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DLA to PIP success!
“The brown envelope arrived this morning! I was literally shaking when opening it as my husband and I feel we have been completely shut down over the past, well nearly a year now, not knowing what to expect. After advice from the Forum in April I contacted our MP to ask for assistance as my request for a home assessment was declined. After our MP's intervention I was given a home appointment and feel I was more able to take part in the assessment due to not having to travel thank you so much for your support and advice in this. The award was more than we dared to hope as I have received enhanced for both elements for the next 10 years. Thank you so much for all the information you provide”
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Dear Reader,

In this edition we ask: has the tide finally turned on hatred of sick and disabled claimants?

Plus there’s the altogether unsurprising news that claimants in the work-related activity group of ESA are at particular risk of being forced to use a foodbank.

And the slightly more surprising news that IDS is continuing his transformation into the claimant’s champion, with his revelation that the work capability assessment is too harsh.

HAS THE TIDE TURNED ON CLAIMANT HATE?
A report by the National Centre for Social Research (NatCen) suggests that hatred of sick and disabled claimants may finally be on the wane.

The 34th British Social Attitudes report, for which 2,942 people were interviewed, found that

for the first time in more than 30 years disabled claimants rather than pensioners are the public’s top priority for extra spending on benefits.

The report found that:

67% said that spending on benefits for disabled people was one their top two priorities for extra welfare spending, up from 53% in 2010.

Spending on pensions, on the other hand has fallen as a priority from 72% in 2010 to 60% now.

There were other positive findings in the survey too:

The proportion who say most dole claimants are ‘fiddling’ has dropped from 35% in 2014 to 22% in 2016 – its lowest level since the question was first asked on the survey in 1986.

The proportion who say that most social security claimants don’t deserve help dropped from 32% in 2014 to 21% in 2016, the lowest ever level on the survey.

It’s not all good news, however.

Support for unemployed claimants in general is much lower. As few as 13% include spending on the unemployed among their top two priorities, a much lower level than during the 1980s and 1990s.

But the survey as a whole is very positive for sick and disabled claimants.

At a time when austerity is really hurting, you might expect that years of anti-claimant propaganda would now be having its most devastating influence on public perception of sick and disabled claimants.

But this survey suggests that people are beginning to look elsewhere for an explanation of what’s gone wrong.


IDS, THE CLAIMANT’S CHAMPION

Iain Duncan Smith, who inflicted universal credit, personal independence payment and a massive increase in sanctions on sick and disabled claimants, is continuing his transformation into the claimant’s champion.

IDS, you may remember, resigned as secretary of state for work and pensions in 2016, supposedly because of cuts to PIP planned by George Osborne.

Since them he appears to have been trying to rewrite history to demonstrate what a compassionate conservative he actually was.

To this end, he told a meeting organised by the right-wing Spectator magazine last week that he had attempted to soften the effects of the WCA no fewer than five times whilst running the DWP, before concluding that it was too harsh and needed fundamental reform.

According to IDS, a system which allows people to be found fit for work for just a certain number of hours a week would be more effective.

“It was quite obvious to us that the system was far too narrow, was acting in a far too harsh manner and was making judgements about people.

“The whole process of having a benefit that says you are either too sick to work or you can work, actually works against the nature of how people think of themselves.

“I came to the conclusion that it was time to review the whole way we do this and remove the cliff edge.”

“The cliff edge tempts people to make wrong declarations. And it means that whatever assessment you’re making becomes very critical, which adds extra stress,” IDS claimed.

What a shame he didn’t explain all this when he actually was the secretary of state for work and pensions. Back then it might have made a difference, now it’s just sounds like history being rewritten.

 

ESA WRAG CLAIMANTS AT FOODBANK RISK
A report by the University of Oxford, on behalf of the Trussell Trust, published last week, has found that claimants in the work-related activity group of employment and support allowance are particularly at risk of having to use foodbanks.

The report also discovered that over half of Trussell Trust foodbank users belong to a household with a disabled person in it and that benefits sanctions and delays in benefits payments are a major cause of foodbank use.

The report urges the government to link benefits payments to rises in the cost of living, end delays in benefits payments and review the WCA.

The new secretary of state for Work and Pensions knows better, however.

David Gauke has confirmed that the current freeze on benefits uprating will continue and explained the real reason for increased foodbank use – and its solution:

“I would expect the benefit freeze to continue. It is sometimes scoffed at, but the fact is there is much greater awareness of food banks than was the case previously. It’s become much more widely used.

“If we want to reduce poverty, if we want to reduce the need for people to use food banks, it’s that we have got to have a strong economy that creates jobs.”

So, the public may no longer support the war on sick and disabled claimants, but it seems the government have no intention of ending the slaughter.

Good luck,

Steve Donnison

 Benefits and Work guides covers

ESA and PIP success
“I have heard today that my daughter has been awarded ESA in the support group for 3 years based on a paper based assessment only. Thank you all at B&W for your excellent guides and help on the forum. I used your mental health and LD guide when completing the forms and sent lots of evidence with the application but didn't imagine she would be successful without a face to face. Last year I went through the mandatory reconsideration process for PIP for my daughter having previously been given DLA for her for life. Again due to the B&W guides she was awarded PIP enhanced for both care and mobility for 5 years. This now means we can have 3 years of peace hopefully without the stress of going through this appalling benefit system. I can't thank you enough. You are all brilliant!!!!”
 

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PIP tribunal
“With all your support I went from standard personal care and no mobile to enhanced on both.”

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.

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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, 7 July

 

LATEST NEWS
Public now see disabled claimants as more deserving of extra cash than pensioners
A report released last week by the National Centre for Social Research (NatCen) suggests that hatred of sick and disabled claimants may finally be on the wane.

Over half of foodbank users are households with a disabled person
A report by the University of Oxford published last week has found that over half of Trussell Trust foodbank users belong to a household with a disabled person in it.

Work capability assessments “too harsh” says IDS
The work capability assessment (WCA) is “too harsh” Iain Duncan Smith, former work and pensions minister and architect of universal credit and personal independence payment has claimed.

  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.

Benefits and Work guides coversDLA to PIP success
“I would like to thank you for your help. I have just received the letter saying that I am getting PIP mobility at the high rate and care at the high rate for ten years. I was so worried, but, because of this guide, I filled in my forms correctly. I have also just renewed my membership, because you keep me informed of any new developments. Thank you once again for all you do.”

B&W supporting each other
“I have just won my tribunal going from no mobility to enhanced and standard care to enhanced. This community got me through. I shall keep on subscribing every year as I know there are thousands just like me who need the support. Without our subscriptions it will be a darn sight harder for those that come after.”

I’m in shock!
“Received the brown envelope today with my results..... I have been worried to death hearing about sick people being refused PIP. I have been awarded enhanced for mobility and care. Didn't have to attend a F2F. And they say I have this for 10 years. I can stop worrying now and try to concentrate on my health. I couldn't get help filling the form because everyone was too busy to take any more people on. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.”

PIP award
“Just to let you know I received my PIP assessment decision last Friday, I was very anxious indeed that I had not told them everything in my assessment but thankfully I was awarded ongoing for both care and mobility. I would like to thank this fantastic website for all the help and advice given, without it I simply wouldnt have gotten this award, I am very grateful indeed.”

ESA outcome
“PHEW phew and phew..!!! -out of the blue in April received the dreaded ESA renewal forms knowing the date meant it came under new rules. Having previously been in the support group and determined to fight them all the way even before the fight began, we spent ages going through your guides and followed them, repeated bits when answering various questions, and enclosed diaries along with medical evidence/supportive letters. Got brown envelope today and am relieved to be kept in the support group without having to attend an ESA f2f "medical" for a further 18 months. Many thanks to all you wonderful diamond people at B&W”

DLA to PIP success
“I am delighted to say that my son has gone from Higher rate care and lower rate Mobility DLA lifetime award to Higher rate care and enhanced Mobility for PIP without a F2F. He has been awarded it for ongoing and will not be reviewed till May 2027. The relief is great…thanks again for the information on here enabling us to get the best result for our son with his PIP award”

ESA reassessment
“I've had my ESA reassessment and I remain in the SG. Thank you B&W for all you do.”

Transferred from DLA to PIP
“Earlier this year I was invited to apply for PIP as my DLA was due to end. I read and used your guidance forms not with the intention of embellishing my claim but simply to make it easier for an Assessor to understand clearly what I can and can't do and identify what help I need. In addition I provided evidence to support my request, GP letter, prescription lists. Consultant letters and medical results. Due to being housebound I requested a home visit, this I wasn't offered. Hence I had to pay my GP to write a letter of support, following receipt of the GPs letter I was granted a home visit… Once the assessment was over, I then had a long wait to hear the outcome… I am absolutely delighted to let you know I was successful in obtaining PIP at the high level for both, which is what I was awarded originally for DLA. When I felt I needed support it was this forum I turned to...”

DLA to PIP award
“The dreaded brown envelope arrived today. However, I was pleasantly surprised and immensely relieved to see I have been awarded standard rate care and standard rate mobility - I had been getting the lower rate care and higher rate mobility on DLA”

PIP from nothing at all
“Just a quick message to say that the information on this site has enabled my wife to gain her enhanced mobility PIP. Originally she had standard mobility on DLA and on transfer she lost the mobility per se. Had a reconsideration leading to the standard award and I submitted a 'revision' of a reconsideration resulting in the enhanced award. Money very well spent - Thankyou.”

DLA to PIP success
“Received my award notice for DLA/pip transfer today. Enhanced rate for both on an ongoing basis! So relieved. I owe a huge thanks to the B&W folks without whose guides I wouldn't have been able to complete the forms! I had a lovely assessor for my home visit & scored me 28pts for care & 16 for mobility which was pretty much what my self assessment score was. I wish everyone currently going through this horrendous process the very best of luck!”

PIP success
“Many Thanks to all on the forum, Now been awarded Standard rate care AND standard rate Mobility”

DLA to PIP transition
“Just wanted to say a big THANK YOU to all the advice & support information here to guide me through the transition from DLA to PIP. I had previously been awarded DLA middle rate for care, but sadly gained a few new health issues since my original claim... then through the letterbox came the dreaded PIP application form. I felt confident in completing it myself and attending the ATOS assessment. To my dismay the decision was Standard Rates for both Daily Living & Mobility. How gutted was I that I hadn't invested the £20 to become a member and have full access to all the available help. I quickly rectified that situation, spent my £20 and started reading as much as I could. Of course I immediately noticed several areas where I had let myself down. I settled myself in for the bumpy road ahead, determined not to be pushed aside. My Mandatory Reconsideration was declined, as I thought it might be (odds 1:5) So I got all my appeal papers ready and sent them off, knowing that this time there were better odds of winning (1:2). Again the DWP declined my request, so I knew my claim was going to the tribunal/appeals court. Eventually, the letter came from HMCTS with my appeal date, this was 31wks after my initial award decision.
The dreaded appeal day arrived... Final result was Enhanced Mobility (14pts was 10), my Daily Living stays on Standard (11pts was 8) Shame I couldn't have gained that one extra point to get enhanced rate for both, but that's my own silly fault for not subscribing fully in the beginning. I know better now, and I couldn't have done this without all your help & guidance notes. Best £20 spent this year.
THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU”

 

BOOST YOUR PIP AND ESA CHANCES - 20% OFF ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP – OFFER ENDS MIDNIGHT FRIDAY, 7 JULY
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: 87664

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, 7 July

Good luck,

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

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