pip results in me losing my car, please help im petrified

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hi, i have changed from DLA where i was on high high, ive received the results of my PIP assessment and theyve decided that im only going to get the standard rates on both. Im really disabled with chronic Rhumatoid and Osteo Arthrirtis and Fibro myalgia, i walk with the aid of crutches and can do for about 20 metres. Im so very worried as i was due to pick my new car next week, but now i wont be able to have one as im not on the advanced rate for mobility, i dont know when they will take my car off me or anything. i sit here crying as i will never be able to afford my own car, and i just wont be able to go out anywhere. I would be really grateful for any help or advice,

thank you, Damara.

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  • Posted

    HI damara, i'm sorry to hear this. Your first step would be to ask for a Mandatory Reconsideration (MR). You'll also need to ask for a copy of the assessment report, if you haven't already done this. You only have 1 month from the date on the letter to get the MR in so please be quick. As for your car motability will be in contact with you and arrange for it to be returned within about about 6 weeks from the date of the decision. Don't give up and good luck.

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  • Posted

    This doesn't surprise me a bit. For a start the distance limit for DLA to get the highest rate was 50 metres, but for PIP it is no more than 20 metres. That has caused a lot of problems for many people - 500 cars a week are having to be handed back at the moment.

    It's all about making the argument for your case and getting good quality evidence to support your argument that 20 metres distance is the maximum.

    ?I was tested in the Spinal unit at hospital on a treadmill a few years back and the consultant said up to 50 metres was my max - now using that as evidence would have shot me in the foot if I was looking to get Enhanced from the High Mobility that I had under DLA.

    ?So you have to find similar evidence that backs up the new 20 metre rule.

    As has been said you must do a MR and if you can, supply new evidence.

    It is highly unlikely that the DWP will change their mind in any event so get preparing for your day in court.

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  • Posted

    Hi

    Can you contact a company in your local area. I never had DLA. I have only had pip but It's looking like I'm in the same boat as you. A company local to me help full on forms and fight your case. They have more chance of winning than we would doing it alone. The company I use are all funded so it's free of charge. They have trip in cebtres for you to attend. Please seek help before sending in your M.R

    Good luck x

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    • Posted

      Hi, could I ask what is the 'company' that you mention? It may well help others who have no choice but to 'go it alone'.

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  • Posted

    Hi Damara,

    Please read all of the replies so far as they are full of good advice. I have to be honest with you there is no quick fix to your situation and to get the decision reversed you will have to follow the DWP procedures by asking for a Mandatory Reconsideration and then a Tribunal if that fails.

    The trick is to persuade the DWP or a Tribunal that on the balance of probabilities the decision is wrong. Probably your biggest hurdle is the Assessment report and as Denise advised get a copy. Once you have that go through it and see where you can challenge the Health Care Professional's opinion using any credible medical evidence you have to swing the balance of probabilities in your favor. If you don’t have any evidence then obtain it by getting medical reports from your hospital files or get your GP to write a letter of support.

    This is not an easy procedure and if you can get help then use it as advised by Clare and remember the appeal deadlines.

    Unfortunately you are not alone and as Les posted 500 disabled people per week are in the same situation as yourself. I understand how upsetting this is for you but sitting in your kitchen crying won’t change anything. You have to summon the strength to fight this or put it behind you and adjust to your new circumstances.

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  • Posted

    Hi everyone, thank you all for the help. This morning I phoned PIP and said that most of the information provided by my interviewer was completely wrong. The lady asked if i would like to have my decision explained to me by a case manager and I would have the opportunity to put my information right.... Of course i said yes and she said someone would ring me within 24 hours.

    This afternoon the case manager phoned me, we went through their decision point by point and she took the details of what I thought was wrong. At the end she asked me if I wanted her to halt my claim and send it for re assessment which I said yes to.

    She did advise me that the decision could go either way and I had 28 days to send my Hospital documents in. Also regarding the car she said it might be worth phoning Motability, explain the situation and see if they would extend the car lease until the reassessment came through, as I'm house bound without one. When I asked how long this procedure took, she said between 4 and 9 weeks.

    I now feel so much more confident and I'm going to fight this decision all the way........

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    • Posted

      All I can say to that is that you are only very lucky dude!

      ​Not because they were polite but that they actually rang you back within just a few hours and were decent and listened to what you said.

      ​You must have had a Case Manager that was feeling extremely happy for some reason.

      ​The general opinion is that they never ring back.

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    • Posted

      One ring me back within hours

      She was very nice. But unfortuanately wasn't the one on my case. She was the one that earned me to go get as much evidence now . So I'm ready for the MR.

      I just wish was doing my case. There at some lovelybpnes that work for the dwp but sadly what they write doesnt always match how they come across.

      You do sound like you managed to get a good one Damara

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    • Posted

      As an example and I think my memory is accurate, I was attempting to claim Pension Credit back in late 2009. I won't go into what happened but from memory, over the period from March 2010 to February 2011, I actually sent the DWP over 42 letters and made 38 telephone calls. I never received a call back from them and only received one letter in reply.

      ?I had a similar problem with my ESA claim, it dragged on from September 2009 untl the following May before I received a penny from them, they lost 3 claim forms (2 of which were duplicates) never returned any telsphone calls with me chasing up the money and over a dozen letters.went unanswered. My claim had to be re-built clerically as so many mistakes had been made by them. I actually had to return a giro cheque to them in Feb 2010 as it was for an amount that was way above what I knew I was entitled to.

      ?So yes those like yourself should count themselves very lucky.

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    • Posted

      You were a victim of the time (2009 onwards) Les where public opinion turned against those claiming benefits. Slowly things have moved on and if our new Prime Minister is to be believed then everyone (including benefit claimants) will be given a fair chance.

      We'll have to see if this is a real change of course by the Government or just a flash in the pan.

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    • Posted

      I did. And I was very shocked that firstly they did call me back and secondly it was within an hour.

      Sadly that seems to be the only thing that has gone right so far.

      I think it maybe area dependant also. My area maybe a little more helpful. Like the group that I am going to. Although I agree it should be rolled out for everyone in our position.

      I guess it's the same debate as people have with medical issues. It's a post code lottery. Very sad for alot of people. I myself have been on the end of this and had to pay private to get some help for my condition on several occasions.

      Sorry you had all the trouble . It's a shame you didn't have the help

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    • Posted

      Hi Damara

      Really glad you have decided to fight your corner.

      However, as I said it is still a tough fight and one polite DWP case worker doesn't make a successful appeal.

      That said you have done the correct thing and started gaining medical evidence. Don't forget your care evidence which is supporting letters from anyone who provides you with personal care such as cooking meals/helping you bathe/help get in or out of the bath tub or shower/help dress/help undress or help with social interaction.

      With your mobility the assessor has probably come to the conclusion you can walk more than 20 meters but no more than 50 meters using an aid (your crutches). This is why you now receive standard rather than enhanced mobility.

      Possible ways of challenging this are;

      1. The distance is incorrect.

      2. You can’t walk the distance ‘safely’ ‘repeatedly’ or within a reasonable timescale (twice the time it would take a non-disabled person)

      3. The HCP has failed to take in the fact you need someone with you when venturing out to ‘prompt you to follow a route or journey’. This would have gained you another 4 points and that would have qualified you for enhanced mobility.

      On each of these points you will need medical evidence which can be linked to your disability. With point 2 if it takes you twice the time to walk 20 meters that it does for a non-disabled person then according to the legislation that is your maximum distance. If you can walk that distance but repeatedly stumble, fall or lose balance then your maximum distance is less than 20m also. If you can walk 20m but can’t repeat the procedure due to physical exhaustion again your maximum distance is 20m.

      If you need someone with you on a journey it is generally connected to Mental Health issues. So if you suffer with MH then get the evidence and explain why you need someone with you when venturing outside. This descriptor isn’t strictly restricted to MH if you can prove on the balance of probabilities that you need someone for some other reason then again you would score the 4 points.

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    • Posted

      gulp!! even though I am a part time politician (unpaid town councillor) I don't believe anything that any politician in Westmister says.

      ?What with the changes to ESA coming on board and the way that those who are sick and in the Support Group are going to be treated I do have my doubts that any minister wants to see the sick given a 'fair chance'.

      ?The policy of this government is to maximise income (everybody should be working and paying there own way) and reducing any sort of welfare dependency. Add to that the reductions in spending (even now considering getting rid of the guaranteed annual increases to the State Pension, getting rid of Pension Credit, fiddling once again with PIP to make it even harder to qualify etc etc ) to make it possible for those who are on a high income and have high capital wealth to not only see effective tax reductions but also to pass on more tax free wealth on death.

       

      For me this country should get rid of the House of Lords and take power away from MP's and pass it to the local authorities and even town councils for them to decide how they want their areas to be funded.

      ?At least local authority control would mean greater scrutiny by those that live in that area.

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    • Posted

      There was and still isn't any help available. Unfortunately for me and a lot of other people, we live in a wealthy area of the South East. That doesn't mean to say that everybody that lives there has the same level of wealth. House prices are ridiculous for example. I find that in these types of areas, very few advice centres are available. You only have to look at some of the more deprived areas in England where there are an abundance of centres set up to help with problems. In fact the South East does not have a Law Centre staffed by volunteer solicitors. The only available one to cover such a large area is in the West of London.

      Consequently it is assumed that being in the South East everyone should have the funds to pay for legal advice.

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    • Posted

      Well put Anthony,

      ?The major problem that I had and presumably there must be many many more in the same boat is going from HRM - DLA to ERM - PIP.

      ?For years the mark of gaining HRM DLA was that the distance had to be under 50 metres. Evidence would have been sought confirming this. Then down the line (maybe a year or two later) you can't realistically use that same evidence to gain ERM - PIP. You need new evidence to counter what you claimed previously - walking distance has reduced from under 50 metres to less than 20 metres.

      ?If you are attempting to argue the safety or speed angles then that would be a challenge if it was clear with the DLA claim that you didn't argue that then but now are changing the argument that it does now.

      For new PIP claims (never having claimed DLA previously) life is made easier as there are no comparisons to make.

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    • Posted

      Good point Les it is a challenge with regard to DLA>PIP Mobility. That said many DLA claimants haven't been assessed for years even decades so the argument of change in condition is a creditable one.

      Also what exactly counts as evidence? Does it actually need a distance to be specifically noted on a document or is a diagnosis of 'pain' enough? I often think of the HCP receiving an MRI scan of someone’s back and wondering how the hell are they supposed to interpret it?

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    • Posted

      I myself live in a nice area but it is classed as a less fortunate area of England so you are probably right. That is why our mps make sure there is finding so this group can help people. I live on the boarder of 2 areas and only one area had the help. So that shows how it varies I guess
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    • Posted

      Yes what actually does count as evidence for the Mobility factor?

      ?Unless you are able to get a specific OT or maybe a Consultant to confirm this you would have had to undergo tests such as the treadmill. I think that you will be hard pushed to prove whether the max. distance is 18/20 or even 23 metres. Then pain? Who could prove or disprove when pain sets in, at what level etc? There are no practical tests that can be done to establish this. Speed? I can go as slow as I need or as fast as I want.who is there to prove that?

      ?Then a MRI/X-Ray/CT - digital result. Who actually have these at home and besides which who has the software to use them.Even hospitals in different area Trusts have difficulting reading each others scans.

      ?Then the written results - again  who have these at home? If they do, how can they be intrepreted by the assessor? They obviously will describe the findings but trying to put that to say - pain claimed whilst walking is very subjective.

      ?Looking at pain itself, does a copy of the repeat prescription prove anything? Yes medication has been authorised for pain but what is the provable pain level. It's no good arguing that - hey I am on a high dose of Morphine so you must accept that my pain is with me 24/7 and reaches 9.5 on the pain scale every day. That doesn't prove a thing. More and more I hear of people becoming savvy to window dressing their condition. Actually ordering their pain relief every month so as to make the records look that they are in agony 24/7 but throwing the meds away!

      ?I think that it is a mixture of all of this and in the right combination it could be used as evidence to support a mobility issue. Having said all of that the claim form and the evidence must be believable.

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    • Posted

      We used to travel on a regular basis up until a year or so ago to both Liverpool and Manchester both for hospital treatment and to see family members.

      ​I was amazed, especially in Liverpool to see so many advice centres and law clinics in some of the less well off areas. The same was for Manchester in tthe Moss Side, Whalley Range and Cheetham Hill areas.

      Although probably not true but it appeared that there were as many of these advice centres as there were pubs!

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    • Posted

      I'm not sure on that haha. But there are 4 centres around me to which one man holds a walk in clinic to help people.

      Then they have an office that you can ring between Monday and Friday. But they are very busy as you can imagine.

      I had 3 hours to wait to see him the other day. But we'll worth it

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    • Posted

      You are so so lucky then. On top of that you have an MP who makes sure that the funding is in place.

      ​I have had to read up on Welfare regulations to try to understand what it was all about.

      ​We do have a CAB which is worse than useless as there are no full time qualified people working there anymore and a AgeUK office with two women who do try their best but their advice and understanding is rather limited.

      ​I was once signposted by CAB to a firm of solicitors on the assumption that surely everyone can afford legal assistance

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    • Posted

      I am very lucky. I seem to have found a lovely bunch of people to which I owe them everything for helping me. I'm just sorry others aren't getting the same help.

      I have to rest my citizens advise is useless too

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    • Posted

      This makes an important point.  One poster on here said that motability cars are repossessed within six weeks - this is incorrect, it's within 28 days.  Once a decision is made on reassessment from DLA, the old DLA award carries on in payment for 28 days from the date of the new PiP decision, and it is within this timescale that the motability car is usually repossessed.  After this, motability do not receive any more payments from DWP. As I have previously posted, the DWP can fast track a mandatory reconsideration where a motability car is at stake and can render a decision over the phone after discussion.  Obviously this depends on the type of evidence you need to submit in support of your claim,so it would not be suitable for complex cases where more medical evidence is required. One of the biggest problems in the switch from DLA to PIP is that motability cars are being repossessed at an alarming rate. I don't understand why the DWP case manager asked you to ring motability to try to extend the lease because as previously mentioned, they do not receive any further payment from DWP once DLA stops and if they extended one lease for reconsideration they would have to do it for all, and it would be a massive expense.  If you can get the decision reversed before the return date for your car, obviously that would be great, but the sad fact is, that most people lose their entitlement to the car until any new decision is rendered at the reconsideration or appeal stage.  It's also important to note that motability are compensating customers who lose their entitlement to enhanced rate, and this compensation is dependent on the claimant returning the car on time - if it's late, you could lose the compensation.

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    • Posted

      you don't have to 'prove' all these elements Les.  In the assessors guide it states that the claimant should be believed on the balance of probability, providing the evidence in the PIP2 does not contradict itself and is consistent with the disability.  We have quite a high success rate with things like pain, even where high levels of medication are not appropriate, as the assessors can see for themselves that where high levels of disability are present, pain is likely.  It's the same with distances - where a previous old claim for DLA has been allowed on the 50m test,we have successfully argued that time and degeneration of the underlying condition means that the claimant cannot do what they could at the time of the original decision.  Massive amounts of corroborating evidence are unlikely to be even looked at because most people will have a face to face assessment and,  more and more, what happens at that assessment is key. Assessors will routinely ignore any medical evidence suggesting a claimant cannot do something, if they demonstrate at the assessment that they can do it, however badly - it then becomes a matter for the assessor to decide and not the specialist providing the report So a better use of your time before the assessment would be to make sure you are well prepared because at the end of the day, that assessment will be the thing the decision maker will rely on to inform the decision and level of award.  What I would say however, is that if you do submit supporting evidence of any kind, send it with the application form, and certainly before you have a face to face assessment.  Decision makers have no medical training and any medical evidence sent in after the assessment is unlikely to count, simply because the decision maker is not trained to interpret it?  

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    • Posted

      Well Pam and I take everything that you say as gospel, I am truly f*****d!

      ​There is simply no way that I have the energy or mental staying power to deal with the potential face to face assessment in the way that is being described. I know what my limitations are and trying to convince an assessor that is not open to being convinced (as in all of my assessments bar one) is wholly beyond me. I know that my temper through frustration will come to the forefront which will not help in the slightest. I understand what you are saying and why you must do things like you quote, but at 68 and alone in this, I feel like a 85+ year old.

      ​I hope others much more able and younger than me take note of your comments and that it helps them to fight the system.

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    • Posted

      Pam you state that assessors routinely ignore medical evidence which has a degree of truth to it.

      However, if a Claimant is clever they will in their ESA50 or PIP2 form 'refer' the assessor to medical evidence using an index system. If for any reason the Claim goes to MR or Tribunal the DWP then cannot deny they were made 'aware' of the evidence. If they chosen not to read any evidence then that is their problem and swings the balance of probabilities back in favour of the Claimant.

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    • Posted

      That's a good point and it would make good sense to properly index any medical evidence sent with the claim forms, and also to refer to it when detailing the effects of the condition or disability, but that's not really the problem.  The main point is that assessors and DMs can make a case for discounting any evidence which does not directly relate to the PIP descriptors, and unfortunately, the nature of supporting medical evidence is that it gives a general overview of the the condition - not the effects on the activities being assessed.  

      Because GPs and other health professionals can only rely on what their patient tells them about the effect of their particular disability, and do not have first hand experience of observing, any evidence in this area is considered third hand - I've seen a lot of medical reports written to support applications which begin 'my patient tells me'.  This is subjective and would be discounted in favour of what the DWP consider to be a more objective report from the assessor.  Tribunals are bound by law only to consider evidence relative to the assessment activities, and in the main, it is not the medical evidence which overturns decisions, it's the claimant attending in person and showing the tribunal panel their disability or condition first hand.  Paper based appeals are always less successful, so I would advise claimants always to attend a tribunal in person if they can possibly do so.

      In addition, claimants are closely scrutinised throughout the assessment, and the weight of evidence as to whether a claimant can or cannot do something is heavily on the assessment report - especially where a claimant demonstrates during the course of the assessment that they can do something (however badly) which their supporting evidence says they cannot.  It's important to remember that the reliability criteria apply, and where a claimant can demonstrate that their ability to do something (safely, reliably, without pain, in a timely manner and to an acceptable standard) to this standard has not been properly considered, then they are more likely to be successful at mandatory reconsideration or appeal.  I do have to say though, that the DWP do not overturn many decisions at MR, no matter what supporting evidence is obtained.  I had a lady who was denied points in two categories and at MR she supplied evidence from a consultant which directly addressed the descriptors in questions.  The request was denied, but the decision was overturned at appeal.  Obviously once the DWP have made a decision they stick to it and make the claimant go to appeal.  The thinking behind it seems to be that some won't go to tribunal and for every clai,ant that doesn't, there's a benefit saving.  I think all the people who post on here, myself inc,used at times, are trying to make sense of an assessment system from the point of view of genuine claimants with genuine needs, who need support.  This is not what PIP is about - the assessment sets out to minimise  the needs of the claimant and does not begin to address the actual cost of disability. A good example is Incontinence.  Incontinence is a common denominator of a lot of disabilities and conditions, especially neurological ones. Those who have significant lack of control over bowel or bladder (or in a lot of cases, both) have massive extra costs connected with increased bills to cope with extra washing/bathing and laundry, not to mention buying in padding, which in a lot of NHS areas is either rationed to the most severe cases, or is not available free of charge at all.  PIP completely ignores these easily assessable costs and instead assesses this area by looking at how much help people need to do things like getting on and off the toilet, changing padding/stoma appliances etc. This effectively means that in a lot of cases people with sky high costs get nothing for Incontinence because they can manage to go to the toilet themselves. Similarly, someone with a stoma device gets nothing if they can change the device without help, and someone with bowel Incontinence will get nothing if they can change their padding themselves - this even applies to people in wheelchairs, as the ability to fetch the appliance or pads is not assessed, just the hands on help needed. 

      Another example is the cooking test - it assumes that the cooking test fairy visits the claimant and puts all the food ingredients and utensils in front of the claimant so they don't have to bend or stretch.  It's supposed to look at al areas of food prep, yet doesn't assess the ability to move about whilst carrying things - so moving from worktop to sink, to wash veg, etc is not assessed, and in my experience most assessors think that a simple perching stool is the answer to all disabled people's prayers - regardless of the claimants'  ability to use on, or any safety issues involved.

      Sorry - bit of a rant there !!  My point is that we are all looking at PIP from the point of view of providing a fair assessment and proper support, when its' main purpose is to save money

       

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    • Posted

      I really do empathise with you Les, and I think many, many claimants will feel the same as you.  I feel strongly that PIP was designed to be difficult to claim, in order to put people off claiming, in exactly the way you describe.  There are advocacy agencies out there who can take some of the strain and provide support, but they are overstretched and many people find themselves without support at the start of what is a very daunting and difficult claim process. 
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    • Posted

      TBH I have seen several GP letters and none have began with the line "My patient tells me..." maybe you are unlucky in your part of the country. Recent case law exists where the DM MUST consider any supporting letters from a GP as they carry the same weight as a HCP and are considered as having more weight (in law) than the assessor's report. Any MR or Tribunal should be fought on those grounds.

      I agree there is an element of cost saving in PIP the mobility part tells you all you need to know.

      However, I have got decisions overturned on MR. I’m not saying ALL the appeals I have done have been successful but a good number which indicates to me that done in the right way using their own rules (the DWP) against them positive results can be obtained.

      To a large degree I accept your point with regard to PIP and the extra cost of disability. There are anomalies but there are bound to be in a ‘one size fits all system’ like PIP. But TBH a lot of the problems are caused by Claimants believing they are entitled to PIP because they are ill or disabled. The times I see things like “lost my DLA how am I going to pay my household bills?” They then go on to explain their illness or disability in great detail. If that had been me the first thing I would have worried about was “how am I going to pay for my personal care?”

      You do wonder if some Claimants see their household bills as the ‘extra’ cost of disability rather than those who have to pay for extra support. It is a valid question and one which PIP was designed to try and rectify but is failing badly.

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    • Posted

      Interesting - because as I say, a lady I dealt with had supporting evidence from her GP which directly contradicted the assessors report and was relevant to the points raised about the descriptors, but the MR was still refused and she was successful on the same grounds at tribunal.  It throws up another pint doesn't it, that the DWP are anything but consistent !!??

      I'm curious about the case law referring to GP reports carrying more weight than assessors reports because our info is that the assessment is key, and if anything the claimant says or does during the assessment contradicts what's in their supporting evidence, then the assessors' report will overrule it.  I've seen this happen quite a lot and one claimant lost a tribunal because the assessor had noted they did something reliably during the assessment that their GP was adamant they could not. The tribunal went with the assessor on that one.

      I also agree that many problems are caused by the claimants' inability to relate to financial problems caused by loss of DLA. But I would offer a word of caution.  Incontinence is a common factor across many disabilities and this, along with a few other conditions is very expensive in terms of household bills and extras on shopping bills etc, so to a certain extent I can understand this.

       

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    • Posted

      Taking your argument about the use of evidence obtained from a GP.

      ​For the majority of cases it will alaways be third hand reporting. There might well be some claimants that have their GP at home and in doing sohe/she will see first hand what the difficulties/needs are.

      ​However for the majority it is always going to be the claimant telling the GP and then the GP relaying the points made to the DWP. That to me is not evidence that would or should over rule the assessment report - at least the assessor has spoken to the claimant and seen how the claimant reacts.

      ​The letter from the GP to the DWP does not have to start as ....... The DWP will for the majority of cases assume that the GP is nothing more than the mouthpiece of the claimant - using that type of evidence to win a claim in my opinion is wrong.

      ​All evidence, if it is to be accepted as primary evidence should/must be first hand.

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    • Posted

      Just to add a little point.

      ?In my evidence bundle that used to go to the DWP for ESA & DLA  were reports on hospital investigations into my deafness. Also included were copies of the hospital audio dept prescribing two hearing aids, one for each ear. So on the face of it it is beyond argument that I am extremely deaf in both ears and as such should be given credit for that in the assessments/report.

      ?In fact, and this is where I agree with you that any contradictions adds weight to the assessor's report, I very rarely wear the things.I have become quite proficient at lip reading so obviously there is no need to wear them. The only time that they are used is in the Council Chamber as I do find it rather difficult without them trying to watch different Councillors putting forward their points of view.

      The assessment reports made a point of saying that my claim for deafness is exaggerated and that I can hear quite well without the aids.

      ?Yes I know what I should have done, but the questions never arose at the assessments so i assumed that the evidence would say it for me as well as the statements made on the claim form.

      ?So in that case even with cast iron evidence and just because I prefer not to wear them the assessor assumed that I was telling a load of porky pies. 

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    • Posted

      That is not quite true Les. Firstly the GP has access to all your medical records. Secondly the GP can examine you and write a report based on his observations.

      A GP is considered as a Health Care Professional and his/hers opinion must be considered and recent case law has established this CA/3419/2012 [2013] UKUT 241 (AAC):

      I accept that any supporting letter which simply states “the Claimant tells me” has a lesser even no value.

      However, when I take claimants to their GP’s I ask them to do an examination and write a report based on that. So then the GP can write “The Claimant tells me that she needs help washing her lower body and on examination I found she had difficulty bending” which puts a whole new twist t on the GP letter.

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    • Posted

      The relevant case law states that the Tribunal and DWP must not dismiss GP's/consultant’s evidence without proper explanation, what is known as a 'finding of fact'

      Using the example of the case above the Tribunal would have to state 'reasons' why the HCP opinion carried more weight than the GP's or consultants, they just can't have a default position where they go with the HCP. Indeed they are tied to the same burden of proof as any civil claim which is “On the Balance of Probabilities”.

      So if your claimant friend denied being able to perform the activity the HCP claimed she did and this was back up by medical evidence then the balance of probabilities was in favour of your friend and that is how you argue a situation like that.

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    • Posted

      Thanks for that Anthony.  In my friends' reconsideration decision, the decision maker made no reference at all to the supporting evidence which related directly to the descriptors we were disputing and backed up everything my friend said.  The only thing we got back was that the assessors are trained disability analysts and he has no reason to doubt the findings at the assessment. As has already been pointed out on here, the DWP obviously have trouble following their own guidelines because the MR decision for this lady comolegely dismissed the GPsreport.

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    • Posted

      I'm confused. I am at the moment filling in my form and I am up to questions 13 and 14. I thought that question 13 was for the blind/deaf so I wasn't going to fill that question in.  I have had spinal surgery back in 2005 leaving me with spinal cord damage so yI now  suffer with severe neuropathic pain also spasms which can keep me awake all night long. I have been receiving higher mobility (I have a car) and middle for health. if my the pain in my legs are really bad I have to stay in bed. I am worried that I fill in the form correctly, I cannot go out alone I need someone with me to prevent falls, which has happened in the past. I can walk 20 metres on a good day so do I say I can or can't. Can I fill in yes for part of question 13 which will at towards my points. 

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    • Posted

      I forgot to add that I do use my wheelchair when I go out. I  wouldn't have the confidence to go out on my own as I haven't since 2005. 

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    • Posted

      Hi Bridget

      Question 13 or 1 on the Mobility Descriptors is about “Planning and Following a Journey”. You are correct that this descriptor deals with those who have sensory difficulties such as the blind. But it covers a wider a field than that. The Descriptor b in that section “Needs prompting to be able to undertake any journey to avoid overwhelming psychological distress to the claimant” will probably apply to you as you need someone with you when you journey out. You need to fill this section and explain why you need help similar to the way you have above. This Descriptor scores 4 points.

      Question 14 or 2 on the Mobility Descriptors “Moving Around” does measure the distance you can walk.

      However, you must be able to walk this distance ‘safely’, ‘within a reasonable time scale’ (no less than twice the time it would take a non-disabled person) and ‘repeatedly’. OK so you say you can walk 20m on a good day, but can you do it safely? By that I mean without falling or stumbling? Also how long does it take you to walk it? A non-disabled person would probably cover the distance in 20 seconds does it take you more than 40 seconds? Finally even if you can walk the 20m could your repeat the journey straight away or would you require a significant rest?

      This is the kind of information you must supply in answer to this question.

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    • Posted

      You mention 20 metres as a distance. Has someone measured it and timed you?

      ?I don't know how people can be so accurate with a distance unless they get out a surveyors wheel or tape to measure it.

      ?In my case I believed that the distance to the end of the drive was about 20 metres. That is the distance I walk regularly and in doing so I find that anymore distance would be difficult. It was a surprise to me to find that using google mapping the distance was well over 20 metres. In fact I didn't believe that so I had the distance measured accurately on the ground. Yes It was greater than what I had originally thought.

      ?So any claim that I could have made I would have understated the distance I could walk.

      ?It wasn't long ago when DLA was around that the magic figure of 50 metres was banded around (the maximum to get High Mobility) Now everyone quotes 20 metres. 

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    • Posted

      Thanks Anthony I didn't realise that to get EMR you had to be so slow that covering 20 metres takes a minimum of 40 seconds. That's a rate of 30 metres a minute or the length of three buses. That's seriously slow.

      ?So, and knowing that in an assessment centre, it should take at least 40 seconds to get from the chair in the waiting room to the door of the assessing room - generally about 20 metres as measured by ATOS/CAPITA.

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    • Posted

      TBH Les the times were a guess and I have no idea if the times are realistic or not.I should have made that clear when posting.

      Sorry.

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