ESA - Work related group need advice to be move onto the support group please

Hi Everyone, Im wondering if anyone can help me i have read on here about a few people having PBC and being in the support group for ESA, i have just received my letter from the DWP and been put in the work group meaning i have to go for interviews (I have PBC and Sjorgrens syndrome) but am still getting tests for other things Im 30 years old and got diagnosed with PBC in November 2011 Im on URSO and I struggle with things daily like the fatigue and itch (i do have tablets for this aswell) I am scared to even go out on my own as i get very dizzy and faint and have pains in my joints especially my knees and ankles, i have regular blood tests every 6 weeks and with the daily struggle im sure i should be in the support group i feel like im being penalised for having a auto immune condition that is through no fault of my own please can anyone advise me on what to do next as i have been to these work programmes before and they pass me backwards and forwards to differant advisors so everytime i go i have to explain to them all over again what it is as no ones heard of it I take my leaflets from the PBC foundation with me but they dont seem to be interested they only seem to be interested in telling me i should be fit for work in 4 weeks which is getting me very stressed and giving me lots of sleepless nights thank you for listening :)

9 Replies

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  • Put your appeal in straight away to be put in the support group gather all the evidence you can regarding hospital appointments a letter from your dr and help from citizens advice is a good idea I also contacted my mp she was very helpful good luck Neat

  • As Neata said, you need to appeal. Im sorry you have to go through all this on top of everything else you are going through. Good luck!

  • What is ESA please?

  • HI Louise,

    Can I ask where you live if thats ok, I am going through the same thing. I might have some advice for you but it works different for different areas.x

  • ESA is sick pay from the goverment.

    I was first of all put into the working group and didnt contest it. The dissabled adviser from the job centre was very nice even walking me to my car after the appointment. After seeing her for the second time she used to ring me instead of me going to see her. I was then put into the working group for a second year and then next time of renewal was transferred to the support group.

    Its not what you have illness wise that decides the group you are in its how you are effected on a daily basis.

  • Thank you everyone, I will start to appeal straight away, Sallie I live in St Helens, Merseyside where do u live if u dont mind me asking, It is a nightmare trying to sort all this out on top of everything else it sometimes makes it worse as not many people have heard of PBC I know i hadnt until i got diagnosed with it, I see advisors from a differant company then the job centre who can be quite blunt and rude with me at times when i try and explain its an auto immune condition and not something that i can help.

  • Hi I live in Prestatyn, so not too far,are u on Facebook if so find me it is Sallie Pettigrew or if u like u can email me on salliepettigrew@btinternet.com happy to try and help as I am doing the same thing.xx

  • make shaw you take your medical records with you and medication.

  • If you are going to appeal any decision made in relation to benefits, it's a good idea to find yourself an advisor who is familiar with the process. There's a lot of evidence which suggests that people who have representation are much more likely to succeed with an appeal.

    As someone suggested above, citizens advice are very experienced with appeals and there are usually people working for disability rights organisations who have experience in the form filling and interviews. The PBC foundation might be able to point you in the direction of someone who can help.

    Don't worry about having to talk to a stranger about personal information or anything like that. There is nothing - and I mean NOTHING- that you can tell an experienced advisor that they haven't heard before. They are usually trained and know the regulations inside out and back to front. They will know what things you need to highlight and how to complete the forms to give yourself the best chance of winning the appeal.

    Good luck x

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