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Benefits advice and how messed up the DWP are

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
Hi all i was originally claiming ESA while my partner was self employed but not really earning much. Up until xmas she was struggling to earn hardly anything so started job hunting. In January she started a job doing 30 hours a week and paid monthly. I had my ESA stopped and first thoughts was i needed to claim something else quickly as my wife would be paid monthly. They sent me the forms to reapply for ESA but 2 weeks later was told we'd get nothing.

I was then told to apply for JSA. We had really started to struggle living minus 263 pounds a week. I followed the JSA guidelines with job hunting to be then told another 3 weeks later i would not get anything. My wife's first wage was gone before we got it with living off what we had to all January. I signed off straight away and applied for working tax credits including back payment. We have still not heard anything and to be honest my wife would be better quitting her job. Does anyone know the usual time for tax credits to be set up please ?

I have questioned the job centre and the JSA phone centre staff. They say everyone is better off working but that's a proven lie. We are still minus 100 pounds a week. Fortunately i should be starting work next week even though after rent and council tax my wage won't be a massive improvement. At least we'll have the satisfaction of working and telling the DWP to shove their money where the sun doesn't shine.

I can really see why people are scared to take jobs now. The thought of a month before getting paid and losing all benefits straight away is a massive worry. I don't know how we coped


  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Hi there and thanks for your post. Benefit awards and the procedures to apply for the different types of benefits can be very confusing. Everyone's circumstances are different and therefore it is difficult to give you specific advice. I think tax credits can take several weeks to process but you could try calling them to see what the delay is - perhaps they need more information from you. You may also need to update them when you start working next week.
    You may find this website useful - http://www.turn2us.org.uk/benefits_search.aspx. They have a really useful benefits calculator.
    I hope this helps.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Hi and thanks we have worked out what we are due in working tax credits. At this point we are now owed over £600 in arrears but still waiting any sign of this coming. I'd keep phoning them but had over a thirty minute wait each time to get through. We certainly don't have the money for a large phone bill at the moment. I spoke to them last week and they advised a few days but have only received a small Child tax credits payment.

    I have always been a believer in everyone working but after this i think differently. If we'd had known we'd have to go through what we have especially after Christmas then my wife would have waited to start work until we'd have saved some money ready.
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