DWP refused to close my claim for JSA

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The person on the phone said it was because I failed to attend an appointment. Said I had to contact the jobcentre directly within 5 working days or it would be put down as a failure to attend. Even though I said I want the claim closed.

Are they legally allowed to refuse to sign me off? As far as I'm aware of, JSA isn't compulsory, it's hardly military conscription.

If I don't contact the job centre within 5 working days and ignore any correspondence, will the claim be closed automatically and will there be any future repercussion on reclaiming?

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  • pmlindyloo
    pmlindyloo Posts: 13,051 Forumite
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    theone999 wrote: »
    The person on the phone said it was because I failed to attend an appointment. Said I had to contact the jobcentre directly within 5 working days or it would be put down as a failure to attend. Even though I said I want the claim closed.

    Are they legally allowed to refuse to sign me off? As far as I'm aware of, JSA isn't compulsory, it's hardly military conscription.

    If I don't contact the job centre within 5 working days and ignore any correspondence, will the claim be closed automatically and will there be any future repercussion on reclaiming?

    They are saying that you have to give a reason why you did not attend an appointment or a sanction will be applied.

    If a sanction is applied then this will affect your JSA (which remember is paid in arrears)

    Also if the claim is closed then the sanction 'runs on' to the next reclaim (where there is one). The weeks you are not paid JSA will count towards the number of weeks that you are sanctioned for.

    https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/419802/dmgch34.pdf

    34061

    Believe it or not, they are trying to help you out here!
  • theone999
    theone999 Posts: 203 Forumite
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    edited 30 June 2015 at 2:19PM
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    pmlindyloo wrote: »
    They are saying that you have to give a reason why you did not attend an appointment or a sanction will be applied.

    If a sanction is applied then this will affect your JSA (which remember is paid in arrears)

    Also if the claim is closed then the sanction 'runs on' to the next reclaim (where there is one). The weeks you are not paid JSA will count towards the number of weeks that you are sanctioned for.

    https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/419802/dmgch34.pdf

    34061

    Believe it or not, they are trying to help you out here!

    so what you're saying is that if no reason is given / no contact initiated, a sanction is applied automatically upon closing of the claim?

    also, what does 34061 mean?
  • pmlindyloo
    pmlindyloo Posts: 13,051 Forumite
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    theone999 wrote: »
    so what you're saying is that if no reason is given / no contact initiated, a sanction is applied automatically upon closing of the claim?

    also, what does 34061 mean?

    The sanction will apply from when you didn't attend the appointment if you didn't/or don't now, give a good reason. Your decision to end the claim will have occurred after your failure to attend so the sanction would still apply.
    Closing the claim will not stop then sanction. otherwise people who are sanctioned would just close their claim and then reclaim to get rid of the sanction.

    The 34061 refers to the link. Click on the link and scroll down to that number where it tells you about the sanctions in your circumstances.
  • Mersey_2
    Mersey_2 Posts: 1,679 Forumite
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    The easiest thing would be to just fill in the booklet and post it to them and hope this is married up with the claim.


    But best attending, as they may sanction you, or close the claim for failure to attend as the reason, rather than for you starting work.


    If you can't attend as you're due to start work tomorrow, just telephone and explain.


    I assume you haven't been claiming JSA for over 6 months, as you'd be entitled to 4 weeks of HB & CTB [if you claim these] and so this final appointment would certainly be worth your while attending. Sadly, £100 Job Grants were abolished though.
    Please be polite to OPs and remember this is a site for Claimants and Appellants to seek redress against their bank, ex-boss or retailer. If they wanted morality or the view of the IoD or Bank they'd ask them.
  • rogerblack
    rogerblack Posts: 9,446 Forumite
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    A VERY VERY important thing to note is that you don't only care about the effect of this sanction on payability.
    This may be - for example - several weeks without money.

    You care about it also because - even if you drop off JSA and stay off JSA for the period of the sanction - the sanction will still have happened.

    There are _MUCH_ harsher sanctions in some cases for those who have been sanctioned in the past.
    This is why it's vital if you have any hope of a reasonable excuse being accepted to go through with the process.

    And to then appeal that decision if it is against you.

    Otherwise 'minor' offences when you go to claim in the future can - because of this one - balloon in significance.
  • theone999
    theone999 Posts: 203 Forumite
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    rogerblack wrote: »
    A VERY VERY important thing to note is that you don't only care about the effect of this sanction on payability.
    This may be - for example - several weeks without money.

    You care about it also because - even if you drop off JSA and stay off JSA for the period of the sanction - the sanction will still have happened.

    There are _MUCH_ harsher sanctions in some cases for those who have been sanctioned in the past.
    This is why it's vital if you have any hope of a reasonable excuse being accepted to go through with the process.

    And to then appeal that decision if it is against you.

    Otherwise 'minor' offences when you go to claim in the future can - because of this one - balloon in significance.

    I was sanctioned at the beginning of the year when I didn't turn up to an advisor meeting. Not that I really cared at the time because job was going to start any day and when the 4 week sanction came through, i signed off jsa and started work a week later.

    so yes, I have "minor" offences in the past.

    I have read a little bit more into it, it would seem a second sanction is 13 weeks. But the rules also allow 2 periods of illness per year.

    so i will just blithly argue a case against a system who couldn't care less tomorrow. I obviously couldn't go in today to rearrange an appointment, because I was too ill.
  • rogerblack
    rogerblack Posts: 9,446 Forumite
    edited 30 June 2015 at 8:20PM
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    theone999 wrote: »
    so yes, I have "minor" offences in the past.

    I have read a little bit more into it, it would seem a second sanction is 13 weeks. But the rules also allow 2 periods of illness per year.

    so i will just blithly argue a case against a system who couldn't care less tomorrow. I obviously couldn't go in today to rearrange an appointment, because I was too ill.

    I have not looked up the exact details of how the escalation would work in this case.
    A quick glance:

    4 weeks indicates it was likely a lower level sanction.
    Becuse of this earlier sanction, this one will be for 13 weeks.

    Unless it was attending a mandatory work activity, in which case it might be 26 weeks.
    You can still - and if you have good cause - should appeal the decision of the beginning of the year.
  • patman99
    patman99 Posts: 8,532 Forumite
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    When I signed-off JSA back in March, I couldn't believe how hard it was to actually sign off. They even needed to arrange for someone to call me the next day just to check I was who I said I was.

    You do need to query what appointment it was that you missed though. As you can then start the process of challenging the sanction (even though you are no longer on JSA). It may well be that an appointment had been added on to the system for yu to attend, but you were then deliberatly not informed of this, or the letter about it never arrived in the post.
    Never Knowingly Understood.

    Member #1 of £1,000 challenge - £13.74/ £1000 (that's 1.374%)

    3-6 month EF £0/£3600 (that's 0 days worth)

  • theone999
    theone999 Posts: 203 Forumite
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    edited 1 July 2015 at 2:28PM
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    patman99 wrote: »
    When I signed-off JSA back in March, I couldn't believe how hard it was to actually sign off. They even needed to arrange for someone to call me the next day just to check I was who I said I was.

    You do need to query what appointment it was that you missed though. As you can then start the process of challenging the sanction (even though you are no longer on JSA). It may well be that an appointment had been added on to the system for yu to attend, but you were then deliberatly not informed of this, or the letter about it never arrived in the post.

    jobsworths.

    what i dislike immensely about applying for state assistance is how intrusive the questions are. years ago when i applied for housing / cc benefit they wanted all the bank statements every month. yesterday when i said i wanted to cancel my JSA because I was going away, the person asked "where to", and I was like "you don't have a right to know that, it is none of your business".

    frankly most of the times i want nothing to do with the system.
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