Justin Tomlinson, minister for disabled people, confirmed yesterday that PIP claimants have a right to have someone else take part in their PIP telephone assessment. This is in spite of some Benefits and Work members being told that no-one else could help them give evidence.

Tomlinson told the work and pensions committee on 23 April, 2020:

“If you are having a telephone assessment, we are allowing your friend, family, trusted partner to be part of that process which is something we introduced a few years ago for face-to-face assessments which has made a huge difference to the quality of the outcome of the assessments.”

Yet, we have heard from members who have not been told that someone else can be involved or have even been refused permission to have someone else take part:

“My partner has a telephone assessment on Thursday. Told him it could last for I hour .He has copd and heart problems. I asked could I speak for him as he gets very breathless they said no he has to speak himself.”

We will be updating our PIP claims guide to include this quote from the minister.

You can watch the committee session on parliament TV.

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