Help with Appeal

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Help with Appeal

Postby Debbie B » Mon Mar 19, 2012 11:26 am

Sorry not been on here lately. Had ill partner to help last week and now have DWP letter and ATOS report findings.

Had the call last Monday to say my money would be stopping. Yet it has taken a week for the letter to get here? Says my money has stopped since last Monday. So what am I meant to live on? I explained on the call that I had been to a specialist in CFS and been diagnosed with that and severe depression. The man on the phone obviously hasnt considered this or even written to the specialist. I seem to have been awarded 0 points as I am not in a wheelchair and the fact I am well groomed and could speak coherently. So I would have passed had I been disabled, attended in my pyjamas and not said a word to them? I am sorry I have my dignity and will not leave the house (rare as it is that i DO go out lately).

They made it sound like i spring out of bed in the mornings and do hours on end of washing clothes, washing up, vacuuming and then off to the supermarket every day.

The truth is my partner does the weekly shopping - I only stated that i go to the BANK and get a few bits from Boots and Sainsbury's - hardly SUPERMARKETS are they? Also the struggling to walk in the mornings, the constant depression and tiredness. My partner had to fill in the ESA50 form FOR me since I couldnt think or write properly.

Do I contact the Specialist to tell them to write to DWP? I just don't know what to do, and I am afraid all this stress has worsened my conditions and feel suicidal again. Then again, if I died, they would not have to pay me a penny then I guess, so its win-win for them. I feel like screaming at them that before I got ill, THROUGH NO FAULT OF MY OWN, I WORKED FOR 22 YEARS. Only thing is every penny I saved up is fast running out and I feel was it worth working at all, consider the acute stress they caused me got me to be ill in the first place?
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Re: Help with Appeal

Postby Ldyalb » Mon Mar 19, 2012 11:54 am

You should appeal the decision. You need to put it in writing to them and they need to receive it within one MONTH of the date of the letter they sent you to say you're not entitled to ESA.

viewtopic.php?f=11&t=12541

There's a good link there to what to do if you fail the ATOS medical. It's well worth a read and should help you.

I'd advise you to get in touch with the CAB or a similar organisation - they can help advise you about organising your appeal. About 50% of appeals result in an award of benefits being made so it's worth doing.

When you appeal you have two options:

a) claim ESA - basically you will be paid the assessment rate of ESA (£67.50 in your case) until the appeal is heard. So basically it's exactly the same as before the medical. The only downside is that during the appeal period they will no longer pay your NI stamps for you. But as you've worked for 22 years previously this isn't a problem - you've already paid your dues.

b) claim JSA. You'll get the same money and they will pay your NI for you. I wouldn't advise this, you may well be refused JSA on the grounds you're not well enough to work (whilst simultaneously being denied ESA for being well enough to work). Also, although it's technically not supposed to, claiming JSA could hinder your chances of winning your ESA appeal. Plus you run the risk of losing your JSA if your Fibro prevents you from signing on and applying for jobs.

Are you getting DLA? If not it may be worth speaking to the CAB about that, my local CAB assessed me as having a claim for DLA and they helped me apply for it.

:goodluck2:
'Think of all the beauty still left around you and be happy' - Anne Frank

TMJ, RLS, HMS, Fibro, Dyspraxia - ASD + Dyscalculia overlap, Eczema + Rosacea + suspected Psoriatic Arthritis.

Being an Adult is nothing like it said in the brochure...!
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Re: Help with Appeal

Postby chrissietosh » Mon Mar 19, 2012 12:57 pm

PLEASE let CAB help you. i'm an ex english teacher, and thought i had no need of help with forms or anything, I'm articulate, I can do it myself. It took me a week to do the forms, and I was exhausted, then got turned down. i handed everything over to CAB, who even came out to help me, because by then I was agoraphobic and prone to panic attacks, and everything went through. when I needed an upgrade, as my condition deteriorated, I turned straight to them - they will get your doctor to fill in forms. etc. They are wonderful!!!!
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Re: Help with Appeal

Postby Debbie B » Mon Mar 19, 2012 4:06 pm

Despite the fact I have caught the flu from my partner, and my wrist is in agony, and my mind is in a total tailspin, I did call DWP and said I wanted to appeal. The cocky sod on the other end said it wouldnt guarantee I would win and this could take 6 months. I am considering the option of going to CAB to let them help me, and thanks for the replies I have received on here today. But its the fact that a week of my money has been taken away, and I can barely cope on what I have, that gets me angry. Why not wait till I received the letter and gave me a chance to request an appeal before I did that, or better still, await the report from my specialist? They also had the date wrong on the report when I went to see the specialist. The things in that letter were things that were not even discussed - pregnancy? They would been concerned for the health of my unborn baby but not MY health? And the fact that I have never wanted kids was never discussed and I am hardly going to start feeling maternal now am I when I find my own life hard enough, let alone a child's. The stuff re my self harming and suicide attempt last August was not even MENTIONED. Or the fact when I did their silly little physical examination, that I almost fell over and lost balance when I had to stand from a squatting position. I could go on, but I am already stressed enough and upset that today, apart from clean my teeth and dress, that I have managed to do NOTHING thanks to the upset this letter and call has caused me.
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Re: Help with Appeal

Postby Ldyalb » Mon Mar 19, 2012 6:48 pm

Are you pregnant? (I'm foggy so may have read your message wrong, if so sorry). If you are pregnant then that can be a grounds on which to claim ESA - if your Dr says working will harm your baby via stress, underlying medical probs etc.

You need to write to the DWP as well, it must be in writing I'm afraid. They often try and talk people out of it on the phone - they're trying to scare you off. Don't let them get away with it.

The suicide attempt and self harm is relevant also - one of the grounds for the ESA support group is when someone has a mental health problem which means being found fit to work could endanger them, or those around them. It sounds like you do have good grounds on which to appeal the decision.

If you're still struggling mentally then please don't keep it to yourself. See your GP about treatment options for Depression and negative thoughts. I had Counselling because I was sliding into Depression due to my various ailments. It did help me a lot so it may be worth exploring. :hugs:
'Think of all the beauty still left around you and be happy' - Anne Frank

TMJ, RLS, HMS, Fibro, Dyspraxia - ASD + Dyscalculia overlap, Eczema + Rosacea + suspected Psoriatic Arthritis.

Being an Adult is nothing like it said in the brochure...!
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Re: Help with Appeal

Postby Debbie B » Mon Mar 19, 2012 7:24 pm

No I am NOT pregnant and have no intention of being!

I will write to DWP once (another) 50 page form appears, but as suggested earlier, I may well go to CAB to let them help and also my partner.
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