ESA Supprt Group

I`m in the ESA Support Group and that is the only benefit I receive.

Therefore I need to work to earn a bit extra.

Does anybody know what the maximum I can earn is without losing my benefit. I`ve tried ringing but am forever on hold.

CAB have just quoted what I have found online.

Why is everything so bloody complicated ?

Many thanks.

But why don’t you believe what you have found online? I thought the answer was quite straightforward: Work you can do while getting ESA - Citizens Advice

I agree £20 isn’t a lot. But the whole point of being in the support group is that you are unable to work because of your heath or disability.


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So which one is it because it isnt straightforward as far as Im concerned. Permitted work means you can: work and earn up to £20 a week work less than 16 hours a week, and earn up to £120.00 a week for up to 52 weeks (there’s no time limit of 52 weeks if you’re in the support group) If you’re unable to work in the support group because of health what are those guidelines all about then ? Plus the fact of receiving £109 a week isn`t enough to survive on with all the outgoings.

Actually you can earn up to £120 (net) a week doing permitted work and it doesn’t affect your ESA if you are in the support group. You have to inform DWP and complete a PW1 which outlines the work you are doing. I just had to stop work due to the effect pneumonia had on my MS but my ESA (Support group) payments were never affected. I kept checking with DWP and they kept confirming there was no problem.

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Thanks Hopeful.

£120 is worth getting out of bed for not £20.

All I`ve got to do now is find work I can do from home as going out to work is not an option.

It’s pretty straightforward, you can earn up to £120 per week, net, and it will not affect your ESA if you are in the support group. Of course it depends on the type of work you are doing. I was working 12 hours a week for CAB and earning £450 a month without my ESA being affected. I informed DWP and completed a PW1 which they keep on file.


I was originally in Contribution Based ESA and then moved to the Support Group ESA which increased my benefit. I think you are confusing the Support Group with Income Related ESA and Contribution Based ESA which dont have support groups. Well thats my understanding of it anyway. Over to you Hopeful.

Well, I am receiving Contributions based ESA and am in the support group, was working 12 hours a week and being paid £450 a month. I kept DWP informed of everything and there was never a problem. You can be receiving Cont based ESA and not be in the support group, but if moved to the support group it doesn’t mean you are no longer on Cont based ESA. When I stopped working they thanked me for the information and told me just to contact them should I decide to try working again.

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Finally I’ve managed to log into The rules regarding permitted work whilst on ESA changed on 3rd April 2017. You are now able to do up to 16 hours of permitted work and earn up to £120 per week. But although the DWP are not supposed to reconsider your benefit because you are doing permitted work, the next time your claim is reviewed they can take the work you do into consideration. So if as part of your ESA claim you state that you can’t stand for long, but you do a job which requires that you stand for long periods, you could find your claim negatively considered in that regard.

Obviously you should inform the DWP if you start to work.


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Apologies for my earlier incorrect post btw.

I’ll be honest, I don’t get this, but my husband is allowed to earn £116 as a carer a week, plus the carer’s allowance & my PIP, I’m as confused as you Scudger. The DWP is notified of husband’s earnings, so why is this different? It’s very confusing.

I am a full time carer to my partner because of her Dementia. As I receive ESA being diagnosed with PPMS I dont qualify for carers allowance. We can have a carer to come in who will get paid. So why cant they pay me to do the work? That can count as my £120 per week. Oh no that would be too `kin easy.

Your telling me Scudger!!! How bloody hard can they make it!!! I was perturbed by your question, hence my reply, but I can’t get my head round this, how is there 1 way for 1 thing & another for another!!! We declare my husband’s earnings, but he only earns what is allowed, yet he can still get carer’s, doesn’t make sense what your going through!!! Sorry I have no knowledge on ESA, I can only relate on my situation, but I hope you get an answer soon Tracey

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Extremely Stupid Arrangement

You can’t get both Carers Allowance and ESA because they are both benefits paid as ‘earnings replacements’. Otherwise known as overlapping benefits.

I agree it’s a bloody complex and stupid set of arbitrary rules. The trouble is that originally the idea of paying people because they were too unwell, or old or had lost their jobs was straightforward. But that was in the 1940s. Since then bits and pieces got bolted on, benefits replaced other benefits, it has all become unwieldy, impossible to understand for the average non specialist (and lots of them too) and should be shelved and replaced with something that works. But that’s virtually impossible to do now because of the vast amount of Acts of Parliament, agencies, departments, rules, jobs, etc,etc which would all have to be scrapped and replaced. At a cost of billions. And then you’ve got to replace all these little bits and pieces, which would again be complex, probably unwieldy, perhaps just as stupid and difficult to understand. And wouldn’t save a penny of Tax / National Insurance money. And we’d be no better off.