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  • FIRST POST
    • ausgirl2016
    • By ausgirl2016 13th Apr 18, 11:02 AM
    • 4Posts
    • 6Thanks
    ausgirl2016
    PIP Renweal Changed..MR Failed.. now tribunal...what can I expect?
    • #1
    • 13th Apr 18, 11:02 AM
    PIP Renweal Changed..MR Failed.. now tribunal...what can I expect? 13th Apr 18 at 11:02 AM
    Hi All

    I have previously been awarded enhanced daily living (12 points) and standard mobility (8 points)
    I got 'renewed' and had an awful assessment with my husband present , I am on double crutches and had disabilities since the age of 11.I have always worked as have government support that helps and a blue badge. None of the descriptors are contradicted by my work

    I wont go into big details but my conditions (medically proven and evidence given ) are:

    Extreme Hypermobilty since the age of 11w
    Removed right wrist and is now fused
    Right foot being fused next year cant weight bear
    Lower spine degrading and arthritis
    ME/CFS (assessment letter was also sent in)
    Chronic pain and chronic regional pain syndrone
    Fybromlygia
    Raynards
    Mild IBS

    I had an updated renewal assessment and explained things had got worse and explained wise, the assessment was awful she didn't listen, she rushed me through saying she didn't have time to look at all my evidence . I then lost a point on daily living so dropped to standard, yet we explained things had got bad and included more evidence, i also had to stop several times on way to the room and on the assessment she said i went back to the waiting room but that was alos a lie as we got sent straight out.I gained two points in mobility but despite proof that i cant walk without severe pain or crutches reliably for more than 20 metres they ticked the next one. despite using crutches and unable to weight bare.

    I requested an MR send a lengthy report in and an additional report from my ME nurse also stating i cant walk more that 20 metres....i wasn't going to appeal, i was pretty upset as there were so many lies and iI have had these conditions from a young age apart from the ME/CFS which was diagnosed a year or so ago after lengthy assessments. They also said because i can drive (i said i can only drive the journey to work everyday which is 3 min away but i was struggling with the car and wanted to look into automatics but financially im not in a position at the moment)...so many vital things were missed out report and she contradicted herself so much she said i had no cognitive issues and yet ME/CFS is a cognitive issue and i get brain fog and replace words with random rubbish a lot which is in my report from the ME clinic but because i do not do it in that assessment the decision maker said i was fine... the assessment was 9.30 in the morning and as my report from the clinic said i struggle in the afternoon more as I am more tired from the day,

    I decided to appeal to tribunal, i have a representative as im not in a great place physically at the moment and its affecting my mental state although i am not pushing mental health grounds.

    I guess my question is, what can i expect from a tribunal, im pretty terrified to be honest.?

    Im not after giving up work, I have always worked, i have cut hours back o 26 a week and will be cutting it back more soon but ive had access to work support and again nothing contradicts the points... my office is right by my car..its ground floor, i use voice activation at work, meetings come to me... my conditions are life long and degenerative but the awards are renewing every two years.

    Any advice appreciated, like I have said i have the representative for the tribunal.
Page 1
    • NeilCr
    • By NeilCr 13th Apr 18, 11:10 AM
    • 2,103 Posts
    • 2,774 Thanks
    NeilCr
    • #2
    • 13th Apr 18, 11:10 AM
    • #2
    • 13th Apr 18, 11:10 AM
    I've been to a few tribunals as a support person. In all honesty they were fine. There were three people on the panel (one a doctor) and someone from the court to take minutes.

    As far as it could be, they were informal. They were behind a table and we sat opposite them. They asked questions about the condition and gave time for replies.

    I, also, found them quite understanding. In one case the person I was with got on the wrong bus and was running pretty late. They gave her a reasonable amount of to get there - which she just did.

    I am sure different people have different experiences. All I can say is that I volunteeer in a CAB office and we have one team who do, occasionally, represent. My partner used to go to quite a lot of tribunals as a rep, too. I haven't heard any horror stories from anyone about the tribunals

    I hope it goes well for you.
    • pmlindyloo
    • By pmlindyloo 13th Apr 18, 11:26 AM
    • 11,756 Posts
    • 13,623 Thanks
    pmlindyloo
    • #3
    • 13th Apr 18, 11:26 AM
    • #3
    • 13th Apr 18, 11:26 AM
    A link for you which gives a good explanation and some useful tips.

    https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/sick-or-disabled-people-and-carers/pip/appeals/your-hearing/
    • White_musk
    • By White_musk 14th Apr 18, 3:37 PM
    • 94 Posts
    • 647 Thanks
    White_musk
    • #4
    • 14th Apr 18, 3:37 PM
    • #4
    • 14th Apr 18, 3:37 PM
    My tribunal was absolutely fine. There was the Judge, a Doctor and a woman who was an expert in care needs. There was also a man there from DWP. The DWP guy and I sat at one side of the table the other three the other side. They actually moved office to accommodate my needs. In turn they all asked questions but I was given plenty of time to answer and explain things in detail. The DWP guy who was young enough to be my son, kept his head down pretty much, asked me a couple of token questions and that was it.

    From no award after 20 years high rate care and mobility DLA to enhanced care and mobility within around 15 minutes. The time in front of the tribunal was quite long but that was because they didn't rush me or make me feel I had to hurry. It's obviously stressful but nowhere near as bad as I thought it would be.

    ETA: Here is the link to my thread I did just after my tribunal. http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5697326
    Last edited by White_musk; 14-04-2018 at 3:58 PM.
    God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, wisdom to know the difference.
    • ausgirl2016
    • By ausgirl2016 14th Apr 18, 3:41 PM
    • 4 Posts
    • 6 Thanks
    ausgirl2016
    • #5
    • 14th Apr 18, 3:41 PM
    • #5
    • 14th Apr 18, 3:41 PM
    thank you all, i am really worried and do keep going from fighting it to giving up because my health is very bad at the moment following major surgery. Appreciate the advice and reviews of experiences thank you x
    • White_musk
    • By White_musk 14th Apr 18, 3:58 PM
    • 94 Posts
    • 647 Thanks
    White_musk
    • #6
    • 14th Apr 18, 3:58 PM
    • #6
    • 14th Apr 18, 3:58 PM
    thank you all, i am really worried and do keep going from fighting it to giving up because my health is very bad at the moment following major surgery. Appreciate the advice and reviews of experiences thank you x
    Originally posted by ausgirl2016
    I'm not going to tell you not to worry because you will anyway but honestly, it's not nearly as bad as you will have made it in your mind. The panel are totally independent and are prepared to give you the time and space you need to put your case. I came out so relieved I broke down, the Judge came out and gave me a hug. They are humans who are there to help you.
    God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, wisdom to know the difference.
    • Alice Holt
    • By Alice Holt 14th Apr 18, 4:57 PM
    • 2,379 Posts
    • 2,760 Thanks
    Alice Holt
    • #7
    • 14th Apr 18, 4:57 PM
    • #7
    • 14th Apr 18, 4:57 PM
    This is a helpful guide on what to expect -
    https://www.advicenow.org.uk/guides/how-win-pip-appeal

    I would echo the other posters.
    The tribunal are there to decide if the DWP decision was right or wrong.
    The key is to weight the evidence in your favour. So the evidence from your ME nurse will be very helpful. As this was submitted with your MR it will be in the evidence bundle you receive from the DWP.

    You can get evidence from family, friends, and work colleagues. A brief letter is sufficient. All evidence will carry more weight if it is linked to the PIP descriptors (.i.e. 20m walking).
    Your verbal evidence at the hearing will be very important - so have notes / examples / a diary with you (see the PIP guide for more on this).

    Remember that if you can't do the activities reliably you should be assessed as not being able to do them. If you take longer than twice as long to do an activity (possible with your ME, Chronic pain and chronic regional pain syndrome, & Fybromlygia) then you should have scored points.

    The PIP assessors guide shows how the descriptors should have been interpreted:
    https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/665635/pip-assessment-guide-part-2-assessment-criteria.pdf

    This is a useful site:
    https://www.benefitsandwork.co.uk/

    Just to emphasis Neil's point. At my CAB, the Benefits Caseworkers get around a 90% success rate at tribunal. Often starting from no points.

    Good luck

    https://www.buzzfeed.com/emilydugan/most-dwp-benefits-cases-which-reach-court-are-based-on-bad?utm_term=.kmWEmVgJo#.jeWa7k9OL
    "Britain's most senior tribunal judge says most of the benefits cases that reach court are based on bad decisions where the Department for Work and Pensions has no case at all........."
    Last edited by Alice Holt; 14-04-2018 at 5:00 PM.
    • Dandytf
    • By Dandytf 14th Apr 18, 6:16 PM
    • 1,436 Posts
    • 426 Thanks
    Dandytf
    • #8
    • 14th Apr 18, 6:16 PM
    • #8
    • 14th Apr 18, 6:16 PM
    This thread is very interesting as I was yesterday awarded 14 daily living points and existing 8 mot ability points since I completed change in condition form a couple of weeks earlier.
    As my latest decision is confirmed after a written assessment -I'm looking forward to increase daily living though slightly disappointed with lower rate mobility -I have posted this via another thread.
    Thought I'd post and comment what the OP isgoing through probably means I'll not bother appealing though the nice lady commented I could within 28ays after my recent award starts.
    Last edited by Dandytf; 14-04-2018 at 8:54 PM.
    sc dmp 2012 13k Jan 2018 8840 paid. 60% approx.
    Mid 2018 Help2save 50 uk pounds per month
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    • LocoLoco
    • By LocoLoco 14th Apr 18, 6:41 PM
    • 233 Posts
    • 320 Thanks
    LocoLoco
    • #9
    • 14th Apr 18, 6:41 PM
    • #9
    • 14th Apr 18, 6:41 PM
    OP, I've been to a number of appeals over the years on my son's behalf and to be honest I find it's the best way to get an honest appraisal of the situation. The panel have always been fair, they've listened to the points I needed to raise and ask further questions to aid their understanding of the situation. I didn't feel they were trying to achieve a certain outcome the way that some other assessments do. It was nerve wracking but I explain when I get there that I'm nervous and they're happy to give you time to answer questions, refer to your notes, have a sip of water and so on. I've won all but one appeal and I knew that one was borderline but thought I'd go for it anyway. As others have said there's no point saying don't worry as we all do but it probably won't be as bad as you think xx
    • ausgirl2016
    • By ausgirl2016 23rd Apr 18, 12:49 PM
    • 4 Posts
    • 6 Thanks
    ausgirl2016
    thank you all, x
    • TOBRUK
    • By TOBRUK 23rd Apr 18, 1:19 PM
    • 2,291 Posts
    • 2,756 Thanks
    TOBRUK
    ausgirl2016, I know this is an extremely stressful and worrying time for you. Others here have hopefully eased your worries about going to tribunal. I know it is scary and you will worry regardless of what anyone tells you.

    I have been to two tribunals in the past (about DLA) and won both. I was extremely nervous both times but that is natural. I was transferred from DLA to PIP last year which fortunately was successful.

    I too have ME, amongst other disabilities and conditions, so I can understand some of the difficulties you face on a daily and hourly basis. This added stress will not help your condition, and I know it will cause exhaustion both mentally and physically.

    As others have stated, the tribunal has a panel (which in itself is scary I know) who ask questions about your claim. They are fair, they will not rush you, and so take your time to answer, and take notes in with you (as with ME, you may have difficulties in thinking straight or remember what you want to say) with the points you disagree with in the report/decision and the way you were treated at your face to face assessment.

    You are allowed to take someone in with you for support even if they don't speak.
    • Vickimichelle
    • By Vickimichelle 2nd May 18, 1:48 AM
    • 1,668 Posts
    • 6,163 Thanks
    Vickimichelle
    You'll find the tribunal panel will take a lot more notice of your evidence so try not to worry (easier said than done I know). I have similar conditions & went from no award to enhanced on both at tribunal based on my evidence (they discounted what the assessor had said as they had no evidence to back it up).
    • Danni
    • By Danni 2nd May 18, 4:35 PM
    • 353 Posts
    • 715 Thanks
    Danni
    I had a tribunal earlier this year, mostly for ME (though I also have other conditions).

    I went from standard daily living, no mobility to enhanced for both. MR stayed the same despite evidence from my treatment team and others.

    The tribunal were really understanding, even offered to do it at my home (I'm mostly bedbound, but can get out in my wheelchair every so often so declined as it was near enough for my husband to push me).

    I spent half an hour answering questions, then waited 15 minutes to get the result. It was worth the payback I got from it. You're allowed to have someone there to support you. Good luck.
    Purple Penguin Power!
    • NeilCr
    • By NeilCr 6th May 18, 6:16 PM
    • 2,103 Posts
    • 2,774 Thanks
    NeilCr
    "I think newcomers to this forum need to bear in mind that this is a public site on which anyone can post. You can't assume information is trustworthy, indeed some posters are known to disrupt, post disinformation, and tell tall stories.

    I would caution newcomers to be wary of any advice supplied that doesn't contain a link to an authoritative site. Such sites include adviceguide, entitled to, turn2us, revenuebenefits.
    Accredited benefit advice is available from local advice agencies such as Citizens Advice.

    Please don't take horror stories about benefit assessments, appeals etc at face value. There are posters on here who whose aim seems to be to alarm, frighten, and generally dissuade OP's from pursuing sensible actions to claim / regain the right benefits.

    Harmful and misleading posters are easily identified by the reaction to their posts
    Last edited by NeilCr; 16-05-2018 at 1:34 PM.
    • Alice Holt
    • By Alice Holt 6th May 18, 10:15 PM
    • 2,379 Posts
    • 2,760 Thanks
    Alice Holt
    "Harmful and misleading posters are easily identified by the reaction to their posts"

    If an appellant was too ill to attend their hearing, the tribunal panel would -
    1) Postpone the hearing and re-arrange for another date, or
    2) Make a decision on the paper evidence.

    They would opt for 2 only if the paper evidence enabled them to allow the appeal.

    It is highly unlikely a tribunal panel would continue the hearing, taking evidence from someone other than the appellant.
    If they did this, their decision would be set aside on appeal to the Upper Tribunal. It is a clear breach of natural justice.

    EDIT: I'm pleased to see that MSE have removed the misleading post that prompted this response (and also NeilCr's reponse).
    Danni's post is spot on. A tribunal panel will seek to put people at ease, and to get to the facts that enable them to make a correct decision that can be justified in law.
    Last edited by Alice Holt; 07-05-2018 at 9:37 AM. Reason: Removal by MES of the misleading post I was responding to.
    Alice Holt Forest situated some 4 miles south of Farnham forms the most northerly gateway to the South Downs National Park.
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