ESA/ DLA entitlement when off work sick temporarily

I have been off work sick with scleroderma related foot ulcers, and hope to be back at work in about 5 weeks. I am now on half pay. I have checked, and I understand that if I am off work for longer than this, and my work stop paying me, then only then will I be able to claim ESA (or try to make a claim, that is). I understand that DLA can only be applied for if you don't have a job. Is that right? Is there anything else I might be entitled to in my situation? I would be very grateful for any information. Many thanks to you all, and looking forward to the warm weather we have been promised soon!

9 Replies

  • One thing I have learnt is that it is impossible to put a timescale on how long the ulcers will take to heal. You may be lucky and with the right care and attention they may heal quickly or they may be around for months.

    To attempt to prejudge how long you will have them is almost impossible.

  • Hi, yes, I know what you mean about timescales. These timescales were given to me by the clinic I am going to, and one ulcer has healed, and the other one is healing now, and my nurses think it is a reasonable timescale. But I do feel I have to keep touching wood, as I know progress can slow down, or things can get 'stuck'. So I am crossing everything! I am really lucky to be having wonderful care from the nurses and the doctors I am seeing.

  • I don't know about the ESA side of it, but DLA can certainly be claimed if you are working so there is no harm in applying for it, but it is changing to PIP, which can also be claimed whilst you are working. You have nothing to lose if you apply and are turned down, but a lot to gain if you apply and are awarded it. Good luck!

  • Thank you for this information. I have found out for sure now that ESA can only be claimed if you are not receiving any pay/SSP from work, and you cannot claim both together.

    Thank you for the information about PIPs. I will look into that.

  • Hiya presumably you have looked on the government's website ??

    do yo have a local citizens advice bureau ? does your employer have a human resources department who may be able to give you some advice ?

    If you have worked for them over a year it may be that your statutory rights will be applicable, andso your employer should be doing everything possible to help you with your return to work, without harassing you whilst off work.

    I hope this helps, but remember your healing process will be dampened if you are stressed and worried so try not to get too uptight with worry :) x

  • DLA from memory doesn't cover 'short-term' illnesses. ESA is like the alternative to Job Seekers - so as you are working don't think it would cover you :( sorry - hey I could be wrong on any of these things so best see CAB (citizens) and visit the government websites.

  • Thanks very much for your reply. I did ask someone today on the phone about DLA, and I did manage to find out something online. I think you're right. I think the effect on my mobility - very luckily for me - is just temporary, and so it would need to be longer lasting to qualify for DLA. Thanks very much for your help.

  • Hi there. Thanks for your reply. Yes, I keep looking at that website. It's difficult to navigate though - or maybe it's just me !

    My local Citizens Advice Bureau was extremely difficult to get through to last time I tried, and they didn't allow you to go and wait in person. You had to ring first - and last time it took me weeks to get through. But I'll try again.

    Yes, my employer have advised me about ESA, if and when that should be appropriate (it isn't at the moment). They have been excellent.

    Thanks very much for your help.

  • I get DLA for my scleroderma for the care aspect, because sometimes my hands are too cold etc to do some basic things like open the door, and i seem to be prone to cuts and burns because i cant always feel things if my hands are cold. Its such a rare disease that the DLA dont question it, i have never been for a medical, they just take it from my medical history

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