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Job centres tricking claimants out of benefits watch

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    (Original post by Martyn*)
    What no-one wants to do. What does that mean?

    If you are trying to say that people should apply for MCdonalds jobs then you are clearly not seeing the bigger picture. Applying for these kind of jobs comes with it a whole host of problems. You can't just take any job. It depends upon your personal circumstances.
    That no one wants to do. Just as it says.

    It means that no one wants to scrub toilets for minimum wage.

    Boring, soul destroying menial labour jobs, that sort of thing. If you want to count McDonalds jobs in there, sure.

    However, if such are available, then yes, people on JSA should be MADE to apply for them or lose their benefit.

    JSA shouldn't be a lifestyle choice. It should be a safety net to provide a mimimum standard of living when people find themselves out of work. However, the whole point is that people need to show they are trying to get a job.

    Even if that job is, as you put it, a McDonalds job.
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    (Original post by marcusfox)
    That no one wants to do. Just as it says.

    It means that no one wants to scrub toilets for minimum wage.

    Boring, soul destroying menial labour jobs, that sort of thing. If you want to count McDonalds jobs in there, sure.

    However, if such are available, then yes, people on JSA should be MADE to apply for them or lose their benefit.

    JSA shouldn't be a lifestyle choice. It should be a safety net to provide a mimimum standard of living when people find themselves out of work. However, the whole point is that people need to show they are trying to get a job.

    Even if that job is, as you put it, a McDonalds job.
    Your argument here is just untenable. Those types of jobs are only a couple of hours a week. Most of them I've seen (and have done myself at a DIY store) advertised are something like 13 hours a week or less. I doubt you could find a job cleaning toilets for 40 or more hours a week.

    You cannot make people apply for these jobs. Don't you see that these jobs will make people financially worse off? If you take a job for 13 hours per week, you stand to lose your JSA, and you stand to lose your housing benefit. You can't get tax credits either. Plus, it is not gainful employment. Making people clean toilets may look bad on their CVs.

    In my experience, when you go for a job you are asked what your last job was. What are you to tell them? I can tell you that this does nothing for your self esteem, and the employer could cast a doubt over your abilities because you have taken these types of jobs.

    Ultimately, you cannot make people do these types of jobs. In some cases, it may mean the individual becomes the worse for taking the job. I speak from experience, because I was one of those who would take any job. I still am but I have to make sure that working is worthwhile, and taking these types of jobs is not looking worthwhile at all at the moment. Now, if things change, if wages were a lot better and if rent would go down perhaps taking on these 13 hour per week jobs may mean it worthwhile, then I would go for it. But in my experience taking these 13 hour per week jobs is just foolish, unless, of course, I could find 3X13 (approx. 40 hours per week) hour jobs all with flexible hours. What are the chances? A: 0.
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    (Original post by Lizia)
    From my experience, the jobs that the Job Centre have in their database, and those on their website/computer system are different (or at least, they were at the time). I would insist that the job centre worker show me the receptionist jobs on the screen, tell them I wanted to apply, and they'd refuse to help me. Then I'd try looking myself on the help points or the website at home, and these jobs wouldn't exist. The only explanation I can think of is that their database has extra jobs in it, the ones they consider 'better'.
    Nope, in my experience the jobs are the same. The only difference being that the JC may have access to work placement schemes exclusively for JSA claimants, not for the general public to walk in, punch a search into the computer and off they go. Not that they'd want to apply for it anyway.

    (Original post by Lizia)
    Also, the Job Centre people would refuse to accept "applied for X job as a receptionist" as one of my completed tasks to show I was looking for work. Meaning that I was essentially applying for these jobs for no reason, as far as the dole people were concerned. So while I genuinely was desperate to get into work so I could stop signing on, someone with less conscience than me would have no problems signing on indefinitely. And where I live, most people who sign on rarely sign off because, from my experience, the centre has no interest in helping them do so.
    Well, when you sign your agreement, you need to agree with the jobcentre a number of fields of jobs of which you will be searching. They are expected to be commensurate or lower than your skills - i.e. jobs that you stand a good chance of getting.

    Stops people saying "Oh, I only want chief executive and management roles". They may have decided that receptionist was out of your range. I don't know you, so I can't judge whether it was or not. But it's hard to get receptionists jobs that don't at least ask for some experience, as it can be quite an important job.

    Nothing to stop you applying for these jobs in your own time though, just they will be expecting you to apply for the jobs they have told you to apply for as well.

    Jobcentre staff are only going to be interested in whether or not you are searching for work. They don't care as to whether or not you get a job. The only job that primarily concerns them is their own. And it can be a pretty crap job. You might say that most people on JSA are reasonable and just want a job. True or not, I'm not going to argue. However you cannot deny that they will also be dealing with the absolute dregs of society on a regular basis.
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    (Original post by Martyn*)
    Most of them I've seen (and have done myself at a DIY store) advertised are something like 13 hours a week or less.
    A person who works 13 hours a week is still treated as unemployed for JSA purposes. Accordingly if you work for 13 hours a week you would still receive JSA unless your income is £5 more than your previous JSA.
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    (Original post by Martyn*)
    Your argument here is just untenable. Those types of jobs are only a couple of hours a week. Most of them I've seen (and have done myself at a DIY store) advertised are something like 13 hours a week or less. I doubt you could find a job cleaning toilets for 40 or more hours a week.
    Why 40 when the average full time working week for most people is 37.5 hours?

    This is for Cleaners in Liverpool for 30 or more hours per week within 30 miles of what is presumably Liverpool jobcentre.

    http://jobseekers.direct.gov.uk/list...37490&p=1&so=1

    And only searching using the Jobcentre website. Page 1 of 7 with 20 to a page. Puts that lie to rest.

    (Original post by Martyn*)
    You cannot make people apply for these jobs. Don't you see that these jobs will make people financially worse off? If you take a job for 13 hours per week, you stand to lose your JSA, and you stand to lose your housing benefit. You can't get tax credits either. Plus, it is not gainful employment. Making people clean toilets may look bad on their CVs.
    Who cares how it looks on their CV? Would you rather sleep on the street than have a 'bad' CV? Because that is the choice available.

    (Original post by Martyn*)
    In my experience, when you go for a job you are asked what your last job was. What are you to tell them? I can tell you that this does nothing for your self esteem, and the employer could cast a doubt over your abilities because you have taken these types of jobs.
    Sure, then instead you tell them that you've been out of work for two years - looks so much better.

    (Original post by Martyn*)
    Ultimately, you cannot make people do these types of jobs. In some cases, it may mean the individual becomes the worse for taking the job. I speak from experience, because I was one of those who would take any job. I still am but I have to make sure that working is worthwhile, and taking these types of jobs is not looking worthwhile at all at the moment. Now, if things change, if wages were a lot better and if rent would go down perhaps taking on these 13 hour per week jobs may mean it worthwhile, then I would go for it. But in my experience taking these 13 hour per week jobs is just foolish, unless, of course, I could find 3X13 (approx. 40 hours per week) hour jobs all with flexible hours. What are the chances? A: 0.
    I just found you 121 cleaner jobs of more than 30 hours a week. There will be more on other sites. And that doesn't include Manchester, a commutable hour from Lime St.

    Sorry to say it Martyn, but it is starting to sound like you are one of those people who has a million excuses but not one reason why they can't get a job. And I'm sure I'm not the only one thinking it. But tell you what, I'll be fair.

    If people go back and read your posts and think that what I've said in the paragraph above is spot on, then why don't you uprate my comment. If you think I'm being completely unreasonable, go ahead and downrate it.

    Then perhaps one of us will change our mind.
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    (Original post by Lizia)
    Like I said, I had experience as a receptionist. I spoke four languages (if you include English), in an area which has a lot of foreign tourists from the countries whose languages I spoke. I had good GCSEs and Alevels. There is no reason why being a receptionist was 'out of my range', other than the job centre arbitrarily deciding that I was too young, despite my experience in the role.

    And my point was that job centre staff might not care if I get a job, but they shouldn't be actively hindering people from doing so. I could deal with apathy and no one caring about my employment status beyond doing the bare minimum. It's my own responsibility to act on whatever help they give me. But they actively prevented me from finding employment, which means if nothing else they weren't concerned about doing their own job. And it was quite clear from everything about me that I wasn't the usual dole-scrounging, qualificationless layabout that they normally deal with, so they had no excuse for writing me off the second I walked through the door.
    Job Centres have a very tricky job of trying to keep on good terms with employers. Employers will not co-operate with Job Centres if they feel that Job Centres are bombarding them with a lot of irrelevant applications.

    In a world with no permissible age discrimination you don't know what surrogates, this employer was using for "I don't want a teenage girl on a gap year".
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    (Original post by Lizia)
    Like I said, I had experience as a receptionist. I spoke four languages (if you include English), in an area which has a lot of foreign tourists from the countries whose languages I spoke. I had good GCSEs and Alevels. There is no reason why being a receptionist was 'out of my range', other than the job centre arbitrarily deciding that I was too young, despite my experience in the role.
    Fair enough. But again, you can apply for these receptionist jobs along with applying for the jobs the jobcentre will give you. And if you are as good as you say, then you should have no problems getting a job as a receptionist. Most people are able to apply for and get jobs without the jobcentre telling them to do so.

    (Original post by Lizia)
    And my point was that job centre staff might not care if I get a job, but they shouldn't be actively hindering people from doing so. I could deal with apathy and no one caring about my employment status beyond doing the bare minimum. It's my own responsibility to act on whatever help they give me. But they actively prevented me from finding employment, which means if nothing else they weren't concerned about doing their own job. And it was quite clear from everything about me that I wasn't the usual dole-scrounging, qualificationless layabout that they normally deal with, so they had no excuse for writing me off the second I walked through the door.
    They aren't preventing you applying for any job you want to apply for.
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    This is one f*cked up government.
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    (Original post by Lizia)
    Except they were preventing me for applying for jobs because they had the details for the jobs on their own database, and they weren't available elsewhere. When I was signed on, there was essentially nothing of value on the website job search facility, yet when I went into the centre, they had loads. I find this when using the site to look for part time work. I can't see anything particularly useful for me, but my friends who go to the job centre are always applying for things that mysteriously aren't online.
    So they showed you details of jobs on their system, then said "Sorry, you can't apply for that"? I can believe that to save money, employers might only advertise at a jobcentre. But they would be available to anyone using a computer to search. Why would an employer only restrict themselves to benefit claimants unless it's just a JC make-work partnership scheme that much of the New Deal comes as?

    (Original post by Lizia)
    Well then I guess it was a good job they prevented me. I wouldn't want to work for a company that didn't want an application from someone qualified for the job but 19 (at the time the job centre didn't know I was on a gap year, since I wasn't certain I'd be going to uni), but would accept them from 30-somethings with no qualifications or experience. Lucky escape, I guess :dontknow:
    I don't know either.
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    (Original post by Lizia)
    Well then I guess it was a good job they prevented me. I wouldn't want to work for a company that didn't want an application from someone qualified for the job but 19 (at the time the job centre didn't know I was on a gap year, since I wasn't certain I'd be going to uni), but would accept them from 30-somethings with no qualifications or experience. Lucky escape, I guess :dontknow:
    This gives a potentially good reason - you ended up going to uni so would have been in the job for less than a year. This is one of the reasons why many employers don't want to hire young people, maybe the receiptionist jobs were such that other people with receptionist experience, and better availability, were applying for them.
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    (Original post by nulli tertius)
    The Guardian story runs together two different concepts as if they are the same.

    The first is whether Job Centres are operating targets for sanctions. If a Job Centre manager thinks that his or her staff are accepting non-compliance with Job Seekers Agreements too lightly, one can well see why they would want to ginger them up a bit.

    The second is "tricking" claimants into non-compliance. That seems to be entirely implausible. Remember, any claimant can appeal any sanction to an independent Tribunal Judge. If a Job Centre was having an abnormal number of appeals allowed, higher management would be on to them for poor decision-making.



    You had 20-30 minutes of the undivided attention of a Judge (the DWP very rarely turn up for appeals) yet you still didn't manage to convince him or her that you had done nothing wrong.
    What you talking about? What judge? I was talking about the Jobcentres appeal process.
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    (Original post by drbluebox)
    What you talking about? What judge? I was talking about the Jobcentres appeal process.
    You have the right to appeal any sanctioning decision to an independent tribunal chaired by a tribunal judge.

    You fill in a GL24 at the Job Centre

    If you didn't do that you haven't appealed at all. You merely asked the DWP to reconsider their decision. Surprise, surprise they decided they had made the right decision.
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    It's quite interesting to see how many comments are from people saying about how being on the dole is a piece of piss, when they've obviously never had to cope on JSA. Lucky you.
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    (Original post by nulli tertius)
    The Guardian story runs together two different concepts as if they are the same.

    The first is whether Job Centres are operating targets for sanctions. If a Job Centre manager thinks that his or her staff are accepting non-compliance with Job Seekers Agreements too lightly, one can well see why they would want to ginger them up a bit.

    The second is "tricking" claimants into non-compliance. That seems to be entirely implausible. Remember, any claimant can appeal any sanction to an independent Tribunal Judge. If a Job Centre was having an abnormal number of appeals allowed, higher management would be on to them for poor decision-making.



    You had 20-30 minutes of the undivided attention of a Judge (the DWP very rarely turn up for appeals) yet you still didn't manage to convince him or her that you had done nothing wrong.
    No, they won't, because the order to trick claimants into non compliance comes at the highest levels. It's a bit like the head of Ryanair saying, well obviously some passengers will be succesful if they take us to court, but the rest of them are poor stupid and can't afford any better than what we're offering so lets fleece the **** out of the lot of them, a few that gets away won't matter.

    Now that's the kind of attitude being taken at the highest levels of th DWP which is filtering down to real human lives.
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    The Conservatives are fixing the problem with unemployment by continuing to contract A4e and other such bonus-chasing, self-interested companies. Nuff said.

    I'm astounded that the answer to saving money is throwing more money at a problem. Amazing.

    How ironic that it is the likes of A4e (supposedly helping the unemployed get work) who are the ones leeching off Britain's economy, taking advantage of systems and circumstances, and sitting on their arses doing nothing but collecting benefits bonuses, and lavishly spending it on signs, more bonuses and extensions to country estates.
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    (Original post by marcusfox)
    Yes, I think it is fair to say the majority of Polish people are hard working. Granted, they will get higher wages in this country than they will in Poland, which is why they have come here. Nevertheless, they have come here to work, and work they do.

    That really is a massive generalisation, I had Polish housemates before who spent a huge amount of time trashing the property and getting drunk most nights and complaining about everything, my current neighbour "works hard" but likes to scrounge off everyone around him stating how poor he is despite him wearing expensive clothes etc, When I worked in a holiday park all the cleaners were Polish and they would spend about 1 hour per chalet cleaning them(at least in quiet season) and about 50 minutes of that was them sitting in the chalet smoking a cigarette!(seriously)

    Didn't say they didn't want to work. I said they would rather remain on the dole than do these jobs. There's the difference. As evidenced by the fact that employers are finding that they are only able to fill these jobs with migrant workers, in spite of them being advertised in the jobcentres. Check jobcentres, you will see there are jobs available. Pretty crappy jobs to be sure, but jobs nonetheless.

    That is scraping the barrel seriously, that means if there is 1 job in a jobcentre and 5000 applicants there is still jobs in your mind, where I live now there might be 10 new jobs a week and 15 over a fortnight, however theres thousands of people unemployed in the town so how can you act as if there is jobs going? I am with an Agency right now who sent over 100 staff to a open day at local holiday park, and yet only 5 people got a job out of it!

    (Original post by marcusfox)
    Not the jobcentre's fault is it? When they jobcentre staff gave you these jobs and told you about them, you had the opportunity to discuss any issues before you left.

    How am I magically meant to know when the staff are rushing me out as its closing time and I am going through a pile of forms, oh and FYI I have aspergers and dyspraxia so have problems with information but the jobcentre dont care about those sort of needs.

    I was honest and did each form in turn even though the form I had my claim suspended for I would never of got an interview I was just trying in case they gave me a chance, it wanted 2 years experience working in a retail enviroment(I had a year working in a supermarket) and essential experience in other areas I didnt have, I could of lied and said to advisor I filled in the form but I told the truth and was burned, how is that a good thing for the Jobcentre to do especially when the rules state the suspension could be as little as 2 weeks to as much as 6 months and they decided on the full 6 months! I had to sell all my possessions to even buy tins of beans each week!




    Well, I can sort of see their point here. If there are jobs available, shouldn't you be taking these rather than going on courses?

    There was no job available, it was a New Deal placement with an employer which the advisors own words were "there is no chance of employment out of this" they just wanted me to do it to learn how to work in a job(despite me having shop experience anyway)




    If you broke your foot, you tell them, rearrange appointment, then when its in plaster, you can still get around on crutches. If it was such an injury that stops you getting about/working, then it's incapacity benefit you need, not JSA.

    I DID rearrange appointment for when they came back but their systems are automated and put me down as non attending within 7 days(5 working days) therefore claim was closed, its not as if I didnt want to go in, in fact I lived 5 minutes walk from Jobcentre but they refused to let me see anyone but my advisor so it was totally their fault.



    Sorry, not familiar with what you mean by "transfer a claim"? However, on appeal you were found to be at fault in some way? What was that reason exactly? Surely you were aware of the fact that you needed an appointment and that you didn't have one? Did you not chase it up?

    The Jobcentre appeals system is notorious for deciding claims arent good enough even if you are right, A benefits doctor who did a health assessment for his DLA was 2 hours behind schedule so sent my dad home without an assessment and a few days later my dad got a letter saying his benefit was stopped as he failed the medical! He appealed and lost via the jobcentre method and had to take them to court, he won however but it took 6 months! During his claim they tried to make him lose his appeal before he even appealed by saying he could only get benefits if he signed on, but if he signed on he was admitting he was fit for work therefore he couldnt start an appeal!, it was so bad a security guard tried to harass him and tell him to sit down and fill out the jobseekers agreement so my dad pushed him out of the way(my dad may be ill but hes an ex policeman so he is built really big)

    Anyway back to myself, a transfer is when you move towns or areas and so need to change to a different jobcentre, what they are supposed to do is fax down your claim details to a new jobcentre who call you in to sign a new jobseekers agreement and give you a sign on time, this never happened despite numerous phone calls saying "it will be in the process of doing it, wait a few days" however as I didnt attend a sign on at old jobcentre it got automatically closed, but they wouldnt open me a new claim until my appeal was sorted which took about 6-8 weeks if memory serves, then when I rang up to ask them what was happening now I won appeal they told me on the day the appeal was granted they made me an appointment and even admitted they forgot to send out the letter but I missed 2 sign on appointments therefore my claim was closed.


    It is simple enough. But by easy, you mean comfortable, it really isn't meant to be. But sorry to say it, your post just reads like a lot of excuses.
    Why is that? dont be such a """" and make stupid assumptions just because I am on benefits, you dont know how often I have worked before or for how long you just jump on the fact I dont think the jobcentre is as perfect as they make it out to be.
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    (Original post by psychocustard)
    It's quite interesting to see how many comments are from people saying about how being on the dole is a piece of piss, when they've obviously never had to cope on JSA. Lucky you.
    Never said it is a "piece of piss".

    However, it's not meant to be.
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    (Original post by The-Real-One)
    No, they won't, because the order to trick claimants into non compliance comes at the highest levels.
    I am very sorry. I didn't realise you had access to this sort of information. Perhaps you would be so good as to post a copy of it.



    If you also have Elvis' current address, I would be grateful for that as well.
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    (Original post by drbluebox)
    Why is that? dont be such a """" and make stupid assumptions just because I am on benefits, you dont know how often I have worked before or for how long you just jump on the fact I dont think the jobcentre is as perfect as they make it out to be.
    Don't post like that. It makes it impossible to quote posts correctly.

    (Original post by drbluebox)
    That really is a massive generalisation, I had Polish housemates before who spent a huge amount of time trashing the property and getting drunk most nights and complaining about everything, my current neighbour "works hard" but likes to scrounge off everyone around him stating how poor he is despite him wearing expensive clothes etc, When I worked in a holiday park all the cleaners were Polish and they would spend about 1 hour per chalet cleaning them(at least in quiet season) and about 50 minutes of that was them sitting in the chalet smoking a cigarette!(seriously)
    Just lol. Generalisation? I can smell the hypocrisy from here. And xenophobia.

    (Original post by drbluebox)
    That is scraping the barrel seriously, that means if there is 1 job in a jobcentre and 5000 applicants there is still jobs in your mind, where I live now there might be 10 new jobs a week and 15 over a fortnight, however theres thousands of people unemployed in the town so how can you act as if there is jobs going? I am with an Agency right now who sent over 100 staff to a open day at local holiday park, and yet only 5 people got a job out of it!
    Go on then, what town, so I can prove you wrong. Unless you live out in the sticks, and even then you will be expected to commute to work. Just like everyone else.

    (Original post by drbluebox)
    How am I magically meant to know when the staff are rushing me out as its closing time and I am going through a pile of forms, oh and FYI I have aspergers and dyspraxia so have problems with information but the jobcentre dont care about those sort of needs.
    You're at least be expected to read and understand the job applications the job centre gives you. It is possible to read them before you leave. If you don't, how is that the jobcentre's fault? If you can't, how do you expect to be able to do a job if you can't apply for it?

    (Original post by drbluebox)
    I was honest and did each form in turn even though the form I had my claim suspended for I would never of got an interview I was just trying in case they gave me a chance, it wanted 2 years experience working in a retail enviroment(I had a year working in a supermarket) and essential experience in other areas I didnt have, I could of lied and said to advisor I filled in the form but I told the truth and was burned, how is that a good thing for the Jobcentre to do especially when the rules state the suspension could be as little as 2 weeks to as much as 6 months and they decided on the full 6 months! I had to sell all my possessions to even buy tins of beans each week!
    Again, you have to apply for the jobs they give you and therefore agree you are going to apply for. Even if there is no chance of you getting it, you still send in your CV or the application. It's not rocket science really.

    (Original post by drbluebox)
    I DID rearrange appointment for when they came back but their systems are automated and put me down as non attending within 7 days(5 working days) therefore claim was closed, its not as if I didnt want to go in, in fact I lived 5 minutes walk from Jobcentre but they refused to let me see anyone but my advisor so it was totally their fault.
    And you explained this at the appeals tribunal, presumably?

    (Original post by drbluebox)
    The Jobcentre appeals system is notorious for deciding claims arent good enough even if you are right, A benefits doctor who did a health assessment for his DLA was 2 hours behind schedule so sent my dad home without an assessment and a few days later my dad got a letter saying his benefit was stopped as he failed the medical! He appealed and lost via the jobcentre method and had to take them to court, he won however but it took 6 months! During his claim they tried to make him lose his appeal before he even appealed by saying he could only get benefits if he signed on, but if he signed on he was admitting he was fit for work therefore he couldnt start an appeal!, it was so bad a security guard tried to harass him and tell him to sit down and fill out the jobseekers agreement so my dad pushed him out of the way(my dad may be ill but hes an ex policeman so he is built really big)
    Sorry, this isn't about DLA, its about JSA. If you are too ill to work, you get DLA or IB or whatever. If you are fit for work, then its JSA. They are by definition and necessity, mutually exclusive.

    Ex policeman on benefits? Some reason he's not getting the generous ex service pension that they are famous for?

    (Original post by drbluebox)
    Anyway back to myself, a transfer is when you move towns or areas and so need to change to a different jobcentre, what they are supposed to do is fax down your claim details to a new jobcentre who call you in to sign a new jobseekers agreement and give you a sign on time, this never happened despite numerous phone calls saying "it will be in the process of doing it, wait a few days" however as I didnt attend a sign on at old jobcentre it got automatically closed, but they wouldnt open me a new claim until my appeal was sorted which took about 6-8 weeks if memory serves, then when I rang up to ask them what was happening now I won appeal they told me on the day the appeal was granted they made me an appointment and even admitted they forgot to send out the letter but I missed 2 sign on appointments therefore my claim was closed.
    All that with only one full stop? I'm sure I'm not the only one having trouble with this.

    Sorry, but when you miss a sign on appointment, they write to you. So that's three letters you never got?
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    (Original post by Stratos)
    Why would someone work when the dole is almost the same?
    Yes because £51.85 a week is almost the same as £237.20 a week that someone could earn working 40 hours a week even on the minimum wage :rolleyes:

    £207.40 a month versus £948.80 I know which figure I'd prefer if in that situation.
 
 
 
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