Claiming Universal Credit If You Have A Disability Or Health Condition.

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Welfare Benefits Adviser Lorraine Moss, today writes in the Havering Daily:

Universal Credit has replaced several of the legacy benefits including Income Related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA).  Please note that people can still claim New style ESA which is based on their national Insurance contributions as opposed to their income.  ESA was split into 2 different components;

The Work-Related Activity Group – This is for claimants who are not able to work but are expected to participate in work related activities.  This could mean having to attend the job centre for training etc.  Under Universal Credit this has been replaced by The Limited Capability For Work Element. There is no extra money for this element but it does mean thar claimants are not expected to actively look for work. 

The Support Group – This is for Claimants’ that have been found to have a limited capability for work related activity and they would not be expected to participate in any work-related activities.  Claimants’ receive an extra £39.20 per week plus the Enhanced Disability Premium of £17.10 when they are in The Support Group.  Under Universal Credit this has been replaced by The Limited Capability For Work and Work Related Activity Element.  Claimants’ who receive this element are paid £341.92 per calendar month.

Please note that you currently cannot apply for Universal Credit if you receive or are eligible for The Severe Disability Premium.  You qualify for this if you live on your own and are in receipt of Personal Independence Payment Standard Daily Living or Enhanced Daily Living or Disability living Allowance Mid Rate Care or above and nobody claims Carers Allowance or The Carers premium of Universal Credit for looking after you

I find that there are a large number of people who are currently claiming Universal Credit and some of these are in receipt of Personal Independence Payment or Disability Living Allowance and they are not aware of these elements in Universal Credit. Please see https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/universal-credit-if-you-have-a-disability-or-health-condition-quick-guide/universal-credit-if-you-have-a-disability-or-health-condition

How to Apply For The Limited Capability For Work/ Work Related Activity Element

You can order a Limited Capability For Work Questionnaire by calling The Universal Credit Helpline on 0800 328 5644 or alternatively you can use your online journal.  You usually will be asked to have a medical assessment.  These are currently taking place over the telephone due to the Covid 19 crisis.  To see how you are assessed please see https://www.entitledto.co.uk/help/ESA_criteria.   If your application is refused, you have the right to ask for the decision to be looked at again, this is known as a Mandatory Reconsideration.  This must be done within a month of you receiving the decision.  If the Mandatory Reconsideration is refused, you can then appeal.  Please see https://www.turn2us.org.uk/Benefit-guides/Universal-Credit/How-do-I-challenge-a-Universal-Credit-decision this link has lots of useful information on how to appeal a decision.

Havering Peabody who you can contact on 01708 776 770 will be able to help you with this process, you can also get help from your local Citizen’s Advice Bureau. 

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