PIP decision

Sorry in advance for this post which is sure to be a bit long and no any. I had my letter today, 3 weeks after my assessment and I have been awarded standard rate for both daily care and mobility until 2026 but I will lose my motability car. I had made up my mind that whatever the decision, I would accept it as objective as my assessor and assessment were much less stressful than I anticipated. Having read the report however, I feel that I should appeal. I lost points for the strangest things such as 'you looked clean and tidy', 'you are of average build' and although you say you suffer from fatigue, you didn't look tired'. My personal favourite was 'although you say that you have friends and a helpful neighbour, you attended the assessment on your own'. I'm going to appeal this decision and even if they find against me, they better be certain to give me big, grown up reasons for doing so.

Since having the assessment the cardiologist who my GP wrote to regarding advice

about my heart attack and mitral valve problems has decided he needs to see me in clinic. As this is a change in my condition, does anybody know if I will have to start the application process again.

Sorry again for the length of this,

Merry Christmas to you all and best wishes for a healthier New Year

22 Replies

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  • If it helps at all I don't score points for preparing a meal or for getting in and out of a bath because I can drive a manual car - I read it and was "huh?" while scratching my head. I also wear reading glasses that I have no idea where he got that from as it's news to me lol

    Mine also commented that I looked well *facepalm* - the only thing that would have shown his lack of understanding more would be if he'd said I had nice rosy cheeks! Lolololol. I came to the conclusion you have to see the funny side or you'd cry :)

    Good luck with the appeal - get some advice filling in the forms too as it helps it be less emotive in the response :)

  • Thanks Mifford.

    I've put a call in to the Council lady who helped me fill my forms in. A tip to anyone going for their assessment. - try not to look clean and tidy! I would recommend the Worzel Gummidge look.

    Did you appeal?

  • I have - that's when I found out their main reasoning for everything was to do with my ability to drive a car. They even added a paragraph in bold at the end stating that if I was as bad as claimed it would be dangerous for me to drive and dvla should have been informed by me or my doctor which felt incredibly aggressive - luckily I'm not easily intimidated. Mainly because I'm not worried about the outcome - if they agree with the assessment at tribunal than so be it but at least then I'll have been properly assessed (hopefully) and considered and that's all i'm asking for.

    I'm thinking of going along with the Bob Cratchett look in a festive style 😄😄

  • I would appeal if I were you/ Like you I was not happy with some of the mundane comments, i.e. this lady is of portly build. she was twice my size!!. Gather all the new information you can , get help and appeal. Good luck

  • The remarks they make are so insensitive. I took my son who 16 and autistic. I take him to school and pick him uo as he has a limited sense of danger and is sensitive to noise and light . He suffers with anxiety and when he has a melt down he spins around and this can be anywhere. The lady who assessed him said my son look like he can cope to travel alone and he looked smart and was able to take off his coat without help.... it does beggar belief that people who do not take the time to understand medical conditions and the significant impact on one's life are making these decisions. The report is also littered with grammar errors. I am waiting for the decision and will appeal irrespective. The report is not a true reflection of my son and rhe daily challenges he encounter and ask to be assessed by someone who has some knowledge of his condition

  • Hi Tannie, thanks for replying. I have put on lots of weight since I became ill 3 years ago and am seriously overweight. I was described in the report as 'of average build'. It was very flattering but absolutely not true.

  • . Owing to my not being able to walk properly or for any distance I put 3 st. on. I have lost a stone, but still not like myself like this. I taught Dancing, Did gymnastics, cycled, now can do none of these things . These assessors do not look at full picture

  • Likewise - I used to be in the gym 5 days a week and rock climb etc - he commented in his report that my calves were big with no loss of muscle. In comparison to what they used to be there is! This guy didn't even mention it to me for me to be able to fill him in on the background unfortunately. The trouble is by sending out assessors with the wrong expertise for the claimant it's actually failing everyone - the guy who assessed me never got a complete picture of how I was affected day to day. My first assessment was with an OT who by chance had a husband with lupus. She was very chatty and found out so much more info about me. She got a much better overall picture to be able to get my assessment at the right level. There were bits I could have tried pushing to get higher points as I was only 1 point below but her summing up at the end was pretty spot on and I was happy she'd pretty much got it right overall. By following the tick box route theye miss that ability to be able to make an overall judgement of the position

  • I went from high rate DLA care and mobility to standard rate for both parts of PIP, awarded for three years. I asked for a mandatory reconsideration and was unsuccessful. I then appealed the decision, but I couldn't attend the tribunal (clashed with an MRI scan). The whole thing was a nightmare! I have flashbacks of the assessment, which was emotionally brutal.

    Only silver lining: Motability let me buy my car at a discounted rate. That will depend on when you got your car and whether details of the introduction of PIP had been published. You'll need to advise Motability of the change of entitlement, but they're very supportive and may give you time if going for a mandatory reconsideration and then an appeal.

    I would encourage you to get support from the person who helped you complete your form, or the Citizens Advice Bureau, see what help they can provide. If you decide to appeal, do include copies of the cardiologist's correspondence, plus any copy test results or O/T or Physio reports. The more proof, the better!

    Depending on the breakdown of points awarded, if you score 8 for the 'moving around' criteria, you will still qualify for a Blue Badge and a free bus pass.

    (I've just been through if all again, over a whole year early; was so stressed and prepared to lose everything, even considered not attending the assessment and giving up. However, had a lovely nurse assessing me, and I heard a couple of days ago: enhanced rate x2 for six years, so there's hope!)

    Best wishes with your efforts.

  • I had to comment on what your incredibly intelligent and observant assessor said! Seriously, you don't look tired???!!!!!! I understand they can't have assessors who know about every condition, but could they not do a tiny bit of research prior to the assessment? Really?!

    I really hope the appeal goes well and second the advice about help with the forms. You need to try not to sound emotional.

    Take care and let us know how you get on. Xxxxx

  • My assessor said I had no swollen joints. At the time both my knees were 3 times size they should be. She had not looked at them and could not see them as I had trousers on! She also said I could move my leg joints, which was untrue, She turned and twisted my joints at which point she said "I will stop now as I can see you are in a lot of pain" yet in the assessment she wrote I did not appear to be in pain! It's a no win situation. I bought a car myself even though I am taking them to tribunal .on Principal as to me she is calling me a liar about the pain I am in, although doctors and consultants agree with me .

  • How can they make all those observations in an hour and over look what the doctor who sees you regularly indicates in their teport.

  • An hour and a half?? My latest assessment was 40 minutes and over half of that was him doing all the mental ability descriptors and testing me on a number of sums ... despite me stating none of those were in dispute and happy with zero points on them and him knowing I work as a tax consultant so working out the change wasn't a problem!!! It takes me longer than the time he took to assess my actual problems than I have to spend filling in my repeat prescriptions lololol

  • The whole process is an insult to individuals whose lives are impacted by illnesses and disabilities. All i could think of diring the assessment is how could this be legal .

  • Thanks to everyone who replied - your support is very much appreciated. My Benefits lady phoned me this morning to tell me that she hasn't been copied into the report. She's going to write to DWP and ask for Mandatory Reconsideration. She told me that she had been very confident that I would get the enhanced rate for both. Interestingly she said 'I was very confident that the assessor would know as little about your illnesses as I do, but I expected that she would do research not just on the individual conditions but how they interact with each other' . Makes sense to me!

  • It is all too subjective. How does fatigue look? Also your mobility car makes you independent to get there alone so they take it away. There is no consistency. I think you should appeal.

  • That does sound unfair lve been there a few yrs ago changing from incapacity to esa I read the benifitandwork.co.uk site and advice was dress down in day wear for house not interview When you look in the mirror on your worst is what you want them to understand Good luck its stressful and awful part of being unwell

  • Oh blimey what silly reasons.hope you get it sorted Maurice

  • They are obviously not trained fully to understand what chronic illness involves , never heard anything so ridiculous as you dont look tired or you clean and tidy

  • She definitely didn't understand fatigue or photo sensitivity. She was an OT.

  • I had loose vest top- over-blouse and trousers on, the two tops were loose and easy to put on, the trousers were bigger size than I take now therefore did not need to use button and zip to put them on, slip-on shoes without socks or pop-socks, as when legs swell these invariably got tight . my hair is long and at this point had just had operation on right hand so husband had to do my hair, well I will say nothing of how it looked! To this assessor reported I was smart in appearance well groomed and dressed : and in her opinion capable of dressing myself. Not taken into account was the fact I had help putting on all of these items including under-garments , Wonder what the report would have been if went in joggers or sack- dress. with hair untidy. I had not slept well for a week and was tired but seemingly did not look so . Beggars belief really .

  • Hi Tannie -the more I think about it the more cross I get. The letter was dated 15/12 and I received it 22/12. I didn't manage to speak to the lady from the Council until late morning on 23/12. She was going on leAve until New Year. She promised she would write and request mandatory reconsideration before she finished work for the day. I really don't know if I covered all the points over the phone.

    The assessor said that I was breathless when I arrived but she didn't mention that my Sjogrens kicked in and I started to choke and dry wretch as my throats a nd mouth completely dried up. She panicked and ran out to get me water. She attributed this to a 'catch in my throat ' even though I explained to her that this was related to my lack of saliva etc.

    So many things annoy me about this but the worse thing is that DWP stereo type people with disability and chronic illness. We're easily recognized - just look for dirty dispelled people

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