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  • FIRST POST
    • acooper95
    • By acooper95 18th Mar 17, 2:00 PM
    • 33Posts
    • 4Thanks
    acooper95
    PIP Help
    • #1
    • 18th Mar 17, 2:00 PM
    PIP Help 18th Mar 17 at 2:00 PM
    Hi all,

    New to this forum so hello from me.

    Few days ago my son was awarded PIP and given standard rates for both. We are both delighted, but disappointed as the letter he received today isn't truthful.

    Budgeting
    We stated in the forms and face to face that my son is unable to make budgeting decisions. Due to his depression and unable to control finances, I have full access to his accounts and debit cards. I arrange the bills to be paid, rent and other expenses. This was stated to the assessor who came to his house. He was awarded 0 points and it states "You can managed complex budgeting decisions unaided"; which isn't true.

    Mixing with other people
    We stated in the forms and face to face that my son suffers from social anxiety and being in an open place with people causes him distress; let alone engage with them. He cannot go out unless it's with me and even then, he appears stressed and will make me take him home. As soon as the assessor sat down, he told her that I would be talking for him. She stated that he had to to understand it more. He did reluctantly under the impression he had to or wouldn't get the benefit. He was awarded 0 points and it states "You can engage with other people unaided"

    Preparing food
    We stated that he cannot prepare or cook a simple meal due not being able to concentrate. He burns himself when forgetting pans on the hob and due to having no sense of smell, he's at hazard of burning the house down or himself. I either cook for him or give him microwave meals. He was awarded 2 points and it states "You need an aid or appliance to be able to prepare or cook a simple meal"

    Managing your treatments
    We stated due to his depression and inability to concentrate and due to number of meds he takes, I sort his various meds out into a dossette box. I visit morning and evening to ensure he takes them as he has the tendency to forget. He was awarded 0 points and it states "You can manage medication unaided"

    He was awarded 8 points.

    Mobility - Going Out
    We stated that he is unable to follow the route of a familiar or unfamiliar journey without another person. Whenever he does need to go out, e.g food or specialist appointments, I literally have to force him into the car to go. Whilst we shop for food, he will stay in the car. He cannot travel on public transport alone and he is never in public without me. Before we travel, I have to confirm with him the route of journey on Google Maps; this was then noted down that he likes to look at Google Maps; what a load of rubbish. It 's not a familiar route, he will panic, get anxious and refuse to go. He was awarded 0 points and it states "You are able to plan and follow a simple journey unaided"

    He was awarded 10 points for moving around and 0 for going out.

    What does he do now? He is worried his claim will get stopped if he even challenges it. Very disappointed as the points missing would of got him the higher rate on both.

    Thanks in advance,
Page 1
    • IAmWales
    • By IAmWales 18th Mar 17, 2:04 PM
    • 610 Posts
    • 1,276 Thanks
    IAmWales
    • #2
    • 18th Mar 17, 2:04 PM
    • #2
    • 18th Mar 17, 2:04 PM
    What medical evidence do you have of the above?

    The assessor cannot just go on your word, especially when it might sound z little scripted.
    • acooper95
    • By acooper95 18th Mar 17, 2:07 PM
    • 33 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    acooper95
    • #3
    • 18th Mar 17, 2:07 PM
    • #3
    • 18th Mar 17, 2:07 PM
    They have been in contact with various specialists and GP's.

    They have on record his no sense of smell, inability to concentrate nor make decisions.

    Other than actually spend a day with us, I'm unsure on how to provide proof of the more physiological ones like journeys.
    • Tommo1980
    • By Tommo1980 18th Mar 17, 2:12 PM
    • 288 Posts
    • 367 Thanks
    Tommo1980
    • #4
    • 18th Mar 17, 2:12 PM
    • #4
    • 18th Mar 17, 2:12 PM
    This is fairly standard practice. The assessor will make a judgement call based on a number of factors.

    If you truly believe the award is incorrect and you have medical evidence relevant to where your son fits the descriptors, then you should encourage him to appeal.

    But as you say, there is a chance your son could lose all or part of the award. Also the process is not exactly stress free.

    Tom
    • Tommo1980
    • By Tommo1980 18th Mar 17, 2:14 PM
    • 288 Posts
    • 367 Thanks
    Tommo1980
    • #5
    • 18th Mar 17, 2:14 PM
    • #5
    • 18th Mar 17, 2:14 PM
    Evidence can be in the form of a diary or log of how you, or others, support your son in his daily life.

    Tom
    • acooper95
    • By acooper95 18th Mar 17, 2:18 PM
    • 33 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    acooper95
    • #6
    • 18th Mar 17, 2:18 PM
    • #6
    • 18th Mar 17, 2:18 PM
    This is fairly standard practice. The assessor will make a judgement call based on a number of factors.

    If you truly believe the award is incorrect and you have medical evidence relevant to where your son fits the descriptors, then you should encourage him to appeal.

    But as you say, there is a chance your son could lose all or part of the award. Also the process is not exactly stress free.

    Tom
    Originally posted by Tommo1980
    If I'm being totally honest, the process up to this has been dreadful and stressful for both.

    We applied for this assuming as per everyone else he'd be refused. But given accepted first time, I may just talk to him and explain take what been offered.
    • acooper95
    • By acooper95 18th Mar 17, 2:27 PM
    • 33 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    acooper95
    • #7
    • 18th Mar 17, 2:27 PM
    • #7
    • 18th Mar 17, 2:27 PM
    Another question, will this award effect his ESA and housing benefit?
    • Alice Holt
    • By Alice Holt 18th Mar 17, 2:52 PM
    • 1,000 Posts
    • 1,070 Thanks
    Alice Holt
    • #8
    • 18th Mar 17, 2:52 PM
    • #8
    • 18th Mar 17, 2:52 PM
    Another question, will this award effect his ESA and housing benefit?
    Originally posted by acooper95
    If your son lives alone and receives income-based ESA he may be eligible for disability premium(s) which will increase his current ESA award.
    http://www.entitledto.co.uk/help/disability-premiums-in-benefits

    If he doesn't lives on his own, it may be possible for someone to claim carers allowance for looking after him.
    https://www.turn2us.org.uk/Benefit-guides/Carer-s-Allowance/What-is-Carer-s-Allowance

    His HB may increase - do tell his local council of this change in his circumstances.
    https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/sick-or-disabled-people-and-carers/pip/before-claiming/extra-help-pip-entitles-you-to/

    I would suggest you both visit your local CAB for a benefits check, and for a chat about the pros and cons of challenging the PIP decision.
    https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/about-us/how-we-provide-advice/advice/

    Here is some info on appealing the decision:
    https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/sick-or-disabled-people-and-carers/pip/appeals/mandatory-reconsideration/
    http://www.advicenow.org.uk/guides/how-win-pip-appeal
    http://www.benefitsandwork.co.uk/personal-independence-payment-pip/pip-appeals

    Info on PIP points system and how there are interpreted:
    http://www.benefitsandwork.co.uk/personal-independence-payment-pip/pip-points-system
    https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/547146/pip-assessment-guide.pdf pages 97-135.

    From your OP it could be that:

    DL -
    an additional point for managing medications
    3b. Needs any one or more of the following –
    (i) to use an aid or appliance to be able to manage medication;
    (ii) supervision, prompting or assistance to be able to manage medication.
    (iii) supervision, prompting or assistance to be able to monitor a health condition. 1 point.

    two additional points for managing budgeting decisions
    10b. Needs prompting or assistance to be able to make complex budgeting decisions. 2 points.

    two additional points for social engagement
    9b. Needs prompting to be able to engage with other people. 2 points.

    For mobility:
    four additional points for
    1b. Needs prompting to be able to undertake any journey to avoid overwhelming psychological distress to the claimant. 4 points.

    Could you get persuasive evidence to argue this case at tribunal?
    Would your son's GP / CPN provide written supporting evidence around this additional descriptors?
    Would you son be able to cope with an appeal?
    Could you get help from a CAB caseworker with any appeal?

    His existing award will continue to be paid if he does decide to appeal.
    On MR / appeal the whole of the award will be looked at again (so it could stay the same / go up / go down).
    Last edited by Alice Holt; 18-03-2017 at 3:16 PM.
    • acooper95
    • By acooper95 18th Mar 17, 3:25 PM
    • 33 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    acooper95
    • #9
    • 18th Mar 17, 3:25 PM
    • #9
    • 18th Mar 17, 3:25 PM
    Thank you so much for your detailed reply.

    I will contact ESA and Council on Monday and inform them of his award for PIP and ask if he will get any top ups etc. Would all mean so much
    • _CC_
    • By _CC_ 18th Mar 17, 3:37 PM
    • 231 Posts
    • 192 Thanks
    _CC_
    Mobility - Going Out
    We stated that he is unable to follow the route of a familiar or unfamiliar journey without another person. Whenever he does need to go out, e.g food or specialist appointments, I literally have to force him into the car to go. Whilst we shop for food, he will stay in the car. He cannot travel on public transport alone and he is never in public without me. Before we travel, I have to confirm with him the route of journey on Google Maps; this was then noted down that he likes to look at Google Maps; what a load of rubbish. It 's not a familiar route, he will panic, get anxious and refuse to go. He was awarded 0 points and it states "You are able to plan and follow a simple journey unaided"

    He was awarded 10 points for moving around and 0 for going out.

    Very disappointed as the points missing would of got him the higher rate on both.
    Originally posted by acooper95
    The above is an understandable misinterpretation of the descriptors for going out.

    The following familiar and unfamiliar journey descriptors are based on the claimants cognitive ability to follow the journey or use public transport. For these to apply the claimant would be expected to have some form of cognitive impairment such as learning difficulties, autism etc. Not being able to follow these journeys because of distress from anxiety is not covered and the descriptors are changing soon to clarify this.

    You could however possibly argue he should be award 4 points for needing prompting to undertake a journey which would take the total to 14. The corresponding notes do state that this needs to be the case on the majority of days and the symptoms so severe that the person is unable to function, such as those with dementia, agoraphobia or generalised anxiety disorder.
    • antrobus
    • By antrobus 18th Mar 17, 4:13 PM
    • 14,661 Posts
    • 20,782 Thanks
    antrobus
    .... Not being able to follow these journeys because of distress from anxiety is not covered and the descriptors are changing soon to clarify this....
    Originally posted by _CC_
    They came into force on the 16th March. I think.
    • Muttleythefrog
    • By Muttleythefrog 18th Mar 17, 5:05 PM
    • 9,670 Posts
    • 17,806 Thanks
    Muttleythefrog
    I think you've received some good advice above except obviously from the resident cigar smoker... the allegations silly and the advice plain wrong (so I have taken the rare step of reporting a post)... for starters in order for someone to be considered able to perform a task they must be able to do so safely, reliably, repeatedly and in a reasonable time period. I too was pretty angered by the falsities in award and did go for reconsideration that put at risk a good award. I'd have taken it further had domestic circumstances been different. But let's see. I presume the face to face medical report will almost certainly mirror the decision details and its flaws. Ask DWP for copy of the evidence they used including that assessment report (the PA4 consultation report) if not already done so. If it backs the points awarded then I would say the risks associated with asking for a Mandatory Reconsideration will be low as you'd probably have to argue pretty tragically to get them to lower an award beyond their primary evidence recommendations. I would make a sound argument in each of the activities where it is felt a (higher) scoring descriptor is relevant. Any supporting evidence could be very helpful. There is risk... and if a reconsideration decision re-affirms the original one then appeal could be less predictable in outcome. But for small advancement of points significant benefit could be achieved.. that would be pressing in my mind particularly given there seems obvious avenues to pursue for those extra points. I get the distinct impression you are of similar mind.
    Last edited by Muttleythefrog; 18-03-2017 at 5:14 PM.
    "Do not attribute to conspiracy what can adequately be explained by incompetence" - rogerblack
    • Alice Holt
    • By Alice Holt 18th Mar 17, 5:15 PM
    • 1,000 Posts
    • 1,070 Thanks
    Alice Holt
    And it would also help an appeal if the PIP form detailed the difficulties your son had the with activities / descriptors mentioned in the OP.

    Very unlikely that the DWP would increase the award at MR. Your son would need to appeal to the Tribunal Service
    • CTcelt1988
    • By CTcelt1988 18th Mar 17, 6:25 PM
    • 250 Posts
    • 281 Thanks
    CTcelt1988
    Ignore the troll Saville.
    • Gareth56
    • By Gareth56 18th Mar 17, 6:35 PM
    • 863 Posts
    • 1,113 Thanks
    Gareth56
    Ignore the troll Saville.
    Originally posted by CTcelt1988
    As you can tell by his username it has disturbing tastes.
    • acooper95
    • By acooper95 18th Mar 17, 7:01 PM
    • 33 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    acooper95
    And it would also help an appeal if the PIP form detailed the difficulties your son had the with activities / descriptors mentioned in the OP.

    Very unlikely that the DWP would increase the award at MR. Your son would need to appeal to the Tribunal Service
    Originally posted by Alice Holt
    I remember with his ESA they called up and asked few questions again to get extra points. Is it not a case of calling PIP up and telling them the assessor and case manager have got a few pointers wrong meaning missed out on points? He's upset about it but if it's a long process just to get a few extra points we're not sure we can manage more stress. It's 200 extra a month on higher so it's a lot.
    • acooper95
    • By acooper95 18th Mar 17, 7:09 PM
    • 33 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    acooper95
    If your son lives alone and receives income-based ESA he may be eligible for disability premium(s) which will increase his current ESA award.


    From your OP it could be that:

    DL -
    an additional point for managing medications
    3b. Needs any one or more of the following
    (i) to use an aid or appliance to be able to manage medication;
    (ii) supervision, prompting or assistance to be able to manage medication.
    (iii) supervision, prompting or assistance to be able to monitor a health condition. 1 point.

    two additional points for managing budgeting decisions
    10b. Needs prompting or assistance to be able to make complex budgeting decisions. 2 points.

    two additional points for social engagement
    9b. Needs prompting to be able to engage with other people. 2 points.

    For mobility:
    four additional points for
    1b. Needs prompting to be able to undertake any journey to avoid overwhelming psychological distress to the claimant. 4 points.

    Could you get persuasive evidence to argue this case at tribunal?
    Would your son's GP / CPN provide written supporting evidence around this additional descriptors?
    Would you son be able to cope with an appeal?
    Could you get help from a CAB caseworker with any appeal?

    His existing award will continue to be paid if he does decide to appeal.
    On MR / appeal the whole of the award will be looked at again (so it could stay the same / go up / go down).
    Originally posted by Alice Holt
    How would I go about arguing the extra 4 points for "1b. Needs prompting to be able to undertake any journey to avoid overwhelming psychological distress to the claimant. 4 points"?
    • NeilCr
    • By NeilCr 18th Mar 17, 7:30 PM
    • 798 Posts
    • 816 Thanks
    NeilCr
    There's some useful stuff here

    https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/sick-or-disabled-people-and-carers/pip/help-with-your-pip-claim/fill-in-form/13-going-out/

    While it's about the initial form completion it gives detail on the thinking behind it. May help with the MR

    Otherwise, Alice has given you a lot of information which should be extremely helpful with the MR

    Best of luck
    • acooper95
    • By acooper95 18th Mar 17, 7:35 PM
    • 33 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    acooper95
    I've just read the opening letter again and at the top, it states "Your mandatory reconsideration notice".

    We have not appealed. All we did was apply, send in forms, have assessor over, then awarded.

    Only reason I can think is they originally lost the forms meaning it went over the deadline. Had to send again so perhaps that's the reasoning behind it.

    Does this mean now I will have to take it direct to tribunal as they have annoyingly sent out a MRN without us actually appealing?
    • acooper95
    • By acooper95 18th Mar 17, 7:37 PM
    • 33 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    acooper95
    There's some useful stuff here



    While it's about the initial form completion it gives detail on the thinking behind it. May help with the MR

    Otherwise, Alice has given you a lot of information which should be extremely helpful with the MR

    Best of luck
    Originally posted by NeilCr
    Thank you.
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