benefit advice

i've just been diagnosed with OA on the top of my foot, I have battled excruciating pain for last 6 months & now being reffered for injection to see if it will help. My problem is I work in retail & have had to reduce my hours to only 12 per week & i am still struggling with pain, if I give up my job will I be able to claim universal credit & will I be forced into another type of employment to maintain any benefits?


  • HelenS
    HelenS Administrator Posts: 101

    Hi @Numes

    Welcome to the online community and thank you for posting. You have recently been diagnosed with OA of the foot and are seeking advice on benefit entitlement.

    Universal Credit is a means-tested benefit. Payments will depend on your personal circumstances, income and savings.

    You may find the following pages useful

    You might want to have a look at some of our other discussion pages; Living with Arthritis tends to be the most popular.

    Do keep in touch and let us know how you get on

    Take care

    @HelenS Moderator

    Need more help - Call our Helpline on 0800 5200 520 Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm

  • Fif
    Fif Member Posts: 107

    I suggest you go to your local CAB for advice. They are experts on benefits and how best to access them and will be able to go over all the options with you. Getting advice sooner than later is always best.

  • scotleag
    scotleag Member Posts: 84

    I don't know about benefit entitlement wrt reduced hours as the level of payment depends in income but if not working altogether you SHOULD receive Universal Credit but as @Fif points out you really should speak to the CAB or other benefits advisor first. For more general advice on benefits and disability or to see others' experience you could look here

    As for being 'forced' into employment that's highly unlikely. Official guidance cane be found here and beginners' guide to UC here

    From my own experience I had to give up work in 2017 on account of RA in my hands. At that time it was Employment Support Allowance I had to apply for. I had an assessment six months in and was placed in their Work Related Activity Group which meant basically if I could find suitable employment I could take it but I wasn't subject to rules regarding looking for work, to do retraining, go on any courses or forced to attend any interviews. I saw my work coach every six months for about ten minutes. I was re-assessed after two years then put in their Support Group which meant I was regarded as not even able to do the limited amount prior to that.

    My assessments were each about an hour long and required physical attendance at them. Benefits would have stopped if I didn't turn up without good reason.

    As far as I understand (I'm now on the pension so am no longer in the 'system' for UC/ESA) interviews/assessments are still being done by phone (replaced physical attendance in first lockdown). ¡