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Anyone here who knows the in's and out's of JSA and ESA?

(24 Posts)
CazY777 Wed 23-Aug-17 16:36:07

Is there anyone around who knows the finer details of JSA and ESA? We went to the CAB today to try and get advice but we could only speak to a volunteer who knew the general information.

DH and I are both looking for jobs. We have a 2.5 year old and my DH has a disability which is getting worse so there are jobs that he couldn't do. Can he apply for ESA and I apply for JSA? He was working up until last March so I think he could get contribution based? I last worked in January 2016 as I've been caring for our DD so I'm not sure what I would get? Or do we both just do a couple's claim as we have a child? We have been living on savings for the last 5 months and we had too much to claim, but we don't anymore!
Any help from someone in the know would be appreciated.

Babyroobs Wed 23-Aug-17 20:53:13

No you would do a joint ESA claim with him being the main applicant. It doesn't stop you looking for work, they may ask you to go to work focussed interviews.
To claim contributions based ESA your dh would need to have been working and paying full NI contributions during tax years 2014-15 and 2015-16.
You would also be eligible for child tax credits.
Does your dh get PIp - if so another option would be for you to claim carers allowance if you meet the criteria and then Income support.

Babyroobs Wed 23-Aug-17 20:54:29

Also if he doesn't qualify for Contributions based ESA then you could get Income related ESA instead on a joint claim.
You would also need to know whether you are in a Universal credit area as you may need to claim that instead.

CazY777 Wed 23-Aug-17 21:10:23

Thank you Babyroobs. He was self employed during 2014-2015 and 2015-2016 but his tax and national insurance is all paid up for that period. Does he need to get a medical certificate to claim ESA? He's trying to get a doctor's appointment to talk about how his disability is getting worse but he can't get an appointment for 2 weeks. We're not in a universal credit area. He's been on lower level DLA for at least 10 years now but he hasn't been contacted about switching to PIP yet. The CAB did say he could think about applying for PIP as he is getting worse but I've heard lots of bad stories about the assessments so we're a bit worried that they might just take the money away completely. I have sorted out our child tax credits claim.

Babyroobs Wed 23-Aug-17 21:32:41

He should be ok to claim contributions based then and make it a joint claim. When he rings up to apply then they will advise which is best to claim. Yes he will need a medical certificate / sick not which he will need to send in shortly after the application. There is an initial assessment period then he will be sent a medical questionnaire then may get called for an assessment. Yes switching to Pip is a gamble and so many are being turned down after being on DLA for years as the criteria have changed. Good luck with whatever you decide.

CazY777 Wed 23-Aug-17 21:41:46

Thanks again

avuncularis Thu 24-Aug-17 22:55:01

Just a tip, with Babyroobs mentioning the questionnaire. To stand the best chance of getting a decent result from completing it and going for an assessment (if they put your DH through one) you need guidance. There's an art to completing their forms these days and a site called Benefits and Work has downloadable guides for claiming ESA and PIP, for a small annual subscription. They also provide a forum where members post questions for trained moderators to answer about the finer points of getting through the claim process. Well worth looking at, take it from someone who has been there and couldn't have done it without them. Best of luck.

CazY777 Thu 24-Aug-17 23:37:13

Thank you avunculari, I'll look at that website.

CazY777 Tue 07-Nov-17 16:13:14

Bumping this to ask if anyone knows about ESA113 forms. We've been getting ESA for a few weeks and have filled in and sent back the ESA50 form. We've just been looking at my husbands medical records (because we're now doing a PIP application too, not through choice!) and it says that the doctor has filled in ESA113 and sent it back. From what I've just read on the internet this may mean that they are assessing his case on paper evidence and he may not have to go to a face to face assessment. Does anyone know if this is the current practice? TIA

Becca19962014 Tue 07-Nov-17 23:22:56

It doesn't mean a paper based assessment. It's the form they sent to GP for further information confirming needs mentioned on the ESA50.

It's unlikely (but not impossible) it'll be paper based if he hasn't claimed before - it's also common for the ESA application and form to trigger the move to PIP.

The length of time you get ESA can be short according to his condition, the six month minimum limit no longer exists - I've had four ESA50 forms this year (though no medical as I'm deemed too much of a risk).

Becca19962014 Tue 07-Nov-17 23:24:10

That's based on my experience and those of others in my area i know with claims - I've no official training or anything like that.

CazY777 Wed 08-Nov-17 07:25:51

He has a lifelong neurology condition which can obviously never get better, only worse due to wear and tear on his joints and ligaments. Just wondering if that could be a factor in their decision making, but I suppose we will just have to wait until they contact us.

Becca19962014 Wed 08-Nov-17 09:30:21

I have a similar physical condition. I hope you'll hear soon.

starfishmummy Wed 08-Nov-17 10:30:38

My son moved to Pip 3 hears ago and hasn't been called for an assessment (yet) so it isn't a given that someone moving benefits will be. Otoh sometimes it's just the luck of the draw and because the month has an r in it!!

starfishmummy Wed 08-Nov-17 10:31:23

3 years obviously blush

pineandholly Wed 08-Nov-17 10:33:14

Why wouldn't someone get JSA if they are looking for a job ... sorry if that's a silly question!

CazY777 Wed 08-Nov-17 12:15:39

Thanks Becca and Starfishmummy, its making me very anxious for some reason and I'm not the one being assessed! It was bad enough for him going through all the PIP forms yesterday having to spell out all the things he can't do, and I'm sure that assessments are much worse.

Pineandholly, as we have a young child we are both on the same claim, so he's getting ESA and I get tagged on.

starfishmummy Wed 08-Nov-17 15:45:39

Pip forms are horribke. Just done an era claim cor my son (I'm his appointee person) and got to call yesterday to arrange a "helping you back to work appointment". They werent sure he'd need it as he's a full time student (this is allowed as he gets high rate PiP) but the devil in me wants to go and see what they suggest as it will be hilarious. He has both physical and learning disabilities and needs a high level of support....(including someone to wipe his bum!!)

CazY777 Wed 08-Nov-17 16:41:26

That sounds like a ridiculous box ticking exercise! My husband made a nuisance of himself at his as they had to clear off a desk for him as he couldn't fill in one of their forms using a clipboard. But the advisor did say that he should definitely get PIP, but we'll see if they are right.

niceflapjack Wed 08-Nov-17 18:36:01

OP if your DH manages to get standard or enhanced daily living for PIP then you could also look into the route of getting carer's allowance for yourself with a joint income support top-up, rather than ESA or JSA. It's a similar amount of money but avoids the hassle of assessments or any job-seeking requirements. It is what I claim for caring for DH, as he didn't want the stress of going through an ESA assessment. Probably best to run through the figures on entitled to, to make sure you wouldn't be losing out compared to claiming ESA/JSA.

CazY777 Wed 08-Nov-17 19:34:40

Thank you niceflapjack, we'll look into that after we know what's happening with the PIP. I'm not sure though if I claim carers if that could mean that we will be migrated to UC because our area will be a full service area in December?

CazY777 Fri 19-Jan-18 20:52:40

My husband had assessments for PIP and ESA before Christmas. He's been awarded standard rate care for PIP, but then told that he's fit for work so our ESA has been stopped completely! What a fucking ridiculous system! He is definitely not able to work at the moment and he still has a fit note from the doctor.
So, I looked at claiming carer's allowance and income support but I've had to apply for Universal credit instead as it's recently been brought in in our area. Not sure what they are going to expect of us, I am looking for part time work as I have to care for our daughter and him. Will they expect him to apply for work? Should we still ask for a mandatory reconsideration for the ESA assessment?

RockinHippy Fri 19-Jan-18 21:01:46

I'm just on my way home from helping my DB with a PIP assessment & the assessor was lovely. She actually gave us loads of advice on stuff his doctors should have been doing for him & was openly shocked at how badly he's been treated. Very caring too

CazY777 Fri 19-Jan-18 21:06:26

The PIP assessor he had was a physiotherapist and was knowledgeable about his conditions. No idea what the ESA assessor was qualified in, DH worked himself into such a state he can't remember much about it (I couldn't go in with him because we didn't have anyone to look after our daughter).

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