Not sure what to do about work ?

I work for a care agency so do not get sick pay when im off .

I have been off work for 3 weeks now due to my symptoms.I have used my whole years holiday allowance so that i still get some pay theses last 3 weeks ive been off .

Im due to go back next week ,but just dont know how im supposed to do this feeling like i do .My doctor has said she will sign me off in the past, but i have said no due to not being paid .

How do i go about claiming ESA? i looked on there website and you can now do it over the phone .But how long do you have to wait until you start getting any money ?as obviously i cant live off nothing .

I dont want to quit my job as ive been there 8 years and enjoy the work i do .

Any advice would be great ,thanks

Sam xx

Hi Sam You need to be unemployed before ESA can be claimed. You could try claiming DLA as this is non means tested and can be claimed if you work. You will need a sick note from doc to claim ESA, but you also need not to be working. You need to check the position about stopping work-leaving as opposed to being off sick. As it could be said you intentionally stopped work and you benefit old be reduced or not paid. If you don not wanna quit job, you are entitled to SSP may help but worth a claim for DLA. The benefits systems a minefield. If you get ESA and in the support group you can work 16 hrs and be paid just less then £100 per week. Dunno if that helps. ESA assessment phase 13 weeks Normally a medical by our helpful friends at ATOS-helpfully (cra*) Then in the support group or other, sorry name slips me at min head not on yet. Hope this helps Give me a nudge if you want more info Mike


You don’t actually have to be unemployed to receive ESA. I was a teacher and claimed ESA after my SSP ran out. I was still on half pay from work at the time and I received ESA in addition to my salary. It only reduced when I started to receive my pension (which was significantly less than half pay) I queried it at the time as I didn’t want to receive anything I wasn’t entitled to but was told this was right.

So you will be able to claim ESA without leaving your job.

I can’t remember how long the prcess took but I don’t think it took that long to start getting the assessment phase money

Hope that helps,

Sarah x

Hi Dogtanion Thanks for that. I was told by the DWP I could not claim ESA unless I was unemployed. When I became unemployed they messed me about for 7 weeks before I got benefit payments. I did not claim anything when I was sick as I got 12 months full pay, and I went back before that. Consistency would be good. Thanks or that Mike

Hi Sam

I claim ESA, and have done for the past three and half months.

Its basically for people who do not get SSP (like you), and it can be income related. So, as I dont get SSP from my job (as Im self employed), I am entitled to it. I am a single parent, so my daughter and I were really in dire straights financially when I applied for it. I phoned them up, and about 3 weeks later it was granted, and the money was in the bank (Phew!!). It gets paid to me on a Tuesday every other week. I get £71 a week as its income related (and I am very poor at the moment!!). I have to send in sick certs every month so need to see the dr to get them (which is fine as I seem to be at the drs every week at the moment!). My dr has now signed me off for two months (until I see neuro for diagnosis).

Its easy to apply for, so make the call asap. I waited to make the call, but then wondered why as its easy… you basically just answer the questions they ask. Then they send you the form to sign, so check that, sign it and send it back quickly. About 2 weeks later money was in the bank :smiley:

Its a horrible time for us all who are having tests, seeing neuros, waiting for diagnosis, and worrying about money is something we shouldnt do. The money I get is hardly enough to live on, but when you get ESA, you should also be eligible to get Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit, which should also take some presuure off you. My daughter and I are now in a situation where we have to be really careful with money, but we are surviving and eating well etc.

I have never claimed anything before, and it does feel strange being dependant on the Government, but as the only earner (my daughter is at school still) we would be starving and homeless without these benefits - ESA, HB and CTB. So while I dont like claiming, I feel that as I am actually ill (rather than people who claim and are fine!) I will claim everything I am entitled to, and I try not to feel horrible about it. I have also put in a claim for Disability Living Allowance now (as my GP told me to!).

Hopefully that helps Sam :smiley: Good luck

Paula xx

Hi Sam Have a look at this it may have info for you Mike

Thanks Mike my benefits are up in the air too. Frank.

Thanks for the advice everyone :slight_smile:

I spoke to my work and they do pay statatuary sick pay apparently (they kept that quite!) So ive seen my doctor and she has signed me off sick until the end of august and backdated the certificate to july 1 st .

So my husband is taking it in to my work today .Dont know how much i will get though ?

Sam x

Hi Sam,

Have a look at the Money Tax and Benefits section on the government website:- or the HMRC website

Both websites explain things quite well. I think the basic statutory pay is £85.85 but they also take ‘waiting days’ into consideration. I’m pretty sure the HMRC website has an online tool where you can work out how much you can expect to get.

Hope that helps a bit

Debbie xx

Thanks Debbie I will have a look Sam xx