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Last updated:
19/10/2018

How can I claim?

  1. Overview
  2. What is ESA?
  3. How can I claim?
  4. What is the Work Capability Assessment?
  5. What are the groups of ESA?
  6. What is the Work Programme?
  7. What work am I permitted to do on ESA?
  8. Can I appeal if I think the decision about ESA is wrong?
  9. Next steps

How can I claim?

The type of ESA you claim depends on whether you live in a ‘full service’ area or a ‘live service’ area. You can find out which area you live in using this website: https://universalcreditinfo.net/

If you live in a ‘live service’ area

 You can claim income-related ESA (irESA) or contribution-based ESA (cbESA).

To claim irESA or cbESA you can phone Jobcentre Plus on 0800 055 6688 to start your claim. An adviser will ask you for the following information, and some other more detailed questions:

  • Name, address, date of birth and telephone numbers
  • National Insurance number
  • Mortgage or landlord details
  • Council tax details
  • A brief explanation of your illness or disability
  • Name, address and telephone number of your GP
  • Details of other benefits you claim
  • Details of any work you have done
  • Bank account details.

You will need a fit note from your GP to start your claim.

If you do not want to claim by phone, you can ask the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to send you a claim form or you can download a ESA1 form online and take it to your nearest Jobcentre Plus office.

 A carer, friend or relative can call the DWP or fill in the form for you if you require assistance. However, you will need to be with them when they make the calls, just so you can give them permission to speak for you.

 

“A carer, friend or relative can call the DWP or fill in the form for you if you require assistance.”

If you live in a ‘full service’ area

 You can claim new style ESA.

 To claim new style ESA you can call the Universal Credit Full Service helpline on 0800 328 5644 (choose option 2, then option 6). 

Reclaiming new style ESA

In most cases you won’t be able to claim new style ESA if you have been found capable of doing some work after your Work Capability Assessment. The main exceptions are if:

  • your current condition has got a lot worse
  • you’re claiming for a new condition

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Within this subject

  1. Overview
  2. What is ESA?
  3. How can I claim?
  4. What is the Work Capability Assessment?
  5. What are the groups of ESA?
  6. What is the Work Programme?
  7. What work am I permitted to do on ESA?
  8. Can I appeal if I think the decision about ESA is wrong?
  9. Next steps
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