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ESA short review period

 

Firebird
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Manchester MIND Advice Team

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I have a client who was required to go through another reassessment of her ESA claim barely a year after the previous one. She has severe and enduring social phobia and agorophobia. Her GP has written a letter to explain how the regularity of these reviews is making her mental health worse.
She attended a special school for children with emotional/behavioural difficulties. She is now in her 50s and has never been able to work due to the severity of her symptoms.
I realise it’s probably a hiding to nothing trying to challenge it with the DWP, as even Tribunal recommendations get ignored - but I was just wondering if anyone out there had had any success with this type of case?

     
JAS1
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Advice Worker, Gaddum Centre

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I had a client with Anxiety who got a 3 month review period. She got the award letter then the next ESA50 about 2 weeks later. Great for her anxiety! Thankfully she is now on an 18 months after her therapist wrote a letter which mentioned that the frequent reviews (she also had a 6 month one) were having a very detrimental effect on their work and her recovery. Not sure if this is what swung it but can’t have hurt.

     
Paul_Treloar_AgeUK
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Information and Advice Resources, Age UK

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In light of the GP letter, I’d recommend making a complaint and asking for an explanation of why another referral for WCA has been made so quickly.

     
Firebird
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Manchester MIND Advice Team

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So it’s worth a try then.
If the DWP ignore the letter I have written enclosing GP evidence, I may escalate to a formal complaint.
There doesn’t seem to be any consistency in setting the review period [as with most DWP decisions] - as I’ve had clients less severely affected who have been given longer review periods.