Benefits advice needed please

Can anyone tell me what I need to do next. My ssp will come to the twenty eight weeks in a months time and I will be unable to return to my job. I’ve already filled out atos forms but have not been called for a medical as I ended up getting ssp instead of ESA. Will I need to make a new ESA claim? My illness is both physical(ms) and mental health(anxiety and depression). I have worked as a nurse without any breaks in employment and have 35 years of contributions.

When your SSP comes to an end and you are still unfit to work you need to apply for ESA.
You mention that you have filled in ATOS forms – ATOS are just the people who administer the medicals, the forms actually come from DWP. It is likely that your employer sent you the ESA forms to fill in.
ESA is a very complex benefit and you would do well to find out as much as you can about it because applications are fraught with difficulties. A good place for help and information is the Benefits and Work Website. It costs about £20.00 to join but is well worth the money.

It may be that your ESA claim was too early – SSP last 28 weeks and is always paid in preference if you are still in employment. You need to check with the jobcentre if you need to put in another claim form. My suspicion is that you will want to do the form again once you have read the guides at Benefits and Work so I’d aim for that if I were you. ESA starts with an assessment period for 13 weeks – this should follow on smoothly from your SSP.
As you have worked and paid NI you will be entitled to contribution based ESA

Are you terminating at work? What about your pension? Are you able to claim ill health retirement?

My pension is frozen in the nhs(20 hrs) been in private sector last ten years with no pension scheme, assume maybe I can apply for it if end up in ESA support group?

You can find out about your pension from HR dept at your old place of work. The rules about drawing it early are peculiar to your employer and have nothing to do with ESA. (Although some organizations do employ ATOS to administer the medicals!) The Pensions Advisory Service might be able to help.(

Occupational Pensions have an effect on ESA.

Contribution based:
The first £85 is ignored. 50% of the surplus is deducted from your benefit

Income based
All pension is deducted £1 for £1


Hi i have been dianosised with ms but been off work for 9 months first 2 months was full pay , next 2 two was half and now i am on a income protection scheme where i get 30 % of my wage from work , the MS has left me with hardly being able to walk , balance shot , and depression , cordination not good either , iam in process of appling for a blue bage , and pip which iam waiting for the paperwork to come through . what else can i claim on do you know ??this is all new to me as i have always been a fit person . can anyone advise me please as it seems like a jungle out there !

thanks in advance

Try the CAB, see if you can get an appointment with a benefits advisor or have a look at their website: Benefits - Citizens Advice Unfortunately it looks like their benefits calculator is not working at the present, but you can check through the section on Sick and Disabled.


thanks sue , i will take a look

Hi, if you are on Contribution based ESA how much of a private pension can you take out in order to pay for wet room / clear bills before it impacts your benefits? It would not be taken as an income only for sorting things out. Big thanks in advance -No one seems to know for sure :frowning: