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If your ESA is ending because of the 1-year limit

Mae’r cyngor hwn yn berthnasol i Cymru

If you’re in the work-related activity group, any new style or contribution-based ESA you get will stop at the end of 1 year. They won’t stop if you’re in the support group – check your award letter if you’re not sure.

You don’t need to do anything. You’ll get the same amount of money when your contribution-based ESA stops.

At the end of the year, the amount of your income-related ESA will go up and it will replace your contribution-based ESA.

If you’re not sure what type of ESA you get

You can ask the DWP by:

  • writing to the address on your ESA letters
  • calling the Jobcentre Plus

Jobcentre Plus
Telephone: 0800 169 0310
Textphone: 0800 169 0314
NGT text relay (if you cannot hear or speak on the phone): 18001 then 0800 169 0310
Welsh language: 0800 328 1744
Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm

Calls are free from mobiles and landlines.

Check what you can do if your ESA is ending

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) will have written to you to tell you when your ESA will stop and why. The letter will also tell you how you can appeal the decision.

If your condition has got worse or you’ve got a new condition

You can keep getting ESA if your condition means you would now be put in the support group. If you’re not sure, check which group you should be in.

If your condition changes before your ESA stops

You can check how to challenge the decision to stop your ESA. You should start your challenge within 1 month of the DWP writing to you to say your ESA will stop.

Send the DWP any evidence you’ve got that your condition has changed since they last assessed you – for example, letters from your doctor. The DWP are more likely to change their decision if you’ve sent them evidence. 

After you challenge the decision, the DWP might invite you to a work capability assessment. This is to check if you should be in the support group. You can check how to prepare for the work capability assessment.

If your condition changes after your ESA stops

You can ask the DWP to start your ESA claim going again if you would now be put in the support group.

Tell the DWP about your condition by either:

  • writing to the address on your ESA letters
  • calling the Jobcentre Plus

Jobcentre Plus
Telephone: 0800 169 0310
Textphone: 0800 169 0314
NGT text relay (if you cannot hear or speak on the phone): 18001 then 0800 169 0310
Welsh language: 0800 328 1744
Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm

Calls are free from mobiles and landlines.

The DWP might ask you to fill in a new claim form.

If they refuse to start your ESA again, check how to challenge the DWP’s decision. You should start your challenge within 1 month of the decision.

If you’ve got no income or a low income

You might be able to claim a benefit that’s worked out based on your income.

What you can claim depends on which type of ESA you’ve been getting.

If you’ve been getting new style ESA

You might be able to claim Universal Credit – check if you can claim Universal Credit.

If you’ve been getting contribution-based ESA

You might be able to add income-related ESA to your claim.

To add income-related ESA, you don’t need to make a new claim. Ask the DWP for a ‘supersession’ of the decision to end your claim – this means they’ll update their decision. You can ask for a supersession by either:

  • writing to the address on your ESA letters
  • calling the Jobcentre Plus

Jobcentre Plus
Telephone: 0800 169 0310
Textphone: 0800 169 0314
NGT text relay (if you cannot hear or speak on the phone): 18001 then 0800 169 0310
Welsh language: 0800 328 1744
Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm

Calls are free from mobiles and landlines.

If your ESA has already stopped

If you have no income or a low income, you might be able to make a new claim for:

If it’s been 12 or more weeks since your ESA stopped

You might be able to make a new claim for either new style or contribution-based ESA. You can check if you can make a new claim.

You can also check what other help you can get if you’re struggling with living costs.

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