First step taken Yikes!

Ok after much lovely advice I telephone the benefits people and had my initial pip interview at beginning of last week. Still waiting for the dreaded form to fill in. any idea how long it takes? And do you think the fact I've been awarded Ill health retirement from my last and previous job (WOrking for HMRC) which were assessed by ATos and Capita bears any relevance to this claim? My first pension from HMRC was early payment of preserved benefits but my last job they awarded my the higher level of Tier 2 which basically states it would be difficult for me to hold down regular employment?


Jo x

18 Replies

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  • Hi Jo, the firm should be through in about a weeks time, mine was about that. I think the fact you've retired early due to ill health should have a positive bearing towards you being successful with the PIP application.

    I think it helped my case in the fact that I'm at the early stages of applying for ill health retirement from a position in the NHS.

    Please let us know how you get on. 😊


  • Hi Malwimmy27 ditto ive just left my job In NHS too. I'm hoping it will help although I do feel bit guilty claiming it....goes against the grain! If you don't mind me asking have you successfully claimed pip?

    Jo x

  • Hi there

    I am getting enhanced PIP for both care and mobility. I spent lots of time on my form but I'm pretty sure it was all irrelevant except my print out from work showing that over the last 18 month I've been off work more than I was there.

    I asked for a copy of the assessment I attended and what I received is almost a transcript which includes everything I did and that happened as well as what I said. The assessor focussed on my mental health issues not really the fibromyalgia and I'm really quite shocked at the content if I'm honest.

    For example she described me as looking unwell, unkempt, dirty clothes, I had BO, pale, agitated and anxious, was visibly shaking, crying and she ended the assessment early as she was concerned that it was causing me too much distress. I didn't have a physical exam for that reason. Fair enough I hadn't had time to shower as I hardly slept the night before and had to go with my mum in a taxi, then a train, then in a taxi to the assessment centre near me. The Tshirt I was wearing is a vintage guns n roses one from a gig, so I'm guessing the fact that it's about 20 years old makes me look unkempt πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

    The assessors report exactly matches my award!

    If it would be useful to anyone I'm going to scan in my assessment report - if you would like to see it to know what to expect? It's quite intimate and personal but I'm happy for others to read it. Message me your email if interested - it's not scanned in yet but I will very soon.

    I don't feel I was assessed fully or described correctly, however, after being awarded enhanced rate for both I'm not going to ask for a reconsideration asking for the descriptors to be changed. I told the truth and moved around normally, the rest was the opinion of the assessor - I can't argue with her opinion from observing me and asking specific questions to come to that opinion. Yes, I was anxious, crying and in pain as I was due medication by the end of the assessment, but to say I was in so much distress was a bit of an exaggeration to be honest!

    When I read the assessment report I just can't see that she has assessed me, but I think my body language etc told her things about me I suppress, ignore or just deal with in the hope they will go away. It's hard for us to assess ourselves as if we were outside looking in. It's definiately food for though for my upcoming medical appointments.

    I don't see myself as bad with my health of many others on here, so I was shocked to say the least when I found out what I had been awarded and which descriptors my points had come from.

    Good luck with your claim.

    Clare xxx

  • Hey Clare guess what? the first dreaded brown envelope has just arrived. Jeez soo much info it's daunting. Let me know if you manage to scan the form you worries if you can't find it. do you think I could get a prescription for chardonnay from my GP to dull the pain lol!

    Jo x

  • Ooohhhhh yeah, either that or gin!! I could just do with a G&T

    Don't race ahead with the form - write or type things out on paper and keep adding stuff as you remember! Also pain/medication/feelings/activity diaries can help

    I'll email over as soon as I can πŸ‘πŸ»

  • Thanks hun

    Jo x

  • Hi Clarence. Thanks for all your info. All this benefits stuff is absolutely new to me and I appreciate the advice. I would love a peek at anything you think might help me for when I fill in my form Thank you. Yvonne


  • Sorry I did write Clare!

  • Ha ha no worries, I've been called worse πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

  • Hi Clare,

    I'm expecting to get ill-health retirement soon and anticipate that I will have to apply for PIP, I would be grateful if you could send me a copy of your report. I find it difficult to talk about the effects on me of this terrible affliction without crying - I fear I will not get my symptoms etc across properly in an assessment.

  • Hi there

    Of course I will send that over, as PIP iS an "in work" benefit you should apply now. The benefit isn't means tested so you can claim whatever your work circumstances. I am still in full time employment at the moment.

    Please take the time to look through my old post as I have posted a long explanation on how I attacked the form and evidence.

    Also I rehearsed and rehearsed for mine and it bit me in the arse! If you can explain what medication you are taking and how you are affected by fibro in too much detail you may lose points like I did.

    Please message me your email address and I'll get it right over to you. If I had to do it again I'd still submit the same form and evidence but I'd not have taken the time to learn everything over and over to be able to talk through it like I did.

    If you have any questions after reading, just ask

    Clare xxx

  • DOH! - A bit of fibro fog there - my email address is

    Thanks Clare,

    Maggie x

  • Ha ha, no worries! I've sent it but if I were you I'd delete your email post, if you put your email on the Internet you may start getting lots of crappy spam to your inbox xx

  • I lost my job through ill health in Feb. I worked for local government and they said they couldnt redeploy me or change anything about my role to fit my illnesses. I have no pension and just waiting for DWP to see if I have to have assessments for my claim.

  • flossyjoolz, have you claimned ESA? So sorry abut your job. Did you not pay into a pension scheme?

    JO x

  • I have completed the ESA50 form which I sent back in Feb but havent heard anything (I know they got it). It was at the time of Atos changing to Maximus assessment people so dont know what is going on? I came out of the work pension when I first started at the Council as I didnt intend staying in the job for long. I ended up staying there 13 years but never took the pension back up regretfully. I didnt ever think I would be in this position. My husband lost his job through ill health 18 years ago.

  • flossyjoolz, ring esa honey. Something has gone wrong, when I applied for esa they made decision within the month. What a shame about ypur pension and so sorry to Hear about your husbands job. It must be very stressful for you both.

    Jo x

  • I have not been through anything of this nature, but I wanted to genuinely and sincerely wish you all the best of luck with your claim.

    Al my hopes and dreams for you


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