DWP /Atos. Migration from Incapacity Benefit to ESA

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DWP /Atos. Migration from Incapacity Benefit to ESA

Postby andyWherts » Tue Nov 10, 2015 12:33 pm

I feel that it is important to tell everyone who has to deal with DWP with regard to Employment and Support Allowance, to never give up the fight.
My wife had a Car Accident 14 years ago, and developed Fibromyalgia as a result of the trauma. She was awarded Incapacity benefit as she lost her job as a Catering Manager.
The battle then began when the transfer from IB to ESA happened.
Following the Atos Medical Assessment, zero points were awarded in May 2013.
I began the appeal process and requested a copy of the Medical Report.
I could not believe the content of the report. Inaccurate reporting of facts, incorrect reporting of information.
As my wife had reported on the ESA 50 questionnaire that fibromyalgia was the main problem with meeting the activity descriptors, at no point during the medical assessment was there a check to assess the severity of the fibromyalgia. ie trigger points.

The First Tier tribunal took place in January 2014.
I was my wife's representative and submitted 18 pages of written evidence, including statements from her GP (who diagnosed the Fibromyalgia) and a Consultant in Pain Medicine who confirmed the diagnosis. Relevant extracts from the Work Capability Handbook were also included.
The Tribunal awarded 6 points.
The judge did not allow me to speak during the hearing, so I could not present my Wife's case.
The questioning by the judge to my wife was very aggressive.

I requested permission to appeal to the Upper Tribunal, claiming the Human Rights Act article 6. " The right to a fair trial" which was refused.

I lodged an Appeal myself and was granted permission to Appeal. I submitted all my previous documents, with some other findings in the First Tribunal record of proceedings.

The previous award of 6 points was set aside and a new tribunal was held on 5th Nov 2015.

A new Judge and Doctor were present, who allowed me to present my wife's case, and listened to my wife when explaining the effect Fibromyalgia has on her life.

The Tribunal awarded 24 points and the Support group with no review for at least twelve months and set aside the decision
made in May 2013.

I hope the above story gives people with Fibromyalgia the encouragement to fight on and get justice.
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Re: DWP /Atos. Migration from Incapacity Benefit to ESA

Postby macca » Tue Nov 10, 2015 1:28 pm

Very well done for fighting all the way bud. Whilst not having to appeal to the uppert tribunal for my wife, we did nonetheless have a 15 month battle with DWP , through an appeal tribunal before eventually taking her from 0 points to Support Group for ESA.

Massively stressful so I take my hat off to you fella, now let's hope your wife can relaxe somewhat.

Mac
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Re: DWP /Atos. Migration from Incapacity Benefit to ESA

Postby phoenix67 » Thu Nov 26, 2015 12:23 pm

Congratulations on not giving up the fight. I'm yet to transfer over and I'm dreading it as I don't really have anyone to speak up for me and my head is so muddled and confused all the time now they will probably think they are dealing with a mental patient instead. :).

Have a rest now and hopefully next time it will be much easier for you to be renewed.

P.
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Re: DWP /Atos. Migration from Incapacity Benefit to ESA

Postby RobStenosis001 » Wed Jun 01, 2016 8:39 pm

I dread approaching DWP for any help after reading this but I have no choice. I have lived off savings /proceeds from sale of properties, etc, for the past 6 years and now more recently my wife's income as she has slowly managed to get back to working full time to support us. Nevertheless we are now on the financial bottom and still sinking slowly, so I must try anything. I tried a temp job in Nov Dec last year, lucky for me it was some reasonable paying professional work and just two/ three days a week but in the end I was pushing myself so hard to do this (and drinking loads of coffee and lucozade to keep me going, my work rate was also slow, I had to double up on the Zapain which made me severely constipated) that I eventually ended up in A&E and then spent a week in hospital with what I was told was some kind of flu bug/ infection. They actually never did find the exact cause, but I recovered quite well after a week of IV fluids and antibiotics. I now know I can't work. :( I tried hard on several occasions over the past 3 years but just can't keep at it. I can however sometimes work for several hours (and everything from the outside would appear normal) but other times just 15 minutes. I do freelance work but it only brings in a pittance by comparison to what I need to support the household. I am 4 x slower on tasks which undermines my time spent doing the work. What do I do? Where do I start with these guys?
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Re: DWP /Atos. Migration from Incapacity Benefit to ESA

Postby *Lisa* » Thu Jun 02, 2016 10:28 am

The best place to start is to speak with a benefits advisor at your local jobcentre or you can find a phone number on the DWP website.

You could claim for PIP (this is for care & mobility needs and you can claim whilst working)

Another is ESA. You have to fit a criteria but this will be explained to you

Then there is working tax credits / housing benefit (all depends on yearly household income)

With the benefits advisor you can explain your circumstances and financial incomings/outgoings and they can work out what you can claim for.
As a Public Moderator & Admin of this forum my opinions/views expressed are personal and are no more valid than those of other members and not necessarily those of UKFibromyalgia...Lisa
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