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Friend’s DLA to PIP
“Thank you so much B&W. We had huge help from a friend with our daughter's PIP claim so when asked for help by a friend I wanted to "pay it forward" and used what I'd learnt and a great deal of reading the B&W Guide. She was on lifetime top mobility and lower care. She was so scared of losing the lifeline of her Motabilty car but just 2 weeks after her assessment she has received Enhanced Mobility and lower daily living for several years and is over the moon - car is safe…Thanks again, it is a responsibility helping someone when you are an amateur but you've made it do-able.”
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Dear Reader,

Changes to the PIP mobility component are due to come into force on 16 March, in spite of widespread opposition.

The DWP have said that people who may be affected by this change in the law are those with conditions including:

  • Learning disabilities
  • Autism
  • Schizophrenia
  • Anxiety disorders
  • Cognitive disorder due to a stroke
  • Dementia
  • Depressive disorders
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder Phobias
  • Obsessive compulsive disorder

In our latest update on the changes, we have news of a 38 Degrees petition against the new regulations, an Early Day Motion seeking to overturn them and the response of the Social Security Advisory Committee (SSAC).

SSAC make it clear that they do not accept the argument that no existing claimants will be affected by the changes.

They point out that some claimants may have been awarded the mobility component on the basis of Upper Tribunal decisions that found in favour of taking psychological distress into account for descriptors where it was not specifically included. This would be descriptors c, d and f of the ‘Planning and following journeys’ activity

As a result, these claimants may lose out in the future when their award is reviewed.

Though, as SSAC also point out, where people have lots of difficulties with following a journey, trying to disentangle psychological distress from other factors is likely to be very difficult and lead to inconsistent decision making.

So, it’s far too early to be sure which current claimants might lose out and we’re likely to have many more years of court battles.

The best thing you can do if you think you might be affected is to make sure you keep yourself updated about any changes in the law and, if you do lose out, consider an appeal.

However, given that the new regulations are due to come into force on 16 March and will affect new claims made from that date onwards, as well as review decisions made from that date onwards, we have now published an updated guide to PIP claims and reviews.

The updated guide takes full account to the changes that affect the ‘Going out’ and the ‘Managing treatments’ sections of the PIP 2 ‘How your disability affects you’ claim form.

Subscribing members can download the updated guide to PIP claims and reviews now from the members area of the site.

PIP AND ESA HOME ASSESSMENTS – YOUR MP WON’T LIKE THIS
We’ve now published the results of our survey into PIP and ESA home assessments. Many thanks to the almost 1,900 people who took part.

Your MP probably won’t like what we discovered, though.

Amongst our findings:

  • 83% of the people who completed the PIP survey had been allowed a home assessment, whilst the figure for ESA was only 41%.
  • 3% of PIP claimants had a decision on the paper evidence alone, without needing a face-to-face assessment, but this leapt to 28% for ESA.
  • 38% of PIP claimants who had a home assessment hadn’t even asked for one, whilst for ESA it was just 7%.
  • 51% of ESA home assessments were carried out by doctors, for PIP the figure was just 4%.

And, as in assessment centre medicals, many home assessments still involve a health professional staring at a computer screen and reading off questions, with no hint of empathy for the person sitting opposite them.

Or, in one bizarre case, for the person sitting in the next room:

“The assessor sat in a different room to me as he needed a table for his laptop. He complained about the software for home visits throughout and never broke from typing to even look up when I spoke.

But what your MP really won’t like is the fact that, over and over again, people told us that when they were unreasonably refused a home assessment, contacting their MP about it had a dramatic effect.

We didn’t hear from a single person who had been refused a home assessment once their MP was involved, whether it was for PIP or ESA.

So, with apologies to all the people we know already work really hard in MP’s constituency offices, if you are refused a home medical and you have solid grounds for requesting one – we strongly recommend you contact your MP.

Good luck,

Steve Donnison

 Benefits and Work guides covers

Thank you - ESA success
“I would like to thank everyone on this site that helped me to get my daughters reconsideration ESA appeal overturned. After following all the very useful information that you provided she has finally been classed as being put into the support ESA group. This was from originally being told 0 points and having to claim JSA. She is overjoyed. Good luck to others.”
 

BOOST YOUR PIP AND ESA CHANCES - 20% OFF ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP – OFFER ENDS MIDNIGHT FRIDAY, 17 MARCH
ESA won at tribunal
“Can I say a big thank you to all who run Benefits and Work for the invaluable guides when it comes to the ESA Tribunal written submission.”

Give yourself the best possible chance of getting the right ESA, PIP or DLA decision, whether you’re making a claim, renewing an existing award or asking for a reconsideration or appeal.

Subscribe now and get instant access to all our guides.

If you’re not already a member, join the Benefits and Work community before midnight on Friday and you can get 20% off the cost of your annual subscription.

Just type the following code into the coupon box when you pay: 98456

Claimants and carers get an annual subscription for £15.96, down from £19.95. Professionals get an annual subscription for £77.60, down from £97.00.
Offer ends midnight Friday, 17 March

 

LATEST NEWS
PIP mobility changes update
Changes to PIP mobility and to the PIP activity of managing medication are due to come into force on 16th March, in spite of strong opposition and increasing evidence that the government are being less than honest in claiming that the changes will not affect any current claimants.

“The assessor sat in a different room to me as he needed a table for his laptop.” PIP and ESA Home Assessments Uncovered
Benefits and Work asked readers to take part in a survey if they had ever asked for, or had, a PIP or ESA face-to-face medical assessment in their home, instead of in an assessment centre.

GOOD NEWS FROM THE FORUM
As always, many thanks to everyone who takes the trouble to post in the forum or email us with news of your success. We know it’s many readers favourite, and most encouraging, bit of the newsletter.

Transfer from DLA to PIP
Benefits and Work guides covers“Just wanted to let you know that I have had the dreaded brown envelope this morning detailing my transfer from DLA to PIP. I am over the moon with the result, I have received the lower rate of care and the higher rate of mobility. This is exactly what I was on before. And they have given me this 'indefinitely' which I am really shocked (but so happy) about. Thanks to your guides on how to fill in the original form and how to deal with a face to face interview I have been able to explain in great detail how my Multiple Sclerosis affects me on a daily basis in a clear and concise way. I really feel that using the correct wording and phrase-ology made a huge difference and I am so grateful. The worry is over and I can move on with my life. Thanks again.”

ESA and PIP award
“Hi im a new member and would just like to say a big thank you for the valuable advice i have received since joining,i was in the activity group for esa but thanks to yous i have now been placed in the support group for the next two years,i was hoping for a longer period due to my on going health problems but its a start. I have also just gone through the ordeal of being moved from DLA to PIP i was receiving the high rate of mobility and the low rate of care allowance on dla but after my assessment i have now been awarded the standard rate of daily living allowance(8points) and the standard rate of mobility allowance (10 points) until 2021… even though i will be a bit worse off but the extra money i receive for being placed in the support group of ESA makes up for that.. dont think i could handle going through the appeal process and a tribunal again which i think i would have had to do were it not for the advice i found on your site so once again many thanks. Good luck to all the other members on here who are currently fighting for what they rightly deserve. Thank you.”

DLA to PIP success
“The dreaded brown envelope has finally arrived after 6 long months from filling out forms for pip to decision it's been a long tough journey but the outcome is what my wife was hoping for enhanced mobility and enhanced care so we can finally relax and move forward, a big thankyou to benefits and work your guides and advice have been so helpful when we had nowhere else to turn, our advice to anyone going through this process get as much help as you can from anybody who might be able to help your case, read benefits and works guides, above all be strong and keep fighting thanks again good luck to everyone out there still waiting.”

Won ESA appeal!
“Hi, I won my ESA appeal last week following a failed reassessment. I have been put back into the WRAG group..”

DLA to PIP
“Hello Friends. Been on the DLA -2- PIP Rollercoaster since early Dec. 2016. The Guides in here were very useful to help focus my thoughts when preparing the claim…Went from Lifetime Max Mobility DLA 2 Max Mobility PIP for Ten Years…Good Luck all.”

DLA to PIP success
“After following your guides when filling out the forms and attending an assessment my wife has gone from the standard rate of DLA to enhanced PIP with a review date of 2027…Many thanks to the guide compilers”

PIP Tribunal success
“After wanting to cancel my appeal so many times. I managed to attend my tribunal in person this week with the support of my family. I think I'm still in shock but I was awarded enhanced rate care and mobility. The mobility component is what shocked me the most. Mainly awarded for severe anxiety. I just wanted to say a huge thank you to everyone on here for all your help. I couldn't have done it without the support on here. Feeling extremely happy”

Mandatory reconsideration success
“A big thank you to all moderators of B&W for their guides. Previously on DLA high rate mobility and low rate care indefinitely. I had my first PIP assessment mid-December …I was notified around 4 weeks after the appointment date that I would be getting enhanced care and standard mobility even though the decision maker stated I had walking difficulties. But went on to say I could walk 20 to 50 metres and it was consistent with my medical records. I asked in my MR what medical records were they referring too, I sent in a report from a neurology consultant and one from the pain management clinic, both outlining that I could only walk up to 20 yards… As the moderators, have clearly stated numerous times to claimants “SHOW HOW YOU MEET THE DISCRIPTORS”. I got a letter from my GP explaining how I met the 12-point descriptor for mobility. 2 weeks after I sent the GP’s letter in I received an award for enhanced on both for an ongoing period until 2026. Thanks again.”


BOOST YOUR PIP AND ESA CHANCES - 20% OFF ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP – OFFER ENDS MIDNIGHT FRIDAY, 17 MARCH
Give yourself the best possible chance of getting the right ESA, PIP or DLA decision, whether you’re making a claim, renewing an existing award or asking for a reconsideration or appeal.

Subscribe now and get instant access to all our guides.

If you’re not already a member, join the Benefits and Work community before midnight on Friday and you can get 20% off the cost of your annual subscription.

Just type the following code into the coupon box when you pay: 98456

Claimants and carers get an annual subscription for £15.96, down from £19.95. Professionals get an annual subscription for £77.60, down from £97.00.
Offer ends midnight Friday, 17 March

Good luck,

The Office Team
Benefits and Work Publishing Ltd
Company registration No. 5962666