & 2

 

You "just" need a letter from your GP or other recognised medical professional explaining why you need/asking for a home visit. That's it! You send it to ATOS or whoever and then wait. 

 

Expect a fight as anxiety sits in category 2 and they do not like paying for taxis. Neither is a home visit out of the question if you hold your ground.

 

I sent a GP letter in with my ESA 50 form requesting a home visit when I 1st applied for ESA in 2010. 

 

I was not offered a taxi and when 2 phone calls later was told to send a GP letter... they got a bit flummoxed when informed that my GP letter requesting a home visit was sent with my ESA50. Several phone calls and cancelled F2F appointments later a taxi appeared!!!!!

 

Could have held out but you get to the point you just want it over! Nower days 40 mins walk to my F2F or 20 mins + 2 tube stops and a diazepam is a lot less stressful than arguing with them!

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Very interesting Speedfreek, thanks.

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UPDATE:

 

Well, after being kept on hold for 90 minutes, I've discovered that this was apparently a purely coincidental 'system glitch', and the ESA will be paid in today.

 

I mean, honestly.🙄  I have been assured that withdrawing the PIP claim will have no repercussions on my ESA claim now or in the future, so I suppose that's something.

 

Thanks all for your advice, responses and good wishes, and for keeping me from jumping off a cliff over the weekend.🙂

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