claiming PIP

Hi There....

I have been recently diagnosed with RA ...

My question is can I claim PIP payments even though my condition is not unbearable all the time ... only when I have a flare up... Although I generally ache and feel tired all of the time! How can I prove I have problems with daily tasks if when I go for an assessment I am having a good day and not a Flare Up?

Please help!

10 Replies

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  • Hi

    I think you may have also emailed Helpline about this. I've sent you a response with some links which I hope will be helpful.

    Generally with benefits they are looking at how you are 50% of the time. You can give them an idea of how often the good and bad days are on the form, but it's looking at the average, so probably not the days when you have a bad flare, but not the really good days either. Hopefully the PIP booklet will give you a good idea of the types of questions they ask on the form, which might help you to get an idea of whether or not you are eligible.

    Kind regards

    Victoria

    (NRAS Helpline)

  • Thank you Victoria

  • How long is a piece of string? no one will really know until you go for a medical and speak to them because unfortunately there is guarantee with any illness that qualify for the PIP but I wish you well in your fight.

    philip

  • Thanks Philip

  • Hiya gailboddy & welcome. It may help you to decide if you read this link from CAB adviceguide.org.uk/england/... You'll see this is relevant to England but there's a drop down box if you're in another part of the UK, I'm unsure if it differs much but of course you need the correct info. I'm suggesting having a look at this specifically in case you've been diagnosed less than 3 months. If this is the case it may be prudent to delay phoning for an application form or mention this to whoever you speak to if you decide to claim, though of course you will certainly qualify by the time you'll receive your date for assessment.

    Hope this helps .

  • Thanks very much for your help.... this is all very new to me and it seems very complicated ... I will speak to my Registrar and GP.

    Gail x

  • Good idea Gail. If you can gather as much information from them regarding your condition that will support your claim. Good luck when you apply & for your assessment when it comes. It is quite complicated you're right there but If you need any more help there are many here who have gone through the process so ask away. There can be quite a wait but the more prepared you are the better. :)

  • You say that you've been quite newly diagnosed, but don't say whether you've got to a reasonably clear idea of how well controlled you'll be able to get? When I was first diagnosed the disease became very active, so I was really struggling with everything - walking, washing etc etc. Getting out of bed sometimes took me most of the day. So I was thinking about disability allowances, and installing living aids and so on.

    However, I did finally find a drug mix that worked well for me, and I'm basically fine now. So I neither need or want PIP - and I imagine if I asked my doc she would laugh as I'm (thankfully) far too well to qualify! So just to say that if it is still early days for you, then don't give up hope that you'll be able to get to something more like you were and not need to bother with claiming this either.

  • Regarding PIP what I will say is if they turn you down don't just accept it appeal against it! Obviously, I don't know how old you are and so it might not be relevant to you. When I was diagnosed it was DLA then and I applied for it. I was 59 at that time and I am sure I had had it for quite a while, but didn't get a diagnosis for ages. The rheumatologist said it was osteoarthritis for quite a while. When the inspector came he asked me loads of questions as they do e.g. could I cook a meal from fresh etc. Also, he asked me to turn my head, which I couldn't towards the left. I said there was no way I could cook a meal from fresh as I couldn't peel veg and lifting hot heavy pans was dangerous. I had special taps and a cooker with arthritis help type controls, plus a gadget for opening bottles and tins. However, when the report came through they turned me down and he had said I could do the meal, no problems with my neck etc. In fact more or less all that I told him was completely different to what I said on the day. Loads of people advised me to appeal, but my pride wouldn't let me as I felt hurt that he obviously thought I wasn't being truthful. It really upset me and bothered me for a long time. Then, of course I reached 60 and wasn't eligible. I am now 66 and can no longer walk more than a few steps, other things besides the RA the reason, one of them being EM which RA can cause. I am too old to get motability and so I have had to purchase my car myself, with a hoist fitted so that I can get my wheelchair in the car. Various people keep telling me that I should be able to get mobility allowance but I can't due to my age. They tell me that they know loads of people over 60 who get it, but they are the ones that got DLA prior to being 60 as then you do get it no matter what age you are. I really wish I had taken notice of people and appealed as I was told that quite often you get turned down first time but get it after appealing. I haven't got my car yet, so am stuck in relying on other people to take me places. I had trouble with that as well. I went and saw the motability expert to order the car. He didn't mention that I was eligible for VAT relief and I forgot at the time. However, on getting home I contacted him about it and he hadn't a clue that I was eligible to not pay the VAT. I ordered the car on 4th February and still haven't got it! It's been registered as me as the keeper since 25th February. The day I ordered it I took along proof of my RA and he said he had copied it. However, it turned out that he only copied the front page and so I had to send him it all again. Then he made a mess of the DVLA as I was having my personal number plate put on the new car. I then heard nothing for ages and eventually I kept emailing him as he was always "with a customer" but never rang me back when I phoned. I couldn't believe it when last week he told me that he needed all my proof again as the VAT relief sales team said he hadn't given them enough information. So he had to come and collect it again and that's the third time he has had it. He now tells me that he is chasing the VAT relief sales team and the hoist is supposed to be fitted this week, but I am not holding my breath as to getting it this week. I know there is a lot to take it, but my reason for saying make sure that the report is exactly how it should be and if you are turned down appeal or you might regret it later. Of course, if you are well below the age of being allowed PIP then it isn't quite as important. Apart from CAB the RA association have quite a lot of information on claiming things like PIP.

  • Hi and welcome Gailboddy

    I have had RA now for 5 Years and I class myself as still being relatively young at 44 haha. As the years have gone by my RA has become worse and more problematic I struggle with the household chores cooking, taking bottle tops off etc and sometimes dressing and washing when having a flare which of late is more often than not.

    I applied for PIP, went for the assessment which was very lengthy with lots of questions on how well I can do everyday tasks such as cooking a meal, washing dressing myself and walking etc, but what the assessor asked after every question was "how often I needed the help" was it some of the time or all of the time", cut a long story short because the tasks I needed help with was only "some of time" I was refused PIP because they felt the help I needed was not all of or more of the time.

    This I felt extremely unfair as we all know when having a flare up I need help all of the time, but this wasn't everyday every week etc. I was only applying for the care part of PIP not the mobility element because thankfully I can still walk and get about without a struggle. I did not appeal but will apply again if my condition becomes worse than it currently is.

    My advice to you is to defiantly apply tell the assessor your struggles, be honest and tell them how this terrible disease effects your everyday life. You have nothing to lose at the end of the day but may gain something.

    Good Luck 😀

    Caroline xx

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