Benefits and Work is receiving disturbing reports that assessments for both PIP and ESA are not being carried out in the way that the DWP claims they should be.
We have heard from a number of members recently who have been required to attend a work capability assessment without first being given an opportunity to complete an ESA50 claim form.
The ESA50 is vital because it gives claimants their first opportunity to set out in their own word the effects of their condition. It also allows them to gather together and submit supporting evidence.
At this stage we don’t know whether the failure to send an ESA50 is due to incompetence or something more alarming. We would be interested to hear from readers who have had a similar experience. You can either leave a comment below or email us at email@example.com
In relation to PIP, we have heard from one reader who was initially asked to do a six hour round trip for his face-to-face assessment . He was then given a series of inappropriate appointments before a paper-based assessment was used to deny him any award at all, as he explains:
“After being invited for assessment in Leicester, which is three hours from where I live and an impossible journey, Capita gave me a home assessment on a day when they had already been told I wasn't available.
“They then promised to re-schedule the home visit but instead passed the claim to a physiotherapist based 130 miles away in Leeds who passed it to another physiotherapist 200 miles away in North Wales for a paper assessment.
“My claim was refused despite the fact that my GP (who described the assessment process as medically indefensible) has never been contacted and nobody at Capita has even spoken to me let alone conducted an examination."