What to do about benefit sanctions
In the last 10 years, over a million disabled people have had their benefits stopped with sanctions.
If this is you, and you had good reason to miss an appointment, appeal right away. You must ask for a Mandatory Reconsideration, and explain why you missed the appointment and why you should not be sanctioned.
If you miss an appointment, ring them as soon as possible to let them know why. Delay will mean it is much harder to get your sanction overturned.
While you are waiting for them to consider your mandatory reconsideration, you can apply for a hardship payment. This is a loan to help you pay basic expenses, like rent, food, heating.You have to show that you have tried to get money from other sources, and you have stopped spending money on all but the most essential things, in order to succeed. You will have to pay the Hardship Payment after the sanction period.
You should also make sure you let creditors know of your situation immediately – that means housing benefit, mortgauge lender, council tax, power companies, and any company you usually pay money to. If you dont do this, your debt will mount.
You can get some model letters to help you with all this here>
If you still need a bit of help with this, contact our advocacy service, by telephone, email or contact form, here>
Remember, DON’T DELAY with any of these things, or you will pile up the problems.