"Claimants could be left without any income replacement benefit at all when challenging a decision that they are fit for work, the government has confirmed. Once the new system of mandatory reconsiderations before appeals is introduced, employment and support allowance (ESA)claimants will lose their right to be paid the assessment rate when they first challenge a decision.
Instead, they will have to try to sign on as available for work and claim Jobseekers Allowance (JSA) or manage without either benefit until the reconsideration has been carried out. Only once an appeal has been lodged will they be able to reclaim ESA"
So for those not already familiar with the assessments, if you are declared fit for work (as often happens wrongly) then you will have to go for a second mandatory assessment, and until you've had the second assessment your income will be cut off entirely.
That's disabled people with no income at all.
The most vulnerable in society unable to pay for basics.
It seems they want to move people on to jobseekers allowance. Now I'm sure some people will say, "well in that case they will still have an income, what are they complaining about?"
Think about this, "In addition, some people attempting to claim JSA may find Jobcentre Plus staff attempting to refuse to accept their claim on the grounds that, because of their health condition, they are not available for and actively seeking work."
And of course if you are on JSA and not looking then you get sanctioned. And if you are looking (even if only to stop the sanctions knowing that you couldn't work) then they would likely use that against you in an appeal against being found fit for work.
It feels a lot like they are trying to con vulnerable people.
Well i can tell you dd1 appeal took 9 months! My dear mum who had suffered a massive stroke and is partially sighted, forget full, has daily fits, has already set fire to kitchin, and unable to walk unaided and can't go out in busy areas had to wait over a year for her appeal!
It's awful and so many families I talk too are so stressed and worried about this change. There has been two stories of people killing themselves after being declared for for work and plenty more have died shortly after assessments have said they can go back to work.
It's just so very awful, to those in need. What amazes me more is that less than 0.5% of DLA is fraud!
And this is just the benefits specific to disability - the other stuff like Bedroom Tax (no spare room for occasional overnight care, partner to sleep undisturbed or storage for equipment); Universal Credit (lose premiums for severe disability for adults and children, paid to main earner so puts disabled partner in weaker financial position); Council Tax benefit cut and means testing results in no benefits if partner earns more than £8k (?)