Benefit Update: changes to ESA and PIP claims due to Covid 19

From 17 March 2020 until 17 June 2020 there will be no face-to-face assessments for ESA (Employment Support Allowance) or PIP (Personal Independence Payment). The assessment provider should contact claimants to explain what will happen next and the assessment will either be paper based, or carried out over the phone.

Until 24 June 2020 no reviews will be carried out for ESA or PIP.  So, if your condition deteriorates and you are in the Work Related Activity Group and think you should be in the Support Group (ESA claimants) or you think you are entitled to a higher rate (PIP claimants), it is very important that you request a review to ensure you receive the maximum arrears when the situation returns to normal.

When you claim ESA you will be entitled from the first day of sickness i.e. there are no waiting days.  You will be treated as having Limited Capability for Work (LCW) and will not have to submit fit notes or undergo a Work Capability Assessment (WCA).  

If your PIP is due to expire in the next 3 months you will continue to be paid at your current rate for a period up to another 6 months. For further information or assistance, contact our welfare benefits team on 0141 763 0511

Glasgow North East voluntary group provides support

If you are unable to get out and about as you may be shielding or vulnerable, a voluntary group called ‘Covid-19 Support Glasgow North East’ may be able to help you with things like:

  • Grocery deliveries
  • Medication collection and delivery
  • Dog walking
  • a friendly supportive chat
  • help using online tools

The team of volunteers is available 9am – 9pm, seven days a week, and can be reached as follows:

Phone: 0141 474 6617 (9am-9pm)
Email: COVID19GlasgowHelp@gmail.com
Twitter: @GlasNESupport

National helpline for those at greatest risk of Covid-19 with no other support

A helpline has opened for those at high risk of coronavirus who don’t have existing support or internet access.

If you’re 70+, pregnant, a disabled person, receive the flu jab for medical reasons, or access mental health services, you can call:

📞 0800 111 4000 (9am – 5pm)

Coronavirus – Helpline for those without support

A helpline has opened for those at high risk of #coronavirus who don’t have existing support or internet access.If you’re 70+, pregnant, a disabled person, receive the flu jab for medical reasons, or access mental health services, you can call:📞 0800 111 4000 (9am – 5pm)

Posted by The Scottish Government on Tuesday, 14 April 2020

Citizens Advice Scotland still offering advice and support

You can still access CAS services and advice online via their website, and you can also call their new helpline number for support over the phone. In particular, if you are worried about not working and paying the bills, you can access information on their website here: https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/scotland/debt-and-money/if-you-cant-pay-your-bills-because-of-coronavirus/

DWP advises new claimants ‘don’t call us – we’ll call you’

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is experiencing extremely busy phone lines – please do not call them about your claim, they will call you if needed. Make your claim and any updates to your claim online via your journal, and the DWP will call you as soon as they can if they need to verify your application. The number they call from may appear as 0800, or private/withheld, but to satisfy yourself that the call is genuine, DWP staff will:

– contact the customer via their Universal Credit Journal advising that DWP will be calling soon

– provide the customer with the last three digits of their unique Universal Credit account code/number

– provide the customer with the last three digits/letters of their postcode.

Please avoid calling DWP and use your online journal instead where possible, as they are trying to free up capacity to be able to call claimants.

More information can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/…/don-t-call-us-we-ll-call-you