Sign Up For Our Free ESA, PIP and DLA Updates

Email
Name
 
With 140,000 subscribers our fortnightly bulletin is the UK's leading source of benefits news. Get the facts about what's changing, how it affects you and how to prepare.  Get your free subscription now.

Professional Members

We support both claimants and professionals.  These are just some of the organisations who have subscribed to Benefits and Work:

  • Royal College of Nursing
  • Spinal Injuries Association
  • Chesterfield Law Centre
  • Stephenson’s Solicitors
  • Birmingham Citizens Advice Bureau
  • Manchester City Council Sensory Provision Team

Read more

What is ESA?

What is ESA?

ESA stands for employment and support allowance, the benefit which has replaced incapacity benefit.  ESA is a much harder benefit to claim than incapacity benefit, primarily because the medical test – the work capability assessment - is very much harsher.

What is ESA: assessment phase?

The assessment phase of ESA is supposed to last for 13 weeks, but for many claimants it lasts a lot longer. In the assessment  phase you are likely to be sent an ESA50 limited capability for work questionnaire and may have to attend a medical.  At the end of the assessment phase a decision will be made about whether you are eligible for ESA and, if so, which group you will be put in.

What is ESA:  main phase?

Once you have completed the assessment phase, provided you were not found capable of work, you will enter the main phase of ESA.  In the main phase you will either be in the work-related activity group or the support group.  You will receive more money but will be subject to regular reassessment  to see if you still qualify.

What is ESA: support group?

The ESA support group is for people who are judged to be unable to work or even to attend interviews intended to help sick and disabled people move into work.  Claimants in the support group get slightly more money than ESA claimants in the work-related activity group.

What is ESA:  work-related activity group?

The ESA work-related activity group is for claimants who are considered not well enough to work at the moment but who the DWP believes could move into work if given enough support.  Claimants in the work-related activity group have to attend a series of work-focused interviews.