Change of Circumstances

My relationship with my partner/carer has broken down. We both receive ESA contribution and are both in the Support Group.

We will both have to declare a change in circumstances.

But will it mean we have to apply for Universal Credit?

I’ve read someone that being in receipt of the severe disability premium protects against being migrated as things stand. However, I get awarded SDP in the working out letters, but then the monies are taken back off me because we are classed as having too much money.

But does it mean I will be protected from universal credit?


Hi Mark.

Change of circumstances ?

A must … the DWP are not the happiest of bunnies … even at the best of times.

Universal Credit ?

If rolled out on your manor … yes … there are some traps when switching over.

SDP ( Severe Disability Premium ) under UC ?

Even under " Old Money " benefits , SDP would disappear when someone claimed Carers Allowance to look after that person.

An Online Benefits Calaculator … ideal time for those " Whats ifs " … and test that " Too much money " element quoted
… I presume savings / other income ? … even under UC :

Additionally useful for ensuring that all benefits / allowances are currently being claimed.

If any abnormalities are shown , feel free to bounce them off us here on the forum.

Thanks, Chris. I kinda guessed I’d be screwed. Still not sure what will happen. DWP not sure either. Advised me to contact my local authority. Something about a new housing benefit claim. If I can avoid UC I will. Seems wise to.

Your welcome.

Housing Benefit ?

Good luck with that … a question of just how big is that gap on your manor.

Rents rising / Housing Allowance frozen … a gap that gets wider on every rent review ?

The other problem … UC rollout … HB will fall under that heading … and the main " Complaint " when first having
to claim under UC … a mini library on that in the press since that UC steamroller started up !

Clain ANYTHING income related , UC will catch it !


If you already get benefits
Universal Credit will replace the following benefits :

Child Tax Credit
Housing Benefit
Income Support
income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
Working Tax Credit

If you currently receive any of these benefits, you cannot claim Universal Credit at the same time.

Universal Credit is being introduced in stages across the UK. You do not need to do anything until you hear from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) about moving to Universal Credit, > unless you have a change in circumstances.

Severe disability premium

You cannot claim Universal Credit if you either:

are getting the severe disability premium
got the severe disability premium within the last month and you’re still eligible for it

If you have a change of circumstances that affects the severe disability premium or your other benefits, report it and you’ll be told what to do next.

I lost the SDP when we moved in together as you can’t get it unless you live alone.

All the other premiums are awarded and then taken away again in the award letter, because they class her income (also ESA support group) as my income

We both get contribution ESA

I used to get the premiums as income-related ESA, before we moved in together.

I also get PIP enhanced and lower. That will help me through the UC standard starvation period., Unfortunately my ex does not and so is going to struggle during herstandard UC starvation period, but I’ll help her out if she allows.

I guess I’m going to be not be entitled to any premiums again. And will be on standard UC and PIP with noi protected premiums coz I lost them already.

Yep … UC … and those mines.

Many readers won’t appreciate just what that steamroller will flatten !

Their time will come …

Next step … that calculator … crunch some numbers … inside / outside UC …
is there a specific combination that produces the highest return ?

If so , given your new circumstances , can it be achieved ?

Don’t forget … UC … just a title … like a book … it’s the chapters … the individual benefits … that count !

( Days of old , for a married couple , living apart produced the best result ! )

Thanks, Chris. I’ll do a bit of number-crunching later as advised.

The bizarre thing is that if you compare my income prior to the ex moving in, to when she did move in, with all the loss of premiums, council tax and housing benefit and wotnot, her real-world contribution to the household was £20 week. In other words, the government were getting away with supporting one very unwell person for £20 week.

Of course, the tradition of making it difficult for disabled people to live together in this country is a long and noble one. It’s not like I didn;t know that.

These prejudices we are subected to have a very long pedigree indeed.

I dread a no-deal brexit for all kinds of reasons but of course anyone with any sense should know how the chancellor will be trying to balance the books… who are the people they’ll come after first to make cuts in order that their infernal machine keeps ticking over

For all those that have ever wondered if they bcan swim the channel… soon they might be testing it

Best wishes and thanks for the good vibe, it all helps

Your welcome , Mark.

TBH it looks like it’d be wise for both of us to remain in a broken relationship rather than claim UC. She will especially be up the creek due to the mandatory starvation period, as she has no-one to help her, no family, nowt and I’m afraid she is a bit aloof when it comes to eating tinned or processed food, she’d rather starve, and so probably would

I would be willing to help her out, and exchange her pot noodles and tins of beans for cash, so she can get herself actual nutritious stuff. thats if she would be willing to accept it.

this whole system is set up to cause pain and humiliation. if it comes to it I’ll spend the days wandering around big food stores eating off the shelf until I’m full or get caught, whichever happens first.

I’ll stop now as I’m procrastinating. I’ll let you know how things pan out.

as a “couple” it is always of course financially prudent not to live together. it costs the treasury more money but somehow everyone is happier when people are not living together. Just have to then watch out for all the stasi stuff coz people are deeply suspicious in new ways when people who once lived together now don’t live together. it’s sometimes a great opportunity to really screw people over via the stasi informant hotlines.

Welcome indeed to CarerLand , Mark.

Half … yes , half … the 7.8 million are below / at / close to the official poverty line.

No caree = no carer.

So , double that number for our carees … a cool 7.8 million … out of the 14 million total !

EAT / HEAT / ROOF … juggling pennies to ensure all three … on a daily basis , every day !

Yes, it’s a tough existence. Absolutely is. I care for her sometimes, she cares for me. She’s the official carer but it makes very little difference. Neither of our efforts to help one another and given any credence, or acknowledgement. Caring is only really “real” as far as this society is concerned if it is done in an institution, and people have some kind of qualification, and there is a logo and a corporate declration of ethics. People don’t really by and large care about the ethics, just that they like to see an official document, which ramps on about we will do this and we promise that.

Ordinary people caring for one another through adversity. Well as you no doubt know that’s largely something which people don’t respect, or give a damn about, in this country. I believe people have been encouraged to be nasty.

What I would say is this, as it might help someone who reads this.

Foraging is a great way to bring in highly nutritious foodstuffs, for absolutely nothing other than the expenditure of time.

In my area they run regular foraging courses and crazily they are dominated by well-fed middle-class people that have plenty of money to spend.

This is the reverse snobbery of some poor people. “I’m not eating common weeds” and ahahahahaha. Anyway, I got into foraging a few years ago becaiuse of Capita awarding me 0 points and being plunged into adversity so that a bourgeois narcissist could have my money for their expensive lifestyle and cocaine habit.

You don’t have to attend a course and get sneered at by other bourgeosie jUST BUY a Collins gem and get out there and before you know it youll have a rucksaclk every day full of some amzing foodstuffs that absolutely swat-out the crap that gets hawked in the supermarket.

At the time of being 0-pointed by the Class Traitor in the designer gear paid for by stealing money from the disabled… I wrote to the lovcal MP and said I had been forced to forage for food… but I knew, given his proclivities, he’d be enoying that one, would be having a laugh about it, so I let him have it, because, me being a bigger man than he is, a generally more decent and unembittered human being, no matter what you put me through I won’t embrace the hatey ways.

So yeah… foraging… absolutely recommend it to everyone. Occasionally you’ll get lucky and find something that’ll put the rainbows inbto your eyes. And these days, with how bleak everything is, that’s no bad thing.

Just to add because… could be seen as contentious and insensitive…

I would also be horrified is local Job Centre Plus’ were calling in disabled people and carers and demanding that they undertook foraging courses… in order to mitigate the next rounds of benefits cuts… I’d also be outraged and doing terrible things in the toilets and car parks…


if you can, if you think you can get out there and do a bit of foraging

what I am saying is please by crikey go for it

I would be especially pleased if people found local courses and attended them

because like I say, these courses are domintaed by and large by the well-fed complacent bourgeoisie, and so a great opportunity to mix with them, and ley them know a little about the oppressive society they turn a blind eye to…

and at the same time learn about the amazing foodstuffs out there, that can be gathered for free

the other thing I would highly recommend is shaming food banks

particularly the bourgeois christians that run them

it is important to shame food banks and the bourgeois christians that run them because they are normalising and assisting the hatey politics

and remember jesus was about love and kindess and compassion

esus wasn;t about food banks, although he was about charity

charity isn’t a tin of beans and a pot noodle. that is humiliation.

charity is about true sharing

so it is time indeed it is to shame the christian food banks

well all the food banks, whatever the religious foundtaion

shame them all

Mark, enjoying your posts mate. Its good get bit of different worldview on here! B)

On your point, if its contributory/New Style ESA ESA then don’t see how you’d have go on to UC, I think you are thinking of income-based ESA?


If you already get benefits

Universal Credit will replace the following benefits :

Child Tax Credit
Housing Benefit
Income Support
income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
Working Tax Credit

That’s strange. And perhaps the first time that being in receipt of contribution ESA stands as an advantage.

I’ll have a chat later with the local council. There’s a woman down there who is the mastermind of benefits. If you are right that contribution ESA isnt affected then that takes a huge worry out of the equation.

Much thanks. All the digressions are a kind of panic! Thanks for being patient.

Food for free by richard mabey, great book.

Well, I’m back. Food For Free is indeed a great book and the very Collins gem that opened my eyes.

Me and The Boss made it through and worked things out.

And now I am having a Carer’s Assessment. Social services rang and did the “say hello, wave goodbye” number on me, and I wasn’t expecting their call, and The Boss was in the same room, so I rambled on about this and that and t’other, and when she goes, “We can’t do anything to help you” I was caught off guard and saying, “thank you”.

So I rang them back the next day and they gave me the direct number of the social worker in question.

Also I got referred to a local carer’s charity and they are assessing my/our needs very soon. And I get free access to Carers UK online resources, some of which Ive found very helpful, and it brings me back here. Small world innit?

And it looks like The Boss is going to be supported in applying for PIP. I’ve made a lot of subject access requests to get as much info as possible. Might need to hire a van to deliver the lot in person.

Will be interesting to see where Capita would like to do their assessment of The Boss. I told them if they called me back in to their centre I’d make a Citizen’s Arrest. They then refused to come here… so’s I served a legal letter on them. And they backed down.

Bullies are always cowards behind the masks.

Best wishes all.