This should be interesting...

I have been on incapacity benefit for 10 years since I had to give up my teaching job. Have filled in the forms every so often, never been asked to see a doctor, and had hoped that I am only two yrs away from my pension that I would be left alone. Wrong! Am waiting for a phone call to confirm my identity (interested to see how they confirm theirs...) and then a form to fill in possibly to be asked to go for an assessment and to see if I am fit to work. Am intrigued to know what will be on offer for a woman pushing 60 with chronic medical conditions.

Joking apart - the letter is four pages long. I am (I hope) a relatively intelligent literate person but goodness knows how people cope if they're not. And the tone of it is threatening. What really annoys me is the part where they say that if I don't hear from them within two weeks of the date of the letter that I am to phone them (not freephone) - I very much doubt I will remember, nor I suspect will others with memory problems, from which I am suffering very badly at the moment. Wonder what happens if you don't call them?

Caroline

8 Replies

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  • hi caroline are you in yhe states- if so where-------------- jet

  • Hi Caroline

    Good luck with the application. They seem to state the rules pretty strictly these days. Hope you have a calendar where you can note the date it has to be with them by and give yourself enough time beforehand to complete and send it.

    We have to be super organised to make our lives easier!!

    Hope you get it done ok

    Best

    Sara

  • Hi there

    you know this makes me so dam mad the Tories started the new D l A now cause there are so many fiddling the state genuine people have to have this stupid test if you type in Google about info on this new test you will find all about how they keep you waiting by the desk and the receptionist tells the Doc how long you were standing it's pathetic also if you have nice hair with make up and you are dressed smart the doc writes that you are healthy enough to look after yourself and also if you are that ill you should have him @ home with family or friend my neighbour / friend who has very bad back and hips was asked by the doc when he came to test her asked could she make a meal she said surly you could open a tin of beans and microwave them she said you asked me if I could make a meal not beans she is aged 54 they refused her she is appealing and they took her mobility car off her so was devastated she cried herself sick I have a simple very cheap wat to sort it all out if your health records are under 1 inch thick you can't be lonf term sick I think the info is on gov.com good luck x

  • Please please take a look at benefitsandwork.co.uk/ This is an independent advice group who provide an enourmous amount of advice and everyone on any sort of benefit should find it useful. I'd go so far as to say nobody should start filling in any forms without having checked this site first.

    I'm a little surprised that you have had this contact as some people approaching pension are exempt from all the new hassle. It may be that you fall just outside of this (fortunate) group- but please have a look at the above website and check this, and other aspects out. Best of luck with it.

  • Caroline- If you would like to PM me with your email address I will send you the guides about what to do if you have to go for a WCA.

    It is also important to note that if you have to have one, Chris Grayling has gone on record in saying: a WCA should not be conducted by a healthcare professional whose medical specialism was "diametrically opposed" to the presenting health problem of the claimant to be assessed - the example given being a physiotherapist not assessing someone who has a mental health problem.

    I suggest that you may want to copy this section and take it with you when you attend a medical assessment so that you can show it to the person who is conducting the assessment and ask them if they are suitably qualified to assess you. We have had situations where members have had their medicals cancelled and rescheduled as a result of doing this.

    personally I am very surprised about this. I was told at a disability event where there were advisors from the DWP, that people who were going to be due to retire before IB was due to finish its migration would be left alone because they would naturally lose their IB to their pension and there was no point in having a WCA. If you are indeed told you need to go for a WCA I would call the DWP and remind them that you are due to retire. At that point you will have nothing to lose and everything to gain. The only thing I can think of is that they are running out of people to access and are doing it for the sake of it!

  • Thanks Lynn and Tim. I was surprised as well. I went on the website Tim mentioned and see that they are dealing with people who reach pensionable age after March 2014 - I narrowly missed being eligible to be an OAP at 60 but will be of retirement age in May 2014, so the whole thing is ridiculous!

    Will wait and see what happens now. I have never been asked to attend any kind of medical in 10yrs but if I do I will be more than grateful for any advice.

  • Good luck............from my experience in the uk they are there to stop you get benefit, not help you, as advertised. Once the doctor is asked for, they mean to cut the benefit. They normally use either underqualified or foreign docs, and I am convinced they have targets. Not the caring you would expect. I hope you have better experience than here. Especially with hughes'. I wish you every success. x

  • I share your concerns about the objectivity of the assessors. I used to work as a CAB advisor and was confident at one time that assessors for some benefits looked for reasons for you to qualify for the benefit but I'm no longer so sure.

    I am though now sure that you cannot trust the benefits people to know their subject fully so never take what they say as gospel and do what research you can.(easier said than done I know)

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