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TOPIC: Autistic Spectrum Disorder - Failed ESA Medical

Autistic Spectrum Disorder - Failed ESA Medical 7 years 2 months ago #14172

Just received word that my son who has High Functioning Autism or Aspergers, failed his ESA Medical Assessment. He received 9 points for difficulties in going out and 0 points for all the other descriptors. Can't believe it really because he has problems with all the other descriptors.

The information writen on the medical assessment form and what was said at the Medical has been completely ignored. Obviously, we have to appeal and I'm writing tonight because I just feel so tired and worried. His doctor has just given him a 6 month medical certificate and I don't know if I should send her a letter and a copy of the written ESA questionnaire with a view to going in to have a chat with her about my son's difficulties.

I filled the form in for my son and the only two conclusions I can draw from this is that I may be seriously deluded about my son's condition or else I am lying. My son left college in June 2009 with a BTEC Level 3 in Business Studies and he has five GCSEs but he finds living in the "normal world" very stressful and can without warning just explode. He also has problems in memory, concentration, coping with change etc., etc. We don't see many of these explosions now because he feels perfectly safe at home.

I recently visited the NAS website and there is a video story about a gentleman who has a degree in Astro Physics but can only manage one day working in a supermarket. This isn't easily understood by Job Centre Plus!

I don't want my son to end up stuck at home for the rest of his life on the scrapheap - I just know he needs more than being made to sign on for Jobseeker's allowance with no real support or understanding of his condition.

I sort of feel at the end of my tether tonight and feeling overwhelmed at what may lie ahead.

Thanks for reading this.:(
Last Edit: 7 years 2 months ago by Jim Allison. Reason: Removed full e-mail address.
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Re:Autistic Spectrum Disorder - Failed ESA Medical 7 years 2 months ago #14173

Hi Marion

Sorry to hear about your sons problems and the lack of understanding by the Medical Assessor. You should register for an appeal straight away. At this time you do not need to supply any supplementary information as this can be assimulated over the next few months. All you need to say is that you disagree with the assessment and you shall be providing furhter evidence in due course.

Then make sure you are a member of this website as this will enable you to put together the best possible response. If you can afford it then I would hire a solicitor who specialises in this type of case and agree a fixed price for him/her to put togehter the appeal submission and employ a barrister to respresent your son on the day. I did this and it cost £1500 for everything. It gave me great peace of mind to ensure I was giving it my best shot. Having a barrister at the appeal gave me huge confidence as she knew her stuff and the 2 people on the appeal panel were an experienced doctor and a senior barrister. So therefore my barrister was speaking the same language. Also I took the view that if I won, which I was confident that I would, then the cost of getting professional representation would be paid for over about 4 months of IB payments.

Good Luck

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Re:Autistic Spectrum Disorder - Failed ESA Medical 7 years 2 months ago #14181

Hi Charlie,

Thank you for your reply. I'm glad you were successful in your appeal but using legal representation for me is not an option. We can just get by as it is financially (me and three kids.) I am just going to have to put my "thinking cap on" and put the work in presenting my son's case. I do know the score. I've been a member of benefits and work for a few years now and managed successfully to get DLA for my son (middle rate care and lower rate mobility) twice. I felt fed up last night because it just feels like "here we go again, scores of writing and endless repetition. As we all know, it is emotionally and mentally exhausting trying to explain one's situation to complete strangers sitting in an office somewhere.

Hope things continue to go well with you.

Last Edit: 7 years 2 months ago by Jim Allison. Reason: Edited out full e-mail address.
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The following user(s) said Thank You: DixiePea

Re:Autistic Spectrum Disorder - Failed ESA Medical 7 years 2 months ago #14183

  • Jim Allison
  • retired Principal Welfare Rights Officer
Hi Marion,

The Decision Maker (DM) who failed your son's claim for ESA should have taken into account the fact that your son was in receipt of DLA, MRC & LRM.

If you look in the Spotlights area at the top of the forum HERE , you may find some useful information that could help with an appeal in the Disability Handbook and the A-Z of Medical Conditions if you look under Autism and Aspergers.

Whilst these guides were prepared by DWP Medical Advisers for helping DM's and DLA Tribunals to help assess entitlement to DLA, it's common practice with DM's and tribunals to use information on one benefit to help to decide entitlement to another.

Hope this helps.

PLEASE READ THE SPOTLIGHTS AREA OF THE FORUM REGULARLY, OTHERWISE YOU MAY MISS OUT ON IMPORTANT INFORMATION. Nothing on this board constitutes legal advice - always consult a professional about specific problems
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