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DLA some movement


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Gardian, that's the standard reply.

You MUST submit a new claim if the claim was closed more that 13 months ago - if you do not, you most certainly will NOT - and this is from the 'decision makers' at the DLA - have an appeal allowed, the file will remain closed and without a new claim, how do the DLA know that your OH still wants to make the claim?  An email really is nothing, could be a scam.

I have posted what I have been told by the DLA offices several times now - new claim plus appeal letter - without those two things together my feeling from my conversations is that they will almost certainly disallow an appeal -IF and it's still a big IF - this ever gets resolved to pay back  money and reinstated claims. 

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Gardian, should have added, if you do what they ask you to do then you're more liable to get a result if not, you may be giving them a 'get out of jail' card.

We must not let the DLA offices have any wriggle room on this so do what they ask, not what is more convenient for the claimants - to me they should just be able to retrieve all our files from storage but are currently pleading inability to do so.

No form, no claim seems to be the answer at the moment.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Well folks, the saga continues ...........

I phoned the DWP office this afternoon and the people that I spoke to (a team leader and then  a manager) told me that there is no telephone line available to speak to the Exportability Team, the outfit set up to deal with this fiasco.

But, after pressing the manager she told me that they have a date for the decisions on DLA to be made and it's really close according to her - it eventually transpired that the date for completion is 1 April 2008.

I am not best pleased and, from what she told me, not only are the original claims not being unarchived but as yet, none of the 'reclaims' are being entered into the system.

I expressed my displeasure!!!!!

Folks, yet again, if you had a live claim when you left the UK, please ask for a new claim form to eventually reactivate your original claim and also appeal seperately on the grounds that your original claim was shut down when it should not have been, quoting the decision which is elsewhere in this thread.

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  • 4 weeks later...
Having just found this wonderful site could I continue this theme and ask the following ; we are planning to move to France bu thave a 20 yr old with Autism and complex learning difficulties. He currently receives DLA and IB and I receive CA as his carer. Both myself and my husband plan to start our own business under the 'micro' sytem so would propbably be paying French tax within 12 months. Would any/all of these be transferable (i have read all your posts and am non the wiser!) or is it possible to claim any benefits for him under the French health system? Keep up the excellent work!
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His entitlement to DLA would depend on what he gets (which elements) and when he started getting it.  If he started getting DLA prior to July 1992 and he surrently receives the higher element for care, it is currently transferable to France and always has been.  If he gets a lower rate and first got it after that date, it is the subject of the ruling of last October which the DLA people still have 'under consideration' and which they are saying they will have a decision on by April 2008.  If he currently gets the mobility element, it is not nor will it be, covered by the recent decision and will remain non-transferable according to the DLA office.

IB is transferable if your son is getting the long term rate.

No idea about CA - it would be worth while speaking to the awarding office in the UK to see what they say and then report back on here so we all would have an idea.  I found the following on one of the national Carer's organisations web sites which may well prevent you claiming CA whilst here:

"Only people who normally live in the UK can get Carer's Allowance. You must have lived in the UK for at least 26 of the last 52 weeks.

You can go abroad on your own for four weeks in any six-month period and still get the benefit. You must have been getting Carer's Allowance for at least 22 weeks before you leave.

If you go abroad with the person you look after and the main reason you are with them is to care for them, you can get Carer's Allowance for as long as they continue to get their disability benefit - usually about two weeks."

And there is the income (from capital investments or work or any income according to the rules) rule to consider, if your income is over £95 per week, you cannot claim the benefit.

Hope this helps in some way.

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The direct.gov site announcement has been updated recently to include this:

"On 18 October 2007 the European Court of Justice gave a judgment which deals with whether Disability Living Allowance (care component only), Attendance Allowance and Carer's Allowance should be paid to people who move from within the UK to live in another country within the European Economic Area.

It is not yet clear what this will mean for recipients of the affected benefits. We expect to provide full details on eligibility criteria by 5 April 2008. The first payments could be made to eligible customers shortly afterwards."

(my highlight)

It would be advisable to contact DWP at Newcastle to clarify just how these changes will be applied to you and your son.

Department for Work and Pensions -Tel: 0191 225 8604

We have been 'told', (not officially confirmed), that being in receipt of any of these benefits 'should/could' entitle you to an E121, when moving abroad, as they will no longer be classified as 'special non-contributory benefits', as opposed to health benefits.

As Tony has said, please do keep us all updated.

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  • 2 months later...

This story must be true as its in the oft quoted ex- Pat Bible of what is happening in the motherland, but as there are only 60 million people in the UK how they arrive at 2.7 billion IB claimants is a bit hard to figure and don't miss the bit about some immigrants have come and got it and gone back home again as they might if DLA s paihd abroad.

However, if people are receiving money to which they are not entitled as in my experience many are in France, then the outraged brigade are right to be outraged. The figure of 12,000 IB claimants abroad seems very low to me, but then again a lot of IB claimants out here don't really live here so they can continue to claim their DLA from a relative's address in the UK.

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Yet another well researched & well reasoned article.

Firstly, no-one can deny that there is some abuse & mal-administration of the current system which means that some people claiming incapacity benefit are currently capable of working.  This is unjust to the taxpayer & to those genuinely entitled to incapacity benefit.  However, as a decision on the capability to work or not work properly requires an individual assessment, with reference to the claimant's medical history, any speculation on the proportion of the 2.7 million claimants capable of working is merely that - speculation.

Picking up a few points from the Daily Mail article :

"Despite a crackdown on sickness handouts at home, the Government send up to £54.6million abroad to over 12,000 claimants last year" 

The implication here is that claimants abroad are treated differently from those in the UK - This is incorrect

"They require only to send Department for Work & Pensions officials confirmation from a GP that they are still too sick to take a job."

Incorrect again.  All those claiming long term Incapacity Benefit will have been assessed by a DWP doctor who will have determined their entitlement to the benefit & when that entitlement should be reviewed.

"Claimants who live abroad do not even take regular medical checks to find out if they are still entitled to the cash"

Incorrect - yes they do.

"It means the sick-note culture is increasingly becoming a key political battleground - with hard-working Britons becoming fed up with paying 2.7 million claimants"

This appears to be the heart of the issue - personal resentment.  I was a hard-working Briton until I found I was no longer able to work.  I currently receive, through Incapacity Benefit, around one tenth of what I used to pay in income tax.  In fact I still pay UK income tax in excess of what I receive from Incapacity Benefit.  I don't recall carping at paying to support the unemployed, child benefit, fertility treatment, housing benefit, income support etc and the myriad other things that I didn't personally need.  It would however have been nice is the Government had spent some of my money on research into M.E. & I might then have been able to lead a normal productive life.

"Mr Plaskett said: "People in Great Britain who qualify for contributory incapacity benefit because they have made sufficient National Insurance contributions can continue to receive their benefit if they take up permanent residence in another EU country" - "Under European law benefits acquired in one member state must be paid to those who move to another country."

Exactly!  Their previous NI contributions entitle them to IB & they are entitled to receive the benefits abroad.  Does anyone complain that the State Retirement pension is exportable?  Or Child Benefit for that matter?

"Danny Alexander, the Liberal Democrat work & pensions spokesman said; "Issues such as this leave hard-working people feeling the whole benefit system is unjust.  It completely goes against people's sense of fairness that UK benefits are paid to those who move abroad & profit from lower living costs at the expense of taxpayers."

As above - what is unfair about it?  Incapacity Benefit is an entitlement paid to those previously hard-working people who are unable to work.  Under EU law it is exportable just like the state pension.  If a person is found on review to be capable of working the entitlement is withdrawn.  As for profiting from the lower living costs - what relevance has this?  Should benefits be reduced for those living in the North of England because the cost of living is less?  If the issue is moving somewhere with cheaper housing to release capital - this strikes me as a responsible attitude.  Anyone previously working & now receiving IB will have had a substantial loss of income.  If I use my capital, which I worked hard to accumulate, to subsidise our income isn't this better than resorting to other benefits back in the UK such as income support or housing allowance?

"After ten years of neglect & inaction by the Government, it's time we had a proper independent assessments for every single IB claimant to find out exactly who can & who can't work."

"Claimants will have to take a medical test to divide them into those deemed unable to work & others judged able to work of some sort."

At present individuals are assessed by a DWP doctor on their capability to work.  If this assessment allows some to claim IB when they are perfectly capable of working then the system is flawed & this is an issue for the DWP & the Government to address.  However, replacing it with a system whereby commercial companies are paid bonuses for declaring individuals capable of working, against a policy background of radically reducing the number of claimants, will not deliver a fair system.

By all means the Government should root all the benefit cheats but please bear in mind those genuine claimants who through no fault of their own are unable to work.  No doubt some would distinguish between the principle of exporting Incapacity Benefit & exporting the state retirement pension.  Maybe those who would deny incapacity benefit to anyone moving outside the UK - usually for health reasons - should also consider themselves lucky that they were able to have a full working life rather than whinging about "hard-working taxpayers".

Mr Cat.

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So glad that the awful wait is finally over for you all.[:)]

Naysayers apart, I know people who are seriously affected by this who are genuinely ill. Why they should lose an allowance just because they live in another European country has always been beyond me.

It seems to me that those who are already here need to prepare their claims, so they don't fall through the net.  What do those affected think?

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Thank you for that ebaynut.

The bit that really excites us is the following

If I already live in an EEA state or Switzerland, can I claim a disability benefit from Great Britain?


Department for Work and Pensions is continuing discussions with the

European Commission on eligibility conditions for people who are

already living in another EEA state or Switzerland who wish to claim

from abroad, either for the first time or from people who have received

a disability benefit in the past which stopped when they moved to

another EEA state or Switzerland.

Further information will be added here as soon as possible.

I thought this piece of legislation was only going to affect people already receiving benefit before they left the UK but this paragraph seems to be saying that further discussions are taking place which may affect a first claim if you are already living in an EU country.

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The question for us is:

Will this new interpretation (classifying DLA, Attendance Allowance & Carer's Allowance as sickness benefits) also make these benefits elligible for an E121, which would mean those affected no longer have to worry about not being able to get health care by PHI, which is impossible! [8-)]

The announcement was made just late enough in the day that there is no-one available to answer telephone enquiries....strange that![blink][:(]

Also, as Benjamin pointed out, how will this affect those who lost the benefits when they moved.[8-)]

Still more questions.........

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Am I right in thinking that this announcement moves those already in France ( and Spain) who have lost their DLA no further forward in getting it back save its still being debated?

Going back to Mr Cat's post, isn't the Daily Mail article correct about the level of assessments carried out after IB has been granted,   Nobody I know who was in receipt of IB in the UK has had to go back to the UK for an assessment, they get their French GP to do it, which is what the article said, isn't it?

It said " They are required only to send Department for Work and Pensions officials confirmation from a GP that they are still too sick to take a job".

What the article does not say is that the current procedure is all set to change.  Following the recent pressure from the Tories, the Government has brought forward its plans to reduce the numbers of people claiming IB. DWP staff have been told that all existing claimants are to be interviewed in person by external contractors and reassessed as to their ability to undertake work. Jobs will be offered to those who can work and those refusing to work will be taken off IB.

Following this exercise there will be a significant reduction in IB interviwing staff at the DWP, so that assumes there will be also be a significant reduction in those being paid it.

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Ron, we are in correspondance with two people who have had IB assessments here in France.  This is done independently, not via the GP - but by a panel doctor who has no personal history with the claimant. It is carried out on a specific day, with no attention paid to the person's medical history.  In both cases the IB has been withdrawn.  One got this reinstated after an appeal to the UK and a further examination by an independent panel.  The other is here in France with no health cover pending appeal, having to pay for drugs just to keep them alive.  The stress whilst this person awaits the outcome has caused them to become extremely ill.

This stinks.  Sorry.

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[quote user="Ron Avery"]

Going back to Mr Cat's post, isn't the Daily Mail article correct about the level of assessments carried out after IB has been granted,   Nobody I know who was in receipt of IB in the UK has had to go back to the UK for an assessment, they get their French GP to do it, which is what the article said, isn't it?

It said " They are required only to send Department for Work and Pensions officials confirmation from a GP that they are still too sick to take a job".


Jobs will be voffered to those who can work and those who refuse will be taken off IB


Well, you may not know me personnally, Ron, but you know of me.  Since arriving in France I have been assessed by a French doctor (not my own GP, but one nominated by DWP) regarding my IB to see if I should be entitled to continue receiving it.  Mr Cat will also be assessed in the near future, by a French doctor on behalf of the UK Government.  I would be more than happy to be assessed in the UK - it would certainly cut down on the expense of having to hire a translator, but unfortunately this is not an option.

Looking vorward to my job voffers!!  Are zese voffers vot must be obeyed [:D] 

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Sorry Coops but it doesn't stink.  If a qualified medical doctor decides from an examination of your correspondents that they could do a day's work, how does that stink, isn't that good news for them? 

 Why should previous medical history come into it?  Whether a person used to have a bad back/stress/agraphobia/drug dependent does not mean that they are unable to work for all time or tomorrow.  IB is not a permanent payment nor an entitlement, it really is not meant to be paid to people who by their own choice move hundreds of miles away from a job, its meant to be paid to people who cannot work because of illness or disability, not because they cannot work because they now live in a different country.

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It seems that different doctors may have different opinions about what 'fit for work' means so that some claimants are classed as unable by one doc and able by another. The idea of changing the criteria seems sound, so that a person is assessed on what they can do and given support rather than it being black or white. Quite how that will affect people living here remains to be seen. I guess they could lose their benefit or be obliged to go to uk for a fresh assessment on the new criteria, and might find it difficult to remain inFrance as inactifs

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>>If a qualified medical doctor decides from an examination of your correspondents that they could do a day's work, how does that stink, isn't that good news for them? <<

Not if there are no available jobs ! And especially not now the rules regarding accessing French health care have changed.

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