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Forum Home  →  Discussion  →  Covid-19: Welfare benefit issues  →  Thread

Do we still need to obtain sick notes during the Corononavirus crisis?

Benefits38
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Welfare Benefits Team, The Money Carer Foundation

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Total Posts: 32

Joined: 9 October 2018

Hello

I have just made a new application for ESA (the client gets the Severe Disability Premium in his Housing Benefit).  The client is unfit for work due to learning difficulties (nothing to do with the coronavirus crisis).  Will I need to obtain a sick note for this client?

Thanks

Lee Forrest
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Team leader of Financial and Social Inclusion - Karbon Homes, Newcastle

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Hi

Claimants ‘affected by coronavirus’ do not have to serve the seven waiting days for claiming ESA and do not have to provide a fit note. ( S.I. 2020 No. 289 )

Under regulation 3, the Secretary of State has discretion to decide that a person who makes a claim for, or is entitled to, universal credit or employment and support allowance may be treated as a person having limited capability for work. This again applies to both contributory and income-related employment and support allowance. The Secretary of State may exercise that discretion where a person is infected or contaminated with Coronavirus disease, is isolating to prevent the spread of Coronavirus disease, or is caring for a child (or qualifying young person) who falls into either of those categories.

So if they’re not affected by coronavirus as above, your client will need to submit a fit note (but remember that if it is unreasonable to expect someone to provide a fit note, the DWP can accept other evidence if that is sufficient).

[ Edited: 24 Apr 2020 at 12:30 pm by Lee Forrest ]
Inverclyde HSCP Advice Services
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Inverclyde Council

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Just off the phone to our local UC partnership team for an existing UC claimant with a non-corona illness. He’s to hang on to the fit notes and submit them when able (presumably post lockdown). He normally uses his local library to manage his UC journal.

Rosie W
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Welfare rights service - Northumberland County Council

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Inverclyde HSCP Advice Services - 06 May 2020 02:43 PM

Just off the phone to our local UC partnership team for an existing UC claimant with a non-corona illness. He’s to hang on to the fit notes and submit them when able (presumably post lockdown). He normally uses his local library to manage his UC journal.

Yes, we were told the same for a client who uses the JC for support to access his Journal and report fit notes. They also said anyone who can report them via the UC account should still do so and hang onto the paper ones.

Most GPs seem happy to post fit notes out to people provided they know them and their condition well enough.