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Registered blind = no PIP

I was registered severely sight impaired (blind) 31/10/17, support nurse said I was going to be registered sight impaired (partially sighted), which would almost get me some PIP, when I pointed out my actual registration she was sure I'd get something, I've since applied, been for a medical and today the results arrived: care no points which I expected, mobility no points which did surprise me as I've lived with CFS for over 20 yrs, which has played up recently, although since Access to Work granted me funding for travel to/from work it's become a lot easier, I'm also wondering whether or not to contact support nurse and say, yes you're probably right that being sight impaired will get you PIP as severely doesn't, I was at the hospital a couple of weeks before the medical and the letter arrived in time for me to take it to the medical, it gives a visual acuity for the right eye, left eye not mentioned, so not even that helped

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I had to reply to you...I am registered blind and just recently awarded PIP care at the enhanced rate.

Prior to this I was on DLA middle rate care and higher rate for mobility....awarded in 1997.

What sort of supporting evidence did you sen in with your application form? And what did you say in the application form answers?

Pat x

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Hello, sadly many people who are sight impaired don't get disability payments. A case was taken to the higher court in the days of DLA and won for mobility. However I know of people who still don't get it or people who are deaf. Having more than one disability/ illness often helps . Need to emphasise the difficulties it causes in daily living, and the health and safety hazards of sight impairment and in your case appeal any refusal. You are entitled at least to lower rates both for mobility & care. Care can still be obtained on the old cooking rule, i.e you need help to cook a main meal from scratch , you can't see being the reason. Mobility requires supervision or someone with you even if that's a dog. I would suggest you seek help and ask for a reveiw of the decision if it is a refusal . Get someone to check the details for you in the disability hand book last years was page 38. But the heading is Daily Living Activities.Oh I forgot it only has to be reasonable to expect you would need help, you don't actually have to have help at hand.Hope this helps you.

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I had a call from DWP yesterday about another matter and while on the phone I asked how they worked out he points for my own award.

They allowed me half points..4...for cooking and preparing a meal when blind?

Decision maker said it was for safety reasons only. She also told me that as I could hold a spoon and stir a pan I was physically capable. Incredulous the fact I can't see what to put in pan or turn on hob etc didn't count. The award like many others is for those with cognitive problems.

It was a real eye opener speaking with a DM and she certainly showed no compassion whatsoever. Very brusque and by the book.

Oh and I got all my advice from RNIB too....think they need to sharpen up their advice.

x

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Good morning, you got the same impression as me that in sight cases it is often about safety nothing else. Oh one other criteria for cooking is about being able to follow written instructions for cooking which blind can't see a recipe or menu. How can you collect ingredients if you cannot see the labels ??? This meal is not supposed to be a ready meal from the freezer into the microwave to cook. Your DM is not quite right either. However you were granted it , it took me several tries and to spite multi factural disability I only get low rate care based on not being able to prepare a meal without help. My mobility award took three tries and an appeal threat to get, I can walk but it worsens my symptoms, the fact I chose not to use a wheelchair is about my choice not necessarily how others would do it. Failure to get the award I found from experience is often due to peoples misinterpretation of the rules. Pip rules are not vastly different to the old DLA rules, but those who administer often blame the change in rules. Sight impairment impedes your ability to walk normally, not the distance you can walk. Anyway we must keep challenging the decision makers if they get it wrong, and inform other bodies if they have their facts muddled. Rules are constantly changing as you know. Have a good day xx

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Sorry for delay Katie...

Where did you find out about reading ingredients? Can't find it for PIP.

They didn't allow anything for communications either. Yes i can talk for the world but have no idea who I am talking to or if they have wandered off! I have found mmyself at auctions bidding against myself!!

People are so grateful to get any points that they often don't challenge for fear of losing those. Too many get standard rate when really they need the enhanced.

So now we know...sight loss isn't really a disability...just a blip.

x

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Hi Pat, You need to read the requirements to make a main meal, OOPs get someone to read the regulation for you.:) I am entitled to higher care but a bird in the hand is worth two in a bush. I often wonder how people cope on line as I have a visual impairment but can still see or enlarge on computer. There are software to talk in text if your hands don't work. The only other thing is the expensive robotic things that do it all for you if you can afford one. Agreed apparently for the new PIP sight is not classed as an impairment until someone challenges it like they did with DLA and take it to a court for decision. Many do not wish to do this due to the long time it takes and the stress.

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Hi Jennymary,

I'm sorry that you have been treated so badly by the DWP! Unfortunately your story is an all too familiar one with many people struggling with disabilities or long-term conditions.

I am no expert, but I do have experience with a husband who has Parkinson's disease, and when his D L A (Disability Living Allowance) was reassessed to be transferred to P I P he lost his entitlement was downgraded and they took away his mobility component and reduced his care component. But we immediately asked for Mandatory Reconsideration, and though this was unsuccessful, we then asked for and went to the next level a Court Tribunal, and we successfully won our case, and got his mobility reinstated and care component increased.

We learned from previous experience, that the DWP almost always fails people at the first application stage, and that despite the hassle and stress, it is worth pursuing right up to Tribunal if necessary. It would help for you to speak to an independent benefits advisor, who could help you apply for Mandatory reconsideration etc., and provide a complete, and updated documented medical history of your conditions.

Also, if you haven't already done so, start to keep a detailed daily diary of how your visual impairment and other disabilities effects your daily living e.g. how long it takes to do things, how safe you are, how much help you needs, how you need to rest, are you safe getting about outdoors, travelling for leisure or work, include everything and anything that demonstrates actual evidence of the limitations of your particular needs. You are not then relying on anecdotal but primary documented evidence that you can share with your medical team, the DWP, etc.

The Independent Living Centres have free impartial benefit advisors, search on Google for your local one. Also, I'm going to include a well-known impartial and independent organisation called Benefits and Work who have helped many people to successfully win the benefits appeals. Some of their information is free, but some is available for a small fee for an annual subscription, they have obtained a lot of information under the Freedom of Information Act (F O I) and could help you word your appeals more accurately. Also, although you feel the RNIB has not been much help they do have information to help with making an appeal and a helpline number. The Citizens Advice Bureau could be another source of help with benefits appeal too.

Here's more information to help with an appeal:

RNIB: Helpline Tel: 0303 123 9999 or email helpline@rnib.org.uk.

rnib.org.uk/information-eve...

Citizens Advice Bureau: citizensadvice.org.uk/benef...

benefitsandwork.co.uk/about-us

benefitsandwork.co.uk/

I encourage you not to give up, but to fight for your rights to the support you obviously need. Nil Desperandum!

Take care and best wishes,

MAS Nurse

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I used RNIB advice sheets for my own PIP application.

Unfortunately I was awarded nil points with these guidance..

I spoke with a decision maker yesterday about another matter but managed to ask why I received no points in certain sections. (I am only registered severely blind with no other conditions.)

Her answer?

Those questions only applied to people with cognitive problems and it was quite clear that, while I am blind, I have cognitive function!!

I was flabbergasted.

However I did get awarded enough points in other sections to gain enhanced rate.

So...all the help and advice in the world appears to make little difference to their decisions.

x

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