ESA (how long does it take?)

Hi everyone,

Just wondered if anyone could help as to regards timelines? I am currently on Incapacity Benefit and received the dreaded ESA forms to complete and return by 16th April this year. I was going to be a little late with them so I rang and let them know they were going to be late (they said as I had rung this was OK) and they were completed (by the CAB) and posted off a couple of days late. I requested a home visit as the medicals were being carried out about a 45minute drive away (too much for me).

I keep watching out for them to come through the post with a date for the medical but have heard nothing so far.

How long does it take from receiving the completed forms to sending out a response?

SUCH a worrying time!


Echo x

Hello Echo.

Your guess is as good as my one.I to sent the form back in and am waiting and 2-3 weeks later I am still waiting.

The DWP are way behind in sorting these things out,DLA is taking upto 15 weeks.



You could expect to wait 3-5 months for the medical / response depending on where you live. This is due to the volume of claims being processed.

If you have to appeal this could add a further 9-12 months for the appeal to be heard.

Please try not to worry (easier said than done).



I went through the process this time last year… I was 8 weeks exactly from the day the forms were due in - to attending the medical, and had the ‘decision’ one week later…(I think I was informed that I would require a medical 3/4 weeks after the form was sent in).

Not sure but think there might be more of a backlog at the moment so it may take a bit longer.

I remember this was a really worrying and stressful process at the time - but you do get through it… ( I thankfully didn’t need to go into the appeal process.)


Hi Echo,

I had my ESA forms Nov. last year, I think mine took about a fornight. I didn’t have to have a medical, I was put straight into the support group, I think that was because I have Ulcerative Colitis, although I did write down all the other symptoms that I’m having, and all the people that I’m seeing at the moment, GP, OT, neuro, and rheumy.

Take care,


my claim took the piss. It took me 8 weaks to get any money at all and that was the bear minimum i then had another month before i got a appointment with a dr (atos health care) who frankly didnt give a toss. And then about another month for my benafits to get sarted propperly. And then last month (12 months on)royal mail lost my esa50 form and they have stopped it all again. And iv now got to start my claim again from the begining. And i find myself sitting here thinking that these people who scam £100,000’s out of the government must be absolute genius’s

Jim I agree with you,there is scams going were cheaters get money for nothing.

People so sick they cannot breath due to terrible athsma but they smoke heavily,people who cannot work due to a bad back yet they can dig a garden,those who say they cannot sit for long or stand yet they sit for hours driving a car.

The list is endless,I hate those who cheat the system.Yet those in genuine need get nothing,the gov and DWP should spend more time catching the cheats but they dont,they cannot get the younger geniration into work,or those who sit on benefits rather than work as its easy money,yet those who are genuinley disabled are being forced to look for a job.

Go figure.

I have had my ESA medical and was told it was a minimum of 8 weeks to get a decision! Jellybean I’m not going to comment on your post cos once you set me off on that topic I can rant on for hours lol

Me to Niki,I thought STOP woman before you start to rant.

But it is so true that we in need seem to get the bad end of the deal and a good liar and actor can get what they need and do not deserve it.

I agree with you as regards to “scammer”. They are the reason that we have such a stressfull time claiming things that we are entitled to. I worry about it so much. What will happen if they decide that I am not entitled to ESA? What will happen if they decide that I am not entitled to my higher rate DLA? I would not be able to function without my car. I ould not be able to get my little boy to and from school. I would not be able to meet friends etc etc. SOOOOO stressfull and all because of those who know how to “play” the systems!!


My forms had to be in the end if April and my medical is this Sunday!!

I am a new person though not someone who is transferring from something else.


I have just returned my ESA50. Im in the Support group at the moment, I am terrified that they will put me in the WRAG group, I didnt have to have a medical when I first applied so Im hoping I wont have to have one this time.

We shouldnt have to go through all this stress and worry. Lyn x

I returned my ESA50 in Feb not heard a thing,

I am also in the support group and had to appeal and go to tribunal because of the useless atos dr I had two years ago.

I have normally had a quick discission and normally the wrong one, but I would think they must have a back log to deal with…still getting paid so will not worry just yet


Hi Jax I returned my form and then was admitted to hospital and diagnosed. I got a call to arrange appt for medical, told I didn’t have to attend. Next thing letter saying I had to go, a week after DX, head not in right place, could do without Argo. rang and then sent doc, specialist & consultant report. Next thing letter another letter saying got evidence and still had to go. Rang up they sed had evidence and DWP will b in touch and I don’t have to go. Got letter confirming not to attend awaiting DWP call Gather as much evidence as you can Neuro, GP, physio report, ss assessment Mike