Is anybody on disability benefit for having mental health problems

I dont feel I can hold a job down with my stress and depression condition. Does anybody know how to claim disability allowance if I cant work.

I took four months off work recently with stress and now I feel I need another break but dont feel I can ask my boss.

As my job is coming to an end anyway due to cut backs, I really dont think I can go through the process of appying for another job only to find in a few months I will need time off for stress.

What do I do?


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18 Replies

  • David, I think you need to talk to your GP.

    Hope that someone on here can give you more practical advise on process but the impression I get is that everything has changed a lot over the last few years and allowances have become a continuous exercise in jumping through hoops, figuratively speaking at least.

    Hope that you find a place where the worries don't take over completely. The sun is shining here and I've just got back from a brunch at a local garden centre - was so warm and sunny I could even sit outside to eat it.

  • Thanks Gambit, I have been for a nice walk and coffee with my wife this morning. It was lovely here too. Gone a bit cloudy now. I asked at the hotel where we had coffee about summer jobs, they said drop a cv in sometime. There is always lots of seasonal jobs here.

    I will just take one step at time.


  • David it's great that you have a supportive wife, sounds

    Like a nice Sunday and you are right. Take it day by day,

    There is no point in thinking too far down the road

    Enjoy rest of day.not a bad day here in Dublin. It's Dry so

    That's good


  • Lack of job security is an issue, obviously, but in my experience deciding to take time out for 'stress' reasons does not mean you can access disability allowances. It is'nt as simple as that. You really need to return to your GP, possible access counselling. The underlying issue needs to be dealt with, otherwise it is like putting a sticking plaster on a wound without cleaning it and sorting it out first. How you feel about yourself will not disappear without you get help in addressing it. You could also talk to your boss about how insecure you feel - find out what the position is at work instead of second-guessing.

  • Not ver helpful. Dont like your tone. You know nothing about me. You sound like an official for benefit allowances. I know that taking time out for stress does not qualify me for disability allowance. This is a very difficult issue and I would not choose to go this route as a career choice. This is how you make it sound. Im sure nobody who is unfit for work takes disability allowance by choice. Just for your information I have had counselling and been on a cbt course.

    can you tell me more about yourself.

  • I chose to return to work after a serious and rare illness left me physically disabled. Surprisingly my employer of 11 years was extremely aggressive and without any understanding of disabilities. Already under great stress and dealing with a major trauma, this left me with severe depression and suicidal for many months. Intensive CBT with two psychologists enabled me to get a life back. It will never be the same but like me, different. I know when I begin to spiral and I have a range of activities that I use as a coping mechanism. You may not like what I have said in response to your comment, but that doesn't mean it is not sound advice.

  • Hi There I'm not really sure what point you are making, you dont know Golfer 15 details and this site is for support

    For one another. You may have coped with your unique

    Circumstances and had CBT and help of a Psychologist,

    This is you and your way of coping is not the only way

    And it doesn't mean Golfer 15 is not going to do

    That too. This is not about right and wrong or one

    Way of doing things and I do find your tone strange

    And not really helpful, we all cope different fly with things.

    Life would be very easy if there was one " right" way of getting better.

  • Hello

    Yes although I have extensive other medical problems, this benefit works on a points system so all will depend on your score, and possibly other health problems


  • Wow Bev sounds very complicated. Not sure what all the abreviations mean. What is a CAB.

    Thanks for the advice.


  • It's citizens advice bureau. Have your union been supporting you at work?

  • Im not in a union. I have only been in the school just over twelve months. It is awkward asking for time off for my stress problem but the gp would sign me off if I wanted. Im seeing a counsellor soon about my stress and depression.

    I dont know if a TA has much say over the job being cut due to budget. There is quite a few cuts in schools here on the Isle Of Wight.

    David x

  • Hi David,

    Yes!! You're entitled to esa at the least, that's what I'm on (used to be Incapacity Benefit, but it's all changed, it's still sickness benefit though).

    I'm on ESA, and also low-rate DLA for mental health problems.

    Talk to a welfare rights officer, or your nearest citizens advice bureau or even your local benefits agency and ask for the relevant form.

    You'll have to get a sicknote from your doctor, and probably have to go for a medical (they don't make it easy

    to claim sickness benefit these days, and you might fail it, but don't be put off, appeal it)

    It sounds like you're genuinely to ill to work due to your mental health issues, so you are entitled to sickness


    They won't tell you about that unless you ask though...!

    Good luck!

    Love, Holly xxx

  • Thanks Holly this is really useful. Im still confused what to do when my job ends in May. I cant go through interviews and the stress of applying for new jobs. I dont know if I can sit at home feeling sorry for myself too.

    I have a few months to think about this.

    Love David x

  • Please join a union in your next job. It's the best advice I can give any school based colleague. Keep an eye out on when the next TA job is advertised. Schools aren't allowed to make someone redundant and then re-advertise the same job. If they do, you can make a claim for unfair dismissal. If you're not a fan of interviews (I'm not either) use your time job hunting to do some voluntary work in another school. Often schools will give temporary contracts without advertising, if they know someone.

  • Yes I got my present job without interview or application as they knew me as I had worked there.

    Not sure I want another ta job as I have been getting very stressed.

    Thanks for the advice. Still confused what to do. Cant stp thinking about it.

    David x

  • Hi Golfer,

    Im David been reading you post. Sorry you to see you had a setback so earlier on with one on the "supporters" I could see where she was coming from but wrong post and was not very supportive. This is about you asking for help and not for people to judge.

    Like yourself I am entitled to ESA Employment Support Allowance and this is paid at the higher end of £132 a week. I spoke to my GP who agreed with myself, my psychologist and my psychiatrist that i should not work, and use the times to focus on myself and getting my imbalance in the brain more steady.

    Also like yourself im looking at getting PIP, which i will be phoning tomorrow. Im going to try and apply for this its a free contact number 0800 917 2222. Give them a call and see what they say. The worst they can say is no and it feels like being rejected again for help. I will call them myself of me and let you know what happens.

    Chin up as hard as it maybe, you will get your break through one day

  • Thanks dnd. Very helpful.


  • Hi David.

    Did you manage to phone the PIP team? I called yesterday. All they ask for is your NI, name address and doctors. After this they will send out the forms for you to fill in and then they will get back to you. Sometimes they will ask to do an assessment on you.

    Hope this helps