If you have an ESA claim turned down by a DWP decision maker your benefit payment will stop. Your next step will be to ask for a Mandatory Reconsideration of that
If your area isn't already a Universal Credit full service area, you can do the following;.
In order to be paid benefit whilst you are going through this process and possibly, having to apply for an appeal hearing, you can claim Job Seekers Allowance for a period of up to 13 weeks.
You will need to make a new claim for the JSA and to prevent being asked to look for work, you will need to provide the Job Centre with a new Fit Note from your GP stating that you are not fit for work.
This must be a new Fit Note, any existing Fit Notes used for ESA purposes will in all probability not be accepted.
You may encounter some resistance from Job Centre staff who may tell you that it is not possible to claim JSA and be sick at the time of a new claim. If this happens, please use the following phrase when talking to Job Centre staff.
"I am claiming jsa during an extended period of sickness"
It is possible that the person you are dealing with does not understand that the above is possible, if this is the case ask to see the Job Centre's disability work coach or a manager, if the Job Centre does not have a disability work coach.
You may also have to explain that this period of sickness could be up to 13 weeks.
The above is perfectly legitimate and is an accepted way of being paid benefits whilst you go through the first stage of the appeal process.
We do get reports from members that Job Centre staff will say that you can't make a new claim for JSA and be sick. If you encounter this attitude, please be persistent and get what you are entitled to.
During that time, get the mandatory reconsideration done on your claim. If you get turned down again (85% do) you can then appeal and once your appeal is lodged you go back onto esa until the tribunal hearing.
If the area you are living in is a Universal Credit full service area, you will need to either try to survive without your ESA payment or an interim JSA payment, or; put in a claim for Universal Credit, which is likely to have an effect in the longer term on your ESA claim.
If you are unsure whether you are able to claim JSA or any other benefit, join our active Facebook communities or ask to speak to one of the adviser team using the contact forms on our main web site.