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Incapacity benefit medicals - be prepared

Please note:  it is no longer possible to make a new claim or a linked claim for incapacity benefit or income support.  A claim must be made for employment and support allowance (ESA) instead. 

Being properly prepared for an incapacity benefit medical, including being aware of the potential pitfalls, can make a huge difference to the success of your claim. Benefits and Work can take you through the entire process, from the moment you leave your home to travel to the medical to the moment you leave the Medical Examination Centre after your medical assessment.

Incapacity benefit medicals are carried out for profit by a multinational company, Atos Healthcare, on behalf of the DWP. It is this company's staff who will read your completed questionnaire and, if they choose, call you in for an incapacity benefit medical.

The actual examination consist mostly of the doctor or nurse asking questions they are prompted to ask by special computer software called LIMA (Logic Integrated Medical Assessment). There may also be a brief physical examination, depending on your condition.Feedback: . . . the doctor virtually asked me word for word most of the questions on your list!

Our guides ensure that you are as well prepared as possible for your incapacity benefit medical.

We tell you:

  • the enormous difference the way you travel to the medical can make to the outcome;
  • what happens at the medical
  • 60 questions you're likely to be asked at your incapacity benefit medical.

We even show you screenshots of the LIMA computer programme used by the examining doctor or nurse.

You can also download a copy of the handbook used by doctors and nurses carrying out the medical.

Find out more about how to improve your incapacity benefit medical result by becoming a Benefits and Work member.

Members of Benefits and Work can download all our incapacity benefit medical resources.