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DLA and ESA (Support Group) recipient: starting full time study? Watch

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    Hi guys;

    I am at present in reciept of DLA (middle care component) and ESA (Support Group category) for both mental and physical health reasons.

    However, I wonder that would become of me, if I were to study full time Medicine at Aberdeen? (which would mean moving away from home).

    Would I be taken off the benefits entirely? And therefore have to be dependant upon student loans? I would only require student finance to assist with the housing costs.

    Any advice gratefully recieved.
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    (Original post by apronedsamurai)
    Hi guys;

    I am at present in reciept of DLA (middle care component) and ESA (Support Group category) for both mental and physical health reasons.

    However, I wonder that would become of me, if I were to study full time Medicine at Aberdeen? (which would mean moving away from home).

    Would I be taken off the benefits entirely? And therefore have to be dependant upon student loans? I would only require student finance to assist with the housing costs.

    Any advice gratefully recieved.
    No, full time students on DLA are automatically placed in the WRAG on ESA, so entitlement will be.

    You'd get SSG and Student loan, then ESA and possibly DSA for modification to accommodation. ESA would obviously be less as the student loan is considered income. SSG is not.

    However fitness to practice could be questionable. I don't know specifically but you'd have to give full and honest disclosure.
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    However fitness to practice could be questionable. I don't know specifically but you'd have to give full and honest disclosure.
    Fitness to practice with whom? The university or the DWP?

    No, full time students on DLA are automatically placed in the WRAG on ESA
    Would that mean I need to attend the work focused interviews? Would I get that for the entire duration of the course? Would I ever be in a position of being taken off the benefits?
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    (Original post by apronedsamurai)
    Fitness to practice with whom? The university or the DWP?
    Fitness to practice as a doctor, so the university/GMC - I'm not a medical student, so you'd need to check directly with them

    Would that mean I need to attend the work focused interviews? Would I get that for the entire duration of the course? Would I ever be in a position of being taken off the benefits?
    I'm unsure as to the work focused interviews. You may have to go, but they wouldn't be able to say anything about getting a job, so it could be pointless. As I said, not sure, because WRAG entitlement of ESA is an automatic entitlement for full time students on DLA. You wouldn't need to attend the 'medical assessments.'

    You would get it for the duration of the course unless a) you're reassessed for PiP and don't get it. b) Legislation changes
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    I am really sorry; don't mean to be so pedantic; just want to be absolutely clear in my mind; before proceeding.

    Let us say for sake of argument, I apply to Aberdeen Uni and get accepted. I then inform the DWP of my change in circumstances.

    Will they then move me onto the WRAG of ESA, by virtue of the fact that I am in reciept of DLA; or will they seek to get me off the benefits, at that preliminary stage. i.e. before I start university?

    Sometimes the D.W.P. review your disability benefit entitlement when you become a full-time student and treat you as capable of full-time work because you are attending a full-time course and use this reason to stop paying Incapacity Benefit/Income Support/Employment and Support Allowance. If your medical condition remains the same regardless of the fact that you are a student or you are trying to do the course for therapeutic reasons you should challenge the decision and put in an appeal. A full-time course does not necessarily have the workload or the responsibilities of a full time job and if your benefit stops whilst you are studying a full-time course but your medical condition has not changed and you do not feel capable of full-time work you should seek advice about appealing. It would help if your doctor can confirm that your illness has not changed and/or that you are taking up the course for therapeutic reasons.
    That is a direct quote; from http://www.hope.ac.uk/lifeathope/stu...ilitybenefits/

    My concern is precisely that, that the DWP uses the status as a full-time student as evidence of capability for full time work at that time. Sure there is the possibilty of an appeal; but what do I do, if the appeal is unsuccessful? I have a permanent, chronic, log t term health condition that will NOT improve, with time, indeed; will most likely deteriorate.

    Would I risk losing my ESA; my DLA, or both?
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    It's no problem

    They have no recourse to move you off ESA if you are in receipt of DLA. It's an automatic entitlement. They cannot demand you attend a medical or provide sick notes or anything else.

    There is zero risk of losing DLA, and unless the DWP try to do something very dodgy, the risk of losing ESA is very very low.

    The benefit rules allow you £303 a year for travel costs and £390 a year for books and equipment, and then disregard an additional £10 a week. Therefore your 'income' will be considered £100~ a week in term time. This will allow you to keep a VERY low amount of ESA, which should allow you to claim HB. Your DLA will be totally unaffected.

    If your condition will likely deteriorate and affect mental health, is medicine really the correct course for you? I'm not trying to be cruel, but would it be fair to either yourself or patients to be their medic?
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    I suffer from arthritis, anxiety; low mood etc. My health conditions impact my quality of life yes. But not to a degree where I pose a danger to others. However; a frank and full disclosure WOULD be made by myself, with corroboration from GP and other health professionals, to allow the relevant department to decide whether my health conditions are of such severity, that permitting me to practice medicine would pose a potential and tangible, as well as proportionate threat to patients.

    I would never willfully place the welfare of a patient at risk for the sake of vanity; or ego. At the same time, I do not wish to be precluded from a dream job, for circumstances beyond my control.

    According to:
    http://www.ageuk.org.uk/Documents/EN....pdf?dtrk=true

    p11 "Income that is not counted" it states:

    "any money given to you for, and used to pay, housing costs, rent or care
    home fees not met by income-related ESA, Housing Benefit or your local
    authority "

    The only reason, the ONLY reason I would be taking out a student loan is to cover the cost of student halls of residence accomodation. With that in mind does that mean the student loan would/could be disregarded for the purposes of my ESA amount..or not?

    he benefit rules allow you £303 a year for travel costs and £390 a year for books and equipment, and then disregard an additional £10 a week. Therefore your 'income' will be considered £100~ a week in term time. This will allow you to keep a VERY low amount of ESA, which should allow you to claim HB. Your DLA will be totally unaffected.
    Can I ask; where did you get the figure of my "income" being £100 per term time week? That would be my income, or how much I would be entitled to receive per term week? I am also confused by virtue of the fact that most loans are classed as capital; but a claimant for income-related ESA is eligible to recieve £6000 in capital before they suffer any reduction in their eligiblity.

    You mention that I would be eligible for a very low amount of ESA. DO you know roughly? I am in the Support Group; and get various premiums, Severe Disability Premium, Enhanced Disability Premium etc.

    I VERY much appreciate you taking the time to so patiently and clearly identify the finer points of what is an otherwise Byzantianian complex system.
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    (Original post by apronedsamurai)
    According to:
    http://www.ageuk.org.uk/Documents/EN....pdf?dtrk=true

    p11 "Income that is not counted" it states:

    "any money given to you for, and used to pay, housing costs, rent or care
    home fees not met by income-related ESA, Housing Benefit or your local
    authority "

    The only reason, the ONLY reason I would be taking out a student loan is to cover the cost of student halls of residence accomodation. With that in mind does that mean the student loan would/could be disregarded for the purposes of my ESA amount..or not?
    No, you'd have zero chance of justifying that your student loan will be for that. The SL will be counted as income.

    Can I ask; where did you get the figure of my "income" being £100 per term time week? That would be my income, or how much I would be entitled to receive per term week? I am also confused by virtue of the fact that most loans are classed as capital; but a claimant for income-related ESA is eligible to recieve £6000 in capital before they suffer any reduction in their eligiblity.
    No, that's the 'income' that would be used to 'calculate' benefits entitlement. Capital is not income. (it means savings in a bank account etc) - Students loans are considered income.

    You mention that I would be eligible for a very low amount of ESA. DO you know roughly? I am in the Support Group; and get various premiums, Severe Disability Premium, Enhanced Disability Premium etc.
    I can only guess. You won't get the EDP as you will be in the WRAG and not on Higher rate care for DLA. SDP should be unaffected [I think]. You'll probably get around £65-80 in term time from ESA total, but that's literally a primitive version of napkin maths. It could be more.

    I VERY much appreciate you taking the time to so patiently and clearly identify the finer points of what is an otherwise Byzantianian complex system.
    Np, it's very complex deliberately I think

    I suffer from arthritis, anxiety; low mood etc. My health conditions impact my quality of life yes. But not to a degree where I pose a danger to others. However; a frank and full disclosure WOULD be made by myself, with corroboration from GP and other health professionals, to allow the relevant department to decide whether my health conditions are of such severity, that permitting me to practice medicine would pose a potential and tangible, as well as proportionate threat to patients.

    I would never willfully place the welfare of a patient at risk for the sake of vanity; or ego. At the same time, I do not wish to be precluded from a dream job, for circumstances beyond my control.
    Honestly, I have something similar to arthritis, and would not trust myself as you have no control over flareups or bad days. I remember once having to stitch up a friends arm when she cut herself open and even that was difficult.

    I wasn't trying to say you it's ego, or trying to dash your dreams, but you need to consider YOUR health with the choice too. If you failed it, or screwed up, or got told you weren't fit, that could screw with your MH too. It's something to consider at least.
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    btw, is your DLA award indefinite, and when was it awarded? Also, why don't you have a mobility award for Arthritis?
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    I cant remember precisely when my DLA was awarded; it may have been last year (cant find the award letter). As to the mobility, it would appear I did not satisfy the narrow criteria; and given that if I appealed it; I may lose the middle care component; I was happy to take the bird in the hand. I was/am well aware how crucial the DLA is for benefits; specifically, as a passport benefit; and with that in mind, getting it at any level seemed the wiser course of action than getting too "greedy" and appealing the lack of the mobility component for the arthritis in my ankle.

    It is not indefinite; will be due for review on 30/09/2017.
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    (Original post by apronedsamurai)
    I cant remember precisely when my DLA was awarded; it may have been last year (cant find the award letter). As to the mobility, it would appear I did not satisfy the narrow criteria; and given that if I appealed it; I may lose the middle care component; I was happy to take the bird in the hand. I was/am well aware how crucial the DLA is for benefits; specifically, as a passport benefit; and with that in mind, getting it at any level seemed the wiser course of action than getting too "greedy" and appealing the lack of the mobility component for the arthritis in my ankle.

    It is not indefinite; will be due for review on 30/09/2017.
    Ok, you 'may' have 'lucked' out, in that you got middle rate instead of lower rate care, and that you got no mobility instead of lower rate mobility. But as you say, not worth appealing, and the way you have it is actually better for the SDP. It's pretty clutch.

    The point is, on that review date you will be moved over to PiP - It's still 3 years away, but it's something you need to be very aware of. PIP is even more draconian than DLA in its conditional bull****. Obviously at that point if you don't qualify you could be facing a year without ESA at all as they get around to appealing your PIP. Just something to be aware of.
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    need some advice....
    I claim dla (172.80 a month) , esa, (494.80 a month) housing benefit (500 a month for a one bed flat), and am in the support group..(diagnosed with a mental health condition - have had a series of lengthy spells in and out of hospital over the last 5 years ..approx 6 times of 3 months in and out)
    I currently feel ok have been out of hospital for a year now, i also work less than under 16 hours permitted work rules (4 hours in a shop (1456 a year) and normally play about one paid gig once a week £2600 a year)
    when you add all of this up.... it comes to 18,724 with no tax paid and not much work to do...

    I have not been notified that i have to go for an assessment ( i have also read that as I’m in the support group i can go on claiming and working like this indefinitely...

    However im starting to feel bad for claiming so much
    BUT heres my dilemma...
    I have a degree but its only a 2:2 in the general built environment hence im not qualified in particularly anything and would definitely struggle at the moment to get any job about 15,000 a year or above and it woudl be in an area i wouldnt enjoy.. so im getting (without working much..nearly 6,000 more than if i worked fullltime in a lousy min wage job assuming tid get 12-13000 fora bar job or call centre or something)

    ..i know i can get fees discount to get a postgrad degree and be qualified surveyor...but even a grad entry level job would pay from 18,000 to 21,000...but after tax this would be 15,000 to 17,000 this is still lower than when you add up what i earn at the moment...which is 18,724...and again i would be highly stressed and blown out from the job so im asking is it really worth doing anything?? it wouldnt be until i have worked for five or so years in the profession and a lot of hard work that i would start making anything like i get now for free!... as once your chartered surveyor you can make £25,000 + a year but with tax and student loan taken off would be about the same as what i get now! (18,700)

    one of my passions is music and so i can quite easily write songs record and try and make a name for myself in my spare time at home in my flat...id much rather do that then work full tiome , be stressed and earn less than what i do now..!
    but then its the social status of having a good job and what else that could bring such as benefits of travelling abroad with a world recognised qualification and what else i don’t know???

    While im grateful for free money, doesn’t this show how ridiculous the system is?
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    (Original post by samba)
    There is zero risk of losing DLA, and unless the DWP try to do something very dodgy, the risk of losing ESA is very very low.
    There is a risk of losing DLA if your course contradicts your care and /or mobility needs. You may also lose ESA if the reason why you're unfit for work contradicts the course you do. They may also question how you can be unfit for work; but do a demanding course such as medicine.

    You won't get the EDP as you will be in the WRAG
    eh? The OP is in the support group. Being a student won't mean he's moved to WRAG.
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    (Original post by OU Student)
    There is a risk of losing DLA if your course contradicts your care and /or mobility needs. You may also lose ESA if the reason why you're unfit for work contradicts the course you do. They may also question how you can be unfit for work; but do a demanding course such as medicine.
    Nooo, I've never even heard of that happening, and I've heard of all the crappy things the DWP do. Would be in clear contravention to uncrpd icescr etc, not to mention a bundle of local and eu legislation. I've honestly never heard them make such an argument in respect to removing DLA's care component on becoming a student.

    eh? The OP is in the support group. Being a student won't mean he's moved to WRAG.
    It won't necessarily mean he's moved to WRAG, but it'll be reassessed as a circumstance change and the overwhelming likelihood is he'll be placed in WRAG. Unlike DLA which has a lot of legislatively enshrined protection, ESA does not and it's fairly easy to argue the exceptional conditions don't apply if you're in FTE too. It's essentially a cost cutting exercise I guess, but one that kind of makes sense.
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    (Original post by samba)
    I've honestly never heard them make such an argument in respect to removing DLA's care component on becoming a student.
    I haven't either. But it could happen if the DWP decide that he doesn't nee the same level of care.

    It won't necessarily mean he's moved to WRAG, but it'll be reassessed as a circumstance change and the overwhelming likelihood is he'll be placed in WRAG..
    I'm curious where you're getting this information from. Because I can't find anything that says there's a high chance someone would be placed in WRAG.

    IIRC, medical students do a lot of full time work placements / experience. Going to look a bit odd if he says he can't work; but is well enough to do a demanding work placement.
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    Just a couple of points for clarification; I am in Scotland. Scottish students; studying in Scotland, do NOT get the SSG. At all.

    At the time of writing; the maximum loan amount is £6750 per annum; with a bursary of £750; bringing the total applicable amount to £7500. (This is for independent students, as per SAAS).

    Therefore; the typical Scottish student would be eligible to £7500 per year.

    I spoke with the DWP; who said that the ESA would be reduced on a pound for pound basis. Does that mean, for the sake of argument that if the £144 per week (loan divided by 52) and I as I am currently recieving £185 per week in ESA: the shortfall of £41 would still be mines?
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    (Original post by OU Student)
    I haven't either. But it could happen if the DWP decide that he doesn't nee the same level of care.
    It's not worth them fighting. DLA is designed as a benefit to work 'inline' with full work work, education, and other benefits. It'd basically be stating 'disabled people are unfit to be students or workers' and cause them a boatload of hassle.


    I'm curious where you're getting this information from. Because I can't find anything that says there's a high chance someone would be placed in WRAG.

    IIRC, medical students do a lot of full time work placements / experience. Going to look a bit odd if he says he can't work; but is well enough to do a demanding work placement.
    Yea, because students work over a long period, this is generally considered wra, and it's fairly safe for them to push to wrag. 1. It's not really worth the student appealing 2. it's basically wra over a 3 year period anyway. I'll pm to the latter
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    i claim esa and dla. i realise i could b reassesed but i hope not. I want to study part time post grad.. ( should be less than 16 hours) but i get income based and contributary based esa and am in the support group...i guess its a case of wait and see what the dwp say
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    Hey I recieve ESA support gourp and DLA lower rate. I live in Sotland and have been thinking about doing a part time course. I suffer from mental and physical disabilities and don't know how i'd cope in a big group or with travelling depending on location. I Was wondering if I could study from home or attend a part time course like an SVQ would it affect my ESA? Any help would be great thanks
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    (Original post by mcbee88)
    Hey I recieve ESA support gourp and DLA lower rate. I live in Sotland and have been thinking about doing a part time course. I suffer from mental and physical disabilities and don't know how i'd cope in a big group or with travelling depending on location. I Was wondering if I could study from home or attend a part time course like an SVQ would it affect my ESA? Any help would be great thanks
    You need to inform the DWP. But part time study doesn't affect ESA.
 
 
 
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