Course Description

Around 40% of people claiming benefits for sickness are found fit for work, but about 65% of people who challenge decisions are successful. It’s often people with mental health problems who find it hardest to prove their case, whose mental health deteriorates as they try to do this. Come on this course and learn how to help them and others to navigate the minefield.

This course is for organisations who signpost, provide information, support or advise people with health conditions or disabilities. Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) is for people who have a health condition or disability that makes it difficult or impossible to work. This is assessed using the Work Capability Assessment (WCA). People with ‘limited capability for work’ can qualify for ESA if they have paid enough National Insurance contributions and/or if they are on a low income. The amount people get depends on the outcome of the WCA. This assessment is also used to assess claimants of Universal Credit (UC) with health conditions or disabilities to decide whether they are expected to work or undertake ‘work-related activity.’

The course will cover: 

  • basic conditions of entitlement to both forms of ESA;
  • basic conditions of UC as they relate to people whose health conditions or disabilities limit their ability to work;
  • the Work Capability Assessment;
  • how to challenge decisions.

Course Aims & Objectives

The course will give participants the knowledge and confidence to:

  • identify who is entitled to ESA/UC on the grounds of limited capability for work
  • assist people to claim ESA/UC
  • help people challenge the decision if their claim is turned down or their benefit is reduced.

About Your Tutor

Vincent has worked for the Citizens Advice service in Devon since 1985. As an experienced trainer, he has provided benefits training for many years to voluntary and statutory sector staff, covering all aspects of the benefits system from introductory courses to Tribunal Representation. He has been a benefits caseworker throughout his working life, having taken cases up to the Upper Tribunal level. He continues to work as a benefits caseworker, providing advice and assistance to families with children with disabilities and to young people with disabilities. He also provides benefits advice as part of the Devon Advice Service for Working Age Carers and is the Chief Officer at Citizens Advice Teignbridge. 

Special requirements

Please let Support Services know if there is anything that would affect your learning and if there is anything we can do to enable you to fully participate in our courses and we will do our best to accommodate you.

Call Support Services on 01392 248919 or email: [email protected] 

Cancellation Policy

In the event that this course does not reach the minimum required number to proceed we will contact you and offer a credit against the next available course, the option to book an alternative course or a refund.

By proceeding with this booking you are agreeing to this cancellation policy.

Two ways to book


i) Complete the booking form and email it to [email protected] Download your booking form here 

ii) Book and pay for your course by selecting your ticket(s) below and following the online booking process.


i) Complete the booking form and email it to [email protected] Download the booking form here 

ii) Your order will be acknowledged and your place will be confirmed once payment has been received. 

For any enquiries regarding booking and payment please contact our Training Administrator on 01392 248919 

Become a member of Devon Communities Together to take advantage of our heavily discounted training rates and click here for other benefits. 

Book a place

Ticket Quantity Price

DCT Members, Devon Citizens Advice Staff & Volunteers

Decrease Increase £50.00

Voluntary/Community Organisations

Decrease Increase £70.00

Statutory & Private Sector, including Local Authorities

Decrease Increase £95.00