Financially I’m up shit creek. I worked a tadge over  four months last year. It’s the only work I could get – via an agency. In the mean time I’m chucking out an average of 30 CV’s and tailored Cover Letters a week. If company isn’t hiring then wtf can you do? They’re not going to create a job just because I bothered to ring them up-life’s not like that. So you’ve got the picture that I’m doing all I can.

Given JSA is paid fortnightly, its always out of synch of  any of my direct debits. So half of the month I’m overdrawn and have to pay bank charges,for my ‘arranged’ overdraft. My power bill had gone up from £39/mth to £54, My water goes up to £25/month next month, so that’s a weeks dole gone already. Just got my TV licence, House Insurance, Broadband & phone package and Council tax on top. As you see that leaves little, if nothing left at end of the month for food. The only way I could buy food for myself was using my credit card. Sadly my savings that I was using to pay off the credit card has dried up. My only choice was to claim on the PPI I took out to cover the payments.

They sent me a form. I had to jump through hoops to fill it out. For a kick off, the operation would be expensive – they wanted all my documents faxed to them….50p per sheet at the local post office. I haven’t got a fax, nor access to a photocopier – on account of being at home unemployed and not in an office. I had to fork out money for printer ink  and struggle getting the compatible cartridges recognised.

1) The major set back was getting in contact with my ex-employers. Like anyone else, it may not have been a great experience. They were dragging their feet. They didn’t respond to an e-mail alerting them that I needed this information filling in. Finally,eventually they returned it by post. The dates they said I worked contradicted the ones I had – there was a two week period on a zero hour contract.

2) I had to get DWP to get a letter to say I was on JSA (lucky I had that)

3) I had to go through my bank statements, one by one and highlight every time I was paid the JSA. I also had to try and anonymise the statements – not show my account number/sort code – so with creative use of post-it notes I scanned the statements, ready for faxing. Nice to know an employee may be upto identity theft.

Twenty six pieces of paper later, I went to the post office. I also sent copies of all the documents by post, as third generation copies were not clear.  I got a few days later, a text saying they’d got the documents.

So, now its the 13th Feb, I’ve heard nothing. Passed from pillar to post before speaking to someone – 20 minutes on the phone.

They sent a letter out on the 30th January, wanting yet more information and proof of employment from 2012 and all the JSA in between. Clearly I hadn’t got the letter. More time lost. Another payment towards the credit card needed. I’ve paid off this month.

Clearly PPI isn’t fit for purpose. If i don’t get anything I’ll be amongst thousands of others making a complaint.

All the time I’m still waiting for that job offer to come along and save me…..



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