Received a copy of my assessment for PIP...

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Yesterday I received the good news that I have been successful in claiming PIP so when a copy of my face to face assessment arrived this morning I wasn't too worried about reading it. The assessor had scored me enough points to receive both care and mobilty at enhanced rates and thankfully the DWP agreed!

Anyway a few pointers that might help others who are awaiting their assessments:

In the report, the assessor refers to 'observations' made by herself AND two other members of staff at the assessment centre - one was the secretary and another must have been someone who had watched me arrive at the centre (maybe from a window or from outside!)  Luckily both of these members of staff had been honest and I was observed to have been dropped off at the door by taxi with my friend, walking with a stick and looking anxious and unsteady on my feet.  The secretary had described me a slow and unsteady on arrival, looked in pain when I walked, pale looking, thin, casually dressed, sat quietly with little eye contact....etc etc I won't go into too much detail but the secretary had described how I walked, my complexion, mood, facial expressions, interaction with my friend, eye contact with her, etc whilst waiting to go in for my assessment.

Now please note:  The secretary had been honest and correct in describing what I was like in her presence so think about how you present yourself from the moment you enter the doors!  I am only warning you because whilst I was waiting for my assessment this young man arrived at the centre with his two friends and even I could tell he was 'playing up to the cameras' as they say!  He continually grunted and groaned when he sat down or moved and he talked really loudly saying things like 'I am in pain today because my prescription delivery didn't arrive from Boots yesterday I couldnt go to the pharmacy to pick it up myself!'  and 'I am so hot today but I couldn't get my t-shirt on myself!' (yet he was wearing a tight polo-neck jumpers, jeans with a posh buckled belt and lace up boots which he must have managed to put on AND he was waving his arms around in despair as he talked!?????)  And also when the secretary called him to the desk to show his ID, he was quite rude and just shouted over to her 'I'm in pain, you'll have to come and get it!'  She didn't look to happy with him so I dread to think what observations she would have recorded about him.....obnoxious, fake looking, loud, confident......maybe! 

So just act as you normally do and try not to look like you are playing up to the cameras!

The report itself read quite well and I couldn't see anything wrong with mine at all.  I think if you just make sure you reliterate what you wrote on your initial PIP application form then you should be fine.  I didn't send in too much paper evidence with my application so I made sure I gave as much info as possible myself when answering each question.

During the assessment the assessor had made comments on the way I communicated with her, the way I looked, my mood, my interactions with her as well as my responses to her questions.

To end, if you have an assessment coming up, just try to relax and be how you usually are during the day.  Yes you will be anxious - I was, and the assesor and secretary picked that up just from observing me and without the need to hear me say it.  So good luck to you all wink

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  • Posted

    Hi TCake,

    you make some really good points and I'm sure your post will help a lot of people.  

    I remember you mentioned this young man before and I thought then, that it sounded as if he was putting on the agony a bit.  It is clear that the assessor believed you as you were obviously genuine.  x

     

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    • Posted

      yes, I am a quiet person anyway and this other man was deliberately speaking loudly - and if it was obvious to me and my friend then it would have been obvious to the secretary.  If she concluded that he looked like he was deliberately speaking loudly then the dwp might be more likely to incline he isn't an honest claimant!

      All my pages were included too - I know some people have mentioned page numbers being missing but I checked and mine were all there.

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  • Posted

    To be honest TCake this is downright disgusting.

    Here you have the receptionist and probably the tea lady having been given instructions to 'observe and report'.

    I presume that this is ATOS and that these two individuals have been given the correct training into body language assessing as the HCP has to do?

    I have heard of CCTV cameras being used by assessors to examine what they haven't seen before calling in the claimant, but to find two, presumably untrained individuals carrying out surveilance activities goes beyond being unacceptable.

    What next, undercover operatives in unmarked cars stationed on all roads leading to the centre on the off chance of seeing if the driver/claimant changes place with the passenger? Maybe the cleaner who is mopping up the toilet floor has a button hole camera on their shirt recording how a claimant acts when going for a wee?

    This is going too far. Only the supposedly trained HCP is able to carry out these informal observations, not the hired hands.

    If I had a report that indicated that I was being observed to that extent by unqualified individuals there would be a formal complaint made to the assessor with my MP being brought into the affair and wanting sight of the written authority that must have been provided for this intrusive behaviour to be sanctioned. The 'anti terrorism act' does not extend to this level.

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    • Posted

      The assessor used the other staff initial when their observations were noted.  I must admit, I didn't expect to have been observed by two others both - both outside and in the waiting room.

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    • Posted

      The observations from all three staff members in my report were all similar.  So obviously if someone is observed walking across the carpark without a moan or a groan or a stop for a rest but then walks into the assessors room really slowly and having to rest then this might flag something up!  Also if they are really chatty looking around the waiting room but then go into the assessment and give the assessor no eye contact that might flag something up.  I suppose it is the dwps ways of trying to catch people out!
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    • Posted

      yes, i agree the secretary and other staff member were probably not qualified but they only commented on my appearance, mood, how I walked and how i held myself in the waiting area.  The assessor was using their observations in my report to back up her own which were similar.  
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    • Posted

      They also ask if you drive an automatic or manual car and that goes on your report and she seemed to know how many metres it was from the car to the consultation centre.

       

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    • Posted

      I am not saying that they could not pass on what they saw to the HCP. What cannot happen is that those 'independent' observations are noted and recorded in the assessment report. That report is medical evidence that is used by the DWP and the MOJ at a Tribunal. 

      As such only those people who are trained and authorised can complete that report and must not have within it any evidence that is obtained elsewhere.

      In the same way any video evidence that is obtained by anyone purporting to show that the level of disability is not what has been claimed cannot be used in evidence, if prior written authority - generally in accord with the Anti Terrorism Act had not been obtained - in fact it cannot even be mentioned that it exists.

      All work that is carried out other than by a properly authorised individual - a HCP in this case - is totally inadmissable.

      As I say where is this going to stop if all and sundry have what they observed admitted into evidence.

      Even the police cannot use anything that you say to them prior to be cautioned as evidence against you.

      Finally if it had happened to me and i wanted to appeal and take the case to a Tribunal - not only would I request of the Tribunal to strike out all of those observations from the evidence, but would demand that the whole report be struck out as admissable evidence on the grounds that it was tainted by an illegal undercover operation.

      Oh the fun of it.

       

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    • Posted

      There was either CCTV or the receptionist did report on me because the assessor knew that while I was waiting I couldn't sit still because of pain. 

      ( this is usual for me because I can't sit on hard straight back chairs it hurts like hell )

      while I was there this bloke was actually sick into a carrier bag when he was sat next to the toilet and then his friend was waving it about to the receptionist asking what to do with it, which wasn't very pleasant at 9 am and made me feel worse.

       

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    • Posted

      I get what you are saying Les but in my case, my assessor wrote a good report and didn't lie on it AND it got me the PIP award I so much need so I will not be reporting her.

      Fair enough, if others get copies of their reports and they are negative and have observations included in them from non-professional members of staff then they should report the assessors and take the matter further.

      The reason why I wanted to inform others of what my report included was to warn anyone with an assessment coming up that they should be aware that 'Big Brother Is Watching' or 'The Hills Have Eyes'!!! as they say! lol

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    • Posted

      Oh dear!  Yes, I have read of others saying their reports included how they were in the waiting room - so they must be getting that info from someone or something.  I couldn't see any cameras in my waiting room though I didn't look too closely!

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    • Posted

      Just a thought TCake, was this written on page 4 by the way 
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    • Posted

      I pressed send when I hadn't finished sorry. 

      I was going to say that it was strange that a few of us had page 4 missing and yours was there, which is why I wondered if that was the page that the claimant is not allowed to see eek x

       

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    • Posted

      No, it was first mentioned on page 8 under 'general appearance and informal observations' and then again on pages 22 and 23 under 'planning and following journeys' and 'moving around'  

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    • Posted

      I received 14 points for mobility because I have difficulty walking and suffer from joint, bone and muscle pain as well as agraphobia and anxiety.  So the extra observations were used to back that up. 
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    • Posted

      My page 4 is headed 'continuation' ie for extra notes etc

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    • Posted

      What I don't understand is that it said amongst other things, it had been decided from informal observation  how I engaged with the assessor and musculoskeletal examination results but she didn't do any examinations but has put on the report as if she had..

       

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    • Posted

      Omg, how many pages long are these reports? 😨 And how long is the assessment?
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    • Posted

      My report was 28 pages long and my assessment was around 45 minutes. 
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    • Posted

      28 pages and 45 minutes long.  The paperwork seems to be the same for all - 28 pages, same format.
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    • Posted

      Poor Ivan. This is much akin to the saying in the 60's in America - 'them there reds under the bed!!'

      Page 4 is in the main left out (a) because it could be blank and/or (b) as in my case it was a private report meant only for the eyes of the DWP and then the Tribunal if it went that far.

      I do hope that poor Ivan isn't emptying all of his rubbish bin out to see where it is?

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    • Posted

      I don't blame you. But if the DWP and the assessors are allowed to get away with these antics, then it needs to be brought out in the open.

      One final point and i doubt that it is the case, I do hope that the assessors are never given permission to ever access the local authority CCTV system. That would definitely be an infringement.

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    • Posted

      Ivan should ask for the missing page 4 as we are all entitled to the 28 page report.  The dwp shouldn't sent out 27 page reports to a selected few!  Equality etc!  All the pages are numbered so that was one of the things I checked when my report arrived as I had heard of pages going astray!

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    • Posted

      you should ask for your page 4!  Though you have received your award so it cannot have been negative smile

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    • Posted

      Do you know what TCake, I hadn't thought about asking for page 4.  I might just do that!

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    • Posted

      No harm in doing so  - just ring the dwp and say - 'I just realised page 4 is missing from my report so please could you send me a copy out for my records'

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    • Posted

      The thing is though it's page 3 and then 5 on the back of the page .

      I just thought it was a typing error.

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    • Posted

      it will be a back to back photocopy - they have left page 4 out for some reason - everyone I have spoken to online have received a 28 page report with either page 4 included or not.
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