Work Capability Assessment - About WCA
What is the Work Capability Assessment?
You can claim Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) if you are not well enough to work. You will need a fit note from your doctor to apply. In some areas, you might claim Universal Credit (UC) instead of ESA.
You can click on the following topics to find out more information about them:
When you apply, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has to check that you are not well enough to work. They call this having ‘limited capability for work’. If you have limited capability for work you can get ESA or UC with a limited capability for work element. In this section, we refer to ESA. But the same rules apply to UC with a limited capability for work element.
The test the DWP uses to decide if you have limited capability for work is called the Work Capability Assessment (WCA).
Sometimes the DWP do not have to check if you have limited capability for work. This would happen if you are in hospital.
They will usually send you a form with questions about your health. This is the ‘ESA50’ form, or the ‘Capability for Work questionnaire’. In this section we will refer to this as ‘the health questionnaire’. You can find out more information about this form here.
When you have completed the form most people will have to go to a medical assessment.
Need practical advice & info? We can help.
Contact our Advice team about mental health & related issues
0300 5000 927 Monday - Friday 9.30am - 4pm, not including bank holidays