Letter to Dame Anne Begg Chair of Works & Pensions Select Committee
Dear Dame Begg,
I write to you today as Chair of the Works & Pensions Select Committee, I appreciate you cannot directly help me as I am not your constituent so this is for your information so if need be can be used in any committees going forward.
I had an SAH that caused a bleed to my middle cerebral artery and subsequently had a deep invasive craniotomy that caused a stroke to my dominant right side, I have been left with both physical and mental health problems as my frontal and temporal lobes are damaged.
This causes me great difficulties in everyday life as I am sure you can understand, however the biggest difficulties I face are those relating to executive dysfunction indeed everything takes me so much longer to do if at all due to a lack of motivation which many perceive to be laziness but is not as I could have the greatest will but it does not connect to my brain to carry out.
Now there are many moral issues relating to my just support from DWP but for this purpose I will stick to the facts.
Firstly I link to this upper tier tribunal judgment as it has a bearing in me seeking an Anytime Revision of my claim to ESA
I maintain that my claim to ESA has always been wrong as I feel I should have been put in the support group but was instead put in the wrag group without assessment, however due to the issues correctly noted by the three panel judges in the above final judgment I never got around to appealing and thus missed the absolute time limit of 13 months to do so .
This worked to the DWP’s advantage as my claim to ESA ended in 365 days which is unfair in itself for someone like me with lifelong disabilities that time limit reached me in October 2013 and my claim was duly ended without warning which came as quite a shock because whilst it stated in the original award letter that my claim is limited to 365 days due to poor memory I forgot which is logical given the form of my disability.
The first we knew was when my wife checked her bank account to find a payment of just £14, the following few months were hell and forced my wife to take on extra hours in here part time job instead of caring for her mother in law who has Alzheimer’s, she then lost her carers allowance because of this and thus was embarking on a list of events that were nothing short of brutal.
On the 5th December 2013 there was a ray of light when the above judgment was released for publication I read it in awe as it so much related to my own problems so decided to make an anytime revision on the basis of that judgment on the 15th December 2013 and from this point it got worse much worse to the point of the DWP Causing Maladministration by not following their own guidance on anytime revisions.
It got so bad it was a having a negative impact on my health due to stress, anxiety and literally pacing my front room in absolute frustration at the DWP’s inability to communicate.
I made a complaint to the complaints resolution team in Cosham Portsmouth they was just as bad resulting in them making a special payment to me for £25 due to them giving false information regarding the contact details of the appeals team.
Eventually I got this information so phoned the department to get an update and was told it was sent to HMCTS in Cardiff for them to decide if I can appeal, now it was not until a couple of days later when I had researched that I found out the errors made that lead me to think they are wilful.
- I requested an Anytime Revision so were was the decision notice I should have received? Even if it was one of refusal/failure a notice should have been sent
- Why did they sent my revision to appeal as they knew it was out of absolute time and thus any judge would struggle to allow it.
- Has an anytime revision indeed been carried out I have my doubts.
They knew that by sending me a decision notice I could appeal it within time should I not be happy with that decision as that very decision notice has it’s own appeal rights so what they have in my mind wilfully done is deny me a right to appeal and that is not a De Minimis issue.
I did receive an email from Complaints Resolution refusing my Anytime Revision but as you know I cannot appeal on the back of an email as it is a document HMCTS does not recognises as it has to be done on an official decision notice.
That email also states that no discrimination has been caused that frankly is laughable as the court case about says differently and more so the way this whole claim has been handled dictates that discrimination has been caused as well as harm and suffering.
I am now stuck between a rock and a hard place through no fault on my part indeed I have tried to follow the guidance as the law states what a shame that one of the Governments biggest departments cannot do the same.
I have now passed this matter over to a solicitor to deal with as I have fought it as far as I can go and it now needs legal opinion, however I felt I had a duty to inform the Works & Pensions Select Committee so that they was aware of what is going on within Government and the DWP under the leadership of Iain Duncan Smith.
I have tried getting help from my MP David Willetts but he is not interested and as useful as a chocolate teapot
I hope you find this information useful in going forward.