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Free, fortnightly PIP, ESA and UC Updates

Our fortnightly bulletin, with over 80,000 subscribers, is the UK's leading source of benefits news. Find out what's changing, how it affects you and how to prepare. Our mailing list is securely managed by icontact in the US.

Fantastic website – thank you
“Big massive thanks to Gordon and everyone else who makes this site possible. I’ve just received my outcome for the swap from DLA to PIP, I’ve been granted higher rate for both till 2023 . I can’t thank this website enough for all the step by step guide you provide for us, you have been a godsend. Well worth to join up”

 

USE YOUR 20% OFF ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP COUPON BEFORE MIDNIGHT FRIDAY: 29577

 

 

Dear Reader

This is our last brief update, and our last discount coupon, before the newsletter takes a break until after the summer parliamentary recess. We’ll be back in mid-September.

In this edition we reveal that the DWP has been accused of lying about its intention to record PIP assessments.

There’s the welcome announcement that universal credit (UC) back-payments have finally begun.

We also have the news that the UC managed migration pilot has been slipped through parliament and is now underway.

And finally, there’s a reminder to professionals that this is your last day to get an early-bird discount on our PIP training.

 

DWP LIED ABOUT PIP RECORDINGS
An MP has accused the DWP of lying about its intention to introduce recording of PIP assessments.

The promise to introduce recording of PIP assessments as standard practice was made by the DWP last April.

It was part of an attempt to win back trust.

Another part of the package was to introduce simplified PIP claim forms.

Yet , over a year later, the department is claiming that there has been so little demand by claimants for recordings that they have not yet managed to complete a pilot project

Results are now expected in the Autumn

The ‘lack of demand’ argument is exactly the same, unevidenced excuse that the DWP used to refuse to introduce recording of work capability assessments for ESA as standard.

This time they have gone even further to ensure limited take-up.

As far as Benefits and Work is aware, only full video recordings of PIP assessments are being offered.

Many claimants are horrified at the thought of the DWP taking and storing a video record of their assessment.

Not only would being videoed make the entire process more stressful.

There is also the awful possibility of the recordings being hacked and distributed.

An audio recording is both much less intrusive and, ultimately, much less easily identifiable.

Not surprising then, that the DWP have been able to ensure very low demand.

As for the simplified PIP claim form, there’s been no word at all about progress, let alone a date for its introduction.

 

UNIVERSAL CREDIT BACK-PAYMENTS FINALLY START
After months of dragging their feet, the DWP have at last begun to compensate claimants who lost out because they were moved onto UC before 16 January 2019 and lost their severe disability premium.

The payments will amount to a maximum of £405 a month, an increase on the original figure of £360 a month.

The total package will have cost £600 million by 2025 and will affect 45,000 claimants.

However, the DWP have gone back on a previous undertaking that claimants who were getting a severe disability premium only in their housing benefit would also be compensated.

The new regulations were put through just before parliament closes for the summer recess and without allowing MPs to vote on the amount claimants would receive.

 

UNIVERSAL CREDIT MANAGED MIGRATION PILOT
The long-dreaded ‘managed migration’ of claimants on legacy benefits such as ESA onto UC has moved a step closer.

At the last moment, just days before the parliamentary recess, the government introduced regulations allowing a managed migration pilot to begin.

They did this without allowing MPs to vote on the issue, in spite of previously promising that they would be given a chance to do so.

The initial pilot involves 10,000 claimants in Harrogate, but may be extended to cover other areas as it progresses.

 

LAST CHANCE FOR EARLY-BIRD PIP TRAINING DISCOUNT
Today is your last chance to take advantage of our 20% early bird discount for our PIP claims training day in Nottingham on 6 November.

The training is suitable both for advice workers and for support workers who do not give benefits advice, but who do need a good awareness of how PIP works and how it may affect their service users.

You can download a PIP training day booking form from this page.

 

FINAL NEWSLETTER – AND COUPON UNTIL 18 SEPTEMBER
This is our final newsletter before our summer break. The next newsletter – and the next coupon – will be out on Wednesday 18 September.

We’ll still be here, still updating guides and publishing articles in the News section when anything important occurs.

But the newsletter itself won’t be published during this period.

We hope that you have a peaceful summer.

Good Luck,

Steve Donnison

 

BOOST YOUR PIP AND ESA CHANCES - 20% OFF ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP – OFFER ENDS MIDNIGHT FRIDAY.
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: 29577

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

 

BENEFITS NEWS
DWP lied about PIP recordings
An MP has accused the DWP of ‘not telling us the truth’ about PIP recordings, the Disability News Service as revealed.

Universal managed migration has begun
The DWP have today begun a pilot for moving legacy benefit claimants onto universal credit (UC).

Universal credit back-payments finally start
The DWP has finally started to compensate claimants who lost out because they were moved onto universal credit (UC) before 16 January 2019 and lost their severe disability premium.

DWP massively increases advertising spend
The DWP has massively increased its spending on advertising in an effort to improve the image of universal credit, according to figures obtained by the SNP.

PIP training day – early bird discount
We’re running our first open PIP training day in quite some time on 6 November in Nottingham.

 

GOOD NEWS FROM THE FORUM AND BY EMAIL
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.

PIP outcome
“Thank you to Benefits and Work guides to completing the lengthy PIP form, when I was asked to claim from DLA to PIP. I have now been awarded enhanced on both Care And Mobility until 2021. I sat and looked at the envelope for about 2 hours before plucking up the courage to open it up. I have made myself ill with the worry of what the outcome would be. I have to say the Assessor who came to do my face to face was excellent, which in all honesty I wasn't expecting in the least. It's not as long an award as my DLA was but at least I've got the award I needed. I am so relieved. So once again thank you to Benefits and Work. I would advise anyone to become a member as the guides are spot on.”

PIP reassessment results
“Hi many thanks so much for all your help and the guides on here. The dreaded brown envelope arrived yesterday for my PIP reassessment decision and I've been awarded the same as before - enhanced for both for 5 years…”

Granted PIP after Mandatory Reconsideration
“Hello it’s good news so the message is don’t despair, I had my pip assessment in may and was awarded zero points , I asked for a reconsideration ,and I provided details of my esa medical done 2 months before and spent a lot of time reading your advice on this site and provided a solid case, I’ve been granted both areas of pip again ( great news)”

PIP ongoing award
“Thanks for your comprehensive advice and help available for the transition from DLA to PIP I did purchase the discounted book that was available on this excellent site which covered all the case laws well I had my atos interview which I have to say was carried out by a hp who was ok my daughter accompanied me I previously had dla high rate care and high rate mobility for an indefinite award well the dreaded brown envelope arrived Thursday morning informing me that I had enhanced pip both care and mobility for an ongoing period I am 62 yrs of age now .so a big thank you for the guidance and help I had in completing the forms .”

PIP ongoing award!
“Very happy to report that I have been awarded standard daily living and enhanced mobility on an ongoing basis. My award letter actually states that a re-assessment won’t take place until after June 2029!! I will be 73 by then, so hopefully I will only have to have a light touch award at that time.
So very relieved. Thank you so so much for your wonderful information on this site. I feel I can learn to relax again.”


A bit of good news..
“Have been waiting on results of my DLA to PIP transfer results., especially as my assessment was pretty harrowing as I got distressed. Finally got them this afternoon - I got enhanced on daily living and standard for mobility. I'm in total shock especially as it was for BPD and Bipolar. After reading the horror stories I really expected to go through a MR. And everyone kept telling me the assessor was being too nice when she kept offering me a cup of tea and if I wanted a break. Plus she went through with me how to word things.. But I genuinely think she was a nice assessor. So pleased”

ESA success
“I received a letter this morning, they reversed their decision without having to go to appeal. "You remain entitled to Employment and Support Allowance with the support component for 24 months".
So thank you to Gordon and everybody else for the helpful advice during this stressful time.”


PIP success
“Thanks to the information on this site I was encouraged to apply for PIP. I was on low rate care DLA for many years (had to go to appeal for that, so was avoiding PIP because of the stress and humiliation) but after my health worsened with a degenerative neurological condition and approaching retirement age, I finally decided to apply. ATOS assessment was professional and courteous on the surface but the report was full of inaccuracies and misunderstandings. I was awarded middle rate care but only 4 points for mobility. So after help from CAB and the advice on this site, I went for MR and was given 22 points for mobility as well. It wouldn’t have been possible without all your help - thank you!”

“award reviewed due to a change in the law . . . You truly have been a lifeline”
“I just wanted to let you know that I received a letter today telling me I have had my award reviewed due to a change in the law. I remember reading on your site a while back about the possibility of awards being reviewed but never thought it would apply to me. I used to receive the mobility rate of DLA at the lower amount but it stopped on change over to PIP. I have been awarded the enhanced rate of mobility now and it’s been backdated to 22/02/17. I think the payment is for £7,051 (letter not that clear) and money not in bank yet. I can’t quite believe it and I’m totally overwhelmed. I have struggled financially after losing such a vital part of my support and I can now use this money to clear the debts I have built up. I am in tears here. I used your guides on every application I have made for support (I get esa support group too). Thank you for all the work you do to help those like me who wouldn’t have the courage to do things without the guides. You truly have been a lifeline and I am so glad I’m still here to see this letter arrive. Totally gobsmacked today.”
Sandra

“Your site made it so much easier”
“I just wanted to thank you for your invaluable help with my PIP application. I have just returned from my appeal where I was awarded higher level for daily living and mobility from my original award of lower rate daily living and nothing for mobility. I was able to rectify the lies told previously. Your site made it so much easier. Thank you.”
Jean

“I couldn't have done it without you”
Thank you for the great advice. I got Enhanced rate care and advanced rate mobility. They did lie on the forms but I am not complaining as I got both entitlements as ongoing. I couldn't have done it without you.
Margaret

“a huge thank you”
Just wanted to say a huge thank you. My husband received his ESA renewal “invitation” & with the help of your wonderful guide, he was kept in the Support Group without needing a face to face medical. Thanks very much.
Clare

“Thank you again”
I have been successful with my transfer to PIP from DLA. Used your great guides. I am going to keep my subscription, so you can continue to help others. Thank you again.
Annie

“our son and us can now get on with our lives”
Got the result of our son's transfer from DLA to PIP today and he has enhanced awards for both care and mobility, stated as "ongoing". Everyone assumes this goes without saying given his level of need, but we really worked hard for this result and relied on the excellent information from Benefits And Work (what value that membership is) but also the professionals' reports who work/have worked with our son now but also in the past.
We demonstrated the long standing nature of his disabilities, how they haven't really changed as well as their severity. We included 14 separate reports from different disciplines to back our case. He was not called for a face to face assessment. Our experience tells us don't take anything for granted, provide the overwhelming evidence and relate this directly to what you state in the answers. We treated it as if we were in a Court of Law presenting a case against hostile lawyers and covering all possible weaknesses.
It has been a stressful, time-consuming period in our lives and the success of the application is almost an anti-climax. Thank you Benefits and Work, our son and us can now get on with our lives again.
Viv

BOOST YOUR PIP AND ESA CHANCES - 20% OFF ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP – OFFER ENDS MIDNIGHT FRIDAY.
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: 29577

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

Good luck,

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