Not ms..... Benefits?

Hi everyone hope we’re all ok (as can be) this early am! Ok, I enroled on a course on the open university in september, (my friend helped me fill out the application, but bless her she did it wrong, so it was returned to me to be amended) and i got an email from them on friday, it was saying about the course fees. (£179) needed paying before i could start. So, that set me off worrying! I mean, who has that kind of money this close to christmas? So when i rang them yesterday (monday) i was quite surprised to find out I got a bursary and didnt need to pay the fees. But when I said to her about the MS and having slurred speech when i was tired and it might be a problem when im having the tutorials over the phone and could she put it in my notes? She said no, you’re not getting enough points? (15, has to be a 30 point course to get help) But anyway, as im on incapacity benefit should i contact them and tell them (DWP)? I dont want to get myself in trouble. Do you think i have to tell them? :? Clare xxx

Hi Clare, why don’t you ask your MS nurse (assuming you have one) to intervene. This has helped me enormously in the past, although it was to reinstate my benefits on that occasion. Most people are not familiar with MS and neither was I until I was diagnosed.

Hi Clare Good Luck with your course :slight_smile: Whenever you receive the details, Email your tutor and explain your speech problems. The tutors are usually only willing to help. Sorry, I can’t help regarding incapacity benefit. Why do you believe they need to know that you are doing an OU course? I’m just curious, what type od bursary did you get? V

I hope version 2 of this forum has an edit button Meant to say The tutors are usually only too willing to help. V

That’s a pity your OU course does not qualify for the help the OU usually offers disabled students - they are normally falling over themselves to help. Even if your course does not trigger the full disability help thing, I am quite sure that your tutor will be helpful and responsive to your needs and it just sounds daft that the person you spoke to was funny about putting a note on yor file. He/she sounds like a stupid person and I would not worry about it - I’m sure your tutor will be sensible and fine. I hope your enjoy the course. Alison x

Hi Clare, With regard to DWP: IB is not means tested so it does not take into account income (with the exception of pension income) or savings. The bursary that you get would not therefore have any effect on your IB. There is nothing in theory to prevent you claiming IB and being a full time student. I don’t expect that OU courses are classed as full time because people work and do them but full time students are not normally eligible for means tested benefits (but as I said IB is not means tested so no worries anyway) Being a full time student would effect housing and council tax benefit so you would probably need to clarify the course classification if you claim either of these. Jane

Hi, just me again!! Thanks for all your replies x I did have an MS nurse (she was in preston) but it seems we have a new one for our town now (?) barrow in furness (ive never properly seen her) And i got an email from them (the OU) saying that i need to fill out a form (did it online and emailed it to them) about the help I might need, like a dictaphone on loan (will help with the phone tutorials maybe? I dont have a clue what I might need?) I dont know whether i was clear enough with the woman on the phone though, she must have thought I was after more money!! (I’m only get DLA and IB, no council tax/housing etc.) I start on the 1st of november, and I’m worried! My friend (who helped me with the form) is working away in S.Korea, so theres half me brain gone haha!! I’m sure I can do this, I know psychology!! Thanks everyone Clare X

Hi everyone!!

Yes, I couldnt find this post before so have posted another to tell you how much you all have helped me, I hope you can find it, but I’ll say it again, I really appreciate how much you helped me!!

@ verona, im not too sure what kind of bursary it was, but as I have M.S. AND mental health problems and am in receipt of only one benefit (DLA is not included as income as such) IB only.

Thanks again xxxx