Last DLA payment was halved!

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My PIP claim failed and I was told my DLA would end on 17th January. Mandatory reconsideration also failed and I'm trying to come to terms with losing my DLA which I've received since 1999. I receive ESA and from now on my life will have to drastically change to account for the big drop in monthly money. Yesterday I received my bank statement and to add insult to injury my last DLA payment on 17th January was only half the amount I usually receive! Please can anyone tell me why I didn't receive the full payment? 

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  • Posted

    When date did you recieve you last full payment? If it was less than 4 weeks then this is the reason why your last payment for only for half the amount. You can Appeal that MR decision also.
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    • Posted

      Thanks Denise, I just checked and my last full payment was on 30th dec so yes it was less than 4 weeks so that answers my question. 

      Morag, I used to get £307.60 a month and it's going to be a struggle to get by without it. I still can't believe it's happened as it doesn't seem possible to be awarded indefinite DLA/SDA and then for it to suddenly change its name AND its criteria for it to then be taken away! How can they do this to disabled people? It's so so wrong. 

      Alexandria, I wanted to appeal but when the Mandatory Reconsideration also failed I realized I wouldn't stand a chance of winning an appeal. I asked them how can someone who's 80% disabled can possibly be ineligible for PIP and they said because the criteria is different to that of DLA. I received 0 points so an appeal would be a waste of time. I was awarded DLA/SDA because I'm agoraphobic, my depression was so bad it led to 4 psychotic breakdowns, I also have ADD (as in ADHD but without the hyperactivity), asthma, eczema, high blood pressure, a hiatus hernia and only one kidney due to the other being killed by repeat infections which I now know were caused by a narrow urethra. Anxiety prevents me going out, I spent many years unable to leave the house at all but after treatment with a nurse I am now able to go out although it causes so much anxiety I avoid it if possible. The assessment I had to go to to try claiming PIP caused me to be ill for weeks and I can't put myself through the stress of a tribunal when the chances of success seem so tiny.

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    • Posted

      Hi Kaydi, sorry to hear about your terrible experience, it's your choice whether you appeal, but like you I was given zero points, lost my MR, and did go for an appeal, and got standard rate . The tribunal was very hard, but at least they listened, so it was actually less traumatic than the initial assessment.

      do you have anyone who could help you, CAB, anyone like that? The criteria are different from DLA but that doesn't mean you don't qualify.

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    • Posted

      I see in your reply to Alexandria that your MR failed and were told that the criteria for PIP is different to that for DLA. This seems to me to be the standard fob-off statement. I too was told this. In my case, a closer look revealed that the decision-maker dismissed the evidence by which I qualified for DLA because it does not fall within PIP criteria. However, I would suggest you look at the criteria and points score system to see which areas you qualify under. This might seem daunting and I would not wish to cause you any additional anxiety. If you want help as to where get this info please private message me and I`ll give you the links. I can well understand that the pressure and feeling that you have little chance of winning an appeal might make you not consider doing this but, from the short time I have been on this site, I have read some very encouraging reports of people who have won and what`s more you don`t have to attend the hearing and as others have said CAB may be able to give support and advice. Good luck.
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    • Posted

      It's that DLA is a lot different to PIP. About 6 months before PIP came out i applied for DLA. Sent off all my evidence, had help filling in the forms decision came back refused. At the time i didn't bother to appeal as my health wasn't great and couldn't deal with all the added stress. Then PIP came out, i did my research and boy did i research it. about 6 months after PIP started i rang to start my claim off. Had help filling out the forms sent them off with all my evidence. Waited forever for an assessment (11 months) at the time the backlogs were HUGE. Decision came back Standard for both. I was 2 points short of Enhanced mobility. Thought about it hard and decided i was happy with the decision even though i thought i should have got Enhanced mobility. Didn't ask for the MR. Couldn't deal with the stress that time either. So for me PIP works better than DLA ever did.

      Those tranfering from DLA to PIP really do need to do their research because it's so different. Qualifying for DLA doesn't mean a person will qualify for PIP.

      Research does show though that at Appeal Tribunal success is MUCH higher if you attend than if you don't.

      I still think that we do read more bad stories than good because those that are successful obviously have no questions to ask therefore we don't hear their stories.

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  • Posted

    Hi there well sorry to hear that .

    But remember the d w p pay in arrears so maybe that's why you never got the rest phone and ask th ! Was it a large amount you lost

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  • Posted

    Thanks for your replies. My biggest problem is I don't have anyone to help me, my CPN helped me apply for DLA but 13 years ago I moved in with an elderly friend who became my carer and it was decided I no longer needed a CPN. My friend is now 83 and has been very ill for the last 2 years and also now has dementia but when I asked my GP for another CPN she said she can't provide this, I'm no longer under the mental health team who normally provide them but she said the ADHD clinic will be able to. I've been on the waiting list for the ADHD clinic for about a year and was offered an appointment in December but had to cancel as my friend had fallen breaking his hip so couldn't be left on his own. The nearest CAB is 8 miles away so is out of the question. 

     I have checked the criteria and strongly feel I should have been given points for several of them. I have absolutely no sense of direction thanks to my ADD, in the last few years I have only been out on my own twice in places I wasn't familiar with and both times I became hopelessly lost so I feel I should have been awarded points for being unable to plan and follow a route of a journey.

    When my friend became ill he was no longer able to collect my ADD meds and I have to collect them myself twice a week, they're a controlled drug so cannot be delivered. The chemist is a 7 minute walk from my home but caused so much anxiety I bought a 15mph scooter to enable me to get there and back much quicker. I assume the reason I got no points for being unable to plan and follow a journey was because I am able to go to the chemist for my meds. Yes I am able but I'm really struggling, I dread the 2 days a week I have to go but if I don't collect on those days I would lose my meds. 

    So I feel I should have been awarded points for being unable to manage medication, I explained how I'm not coping having to collect my meds but this was ignored. In the decision it said there is nothing in my medical history to indicate memory problems, I couldn't believe she wrote this as ADD causes severe memory problems but then I realized my ADD wasn't even mentioned at my assessment. She did ask me about taking my (huge) assortment of medication and I told her I use my iPad to remind me to take this. But without my DLA I'm worried I won't be able to afford to continue paying for the broadband to run my iPad and know of no other way to remind me to take my meds. 

    Other criterias I have difficulty with are expressing and understand verbal information, again my ADD makes both difficult, same with reading and understanding written information. My friend used to help me with these and before that my CPN, now when I receive a letter I don't understand I photo it and send it to my friend via Facebook messenger and she helps me. But if I lose my iPad I'll lose this too. 

    Engaging with others is also something I find difficult, long ago I realised my agoraphobia is not a fear of open spaces but a fear of people. 

    Steve, I was interested in what you said about not having to attend the hearing as I thought I would have to and this scared me so much I knew I couldn't do it. Please can you explain about this? 

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    • Posted

      Most MR decision remain the same. Chances of success with Appeal Tribunal are much higher than those that choose the paper based decision. I totally understand when you say you can't go, but i've heard so many stories where the Tribunal is so much different to the actual PIP assessment. So much more relaxed and a lot more understanding. If you still decide not to go you'll need to make sure you ask for a "paper hearing" when filling out the form for Tribunal. Please so consider going because if the decision doens't go in your favour with a paper based decision the only way you can appeal the decision is if an error in law was made. This is extremely hard to prove! Good luck what ever you decide to do.

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    • Posted

      Kaydi,

      As you`ll see from her post, Denise has explained this better than I can, and I do hope if possible you decide to go ahead at least with the appeal.

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  • Posted

    I forgot to mention that my eczema on my feet (it's pompholyx eczema which affects only feet and hands) is a condition I find impossible to manage (I also forgot to mention this in my claim and my MR, so much for having no memory problems!). The eczema causes the skin to become so dry that I get painful cracks and often becomes infected. I'm supposed to scrape the dry skin away and keep it moisturised but reaching underneath my feet for any length of time is impossible so I tend to ignore it most of the time and put up with the pain when it cracks. My DLA enabled me to buy special shower gel, shampoo and bath creme as any contact with these or any other cleaning products such as washing up liquid, bleach etc cause flare ups. But even using the special products I can't remember a time when my feet were clear. I'm prescribed ultra base cream to use as a substitute soap but I spend a fortune on moisturising cream for my hands. 

    Another reason attending a hearing worries me is because I'm not good at verbally explaining things, with writing I can stop and think what I'm trying to say but not so with verbal and I have a tendency to just say the first thing that comes into my head. I often think about some of the things I said at the assessment that probably went against me. But it's hard to engage your brain before your mouth when anxious. I feel such a failure for being too scared to face attending a tribunal, I desperately need the money but not the ill health a tribunal would cause.

     

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    • Posted

      Hi Kaydi, again, I understand your feelings, but if it's any reassurance, I found the tribunal far less traumatic than the assessment, they gave me the time to gather my thoughts and listened to what I said, like you I have a mix of mental and physical health issues, and collapse under tense conditions. Good luck, whatever you decide

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  • Posted

    By taking my DLA are they saying I'm no longer disabled? On my benefit letters it says I get extra money because I'm severely disabled, will they take this too? If they do I will be left with just £292 a month ESA to live on. And if I'm no longer classed as disabled would that put my ESA at risk? It doesn't seem possible as no one can suddenly go from being 80% disabled to no longer being disabled (when I was awarded SDA I remember reading you have to be 80% disabled to get this). I feel so confused and depressed as I was supposed to get DLA/SDA for life and it's my disabilities that make appealing so scary. 

     

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    • Posted

      Hi Kaydi,

      You will no longer be entitled to the severe disability premium on top of your ESA. This was awarded because of your DLA. If you appeal and your awarded Daily Living part of PIP you'll be entitled to it. I'm sure ESA know but to be safe i'd ring them otherwise you may end up with an over payment.

      No you won't lose your ESA because they're 2 completely differenr benefits. Which group are you in? is it the WRAG? £292 a month seems rather low.

      Unfortunately those life time DLA awards were taken away when PIP came out. It doesn't mean you're not disabled it means DWP think you don't qualify for PIP. Please do rethink about going to the Tribunal it will help and as others have said it's not as scary as you think. Can you get someone to go with you? Don't give up on this because that's what DWP want you to do.

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    • Posted

      Hi Denise, I don't know which group I'm in, it just says I get £36.20 extra because I'm in a support group. TBH I rarely read these letters as I don't understand them. To get the £292 I also took this off as well, hopefully I will keep it as £292 a month is nowhere near enough to cover bills etc and I'm worried how I will manage. 

      I have been reading up about the tribunal and feel really angry at myself as I know I can't go through with it, my fears are too great and there's only a few days left before the month is up. I received my appointment for the ADHD clinic today so hopefully I'll be given another CPN, it would have been different if I'd already got one as she would have helped me with the tribunal. Do you know if it's possible to try again to apply for PIP or do they not allow this? I tried googling this but couldn't find the answer. 

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    • Posted

      First of all the £292 a month you say you recieve can't be right. You're in the Support Group of ESA which means you should be getting at least £124 per week. This consists of £109.30 which is Support Group weekly money also you i'm sure you'll be claiming Income Related ESA so add £15.75 Enhanced disability Premium. This gives a total of £125.50 per week. You should be getting about £500 per month not the amount you say. Are they taking any money off you for anything like loans at all?  Also if you were claiming Severe Disability Premium (SDP NOT SDA) this would be £61.85 per week but as i said in my ealier post this will stop because of you no longer claim a disability benefit.

      Yes you can put a reclaim in for PIP but i'm confused why you would want to put yourself through this again when there's a high possibility that they'll refuse you again. You would put yourself through all the stress of the face to face assessment yet you say you can go to the Appeal Tribunal? The Tribunal is FAR LESS stressfull than any face 2 face assessment. Also like i said before you can ask for a paper based decision, this way you dont have to attend. Yes your chances of a possitive outcome are less but it has been know for people to have decisions in their favour by not attending the Apppeal. I would advice you go for the Appeal and ask for the paper based decision then once they've decided they'll write to you with the decision.

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    • Posted

      Another thing if the Appeal goes in your favour they'll backdate your money to when your DLA stopped. To me going for the Appeal apposed to starting all over again to make a fresh claim, the Appeal wins hands down. This is my oppinion of course you have to chose yourself what you want to do. Good luck.

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    • Posted

      I'm useless at trying to understand these benefit letters so I'll tell everything it says ok. My living expenses are £73.10 a week, then £61.85, £15.75 disability income guarantee, £36.20 because I'm in a support group totalling £186.90. The £292 I worked out by adding the £73.10 four times. 

       As for reclaiming PIP at a later date my reasoning is I will have a CPN to help me then, I have no one to help me now and I gave the MR everything I had but it still failed, the letter I wrote took me hours and hours to write and was 8 and a half pages long. Apart from telling them about how I am unable to look after my eczema there is nothing else I can add and I doubt this would make any difference. I am no longer under the mental heath team, the doctors practice I was with for over 30 years closed a couple of years ago and I have never spoken to the doctors at my new practice about how my disabilities affect me. When my friend became ill a couple of years ago instead of him being my carer I became his but his dementia caused him to become very aggressive and last April I asked for a carers assessment as I wasn't coping. I still occasionally email the social worker that did this assessment (regarding my friend) so before the MR I emailed asking if she could help me but she didn't reply, unusual for her so I assumed it was her way of letting me know she couldn't help me. I also emailed a free service offering help with the claim but they didn't reply either. There is no one else that can help and I really can't cope with the stress of doing it alone. 

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    • Posted

      Yes your weekly money is what i thought. Don't just add the £73.10 what you need to add is all of it except the £61.85. Your total weekly money is £125.05 per week. You'll also need to ring DWP ESA about that £61.85 which should have stopped when your DLA stopped. This is because this is an added premium paid because your severely disabled and WERE claiming DLA. Because you're no longer claiming it you're not entitlled to the premium. If it's not already stopped please call them otherwise you'll have an overpayment on your hands.

      As for your PIP appeal i have given as much advice as i possibly can and i can't help you anymore, sorry. It's your choice what you decide to do. I just think that if you make a reclaim a few weeks/months down the line you may just get refused again because it wouldn't have been long since your last refusal. Good luck.

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    • Posted

      Thank you so much, you've helped enormously as I have been so depressed at the thought of trying to live on £292 a month and didn't realize I'd worked it out wrong. My CPN and then my friend used to help me with this sort of thing, my friend is no longer capable and hopefully I'll be allocated with another CPN soon as my appointment for the ADHD clinic is 15th March. I'm sure I've made the right decision about the tribunal and I'm now going to stop beating myself up about being unable to go through with it. No amount of money is worth making myself ill over. The government is so wrong in targeting the ill and disabled.

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