P.I.P. Tribunal hearing.

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I have just spent the best part of a year going through the whole P.I.P. process, which included the application form, and the face to face assessment, which was a farce as the assessor totally twisted everything I said and made up or lied about crucial points. He said he carried out a physical examination which he didn't. The outcome of this was that I was awarded the standard rate of P.I.P. for both components even though I was on both the high rates of DLA previously. Needless to say I was very upset about this, especially about the unfair assessment which  was in fact was carried out by a nurse with no specialist training or understanding of a complex illness. Also the fact that the DWP didn't contact my GP for any medical history, and relied solely on the dodgy assessment was very worrying.

Consequently, I applied for a mandatory reconsideration which is the next procedure. This was then refused by the DWP, and I then appealed to the tribunal. My post today is regarding my tribunal experience, which took place this morning.

After a year of fighting and the stress and upset this has caused, the tribunal this morning was without doubt the most horrendous experience I think I have ever gone through since my illness began about 20 years ago. The tribunal consisted of three people, a doctor, a judge, and a disability specialist in daily living. They proceeded to systematically go through my whole claim and attempted to humiliate me. They questioned me for 45 minutes on every aspect of my claim. Their questioning was aggressive and intimidating, and they constantly went back trying to trip me up in some way. After the doctor had finished questioning me, he sat for the rest of the time with a smirk on his face which was very intimidating and unsettling. They managed to make me feel a complete fool and worthless. I went into the tribunal fairly confident that I could put my case across fairly and persuade them to award me the enhanced rates after all, but I came out feeling demoralised and not knowing if I would keep my award at all. Apart from my physical disabilities I have suffered from anxiety and depression for many years. I went into this tribunal at least being able to speak coherently, but I came out stuttering, which I have never done in my life. My daughter, who is my carer and who was with me this morning, was devastated by my treatment, but was told by the judge not to speak or interrupt or prompt me at any stage as the tribunal was about me and not her. I don't hold out much hope of a successful conclusion for me, but I just wanted to at least let other people know what may be in store for them if this is in fact the normal way a tribunal operates. Has this happened to anyone else ?

Still trying to recover at this point.

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  • Posted

    Mines was ok not the best thing I’ve done and nerves were shattered but I was told right away by the judge that I won 
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  • Posted

    So sorry to hear your experience was bad.  After reading a lot on forums people's experiences are that whilst tough tribunals seem more empathetic. My story is much like yours in that I was on enhanced DLA but on assessment my assessor lied unventing a whole page description of an exam that didn't happen!  Just been told the Standard for both I was awarded has kept the same, despite writing eight pages of clear reasoning linked to evidence, as to why I should have got additional points! Looks like I need to decide, but on principal think I will go to Appeal, though risk losing what been awarded.  I only hope I don't crumble as my condition also causes me to not be able to think clearly so don't know how will stand up if interrogated! Hope your outcome is better than your experience.

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  • Posted

    It sounds the same has my tribunal which was in Birmingham. I lost my appeal for esa and now are on job seekers. The judge also said do not speak to my daughter. I was told that because I walked in sat and stood back up I could do some form of work
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    • Posted

      Hi Lyn,

      Thank you for your reply. I'm sorry you have had a similar experience. The only thing I can say is keep trying for your esa as many times as it takes. Good luck.

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    • Posted

      Unfortunately the only way lyn can re-apply for ESA now is for a different condition or if the existing condition has got considerably worse. That would be down to the decision maker to decide that once another claim as been made.

      If they are successful and their condition has been accepted they will go back onto assessment rate. If they're found fit for work again and decide on the MR route, if this fails and they take it to Tribunal they won't be allowed to go back onto assessment rate for ESA while waiting for the Tribunal. This is because they've already had 1 Tribunal for ESA. rolleyes

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  • Posted

    I'm sorry you had such a bad experience. I have to say this doesn't often happen. Most Tribunals are very fair whilst i have heard that a lot of them won't let others speak on their behalf. Like yourself some won't even let them prompt them. I also recently heard a story that someone went to Tribunal to try to increase their Mobility award from standard to Enhanced. They started with Enhanced daily living and standard mobility. At the end of the Tribunal they had lost what they originally had and were left with just Standard daily living. Quite shocking, really.

    The Tribunal do have to pre-warn a claimant if they're considering lowering their award. The same rules apply to Tribunal as they do with MR though and that you do risk losing everything you already had. A big risk for anyone!

    As you didn't have the decision today it should only be a few days before you have that letter from them telling you the decision. Hopefully for you it will be good news. If it's not then you can only appeal that decision if an error in law was made in making the decision.

    Hopefully this won't happen to you. I'm sorry to hear your story and hope you have a possitive outcome and hope you're in that 65% whole have a decision in their favour.

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your reply Denise,

      Considering what happened today, I am fully expecting to lose my whole claim, although I was never at any stage warned that this could happen. Thanks again.

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    • Posted

      You're welcome Steven, They really should warn you if they do take points off you. However that story i told you in my other reply, that person wasn't warned either. It really is disgraceful how they treat some people.Please do let us know the outcome.

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    • Posted

      Hi Denise,

      Got my letter this morning. My appeal was refused, but thankfully my original award still stands, so no points were taken from me. Yes I am vey disappointed because they have completely ignored my serious misgivings about the lies and false statements made at the face to face assessment, but also relieved that I haven't lost the award altogether. I'm back where I started. I don't feel that it was worth the trauma that they put me through yesterday. Thanks anyway for your messages.

      Steve.

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    • Posted

       Steve My hubby was originally on the higher rate of DLA ,when going over to PIP he was awarded  middle rate. His assessor was quite nice although a couple of points were in accurate which was i reckon went towards him not getting the higher rate. lack of just 2 points.  He decided not to appeal and was pleased to at least to have come out with something, but then Steve i dont know your circumstances in your health and did you losing the higher rate result in you losing mobility car?

      Its awful and reading what all this has done to you is appalling, what human beings are capable of doing to another human beings mentally is beyond words.

      At least you can say you tried and tried you did.  Im still waiting for my brown letter to arrive asking me to apply for PIP and ive more or less decided im nor going to bother to apply due to insufficient back up and lack of medication.

      Sue 

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    • Posted

      Hi Susan,

      Thank you so much for your message. I'm so sorry that your husband has also lost out on his P.I.P. award. I also missed out by 2 points, and no I didn't have a motability car.

      Personally I blame David Cameron, and now Teresa May. They are less than human in my book. Heaven forbid that someone would treat them the way we have been treated. We'd all hear about it then. This is a system that has now been designed to discriminate against disabled people.

      My wife is also in the same boat as you. She is disabled and has multiple  health problems. She gets DLA at the high rates, but is now waiting for her brown letter also, but she is prepared. She is a strong character and will not take any rubbish from them, as she has suffered greatly over the years. I'm dreading what may happen. Only time will tell.

      Thanks again for your concern Susan,

       

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    • Posted

      HI Susan,

      Please have a re-think about appply for PIP when you get the brown envelope. You don't have to be on medication to be awarded PIP. There's plenty of people who aren't, my daughter included. She doesn't take any medication and has recently been awarded Enhanced rate for both. Evidence will help yes and i know you say you are lacking in this but a letter from someone that knows you well, a diary written by yourself for as long a possible, you can even ask them to take your DLA file into consideration. All of this will help. If you apply, then at least you can say you tried. If you don't apply then you're letting them win and this is what they want.

      Yes i know it's very stressful going through all of this but if you're entitled to something then apply and don't just throw it all away and give in. I hope you do decide to change your mind. Good luck.

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    • Posted

      Thanks Denise but ive got M.E. had it for over 20 yrs now. ive read this is one of the hardest conditions to get it for and i read this years ago and recently.As you say i may be entitled to something but then it may be for 3 years or less, and from what ive been reading you dont get the full 3 years, they send you another assessment a year before so its only 2 years in total.  The DWP have the power even after getting to the judge stage that says yes your entitled to take it away from you again. Ive just read about someone going through this on scope forum happening to people. 

      I suffer from anxiety anyway at the best of times, again no proof or medication.

      Hubby is saying the same thing as you, at least you tried!   If it was like it used to be on DLA when you at least had it for a few years then maybe worth well. 

      What i dont understand there is a person in my family who has a £1000 per month to do what she wants with, learning difficulty's diagnoses, but she has no pain, nothing physically wrong with her yet us who are suffering with the most awful painful conditions are having to fight for it and losing our mobilty cars.

      I think once youve been awarded the next assessor you see should be the same one you saw last time not someone new who can award you with less or zero points regardless of the fact you may be the same or worse. It should be all based on your last application and a short form to add any info as to if you feel youve got worse. My hubby was lucky enough to have a nice assessor, yes he lost the higher rate and came out with middle but at least the assessment itself wasn't a dreadful experience for him.

      Sue 

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    • Posted

      Everyone is different Susan and you can't compare 2 people. It's not about a diagnosis with PIP, it's how those conditions affect you daily. Award lengths vary and reviews are done 1 year before your award is due to end yes. There's no lifetime awards for PIP like there were for DLA. The longest award is 10 years, with review at 9 years.

      That person in your family that claims it for a learning difficulty. Yes this person may not have any pain or physical difficulties but this no way means that they don't have their problems everyday of their life. My daughter has a learning difficulty and it's actually quite sad. People that have this have a much less advantage of those that don't have it. I'm sorry but yes i may spend everyday of my life in pain but at least i can count my money and manage my own bills, go into a shop and buy anything i want because i know how much money to give, how much change to recieve etc. At least i can go out when i want because i know which direction to go in. I can tell the time and know how long things take etc. I can read and understand what things mean etc. Those that have learning difficulties find all these things extremely difficult. Things that a lot of people take for granted.

      I claim PIP for physical disabilites and my daughter for mental health reasons. My daughter has a higher award than i do but please don't compare others to yourself. It's really not a nice thing to do. What you should do is concentrate on yourself and how you will claim not what others claim and how they managed it. I'm sorry but when people compare theirself to others it make me sad. None of us know what goes on behind closed doors. Just because a person may have an invisiable conditon this doesn't make any less difficult or life changing.

      Good luck with whatever you decide to do.

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    • Posted

      Hi Denise

      I totally understand your views hear and i agree with everything you said, i would by no means compare myselfe with others with learning difficulties that i dont know about and meant no offence to anyone who has so i do apologise if ive offended anyone else reading what i put.

      Im talking about this particular person in my family because unlike your daughter yes they  can count my money and manage  own bills, go into a shop and buy anything they want and know how much money to give, how much change to receive etc. They can go out when they want because they know which direction to go in. they can tell the time and know how long things take etc.  I do know what goes on behind closed doors with this person and their shocking cruel behaviour to their dad, my own son! who's on the verge of a nervous breakdown with it all..  

      Again apologies and no offence meant

      Sue 

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