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Old 09-04-2012, 04:33 PM   #1
MrsNutkin
 
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Criteria for disability

I'm really frustrated because I have a disability which means I have almost no dexterity in right hand. I cannot for example, hold a cup with my right hand. I cannot pour water from a kettle with my right hand, I cannot pick up a coin with my right hand.

In other words I have full use of only one hand.

When looking at benefit descriptors, the latest being working tax credits as I am looking at going back to work it says use of either hand. That to me reads as if you have use of one hand then you don't qualify. Funny that as I would consider myself disabled. I get lower rate care component of DLA.

I just can't understand it. You are either disabled or you are not. I don't think I'm fully able bodied as I can't use both my hands properly.


http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/taxcredits/tc956.pdf

Reading the descriptors in table 1 on page 2 what do you think? I can't pick up a pen with my right hand or type with my right hand or pick up a coin with my right hand.

It continues to baffle me that when it suits the government I'm considered disabled but when it comes to getting support I'm considered fine.

The CAB local to me has shut



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Old 09-04-2012, 05:41 PM   #2
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Generally speaking I think that disability is on a sliding scale. With regards to that I mean from a disability that means you struggle with some situations to a disability that prevents you doing anything.

It sounds like the disability you have will limit you in some ways, but equally, there will be many things that it does not affect, or that you can adjust and morph to find a way to do. So whilst you may have a registered disability, it is not necessarily something that would prevent you from working, in its own right, because there will be a wide variety of jobs that you could do, as well as some that you couldn't.






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Old 09-04-2012, 06:19 PM   #3
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Generally speaking I think that disability is on a sliding scale. With regards to that I mean from a disability that means you struggle with some situations to a disability that prevents you doing anything.

It sounds like the disability you have will limit you in some ways, but equally, there will be many things that it does not affect, or that you can adjust and morph to find a way to do. So whilst you may have a registered disability, it is not necessarily something that would prevent you from working, in its own right, because there will be a wide variety of jobs that you could do, as well as some that you couldn't.
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Old 09-04-2012, 07:10 PM   #4
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You cannot pick up a coin with one hand - well that's true with one of your hands you can't... but you can with the other. You can always have a phone consult with cab or ri g up tax credits and explain you are confused with the terminology.



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Old 09-04-2012, 08:22 PM   #5
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Yeah I do think it's a sliding scale.

It sucks that you have limited use of one hand but you can still do a heck of a lot with your other hand.

I guess benefit descriptors are there for people at the higher end of the previously mentioned sliding scale.

Take depression some people are barely impacted by it whilst others spend there lives in hospital. If the rules were there for anyone with depression the country wouldn't be able to cope.

For a lot of people work can be highly beneficial and its right that people should contribute. As you recieve DLA that should help you to live a more normal life and in turn you should be able to work in some jobs.




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Old 10-04-2012, 03:41 PM   #6
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I don't know if I wrote this wrong but I wasn't saying I can't work although I did leave a job due to anxiety but anyway that's not the point. I just find it's harder with a 'not so obvious' disability as people just go yeah you can do so much. Really, everything is hard. I just miss out... I guess it's easy for people not living with this to go 'your ok' and yeah I am but try living with a broken arm for 6 weeks, people get annoyed at that. My whole life is like that!

Sorry I sound annoyed, I am right now. I'm not trying to live for free and never work I just need some support and I dunno.. I guess I was trying to.. well you either have 2 hands or you don't and I haven't got full use of both of mine but this doesn't seem to matter



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Old 10-04-2012, 03:42 PM   #7
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Working tax credits by the way, are meant for people in work to support them. There is or used to be a working tax credit for the disabled.



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Old 10-04-2012, 05:29 PM   #8
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:|

I don't think anyone has belittled your situation or how difficult things are for you. No one has said you are ok either. We heard, and responded accordingly. Personally, my left hand does not work properly, and often when I do use it, it causes me a lot of pain, but it just means that for me I have to adjust how I do stuff and find other ways to do it. I don't view mine as a disability, I view it as a challenge. Sure it annoys me and makes things more difficult, but each time I find a way to achieve something with that hand, then that's a confidence boost and a little bit of pride I gain.

You mentioned about how sometimes you are disabled in their eyes and sometimes you aren't. Well, that is true in any situation with a disability like this. For example, if you had to walk somewhere, your hand usage would not affect that at all. But if you had to try and cut a carrot or something, you would have to look for a way to adjust it to make it achievable, such as by getting pre-diced food, for example.

There are some situations where you are as able as anyone else, but others where you find challenges. That's no different from the vast majority of people, to be honest, but in a variety of reasons.

I do have to be honest though because you come across as very defeated by your situation and being determined to 'disable' yourself, as opposed to wanting to enable yourself and recognise the things that you can do.

Is there a particular reason why right now you feel this is such an issue for you? Has something happened to bring it to the forefront?

I do agree, going back to your first post, contacting the relevant people and asking them to explain what the situation is, explain your situation and see what they say.






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Old 10-04-2012, 08:05 PM   #9
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I agree with the others. My personal experience is that I am only partially sighted in one eye (I can see colour blocks) but I've adapted to doing things with it. I can't do some jobs and learning to drive was harder and it causes me some issues but I've learned just to deal with them and I've never considered it a disability. Sometimes it gets me down a little but not often.

I think it's good uou aren't letting it stop you work or anything though.

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Old 11-04-2012, 09:06 AM   #10
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Kind of, I'm looking for work again, part time. People keep recommend bar work, shop work or cafe's. Cafe's would be hard as I couldn't really wait tables or make drinks and shop work - dragging cages = hard.



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Old 11-04-2012, 10:39 AM   #11
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What about admin work? Office duties? For example post, filing, data input that sort of thing. Or maybe working for a disability charity or something? I also worked at a doctors surgery in reception and I can imagine that is totally doable.




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Old 11-04-2012, 01:55 PM   #12
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Shop work doesn't have to be shelf stacking it could be admin, cleaning, serving in a petrol station or kiosk and in a cafe you could be in charge of the till or use a trolle to help you clear tables. Employers ar supposed to make reasonable adjustments to help disabled employees work.



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Old 11-04-2012, 04:25 PM   #13
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I thought it may help if I added my side to things.

I personally am 'disabled'. I have reduced use of 1 side of my body as well as having trouble with several joints, my back anf have difficulty walking long distances amongst other things. When I first applied for DLA I got rejected. I asked for them to reassess my application to be rejected again. The final stage was to take it further and go to tribunal; I sent in supporting evidence from a number of sources plus my own beliefs. I then got told I'd have an independent doctor visit me re my application. He came and assessed me and presumed that I'd been on it for years, when I told him I hadn't been and that I'd actually just been refused twice he was astonished. He filed his report in and they finally realised my needs, I was offered medium rate care allowance and higher rate mobility and also had it back-dated from when my first application was (5 months previously); I didn't have to go to tribunal as the doctors report changed their decision in my favour. What I'm saying is if you feel it is wrong you can always query it and see however things are on a sliding scale depending how disabled you are and the help you need and it's up to them to make the decision on that. It sounds like my cousin has a similar problem to you and he gets either lower or medium rate care, if that and nothing for mobility.


I do have a job. At the moment I'm working part time plus doing cover when people are away. I'm doing a physically and mentally/ emotionally demanding job, which is compounded when you're not really healthy, and at 1 point I wasn't believed to be able to get the qualifications I needed to get where I am and when it came to getting a job, I had some negative comments. However, I now have a very good employer who knew about my problems but saw past them. They've, for the moment, capped the number of hours per day I do when covering other people just to try and reduce the impact on me, and I get extra help as well as it being understood that some things won't be as easy for me as other people. All the staff are aware of at least part of my health problems and therefore assist me appropriately. This is how it should be and you are protected under the Equalities Act 2010 which states that employers have to make 'reasonable adjustments' to help you to work. You could also apply for Access to Work (which I haven't and really should've done when I started my job or beforehand) during the time when you are looking for jobs and they can fund things you need to put you on a more even keel.

DLA is really a tough thing, as are disabilities, to put on a scale as they all different, not just each disability but more importantly the affect a certain disability has on the person; someone may be in a wheelchair but still be able to totally care for themselves whereas someone else may have the same problem but be unable to care for themselves at all and that, amongst people trying to get it when they don't need it, is why it can be difficult to get it and also get it at a level you feel you should as other people may see it differently to what you do and things may also be questioned (with me some of the things was how it affected my social life, my abilities to do sport, how far I could walk (and that was cross-examined by the doctor through asking some questions) amongst other things. I'm not at all trying to say you don't deserve more or that you're trying to get more than you need/ you don't need it or anything like that, all I'm trying to say is it can be hard for you and anyone else (especially those in an office who have never met you before) to guage where you lie on a spectrum and if you do want to appeal, like I did, then feel free to but get as much supporting info from as many sources as you can; even a friend but say if you have a physio/ occupational therapist then they may really be able to help your case and see what they think.

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Old 11-04-2012, 05:21 PM   #14
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I just wanted to say that work wise it would be a great idea to book an appointment to see the Disability Employment Advisor at your local Job Centre. S/he should be able to give you some support, ideas and guidance :)






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Old 11-04-2012, 06:24 PM   #15
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Hi there,

Disability criteria does vary according to what/who is asking. The goalposts re disability in relation to benefits are moving and being moved to prevent people from having their care needs supported financially. Some of the changes are quite subtle, for example at the moment for DLA to get lower rate care one criteria is that you can not, or without support (ie too depressed/eating disorder) will not prepare and eat a proper meal for yourself. This is becoming, "if you are able to pop a ready meal in the microwave you are no longer eligible for lower rate care" or its equivalent when it becomes PIP - even if due to mental ill health you won't.

It is complicated, and this is my own understanding having done some research. It's well worth doing some on line research and getting advice before you apply for any benefits. It is very easy to unwittingly miss out information that will mean the decision maker says no when you really are legitimately eligible for support.

I hope that makes a bit of sense.

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Old 12-04-2012, 09:48 AM   #16
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Hi there,

This is becoming, "if you are able to pop a ready meal in the microwave you are no longer eligible for lower rate care" or its equivalent when it becomes PIP - even if due to mental ill health you won't.
Yes I know. Heartbreaking really, that's not cooking. I've done research but I've lost all faith in it all now



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