Income Support versus Incapacity Benefit/ESA


S

Sam

Hi

I am 19 and have been chronically ill for some time. I receive DLA (high
rate mobility and middle rate care) and Income Support with a Disability
Premium, which is £73.80 a week. I made a joint application for IS/IB in
June but did not qualify for IB in Youth at the time because I did not
produce a medical certificate for the qualifying period. I was put on IS
instead and was told that in January 09 I will be eligible to apply for
IB/ESA and that I should ask for an application form at around that time.

I am wondering whether I should just stay on IS for the time being or
whether I would be better off on ESA. I have filled in so many forms and
they have made a mess of my claim which took a lot of effort and time to
sort out. I am now exempt from sending in medical certificates for the next
year and all the payments they'd owed me are finally up-to-date so the
thought of making a new claim (I assume) and going through it all again so
soon, especially with all the recent changes in benefits, really puts me
off, since I found it very hard to cope with the first time around. I am not
sure if I would be receiving the Disability Premium with the ESA but if not,
the difference in my income wouldn't be so big, anyway.

Thank you for any thoughts.
 
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R

Robbie

Sam said:
Hi

I am 19 and have been chronically ill for some time. I receive DLA (high
rate mobility and middle rate care) and Income Support with a Disability
Premium, which is £73.80 a week. I made a joint application for IS/IB in
June but did not qualify for IB in Youth at the time because I did not
produce a medical certificate for the qualifying period. I was put on IS
instead and was told that in January 09 I will be eligible to apply for
IB/ESA and that I should ask for an application form at around that time.

I am wondering whether I should just stay on IS for the time being or
whether I would be better off on ESA. I have filled in so many forms and
they have made a mess of my claim which took a lot of effort and time to
sort out. I am now exempt from sending in medical certificates for the
next year and all the payments they'd owed me are finally up-to-date so
the thought of making a new claim (I assume) and going through it all
again so soon, especially with all the recent changes in benefits,
really puts me off, since I found it very hard to cope with the first
time around. I am not sure if I would be receiving the Disability
Premium with the ESA but if not, the difference in my income wouldn't be
so big, anyway.

Thank you for any thoughts.
I'm not sure how you got IS if you couldn't get IB and also don't
understand why they told you to reapply in January 09. If you are
entitled then surely you would be entitled now. Under IB you would have
got £102 a week, which is partly because of additional amount paid
because of your age. I'm not 100% sure, but I don't think this age
allowance is payable under ESA, so you may be not much better off. As I
said, I'm not sure about the age allowance, I would need to check that up.

I would chase up why they aren't paying you IB/ESA. It seems to me like
they are doing you out of some money.
 
S

Sam

I'm not sure how you got IS if you couldn't get IB and also don't
understand why they told you to reapply in January 09. If you are entitled
then surely you would be entitled now. Under IB you would have got £102 a
week, which is partly because of additional amount paid because of your
age. I'm not 100% sure, but I don't think this age allowance is payable
under ESA, so you may be not much better off. As I said, I'm not sure
about the age allowance, I would need to check that up.
I believe that I have an underlying entitlement to IB in Youth. I was told
that if I gave them a medical certificate covering 196 days (or something
like that) before my claim date, I would have been entitled to IB. However,
I was still at school during that period and my mum was receiving Child
Benefit and Child Tax Credit for me, which was more money than I would have
got had I claimed IB, so I'd decided against it.

As for January 09, I have been sending in medical certificates for the last
6 months or so, which covers the qualifying period for IB.

Nobody has mentioned the age allowance to me; since I am under 25 I am
receiving the lower rate of IS. I've always thought that young people get
less benefit money?
I would chase up why they aren't paying you IB/ESA. It seems to me like
they are doing you out of some money.
I don't quite understand the new ESA rules but it seems that I would be
getting £60.50 in the post-assessment period plus the Enhanced Disability
Premium of £12.60 (if the same rules apply), making it £73.10 in total,
which is what I am getting now. If they treated my claim as a new one, the
pre-assessment payment would be only £47.95 so I would lose some money.
 
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R

Robbie

Sam said:
I believe that I have an underlying entitlement to IB in Youth. I was
told that if I gave them a medical certificate covering 196 days (or
something like that) before my claim date, I would have been entitled to
IB. However, I was still at school during that period and my mum was
receiving Child Benefit and Child Tax Credit for me, which was more
money than I would have got had I claimed IB, so I'd decided against it.
Why not get a backdated certificate from your Doctor and try to get IB.
The ESA regime is a lot tougher and there are more stringent medicals.
You aren't exempt from being called for a medical unless you receive the
highest care component of DLA or have certain medical conditions. Far
better to fall under the IB regime than the ESA regime. I think you made
a mistake in not claiming IB before now.
As for January 09, I have been sending in medical certificates for the
last 6 months or so, which covers the qualifying period for IB.

Nobody has mentioned the age allowance to me; since I am under 25 I am
receiving the lower rate of IS. I've always thought that young people
get less benefit money?
The age allowance is in Incapacity Benefit, not Income Support. It gives
additional money depending on your age when you first became unable to
work. As you are under 35 this is the highest age addition, which is
£17.75 per week. On top of this is IB itself which is £84.50, a total of
£102.25 per week.

Income Support is less for under 25s so that gives you almost £30 less
per week, although if you were on IB you would have to pay for
prescriptions etc unless you are in an exempt category.
I don't quite understand the new ESA rules but it seems that I would be
getting £60.50 in the post-assessment period plus the Enhanced
Disability Premium of £12.60 (if the same rules apply), making it £73.10
in total, which is what I am getting now. If they treated my claim as a
new one, the pre-assessment payment would be only £47.95 so I would lose
some money.
You are getting Income Support so you shouldn't be able to get ESA.
Though the IB situation causes a bit of confusion as technically there
are no new claims for IB and instead the person has to claim ESA. I
honestly don't know what you would get, IB or ESA. The latter pays a lot
less but it should give you about £89.50 per week if you get the support
rate. You would then no longer receive IS as your income would be higher
than the IS rate. The ESA rate you quote is for means tested ESA, if you
qualify for Incapacity In Youth you get ESA as if you had paid full
contributions.
 

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