ESA reassessment exemptions

I’ve been meaning to post this for a while now, on the subject of reassessment of claimants of ESA.

There are still very restrictive conditions required in order to meet the necessary criteria to avoid ESA reassessment.

These are:

Claimants will have to satisfy all four of the following

  1. The level of function will always meet the limited capacity for work related activity criteria.

  2. The condition will always be present (some lifelong conditions are present from birth the others will develop or be acquired later in life)

  3. No realistic prospect of recovery of function (with advice on this being based on currently available treatment and not on the prospect of scientists discovering a cure in the future)

  4. Unambiguous condition ( following all relevant clinical investigations a recognised medical diagnosis has been made)

if all the above four criteria and any of the limited capacity for work related activity criteria are met, the healthcare professional is to advise the decision-maker that the claimant has a severe condition and has limited capacity for work related activity.

I have also found the following wording from the government’s own website.

ESA claimants in the support group and universal credit claimants with limited capability for work and work related activity attending a work capability assessment from the 29th of September 2017 will no longer need to be reassessed if it finds they:

Have a severe, lifelong disability, illness or health condition,

Unlikely to ever be able to move into work.

One possibility could be, and I say could be, fewer claimants assessed as having limited capacity for work related activity and consequently more claimants being put into the work related activity group. This counteracts the effect of removing the need for reassessment of those as described, as WRAG Claiments are still regularly assessed!

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In that case I should be exempt but I’m not. I was told I have to be reassessed in 2019 which I frankly don’t understand because my condition will never improve but can only get worse.

Scratching head…???

Well, Florence the Cat are you now SPMS? If you are, this should be your last ESA bullying. If you are still RRMS, it is worth keeping your neurologist informed about symptoms, which don’t get better, he/she may decide you are now SPMS. In an Orwellian sense - there has never been a better time to be SPMS!

This all came into effect from 29th October 2017. So if your last reassessment was before that date you could face another brown envelope horror.

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I have RRMS and believe I meet the criteria for no reassessment.

But I have just been sent today a form to complete for reassessment entitled “Capability for Work questionnaire”.

How should I proceed?

Do you think I could email them and explain I meet the criteria?

Has anyone else been through this?

Is this your first ESA??

They just did an NHS paper-based assessment, and phoned my GP for my ESA

when I was RRMS.

They never asked to see me to do a WCA. Just fill the form and sent it off

and let your GP know to expect a phone call - and send any NHS letters your have or ask you GP

to write a “To whom it may concern letter” to give the ESA assessor all the details they need re. your

condition. I was automatically put in the Support Group.

Hi all,

letters from GPs must contain functionality details that correspond to DWP discriptors, so a letter confirming diagnosis whilst not completely useless won’t specifically answer their questions as to whether a claiment can or cannot engage in work related activities.

Having MS in any form automatically meets two of the conditions the others could be open to interpretation.

In terms of dates, it very specifically stipulates 29th October 2017. If you categorically meet all criteria and you’ve been reassessed since this date you could speak to your MP if you get another ESA50 as this is not in line with their own regulations!

But I must admit that this could be the DWP paying lip service as somewhere in amongst all their waffle is probably ‘we reserve the right to assess and reassess whenever we want regardless of what people might think’

Yes I’m a cynic/realist.

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Hi PJ,

This is not my first ESA, I’ve been in the support group since 2012.

And yesterday I got a re-assessment form in the post.


When I was diagnosed last year with SPMS, I called ESA and said I had got worse from RRMS now SPMS,

and the ESA guy wrote this on my file and said I was due for another WCA in November this year, and that because I

was now progressive that this would be my last assessment.

Do you think you might now be SPMS??

Worth checking with your neurologist.

I am praying that the WCA I completed at the end of October last year (decision was made I think early November) will have been my last.

It doesn’t say that anywhere on the decision notice, but I do fit the criteria. I suspect that regardless of it being utterly meaningless with regard to actual ability, or fitness to work, just the word ‘progressive’ has a psychological effect on the decision maker.

This isn’t based on anything except my own belief btw. It shouldn’t make a scrap of difference to the assessment whether you are RR, SP or PP. As has been said before, the word ‘Advanced’ is much more appropriate. But that’s not a concept with which the DWP assessors and decision makers are necessarily familiar.


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I sent in my WCA questionnaire over a month ago and still not heard anything yet.