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TOPIC: ESA letter query

ESA letter query 1 year 11 months ago #143689

Good evening!

I have been a member for a few months, and found this site invaluable in my successful claim for PIP.

My query this time concerns ESA. I sent my esa50 form back, and now just a week later I have today (Saturday) received a letter about a work focused interview - on Monday! :blink:

I thought that a WFI wasn't applicable unless assessed and placed in WRAG. However, my research on this site indicates that a claimant may have to attend a WFI during the assessment period.

My queries:-

1) if you have to attend a WFI during the assessment period, is it usually 8 weeks into your claim ? I am at week 3.

2) if the WFI is mandatory, would the letter have to have a paragraph titled "do I need to come to the interview" with the caution of loss of benefit if failing to comply. There is no paragraph in my letter.

many thanks for any guideance!

Ty

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ESA letter query 1 year 11 months ago #143704

If you turn up on Monday they may use that against you.

You could ring on Monday, explain it arrived on Saturday and you cannot arrange transport, carer etc at such short notice. You can then rearrange it. They should not sanction you for doing this.
It is up to you to decide how inconvenient, difficult or whatever it might be to attend on Monday.
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Nothing on this board constitutes legal advice - always consult a professional about specific problems

ESA letter query 1 year 11 months ago #143718

thank you for the reply foss27

I shall ring up first thing tomorrow and ask if its mandatory or voluntary.

Thank you for the advice, I have no intention of going for the interview :-) I have made use of my subscription, and will argue just cause for rescheduling - taking into account the reasonable adaptations I put on the ESA50.

ty

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ESA letter query 1 year 11 months ago #143733

Hi ty

It's probably too late now, but they first called me in for an interview when I was having chemo for breast cancer. I was furious & told them no way was I going in. The woman backed down & said that they'd call me again in 6 months, but she never.

Second time I'd just had an operation for bladder cancer & again I wasn't in any fit state, & told the woman this. Again she backed down, apologised & said that she wasn't trying to push me into work, but she was there to help me if I needed it. Then she went off on one & asked me if I was aware that I was on benefits .... She said she'd interview me over the phone this time & would contact me in 6 months, she never.

On both occasions I don't think that either of these people knew what was wrong with me. They'll probably come for me again, but so far I've not been for an interview or had any money stopped. They'll probably get me now. I reported it both times to Macmillan. So you could try asking for an over the phone interview. All the best to you.
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ESA letter query 1 year 11 months ago #143738

Hi Bud, thank you taking the time to read and reply.

First of all, the people on this site -those who run it and those who use it are finding it tough enough fighting/coping with illness or conditions that have happened to us. We need support, not hassle!

Your example of having to deal with cancer not just the once and then having some advisor throw the "your on benefits" line. its just so totally unnecessary and plain wrong! I do appreciate that advisors deal with a lot of people....but they tar the genuine for the faults of the few.

Secondly, I have to now balance what I have just said above. I rang up the main number on the letter. The young girl was very helpful, very polite and said she would contact my local jobcentre and get someone to call me. Didn't have any hassle over whether it was mandatory or not, she made it clear it was voluntary.

I got the return call, at the time they said they would. I spoke to my advisor for the first time. Couldn't have been more helpful. He cancelled the interview, asked for a few brief details of my difficulties, gave me a direct dial number and told me he was going to do telephone interviews on a three monthly basis - I didn't have to ask. He said he would leave it for me to contact him if I felt ready in the next few weeks - if not "talk to you after Christmas".

We shall wait and see how things work out. I feel he was genuine and I'm taking a positive view on things unless proved otherwise!

I hope that you don't get hassled, and you have a more positive experience next time. Take care x

Ty
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ESA letter query 1 year 11 months ago #143753

Ty

In fairness to the JC+ staff, I know, it it's not easy, but they do not have access to the claimants medical information on the DWP computer system, all they know is that they have made a claim for a sickness benefit, so they are reliant on the claimant explaining how they are effected.

Gordon
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Nothing on this board constitutes legal advice - always consult a professional about specific problems
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