Citizens Advice Bureau will 'take some of the strain off South Oxhey benefits claimants'

Watford Observer: Citizens Advice Bureau will 'take some of the strain off benefits claimants' Citizens Advice Bureau will 'take some of the strain off benefits claimants'

South Oxhey benefit claimants who have been medically signed off from work will no longer have to travel to Watford to prove that they are eligible for Employment and Support Allowance (ESA).

Those who had been signed off by their doctors as unfit for work had to present their medical certificate to Watford Jobcentre Plus, in Exchange Road, making it difficult for some who were not well enough to make the journey.

A collaboration between the South Oxhey Citizens Advice Bureau and the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) means that claimants can now go to the bureau’s offices, in Bridlington Road, to have their forms processed.

Peter Franklin, South Oxhey Citizens Advice Bureau’s social policy co-ordinator, said: "Using this process should take some of the pressure off our clients. The DWP have agreed that as soon as they receive the medical certificates from us they will contact our clients directly to confirm that their claim has been received.

"This should cut down the amount of time that clients have to wait for the processing of their ESA claims and will hopefully take some of the strain off the clients using this process."

He added: "We hope that once this becomes generally known that this system is in place, our clients will come directly to us rather than having the worry of how to get their medical certificates to the DWP office in Watford."

South Oxhey Citizens Advice Bureau is open on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays between 10am and 4pm.

Comments (3)

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1:03pm Wed 5 Feb 14

Phil Cox - UKIP Mayoral candidate for Watford says...

Why don't doctors just email DWP with the details? It would save a lot of bother all round and be the most efficient system?

Why have a middleman at all?

Then it wouldn't matter where you lived, no-one would have to struggle in to Watford.

It should cut costs as well, overall.

What's not to like?
Why don't doctors just email DWP with the details? It would save a lot of bother all round and be the most efficient system? Why have a middleman at all? Then it wouldn't matter where you lived, no-one would have to struggle in to Watford. It should cut costs as well, overall. What's not to like? Phil Cox - UKIP Mayoral candidate for Watford

8:22pm Wed 5 Feb 14

Nascot says...

In my job (Insurance) you would not believe the number of medical 'professionals' who are complicit in fraud. Bung them £30 and you will get a 'whiplash' or 'unfit to work' Certificate. The result of this being:
fraudulent insurance & benefit claims which ultimately you and I pay, either through our premiums and taxes. Cheaper maybe, according to Phil Cox - UKIP Mayoral candidate for Watford, but not necessarily the best.
In my job (Insurance) you would not believe the number of medical 'professionals' who are complicit in fraud. Bung them £30 and you will get a 'whiplash' or 'unfit to work' Certificate. The result of this being: fraudulent insurance & benefit claims which ultimately you and I pay, either through our premiums and taxes. Cheaper maybe, according to Phil Cox - UKIP Mayoral candidate for Watford, but not necessarily the best. Nascot

9:01pm Wed 5 Feb 14

Phil Cox - UKIP Mayoral candidate for Watford says...

Nascot wrote:
In my job (Insurance) you would not believe the number of medical 'professionals' who are complicit in fraud. Bung them £30 and you will get a 'whiplash' or 'unfit to work' Certificate. The result of this being:
fraudulent insurance & benefit claims which ultimately you and I pay, either through our premiums and taxes. Cheaper maybe, according to Phil Cox - UKIP Mayoral candidate for Watford, but not necessarily the best.
Fair comment, but is it made any better by a claimant presenting a bent certificate in person to a claim handler? Probably not.

Presumably the receiver of the cert will not be examining the claimant again, just processing a form.

So, my suggested method might be cheaper but just as prone to fraud. That still makes it more efficient.

It might save enough money to employ more fraud investigators if they are needed. Win-win.

What would you suggest Nascot, because we do need to run our systems as efficiently as possible whilst stopping fraudulent claims?

We should all work together to make systems work efficiently. Then taxes could be reduced or services improved at no extra cost to the taxpayer. That's got to be a good thing.
[quote][p][bold]Nascot[/bold] wrote: In my job (Insurance) you would not believe the number of medical 'professionals' who are complicit in fraud. Bung them £30 and you will get a 'whiplash' or 'unfit to work' Certificate. The result of this being: fraudulent insurance & benefit claims which ultimately you and I pay, either through our premiums and taxes. Cheaper maybe, according to Phil Cox - UKIP Mayoral candidate for Watford, but not necessarily the best.[/p][/quote]Fair comment, but is it made any better by a claimant presenting a bent certificate in person to a claim handler? Probably not. Presumably the receiver of the cert will not be examining the claimant again, just processing a form. So, my suggested method might be cheaper but just as prone to fraud. That still makes it more efficient. It might save enough money to employ more fraud investigators if they are needed. Win-win. What would you suggest Nascot, because we do need to run our systems as efficiently as possible whilst stopping fraudulent claims? We should all work together to make systems work efficiently. Then taxes could be reduced or services improved at no extra cost to the taxpayer. That's got to be a good thing. Phil Cox - UKIP Mayoral candidate for Watford

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