Claimants who should be automatically entitled to a new Blue Badge are being left in misery because of the DWP’s  backlog of PIP reviews..

Benefits and Work is hearing from members who are facing a choice between paying repeated fees for short term renewals of their Blue Badge or having to complete a form and provide evidence which one member described as being ‘worse than applying for PIP’ and which does not guarantee they will get the badge they should be automatically entitled to.

The problem is being caused by the enormous backlog of PIP reviews, with the DWP now using software which extends PIP awards repeatedly when they are close to ending, if a review has still not been completed.

Automatic Blue Badge

Some claimants automatically qualify for a Blue Badge.

This includes people who are awarded the PIP mobility component because:

  • they can’t stand and move more than 50 metres and are awarded 8 points or more for ‘moving around’, or
  • because they cannot undertake any journey because it would cause overwhelming psychological distress, descriptor E under ‘Planning and following journeys’.

Claimants who don’t automatically qualify have to provide evidence to show their eligibility for a Blue Badge.

The problem claimants who should qualify automatically are encountering is that many local authorities require proof of the end date of a claimant’s PIP award before they will issue a Blue Badge.

If PIP is being awarded on a repeated short-term basis then claimants may either not have proof of the end date of their award or they will only have proof that it has been awarded for a few months or less.

Without any proof of an end date, no automatic Blue Badge will be given. 

With proof only that an award will last say three months a claimant may have to pay £10 for each renewal and may have to wait a large part of that time for the new badge to be issued.

Members’ Blue Badge problems

We have received feedback and forum posts about this issue from members and it is clearly one that is of growing concern.

One member told us:

“I sent my renewal form back in May 2021 and the DWP have put me in a queue for an assessment even though the only change to my chronic health issues has been the introduction of long covid. 

My blue badge expires at the end of June 2022 when my award runs out and my local authority will not give me a badge unless the DWP supply me with an end date award.

I have spoken to DWP who said that they cannot help me. The agent asked his manager if he could speed up my assessment and he refused. I have been told that as I put covid issues on my form that I have been placed in a different format for assessment.

I told the agent that I filled the form in in May 2021 and that I am almost free from the effects of covid. I have also been informed that I will receive PIP on a rolling month basis until an assessment is carried out. I have received DLA now PIP since 1996 and I will not get any better.

Have I any other way to address this issue as I will soon not have any access to shops etc if I do not have a blue badge.  My local authority have not been much help as they state that they require an end date reward from the DWP who will not supply me with a letter of explanation.”

Another member told us that when faced with the same problem they filled out an application form for a Blue Badge.

“I was given regular repeated 3 month extension letters of award by dwp ( if I chased up) but the problem was you then had send for a blue badge for only 3 months at a time and pay £10 each time, and it said it took nearly that to apply.

I asked the council what to do, so they said fill out the form as if you don’t have PIP (so without passporting), and send in the 3 month letter and explanation letter. This was Gloucestershire council. They processed it and sent me a 3 year one, without assessment and in about a fortnight.”

But one member decided to manage without a Blue Badge for the time being rather than attempt yet another complex and stressful period of form filling:

“I then went on line to apply for my blue badge via local government (council) website.

I filled out the form best I could, and received an email with the councils blue badge award criteria. Well its asking for tons and tons of evidence, etc. Worse than applying for pip if you ask me.

So I'm going not send off evidence, I’m going to let the application expire, and they will reject my blue badge application.

Then hopefully when my pip has been decided etc, I will then reapply for blue badge under the PIP criteria.  The councils criteria seemed more stressful in regards to obtaining evidence, than PIP itself. and lots of the criteria never applied to me. like cancer, oncologist, do you have a Macmillan supporter etc.”

For some members, a short-term award was worth the cost:

“I encountered exactly the same problem last year.  I took photos of my extension award notice plus a photo of my ugly mug and applied online (this was after a phone call to my council blue badge department advising me to do so) and I got my badge after paying online via an e mail link I was sent.  It was only a short extension, can't remember how long for, but not much more than six months, and I duly got my badge.  It's up to you as to whether a 'short fix' will do for now and is worth the £10 admin fee, but at least my local council were fine with it.”

Have you had difficulties with getting your Blue Badge renewed because of the PIP backlog and how did you deal with them?  Let us know in the comments section below.

You can read the full Blue Badge criteria on the .gov website

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  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    J Campbell · 6 days ago
    8th May 2023,dwp have had my review form, my pip ends on 28th March 2024,and I have heard nothing, my blue badge ends as well soon,will then have to take someone shopping with me,as I need to park close to shops 
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    Richard · 28 days ago
    I can not renew my blue badge as have no award letter. Filled out review online in July 2023. Now January 2024 and nothing. Just got my letter from Blur Badge saying it is about to expire. I will let it as nothing from PIP. Pathetic what is Government doing about PIP backlog and issues its causing. This country has gone to s@*t
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    Jack · 1 months ago
    I could not renew for my blue badge  as I was waiting for my PIP renewal to be processed. A week before my Blue badge expired I received a 12 month PIP extension but Bradford council have a 15 week backlog for blue badge renewals so I now have no blue badge. By the time it arrives I will have to apply for another one but will be in the same situation again unless my PIP gets renewed for 3 years. Its rediculas.
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    Rishi S · 1 months ago
    The blue badge scheme is itself a nonsense the vast majority of vehicles are registered disabled by DVLA tax class  so to rely soley on the badge scheme for parking is a stupidity .Surely an equal check on the DVLA database would also show the vehicle as disabled and entitled to park ? When this country had the common sense to have tax discs it used to actually say disabled on the disc . Surely a more aligned system between tax class and blue badge needs to be created ? There is no back log really on PIP we all know its to get the maximum number of claimants assessed under the new rules of PIP on work capability and thus have more fail an award they know what their doing ,wakey wakey
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    Jill · 1 months ago
    I have a similar issue. I need advice to fight a PCN when my badge has run out awaiting my PIP renewal decision. 
    I returned my PIP renewal form on 12 September 23. I am hoping my higher mobility award will continue and in turn my Blue Badge award. It's now 30.12.23 & I've still heard from PIP after three & a half months. My Badge ran out on 01.10.23. When I last renewed it, the Council would only accept the PIP renewal date of 01.10.23 which was the 2 yr date, even though the date of 01.07,24 was mentioned as the final date of my award period as Covid had delayed things. 
    The consequence is that my Blue Badge has run out and after three & a half months, I still haven't heard back from PIP! I am struggling to attend medical appointments and to go out.
     I can't walk very far so I need to use my car. Once a week as a student, I park on double yellow lines when I attend a college session because the staff car park is too far away for me to walk from it. I display my out of date badge & cross my fingers and pray! True to form I was nabbed at 17.40 on my last college class of the year before Xmas. 
    How do I fight this PCN when I was clearly on double yellow lines with an out of date Blue Badge? Its my second ticket. My first was from ParkingEye but this is completely different as it's from the council. Advice please.

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    Julian croft · 4 months ago
    I have the same issue with the blue badge, sent my renewal forms back on the 2nd of Jan 2023 and my blue badge is just about to run out. Have contacted dwp and they are not interested and also my local council. I explained to the council my issue and could I apply providing evidence and they told me that because you are still receiving pip that I could not go down this route. What do you do? 
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    H · 4 months ago
    I'm experiencing the same issue, I sent my PIP renewal form to DWP at the beginning of April 2023 & I am still waiting to hear back from PIP. My badge runs out next month & I don't know what to do or who to contact about it. 
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    Bittu · 6 months ago
    Same problem, applied for PIP renewal Dec 22, current award expires Nov 23 as does Blue Badge. Called DWP in Aug 23 for update, spoke to case manager who said waiting assessment cannot issue letter as Blue Badge not a criteria for them. Also cannot say when assessment would be carried out.
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    Odi · 6 months ago
    Same problem aswell just because pip couldn't finish reviewing my wife pip form before expire date so they add 1 year extended to review getting done but we don't know how we can extend this one year to our bluebadge. Awful situation 

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    M. Hill · 9 months ago
    My renewal application was received by dwp back in October 2022 and they keep sending me texts, telling me they have my paperwork, but nothing else happens.
    It's been 8 months to the day and my blue badge runs out soon.. Absolute shambles, really. I don't know what the DWP are doing, but I need that badge but also cannot keep forking out and reapplying for badges either. 
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    Deborah · 9 months ago
    My blue badge ran out in March 2023 but still awaiting renewal of PIP before I can apply for a new badge and this will not happen any time soon by the sounds of things.  Thus parking is problematic.   I am in limbo.   
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    Robert · 11 months ago
    My blue badge will run out in June 2023.  I received a renewal from Croydon council and provided a current award letter, however the DWP are yet to reassess my condition and cannot provide me with the additional letter confirming points awarded. The council say award letter is not enough. They know there's a backlog with reassessing so why don't they take this into consideration. This is the absurd system I've encountered. Nobody seems to give a damn either. Will be writing to my mp.
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    KD · 1 years ago
    I’ve recently applied for a renewal of my blue badge as it was due to finish at the end of Feb 2023. I had a letter from the DWP stating that my award had been extended until the end of Nov 2023, so I used this to reapply.

    To my great surprise, my blue badge was renewed for 3 years!
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    AM · 1 years ago
    is there still no solution to this? My blue badge expired in July 2022 and The council won't provide me with another one until my pip renewal letter is sent to me, I think its been 2 years since i filled in that pip renewal form, how is everything going to shit in this country?!
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    Shadowes · 1 years ago
    Been waiting 6 months since I applied for PIP renewal but no sign of it being  processed yet. Blue badge is expiring so I’m going to have to pay repeatedly based on extensions. Getting the extension proof letter from PIP is a faff in itself. Long call wait times. Why can’t PIP and blue badges be automatically linked?
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    Mrs Sharon goodband · 1 years ago
    I've been waiting for over 6 months for my pip rewards and haven't got a blue badge, I'm disabled and can't walk very far due to this. Its making it very difficult for me to get out for hospital appointments and every day things. My disability has become much worse now and not having a blue badge is making it worse. 
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    royston · 1 years ago
    My pip was automatically put to indefinate without telling me it was to end in jan23 I asked for a letter of proof and was promised this would be sent out and as of today 2 weeks later still no letter and cant wait on a phone for an hour! what makes all this a joke is that the motorbility people have checked (took a couple of mins) and saw my renewal of pip yet the local authoritys have the same system to check and dont!!!!
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    LizzieD · 1 years ago
    Going through this now. Hubby’s pip renewal sent in last December, blue badge extended in April for 6 months at a cost of £10. Now that’s running out again, still no joy from pip. Council won’t renew blue badge again until we have a new award letter from DWP. We’re so fed up with this.
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    John S · 1 years ago
    I'm now without my blue badge and have been for a while.. I've paid for it, supplied all the forms/details etc, but am now being prevented from getting my badge due to the PIP dept delays and the reply to my pip review which was returned in october last year 2021. But ive heard nothing. I cant provide a suitable expiry date for my PIP award and thus can't get my blue badge due to the delays in their dept. This is severly messed up! 😡
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    Calypso · 1 years ago
    My blue badge runs out on the 19th September but the renewal form asks for information from the PIP letter. I haven't received my PIP letter yet though. 
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