Headway
5,724 members8,089 posts

How rude

I rang up the PIP people and asked what was happening about my PIP as the tribunal was postponed and ive not yet had a date.

The woman on the other end of the phone was very short tempered and told me (no shouted) that a letter should have said when it was from.

I lost it and told her not to speak to me like that as ive had a brain injury

13 Replies
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Can relate. Very easy to take out frustration on call centre folk. Confession that I have also had short tempered conversations with complete strangers just because I was having a bad day. Tomorrow is another day. Get some rest. And try again tomorrow to resolve the issue.

Best.

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It wasnt a call centre

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HM Courts & Tribunals Service (HMTS) deal with the administration of Tribunal hearings, so if the hearing itself was postponed it's the Tribunal Service who will relist the appeal hearing. In my experience HMTS are always very helpful and polite.

You can find your local service via this Govt site:

courttribunalfinder.service...

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Hope you get this sorted out and get PIP in place soon. Ive just got it but think I will need to appeal as not getting much at all. Part of me thinks just leave it as no real eenrgy for a fight but I know that the extra money will help atm (especially if have to keep seeing private consultants while waiting forever on the NHS).

Good luck with tribunal. Have you got some support, like from CAB?

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I got my ESA back and it was backdated but it looks to me like they won’t backdate the PIP money as it was last May. There was supposed to be a tribunal in November but the courts cancelled it and no other date has been decided yet.

I realise now this must be a ploy to save even more money

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Thats one problem I have too. They havent backdated PIP to the time I asked for the application form (which I think they are meant to). Thye will do anything to save money for sure. Evene when they know someone is entitled to it and needs it and isnt well placed to fight for it.

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The cynical side of me thinks that the 'no energy for a fight' is part of the process for PIP, charlieab

My first application was December 2015, I was 'assessed' in February 2016, declined in March 2016, and, although I did go to Mandatory Reconsideration at that point, I also had 'no fight left in me' to take it to Tribunal at that stage. (Life got in the way, separated from the husband, bit more brain surgery, major changes at work...)

I had more deficits after the 2016 surgery, and, because I was still in idiot-denial stage, I tried to 'wait it out', and hoped I'd recover to something approaching normality. That didn't really work out according to plan, things got a bit messy, and I had to give up my job. I re-applied for PIP in March 2017, I think the assessment was either June, or July, again, declined. I wrote for the MR, which was zero-point declined. I know I'm not capable of everything I was before, not safely, so I requested a Tribunal. The Tribunal 'pack' arrived in November, and I've heard nothing since then, I'm in no-date limbo.

I have run out of 'my' money, and I'm subsisting on Universal Credit, which isn't pretty, next month's shopping actually IS mostly-beans. (The Universal Credit diet-plan! Accidental veganism for all!) There will be people all over the UK thinking 'Sod this for a game of soldiers.', and giving up on the PIP process, because it's so convoluted and long-winded to get through. I know that the master-plan was to make the process more rigorous and less vulnerable to abuse, but that's what sticks in my throat about it. If I could 'just' get another job, I'd already have done it, rather than face the indignity of dragging myself down to the Job Centre, and patiently reminding my work-coach (again) that my left hand doesn't work, and my lucidity declines over the course of the day, so 'a little bar job' isn't really suitable.

If I did 'just' accept any/all work, I'd be conscious that I could be inadvertently placing myself or others at risk of harm if I have a cognitive lapse. As a human being with fairly strict morals on some things, I'm not willing to do that. I know that being out of work is taking a toll on my mental health, but I NEED the PIP-award, so I can work part-time, using my 'functional' hours productively.

That was a long ramble, wasn't it? I'll keep fighting, we all need to.

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spidey too right i cant take s**t like that either, i wouldve have also asked to speak to her manager and have her repramanded and then sent in a letter of complaint, all call are recorded so she wouldnt have had a leg to stand on.

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Yep I have heard this happen to others. It is horrible no being able to have a face to face conversation. Try again though, there are some helpful staff. Some local Headways have benefit help advisers, I don't know if you do

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Hi Spideyman,

Is it possible for someone else to phone for you, as my speech and thoughts gets mixed up due to TBI /stroke, my husband does most of the talking for me. You might have to give the PIP permission for somebody else to speak for you but it does help.

If you do NOT have a family/friend to speak for you, then before you make a call try to relax and have a piece of paper with words saying CARM RELAX and smile it sounds rather simple but it does work. Take Care Liz x

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Thanks Liz x

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It's terrible how pip appeals try to make you feel like fakes , none of us asked for brain injury

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It's a nightmare, spideyman I'm still waiting for a date for my Tribunal, I had the 'pack of papers' in November, and still no date. I've deliberately limited my contact with PIP/ATOS (It's ATOS in my area, there's another company as well, but 'mine' is ATOS.) because I can be snappy as well when people clearly aren't listening/understanding what I'm saying, I type more than I talk, so I can 'please refer to my previous', instead of shouting "I already told you that, twice!"

The phone-drones aren't medically trained, and, depending on which bit of the tangled mess you're talking to, they could have been working to a script, or been time-targeted on calls. (Good grief, I'm excusing them, it's only because I've worked in contact centres myself. I'd clean toilets before I worked for PIP, though, it's s disgusting system.)

The system is all over the place, phone for this, write for that, I shudder to think how much it actually costs for all the appeals and tribunals that wouldn't have been needed if the assessments were more honest in the first place. The 300+ pages of 'evidence' that DWP/ATOS have submitted to Tribunal (Most of which is photocopies of evidence *I* sent them...) is peppered with ridiculous phrases like 'as she can X, it is reasonable to assume she could Y'. Mate, I might be able to run for a bus, that doesn't mean I could run a marathon. My assessor has recorded results of tests she didn't do, and 'forgotten' to record which tests I verbally told her I was having difficulty with. (No I didn't have a witness with me, yes, I'm a numpty.)

The systems and processes are an absolute joke, but they're not funny at all, they're making some of us very, very ill indeed with the stress and pressure they cause. That's all the more disgusting, because we're applying BECAUSE we're already ill.

(Bit of a sly-side-thought here, if I do end up having to phone them, I might tell them I need to record the call due to functional memory issues? They might behave better if they know they're ultimately accountable?)

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