SSP ending then claiming ESA

Hello Everyone!

Not been online for sometime since prior my mastectomy and immediate reconstruction (abdominal Diep)which was mid December 2011, now in 6th week of recovery( if you can call it that!) Still having dressings changed, lots of strange smells from dressings I’m told mainly not me from not washing!Coping with it and due to see plastic surgeon on Friday 27 Jan…

As my SSP is coming to an end 28 weeks I believe, so probably ends about mid Feb I’m guessing. I’ve send my employer a letter together with medical cert which my doctor has written to beginning March. I have requested my employer to state an actual date when SSP ends and to post my the SSP1 form. Now when I recieve this from them, I understand I can claim for ESA. The problem I have is, that if during February I decide to resign from my employment (after I get my treatment plan I have an appt whether therapy/tablets don’t know yet in Feb)am I still able to apply for ESA?? Also by claiming ESA are you expected to find a job straight away? I’m thinking of looking for a part time job nearer home but only when I am fit and ready to go back to work.

2011 was not a good year for myself and my husband. He has a pacemaker and was taken ill himself had a reflux complication and was in hospital himself for nearly 2 weeks. He just came out, then it was my time to have my mastectomy and reconstruction!

So you can imagine we would both like a break/short holiday when we are both fit and I don’t want to rush back to work but want to apply for any benefit I can. Another query if anybody knows/has experience, does ESA matter how much savings you have?

Any advice would be very useful. My husband and I will also book an appointment with the Macmillan benefits advisor at my hospital who was very helpful before. Just wanted anyones opinions or experiences.

Hope to hear from anyone soon



I couldn’t claim ESA and have been skint since September. Will be glad to go back to work and sort out my debts.

I’m not sure about this but i think resigning voluntarily is a bad idea for several reasons. As far as ESA is concerned, it’s easier to demonstrate you aren’t fit to do your job, if it’s clear what that job entails. I know there are specific criteria they use for ESA but meantime your GP is signing you off against your particular job as far as she knows it, so I might be fit to do my job but not yours.
Another reason to stay employed even if you are on half or even zero pay is to do with a gap in your CV, it’s not a crime to be off ill, but the shorter the gap between jobs on paper, the more likely you are to get back in. I think there’s something similar involving national insurance there too. There’s also implications for your pension rights if you choose to leave, or if you have to leave because of ill health. If there’s a climate of redundancies coming up in your company and you get singled out as the one to go (purely because of your illness) that might be grounds for a claim of unfair dismissal, which you have thrown away if you choose to resign.

Do go through this with the benefits adviser, they will help you get the best deal for you, help with the forms etc. You stand a whole lot better chance of getting ESA with a benefit adviser behind you, especially at the appeal stage. Wishing you lots of luck.

Dear Ladies
Thanks for your replies. There’s lots to think about I know. I think my pension rights are safe/national insurance etc. I looked into this but I will go through all my present letters then book an appointment with the Macmillan advisor with my husband and his details. It’s never straight forward, each person is different. I have to do what’s right for me and my husband have discussed this together re finance.


Interesting thread. My SSP came to an end just before the end of December last year. I applied for ESA which I thankfully qualified for. I too had been considering resigning from my job as I just can’t see myself working again, it doesn’t seem fair on my employers even though it is a massive company and my colleagues are covering my work by doing paid overtime. Having read the the comment from hymil I realise that I am best carrying on as I am. I am still recovering from chemotherapy and surgery (5 weeks post mx and axillary clearance) I go for Rads planning on Friday so I am still in active treatment and need to stop thinking about work and concentrate on getting through this and out on the other side.

So, thanks for raising the subject!

Oh I forgot to say, while I was off sick but no longer being paid I was still covered for death benefit on the company sickness policy. So if i had died while still employed (even if i was off) either BC treatment or anything random, stroke, heart attack, whatever ppl die of, my daughter was provided for. That’s worth keeping as long as you can. Getting fresh life-cover outside of your company scheme
when you’re over 50 and within two years of BC, isn’t cheap!

I had thought about going voluntarily too but a friend talked me out of it and i’m so glad she did.