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Osteoarthritis - DLA?
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# 1
Terrysdelight
Old 11-01-2012, 11:50 AM
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Default Osteoarthritis - DLA?

Hello

I wonder if there is anyone who can give me some advice on this subject and the possibility of DLA.

I have watched one of my closet friends suffer for years with chronic pain - it really affects her quality of life - she has reduced her working hours further and further. About to reduce again and she really really cant afford too. She can't bend or carry. It turns out she has it in her spine, hips, knees, ankles and hands.

I have suggested to her to claim DLA but she doesn't know anything about DLA and what criteria etc to claim.

She doesn't really want to give up work but I fear it wont be long before she is finally forced to do it.

Do you think she may be entitled to claim and would she need to give up work altogether or go on incapacity benefit?

Many thanks for advice.
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# 2
rogerblack
Old 11-01-2012, 12:01 PM
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Incapacity benefit no longer exists for new claims, she'd need to claim ESA. (Employment and support allowance).

DLA in short has several bands.
Low-rate care is if she can't reliably and safely cook a main meal for one from ingredients - involving chopping, lifting, ...
Mid-rate is if she reasonably requires care or attention to prevent danger throughout the day (even if she does not receive this).
High-rate care is similar, but for nights too.

Low-rate mobility is if she needs help from another person outside, and high-rate if she has problems that mean she has very limited walking ability.

As to ESA, again if her ability to walk is extremely limited, and she can't use a wheelchair, she would qualify.

http://www.dwp.gov.uk/docs/m-06-11.pdf are the criteria for ESA.
http://www.benefitsnow.co.uk/esa/ and http://www.benefitsnow.co.uk/dlanotes/introduction.asp may well be of use.
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# 3
Prinzessilein
Old 11-01-2012, 12:09 PM
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DLA can be claimed whilst still working. Many people work and claim DLA. Indeed, for many, DLA helps then to keep working.

For DLA you need to have either Care and/or Mobility needs. You need to have had the needs for at least 3 months and expect to have them for at least 6 more months. If your friend is unsure whether she qualifiew, then I suggest she keeps a diary for a couple of weeks. Make a note of what problems she has. Then she can take the diary to a benefits advice agency - I used DIAL - who will give impartial advice. They will also help fill in the forms, and will deal with asking for a reconsoderation and a tribunal if these prove necessary.

Do not be encourage your friend to pay for any help and advice. All the help and assistance she needs should be free!

I don't believe any new claims for Incapacity Benefit are being accepted. It would now be ESA. THis would be another form and a possible examination to go through. Again, she may wish to see a benefits advisor who can look at her personal circumstances.

Without knowing her circumstances, I obviously can;t make any judgement. But whenever posiible, I would suggest trying to keep working as long as health is not compromised. I am no longer able to work - but when I stopped I stopped gradually. First I asked for a change in working conditions and hours (my boss was really helpful) ; when I could no longer do that I moved to a different job....and then a diffewrent part-time job. There are a lot of benefits in working whilst you still can - not least the self-esteem you get and the daily contact with people.
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# 4
Terrysdelight
Old 11-01-2012, 12:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prinzessilein View Post
DLA can be claimed whilst still working. Many people work and claim DLA. Indeed, for many, DLA helps then to keep working.

For DLA you need to have either Care and/or Mobility needs. You need to have had the needs for at least 3 months and expect to have them for at least 6 more months. If your friend is unsure whether she qualifiew, then I suggest she keeps a diary for a couple of weeks. Make a note of what problems she has. Then she can take the diary to a benefits advice agency - I used DIAL - who will give impartial advice. They will also help fill in the forms, and will deal with asking for a reconsoderation and a tribunal if these prove necessary.

Do not be encourage your friend to pay for any help and advice. All the help and assistance she needs should be free!

I don't believe any new claims for Incapacity Benefit are being accepted. It would now be ESA. THis would be another form and a possible examination to go through. Again, she may wish to see a benefits advisor who can look at her personal circumstances.

Without knowing her circumstances, I obviously can;t make any judgement. But whenever posiible, I would suggest trying to keep working as long as health is not compromised. I am no longer able to work - but when I stopped I stopped gradually. First I asked for a change in working conditions and hours (my boss was really helpful) ; when I could no longer do that I moved to a different job....and then a diffewrent part-time job. There are a lot of benefits in working whilst you still can - not least the self-esteem you get and the daily contact with people.
Thanks totally agree. Friend doesn't want to stop working and she has done just as you, reduced hours, changed jobs, reduced hours again but it is getting worse.

I will get her to get some free advice and it will be comforting for her to know if she does get DLA or whatever it now is, she can reduce her hours in order to keep working.

Thanks for your help :-)
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# 5
andrea_louise
Old 17-01-2012, 6:30 AM
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Dear Terrysdelight,

If your friend does get DLA whilst working, and works for more than 16 hours a week, she may also be eligible for working tax credit! It's not a huge amount of money, but with wtc and dla, it will make a difference.
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# 6
Terrysdelight
Old 27-01-2012, 9:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andrea_louise View Post
Dear Terrysdelight,

If your friend does get DLA whilst working, and works for more than 16 hours a week, she may also be eligible for working tax credit! It's not a huge amount of money, but with wtc and dla, it will make a difference.

Thank you, that is most appreciated.
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# 7
margaretclare
Old 27-01-2012, 9:26 AM
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I take the view that 'you can only ask, they can only say no' but it is worthwhile asking.

It sounds as if your friend could not bend to get a casserole out of the oven i.e. her ability to cook a meal is severely affected.

My daughter gets DLA and she works as a PA in a university department. She can't walk far so has to have her car, but her brain is not affected, nor her skills, so she can do this busy and demanding job. She wouldn't, for instance, be able to work in a supermarket on her feet all day or moving heavy boxes of goods. It did help her that in a previous job she'd been a disability/benefits adviser for a local authority so was well used to completing any number of official forms.
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# 8
eighties girl
Old 01-02-2012, 10:50 AM
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My husband suffers with the same and he gets high rate mobility and lower rate care. We got help with the forms by cab they were great. He also had mri scans to prove just how bad it was so that helped loads.
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# 9
uponahill
Old 01-02-2012, 12:01 PM
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Hi, first time I have replied on this site but have on others. This subject interests me. My wife has Osteoarthritis and has had it since it was first diagnosed in 2001. Then she was diagnosed with Sciatica in Feb 2002. Then again in June 2010 she was diagnosed with Arthralgia of multiple joints.

So far we have had the CAB, DIAL and myself submit 3 DLA applications (2001, 2003 & 2010) all of which ended up at a Tribunal. In all three cases the Tribunal refused citing that she could use adaptions around the house to solve her problems.

What made it worse that the best treatment for Osteoarthritis is plenty of exercise. She can't do that, but the Tribunal said she should be able to.

My wife has now given up making the claims as it is clear that Osteoarthritis, Sciatica and Arthralgia of multiple joints are conditions that do not qualify you for DLA.

I wish you luck and hope that you get a better result than my wife did.

I have just found the report my wife had:

Quote:
Osteoarthritis cannot be cured, but treatment can ease your symptoms and prevent them from affecting your everyday life. The main treatments do not involve medication and consist of exercise to improve your fitness and strengthen your muscles and weight loss.
She is prescribed pain killers and has been on them since 2001.

Last edited by uponahill; 01-02-2012 at 12:18 PM.
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# 10
rotoguys
Old 01-02-2012, 3:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uponahill View Post
Hi, first time I have replied on this site but have on others. This subject interests me. My wife has Osteoarthritis and has had it since it was first diagnosed in 2001. Then she was diagnosed with Sciatica in Feb 2002. Then again in June 2010 she was diagnosed with Arthralgia of multiple joints.

So far we have had the CAB, DIAL and myself submit 3 DLA applications (2001, 2003 & 2010) all of which ended up at a Tribunal. In all three cases the Tribunal refused citing that she could use adaptions around the house to solve her problems.

What made it worse that the best treatment for Osteoarthritis is plenty of exercise. She can't do that, but the Tribunal said she should be able to.

My wife has now given up making the claims as it is clear that Osteoarthritis, Sciatica and Arthralgia of multiple joints are conditions that do not qualify you for DLA.

I wish you luck and hope that you get a better result than my wife did.

I have just found the report my wife had:



She is prescribed pain killers and has been on them since 2001.
The conditions you mention can and do create needs both care and mobility!

Either your wife does not have those needs because the conditions are not severe enough or that the application forms have not been prepared correctly.

I am surprised that you have had three refusals - have you sent in up to date medical reports?

Unfortunately a lot of people do not get what they are entitled to. Not because they don't have the needs but because they don't help themselves with not having the right evidence.
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# 11
rogerblack
Old 01-02-2012, 6:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rotoguys View Post
The conditions you mention can and do create needs both care and mobility!

Either your wife does not have those needs because the conditions are not severe enough or that the application forms have not been prepared correctly.

I am surprised that you have had three refusals - have you sent in up to date medical reports?

Unfortunately a lot of people do not get what they are entitled to. Not because they don't have the needs but because they don't help themselves with not having the right evidence.
Again, you're assuming that all decisions look at all the available evidence, and that people actually have the skills, ability to gather fresh evidence.
This is _not_ the case.

My DLA form completely outlined my care and mobility needs.
The additional letters and information supplied detailed my original diagnosis, as well as a letter from a relative who has recently seen my condition over several days, and a daily diary.

The _only_ evidence used was the ESA medical I'd had recently. No notice at all was taken of what I'd put on the DLA form.

My GP sees me every several months, when I cannot avoid it - getting out is _really_ hard.
On these occasions, I do not generally discuss my day-day condition, so they don't know it. This is simply as there is nothing they can help with, and nobody they can refer me to.
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# 12
rotoguys
Old 01-02-2012, 8:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rogerblack View Post
Again, you're assuming that all decisions look at all the available evidence, and that people actually have the skills, ability to gather fresh evidence.
This is _not_ the case.

My DLA form completely outlined my care and mobility needs.
The additional letters and information supplied detailed my original diagnosis, as well as a letter from a relative who has recently seen my condition over several days, and a daily diary.

The _only_ evidence used was the ESA medical I'd had recently. No notice at all was taken of what I'd put on the DLA form.

My GP sees me every several months, when I cannot avoid it - getting out is _really_ hard.
On these occasions, I do not generally discuss my day-day condition, so they don't know it. This is simply as there is nothing they can help with, and nobody they can refer me to.
Well then you did not really help yourself did you.

All it needs is a visit to the GP every 4/6 weeks as a proactive exercise to keep them fully informed on how you have been and how you are now.

An ESA 'medical' is of some value, as is the claim form itself. But if your GP can confirm on the report form sent to them by the DWP that your mobility is poor and/or non existent and that you cannot care for yourself and require constant help, then you will have no problems getting the award.

That is what my GP put on the report form for me. I was awarded MRC & HRM within a few weeks.
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# 13
Mojisola
Old 02-02-2012, 11:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rogerblack View Post
Again, you're assuming that all decisions look at all the available evidence, and that people actually have the skills, ability to gather fresh evidence. This is _not_ the case.

My GP sees me every several months, when I cannot avoid it - getting out is _really_ hard.

On these occasions, I do not generally discuss my day-day condition, so they don't know it. This is simply as there is nothing they can help with, and nobody they can refer me to.
If you don't tell the GPs about the problems your condition causes day to day, they won't be able to pass the information on. You aren't giving "all the available evidence" so you will have problems getting benefits.
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# 14
margaretclare
Old 02-02-2012, 11:37 AM
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Quote:
My GP sees me every several months, when I cannot avoid it - getting out is _really_ hard.
On these occasions, I do not generally discuss my day-day condition, so they don't know it. This is simply as there is nothing they can help with, and nobody they can refer me to.
If you make an effort to see your GP - you said it's difficult to do so - then why on earth don't you make the effort to 'discuss your day-to-day condition'? What else do you talk about to him/her?

The GPs are the 'gatekeepers' to a lot of other services and are a vital link. But they can only take action if they know all the facts and circumstances.
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# 15
rotoguys
Old 02-02-2012, 11:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by margaretclare View Post
If you make an effort to see your GP - you said it's difficult to do so - then why on earth don't you make the effort to 'discuss your day-to-day condition'? What else do you talk about to him/her?

The GPs are the 'gatekeepers' to a lot of other services and are a vital link. But they can only take action if they know all the facts and circumstances.
Absolutely!!

I learnt that but the wife doesn't seem to have cottoned on to it!

With total support from a GP, all manner of 'gates' start to open.

There is no better feeling that when you open those 'brown envelopes' from the DWP you know that you will be awarded everything you are entitled to without an argument or Tribunal.
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# 16
duchessmaysail
Old 02-02-2012, 12:04 PM
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If you are having mobility problems ,most surgeries have the facililty to have a appointment , the GP phones you at a given time to discuss your concerns etc, simply ask the receptionist to arrange this. Have you considered this option, GP are not psychic also a previous post they can refer you onward to occupational therapy for aids to help mobility, physio , pain specialist etc also ask to be reffered to rheumatolgist as joint replacement as done if osteoarthritis is severe enough .
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# 17
roseroyce
Old 19-06-2013, 1:59 PM
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I have recently been diagnosed with osteoarthritis in my knees and feet, and hands. I also have chronic edema in my feet, and cannot get shoes to fit. The hospital are referring me for orthopedic shoes. Furthermore, I have a torn ligament in my foot after tripping over a pallet in work last September. I am waiting to hear whether the surgeon will choose surgery. I am also epileptic. My problem is that i work in a very busy factory, working 12 hour rotating shifts, with just three 30 minute breaks.They have been adamant on me being in work, even when i have been in agony walking. I am 59 now, and every day has been hard labour for me and, after 5 1/2 years, I dont feel like I can do this any more. I am on the sick at the moment following a flare up in my foot and I am dreading having to go back to work. My days off are spent with hot/ cold wraps on my feet/hands and neck. I need money, so can think of no way out. Please help.
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# 18
rogerblack
Old 19-06-2013, 2:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roseroyce View Post
I am on the sick at the moment following a flare up in my foot and I am dreading having to go back to work. My days off are spent with hot/ cold wraps on my feet/hands and neck. I need money, so can think of no way out. Please help.
You may find you get better answers if you create your own post, not reply to others on different topics.

Specifically on epilepsy - do you have fits exceeding one per week?
If so, this alone would qualify you for employment and support allowance.
It is probably also questionable that your employer is breaking various employment laws, by not reasonably adjusting to your disability.
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# 19
HB58
Old 19-06-2013, 5:29 PM
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I echo rogerblack's advice about starting your own thread - especially as DLA no longer exists for new applications.
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# 20
Scully38
Old 11-07-2014, 9:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andrea_louise View Post
Dear Terrysdelight,

If your friend does get DLA whilst working, and works for more than 16 hours a week, she may also be eligible for working tax credit! It's not a huge amount of money, but with wtc and dla, it will make a difference.
I thought you had to have over 30 hours to claim WTC? Have I struggled these last few years on crappy pay for nothing?
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