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Someone said to me this morning she had seen on television last week that they are now stopping PIP or assess people for PIP.

At the moment I am still on DLA.

My friend thought that those who had lifetime (or indefinite) award for DLA would now just automatically get PIP without having to apply for it.

Anyone got any ideas how right this is?

Sarah

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23 Replies

  • Posted

    Really sorry to disappoint you but this is completely incorrect.  There was an announcement a couple of weeks ago that the government are putting in place measures to stop frequent reassessment of those people with severe, stable conditions which were unlikely to change or fluctuate, and who were unlikely to be able to work, as a result.  This was for Employment and Support Allowance (formerly incapacity benefit) and not PIP.  The government stressed that they have no current plans to apply this change to PIP, so I'm afraid you will be reassessed from DLA to PIP sometime between now and May 2018.  They also announced that in conjunction with these plans for ESA, they will be reforming the work capability assessment, so watch out for the public consultation and take part of you can.  You could also try starting an online petition on The government petition website, to try to get them to consider applying the change to PIP.  I think if the support for a petition gets to 100,000 signatures it has to be debated in the commons.  There's a lot of criticism of PIP at the moment so you never know.

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    • Posted

      I really like your reply.

      ​Could I see them just waving through those that are being re-assessed for PIP - No not really,

      The government are having a hard enough job as it is trying to keep to the 20% reduction promise. Just waving people through will blow a massive hole in that promise. 

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    • Posted

      I honestly don't know what mechanism they would use either Les - given that PIP is so completely different to DLA.  My comment about starting a petition wasn't really about waving people through without assessment though. It was more to do with applying the same rules on reassessment as they are doing for ESA.   Everyone will have an initial assessment, but the more severe disabilities wouldn't continually be reassessed.  There is a provision in PIP for indefinite periods of award, but in practice they are rarely used even where there is no prospect of improvement.  The longest award I've seen is 10 years, and that was where the enhanced rate of mobility and care had been awarded.

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    • Posted

      I totally agree with your view Pam. It would be unfair on those who have already been reassessed from DLA to PIP if the initial assessment was abolished and any way as you pointed out that isn't going to happen anytime soon.

      I also totally agree that those with long term illnesses and disabilities which have no prospect of improving shouldn't be retested for PIP.

      To that end it would be similar to the new changes to ESA. The WCA has been around since 2009 and some claimants have had more than 3 reassessments all producing the same result. The Government to that end have now belatedly realised it is a waste of public money retesting these claimants.

      PIP has only been around since 2013 but give it a few years along with a good petition (see I was paying attention) and the same thinking must surely eventually come to PIP as well.

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    • Posted

      Hi Les,

      On the government website it seems to work this way, however there are rare circumstances where changes have been made, where no assessment is ever required again, due to the disorder or multiple disorders and clarified by Consultants where no more assessments would ever be required. I have only found one case where this was the outcome. A Tribunal Judge can issue a maximum length of 15 years, with a re-assessment at 10 years.

      How it will work in practice:-

      7. As part of the objective assessment, the trained independent assessor will provide a recommendation to the Department on the duration of the award, based on the individual’s particular circumstances, the evidence that has been gathered (including that provided by the claimant) and the likelihood of their condition changing. We will provide a framework for award durations to assist the assessor when providing their recommendation to the Department.

      8. Durations would be based on the likelihood of changes – either an

      improvement or deterioration – to the disabling condition itself or the impact of the condition on the individual.

      9. Shorter-term awards (up to 2 years) would be used where significant improvement could be expected in that period, for example where conditions improve with time or treatment; and the barriers the individual faces may reduce.

      10. Longer term awards (e.g. 5 or 10 years) would be used where changes are less likely but possible. For example, where some improvement is possible over time or where the needs of the individual are likely to increase.

      11. It is anticipated that ongoing awards would be used in a small minority of cases where changes, either positive or negative, are unlikely. For example, where improvement over time or in response to treatment or rehabilitation is unlikely and where the needs of the individual are also likely to remain broadly the same.

      It would be nice to see DLA to PIP with no f-2-f, but these are few and far between, the assessors have only a certain number of claims per month where this does happen, it is rare.

      I'm still on DLA and just changing vehicles, that used to be straight forward - now I found Motability have problems with the dealer I am currently with, therefore there is talk of extending the lease on my current vehicle.

      I have to spend quite a lot of my High Care Component on Service Charges a month. This is for adaptions done to the property which were covered by a Disability Funding Grant (DFG). However, after the 12 month warranty I have to pay Service Charges, they soon add up because most are over a 3 year contract.

      The Clos-o-mat I had installed was £3,100 on a DFG, then that is followed up by payments from my care component of £180 a year!

      You certainly do not see drinking alcohol or smoking, I'm on 36 meds a day, which is under review after a 3-day in hospital.

      How people on DLA or PIP can afford holidays I'll never know! These days I couldn't leave this premises, apart from doctors or hospital appointments - thats all I really go to, but I have so many follow-up appointments in a month it's ridiculous.

      At the moment I feel really ill - due to a drug which has been stopped in production, I've been on it for over 30 years! Course there was no mention of it being stopped anywhere. My doctor tried me on alternatives and put me in hospital.... I ended up doing my own research online, phoning the local pharmacist then phoning the pharmacist at my doctors surgery to give me a prescription for the drug. He was amazed that I had seen two GP's and a Neurology Consultant and found another alternative myself. In hospital I was asked if I was a doctor! lol  This is how bad the NHS is, it is well under-staffed and my local hospital is rumored to losing nurses in the new year!

      My apologies to Sarah, for hijacking your topic and post! redface

      Regards,

      Les.

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    • Posted

      My own feeling is that the ESA Support Group will be scrapped as part of the reforms to the work capability assessment.  The government announced at the end of last year that they would be consulting on the Support Group with a view to making it smaller and the only way they can do this is to start identifying those people who are the closest to being able to do some sort of job search or job related activity, and also by identifying those furthest away from it.  I think this latest announcement is part of that process.  Any future support group will only consist of those people judged unable to work and never likely to improve.  Everyone else would then be subject to jobsearch activities to prepare them for work - presumably with the same kind of compulsion and sanctions which currently apply to the work related activity group.  So they're not really promising much are they ?  If, as I suspect, this is what the aim is, things will get worse, not better, as more very sick people are compelled to look for work.  In addition, I think you'll find that any new work capability assessment to replace the current one, will be a whole lot harsher - along the lines of the change from DLA to PIP.  Sorry to be so negative but going on this government's track record on support for the disabled, I don't be.ieve things will improve.

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    • Posted

      Hi Pam,

      I hope they just don't scrap the support group completely from ESA. There is a good reason.

      As it stands at the moment, Contribution-based ESA (Support Group) as you know followed on from Incapacity Benefit, and before this it was Invalidity Benefit.

      Back in July 1995, a change was made that affects paying Tax on:

      Invalidity Benefit

      Incapacity Benefit

      Contribution-based ESA (in the Support Group)

      If you claim Child Tax Credit at the moment, and your claim for Invalidity Benefit started before July 1995, and there have been 'no gaps' between all 3 benefits then you are exempt from paying TAX on your ESA in any CTC Claim. ESA should not be taken in to consideration on your CTC Claim.

      How this will change, I have no idea. I have to phone CTC every year to tell them that my claim started in June 1993, then they remove the taxable amount from ESA Claim.

      Regards,

      Les.

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your honesty Pam my friend Carol said she had seen something about it but could not remember the exact details.

      I had orignally been given October 2017 as the deadline for being reassessed but you say it is March 2018.  Why are they taking so long?

      This process goes back to April 2014!!

      Sarah

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    • Posted

      In April 2014 they were only starting to roll out the process of PIP assessments, and it applied to new claims only.  Reassessment from DLA to PIP was the last part of the process - the more severely disabled on enhanced rates of DLA were the last to be added to that process.  The latter started to be reassessed in July 2015 and the process is not as straightforward as they first thought. The government projected that 70% of claimants would have a face to face assessment, but in practice 98% are assessed this way - thus the process takes longer and the timescales have to be extended.
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    • Posted

      With respect Les isn't that a very good reason to scrap the Support Group as it is?

      ?It would then bring everyone that claims it and is in the Support Group into line and that ALL contribution based awards are made taxable.

      ?To have some claimants not pay tax and others must do so is a tad bit unfair.

      ?Being on benefits years ago should not now affect the tax position

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    • Posted

      Hi Pam

      ?I understood that it is down to the government why so many face to face assessments are now happening? Yes it went fron 70% 'ish to 98% on orders from the DWP via the Treasury as the level of savings (80% of the DLA budget) was being breached.

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    • Posted

      Hi Les,

      Sorry for the late reply, but my hands and fingers are so numb lately, it is very difficult to even type, and I have no prognosis as to what is causing it.

      I think what Pam stated regarding the 'Support Group' being scraped could be done, because the WRAG will no longer exist anyway. Not sure how that goes against Contribution-based ESA though with the HMRC Child Tax Credit.

      We are only claiming now for our youngest daughter of 16 years old, but that may change next year, regarding CTC claims. Not to sure because she is going for an apprenticeship, "learning while earning" in college.

      When I was working, I certainly was not your average 9-5 person, I was doing 16 hours a day for 5 days, and 4 hours on a Saturday - I remember the amount of Tax I paid was a large amount, but I was earning a large wage a week including big bonuses.

      Back then I didn't have a social life as such, I just preferred to work hard and put in plenty of time. I worked for British Telecommunications and done work at various locations over the UK. There was a team of us that serviced the 'old-flapper-board' displays in busy train stations. I used to have a phobia regarding heights, but I soon got over that when erecting scaffolding towers of around 20-40ft and standing on the top!

      That society has certainly changed over the years; some people moan at doing 6 or 8 hours a day! Then there is me, wishing I could work - that will never happen now. My wife cares for me 24/7 now.

      Getting back on track though, ESA could be just ESA for the obvious sick or disabled people like myself. I cannot wait until the DLA to PIP pack comes to be honest, my wife will be filling it in, that is one thing I cannot do is write, my signature is never the same twice! The content of what will go on that form will probably shock the DWP, there is multiple disorders and I have just been diagnosed with another condition after an operation 4 years ago! I didn't even know about myself, until I had to stay in hospital for 3 days of OBS.

      Today, I had 4 lots of blood taken - because of a lot of new problems that have appeared in the past few weeks. Nothing is simple.

      Anyway, my fingers and hands are giving me such pain, so I'll end this post.

      Regards,

      Les.

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  • Posted

    HI Sarah,

    I had an indefinite DLA award, but received the dreaded letter 'kindly inviting' me to apply for PIP.  It was horrendous to be honest, but I'm pleased to say that it turned out fine in the end.  

    Good luck for when your time comes.  

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    • Posted

      Thanks. Not trying to be nosy but what questions did they ask you and did you have a face to face?  Were you interviewed at home or somewhere else?

      Sarah

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    • Posted

      Two companies operate the PIP assessment process.

      ​CAPITA - they normally want to assess you in your home. They do that so as to reduce the travelling to a centre and they find that assessing in a home envoirment reduces the stress on the claimant.

      ​ATOS - they very rarely give home assessments. Their attitude is if you go to see your GP or attend hospital for an outpatient appointment you can travel up to 90mins each way to go to one of their centres.

       

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    • Posted

      Hi Sarah,

      My first appointment for the face to face would have meant a car journey of an hour away,  We googled centres nearer to my home, rang DWP and they changed it no problem, to a venue just 10 minutes away.  

      To be honest I think I was very fortunate to be assessed by a lady doctor. She told me from the start that she wasnt interested about my diagnosed illness, apart from when it all started and she even knew the doctor that diagnosed my spondylitis.  she was more interested in how it affected my life, what I can and cannot do and the things that I need help with ie, showering, help getting in and out of bed, undressing and dressing, cooking and eating, medication etc.  She watched me walk into her room from reception and could see how, even with my hubby's help, I struggled. She was very understanding actually and even fetched me a pillow to sit on after I had to stand twice to ease the pains.  She didnt ask me to do any bending etc, she said she could see I wouldnt be able to do it and even said that she could not understand why I had been selected for a face to face and put on her report, that my condition would only get worse over the years.  

      On DLA, I was on middle rate care and high rate mobility,  I have now been awarded advanced on both care and mobility.  x

       

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    • Posted

      Oh I do wish I had your assessor. My last one this summer was for Attendance Allowance. It was at home and was one of the worst I have ever had over the past 21 years. After over an hour I was left feeling like a criminal and drained after trying to fight him on every question As I was talking he interupted and interpreted in his own words what I was trying to say in a way that made me look like a liar.

      ​I was worn out, angry and frustrated by the time they both left.

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    • Posted

       [color=#3a2e28]'?I was worn out, angry and frustrated by the time they both left'

      I'm not surprised Les, I read your post at the time and [/color][color=#3a2e28]remember[/color][color=#3a2e28] that [/color][color=#3a2e28]one seemed more interested in your car than you!  [/color]

       

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    • Posted

      Yes, to this day I don't know why two came. Neither was a trainee - that I could understand.To be totally frank I don't even know who they both were. They flashed a couple of ID cards at me - far too quick for me to take them in. For all I know one was an assessor (from which company I have no idea) and the other could have been a DWP employee.

      ?It was as though with the DWP being given the opportunity to come into our home they would take full advantage of it for some unknown reason.

      ?Whilst both were on the ground floor with me I was able to keep an eye on the younger guy - i became suspicious when he asked if he could go upstairs to the bathroom! Making comments about the contents of our home, the way our garden is and then making comments about the car. seemed very suspicious.

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    • Posted

      Thank you glad you got a good result.

      On DLA I am just on mobility rate no care rate.

      Sarah

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    • Posted

      Hi Les,

      I replied to you conversation on the previous post above this one, where Pam and yourself were talking about ESA, etc.

      Regards,

      Les.

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    • Posted

      Hi Sarah,

      Capita covers Wales normally.

      ATOS covers:

      East England

      Scotland

      London

      South East England

      North East England

      South West England

      North West England

      Yorkshire & Humberside

      HTH,

      Regards,

      Les.

       

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