Fibromyalgia Action UK
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Sometime ago I received a letter from the NHS dental services saying I wasn't entitled to free dental treatment, despite being on ESA!! I wrote a real snotty email back telling them to check their records, but they were adamant. So they sent me a letter for the DWP to complete. I took that in Jan 31st. Got a letter back from DWP this morning to say I'm not entitled cos I'm on contribution based ESA!! Phoned the NHS and they told me I owe them £327!! £177 for the treatment, £100 charge cos I didn't reply within 14 days and £50 admin fee!!! When I repeated I had only received the letter back today from the DWP and didn't know they hadn't sent it on I was told the usual - 'it's policy'!! Damn cheek I think!!

OK, rant over!! XX

7 Replies

Whatever you do don't pay the admin fee! What a cheek!

It's the sort of thing you could take to your local MP, and definitely see C.A.B.about it.

Even if you turn out not to be entitled, they've no right to bump up the charges as they have - that's daylight robbery!


If it is 'Policy' then the policy needs to be made clear to all patients, and not advised of later. If they didn't tell you of the added charges at the time, and it isn't printed on any paperwork they gave you, or in any correspondence they sent you demanding payment etc, then they cannot demand anything other than the initial charges which you agreed to. I would certainly take advice on this before paying them anything over the initial £177. I would love to see them explain away their APR with £150 in charges.


Sounds wrong to me but a quick check here says you are not entitled to free dental if you get contribution based ESA.


i always thought you only get help with free dental, prescriptions and eyesight if you are on income based benefits. Any contribution based benefits don't count.

The Dentist that you went to, when you signed the form there would have had the different boxes to tick, similar to the back of your prescriptions. Unfortunately the onus does lie with us to make sure if we sign the forms as such we know what we are claiming for… don't mean to be harsh or anything, its just i have heard of all this happening before.

My own personal opinions don't count really but I think if you are on a contributory benefit why does it mean you must have more money tucked away to pay all these bills. It may be your OH works, but doesn't mean they earn mega money… In that boat so I really do feel ofr you xxx (((hugs)))


I'm a widow fibro, and live alone. The thing is I didn't know I was on contribution based ESA, that's the whole point!! No one ever told me. Even the initial letter saying I was entitled to ESA never said! And, yes, I have checked every bit of correspondence I have ever received. Please don't think I'm getting at you all, you're all so damn wonderful, I'm just soooo annoyed!! Thanks for the hugs fibro, greatly appreciated!! XXXX


no one thinks you are getting at us, it's very difficult to put feelings into words and this can be misread if you get what I mean. we are on your side.

I thnk it's terrible that you weren't given the correct info in the first place, basically as it could effect your future pension, I always knew I was on contributory based as I started on the old original sickness benefit, yep that what it was called. why couldn't they leave it at that, then after so long it went to incapacity benefit, back then it told you on any award letter that contributions were being credited, so I knew I would be covered for my pension. mind you there will be no money left to pay that!

soon when they change over to this universal credit no one will know what benefit they are on, not even the staff..... I see a huge mess coming along.

sue make sure you fight this payment, if you can prove you had no notification of what you were on based on those letters. but if they make you pay it back in the end, say you will but it has to be the minimum about weekly/monthly etc as you just can't afford it. I agree that you shouldn't have to pay it, but if there is no way out it's always better to make an offer that you will pay but can only afford X amount in instalments. even if they took you to court, they would have to accept that, but it's you making the offer the court will see it in your favour.

I just wish life weren't so hard, they do it to trip us up, I'm sure xxx (((hugs)))


Ooh, it's a real pain innit?? Maybe it's my fault...maybe I should've asked in the first place what I was on, I was on the old Incap Ben too and income support with the Severe Dis All. added on but why we can't all be left alone I don't know. OK, if there are new claimants, then be stricter with them, but not us oldies who've been on it years eh?! XX


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