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Tune

DWP. PIPS

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First DWP hone visit for PIPs. Gather 98% are refused on first application and 95% of those reapplying get accepted.

Any tips? Sticking two pencils up my nose and saying "wibble" might prove too obvious.

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Cant provide any tips unfortunately as this happened without me (I had Flu). However, as a general comment - keep all of your medical paperwork, as they (benefits people) can be complete bar-stewards in our experience.

my mum has ongoing heart and other medical issues and I've helped her with loads of this stuff.

Only other tip would be to get your doc onside. We've had detailed letters from the doc which we've appended to applications. This works wonders.

Finally, as a general comment... the length and complexity of some of the applications is ridiculous. Whilst I appreciate they have to weedle out the chancers trying for a free ride, for others with genuine need this is ridiculous.

Good luck Tune, I'm sure it will be fine.

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Any tips? 

Vote Labour.

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Only other tip would be to get your doc onside. We've had detailed letters from the doc which we've appended to applications. This works wonders.

Finally, as a general comment... the length and complexity of some of the applications is ridiculous.

Thanks for that. I gather they've already been in touch with the physicians but will have the papers just in case. I think the one advantage is that the claim goes from the day that you make it (which Citizens' Advice were kind enough to do for me) rather than from the day they pass judgement. 

All of the professionals I've spoken to think that I should get the higher rate of PIP due to the nature of my issues but they also fully expect my application to be refused. Are these people on commission or something?

Jeez I had forgotten it was tomorrow. I had a guy around today to do the front door. Had totally forgotten. Apparently I spoke to him on Sunday - yesterday. Still don't remember! Really useful in a marriage...

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They do seem to have a 'say no the first time and hope you go away' policy. It took me 3 assessments before they conceded that having barely functioning arms and needing to lie down every 2 hours, made it tricky to hold down a job.

They also like to expunge any record of your existence at the slightest opportunity. So I definitely agree, keep all your paperwork, from medical professionals and also from them. 

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Got a friend who is fairly disabled . wobbles a lot !! the nutters stopped her pip . fortunately we have another friend who is  barrister trained and acted as an advocate . I must say i don`t have too much confidence in the process when someone so disabled gets their pip stopped

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If there is any sort of Advice Centre or help group where you live get in touch with them. Unfortunately the CAB is underfunded, underappreciated and too busy in too many places, and Law Centres have mostly disappeared.

And yes, vote Labour.

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My wife had her mobility part stopped May 2018 I believe.  Monday this week we went to the tribunal and she won her case. She used a firm called fightback4justice. Not overly expensive but take a slice of the back payment. Very friendly people who are over worked by pip tribunals.

We went more for the injustice of stopping her money than the money itself. My wage covers everything we need.

Edited by Lee M

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Mrs. P had her PIPs interview a couple of weeks ago. She's going to wait around 11 weeks before a decision is made. The whole thing is a complete farce.

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Cannot believe a nurse friend of mine has just got a job assessing these claims! She must be bonkers !! 

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PP,  I apparently originally applied in MAY.

It took 4 weeks from the visit - to be refused the main payment that I would qualify for. Primarily because it was a "nurse" who had no medical understanding really who marked a simple questionnaire.

So "Can the claimant understand a conversation with other people". Answer "yes" Nil point. They don't ask if you can remember it in any shape or form.

Before you can appeal you have to ask for a mandatory reconsideration which obviously produces the same results.

That takes another ten weeks.

Then you can appeal, provide evidence from healthcare professionals (which they were supposed to garner in the first instance), and almost certainly get the decision reversed.

What a waste of Government resources. The back pay it anyway so it is not as if it is saving them money.

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mike , how can a nurse have no medical understanding ? they spend years getting that qualification and training  surely? 

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They do of course and I've known many over the years. :) 

The issue is that the questions are starkly black and white and they are not given any leeway. 

In the example I gave, she had to put "yes", no problem. The reality is that the question is not fit for purpose. As interviewers, I don't think they are encouraged to consider more than the question requires. I wrote down that I was trying to explain this but all she wanted to confirm was that I did not suffer from Alzheimer's. It was pretty clear that she had no knowledge of or no professional interest in, the impact of other forms of dementia or issues that mimmic it.

To be fair, if I mentioned ALF to you, would you think of it in medical terms or would it bring an old man in the pub to mind?

Here is another example of a question - scored out of 8.

"Can you engage with other people unaided"

You say yes - nil point. The fact that you will repeat yourself regularly and forget the interaction within hours is not taken into account. The Alzheimer's Society is highly critical of the process with good cause.

None of the questions account for the symptoms of dementia which means that all sufferers are faced with maybe a year of applications and appeals. That is assuming that they have the support to remember. It's taken me 3 years to get around to it so it will be 4 by the time of an appeal. That would be quite typical. There are almost a million dementia sufferers in the UK.

I'm lucky. I forgot for 3 years and can wait another. many cannot though and the whole process is both stressful and requires organisational skills that many will not have. Many will have no family to aid them either. That cannot be right.

Edited by Tune

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I'm pretty sure it's deliberate, they do the same with the assessment for what was ESA, now UC. 

Can you walk down the shops? Yes, pass. Can't actually carry anything home from the shops? Too bad.

Simple yes/no questions that let them dismiss complex issues out of hand.

Edited by brystonian
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Super Wammer

I have so far resisted any PIP assesment as I have a DLA judgement that was given for life. All I do is ask whoever they are going to send to assess me to provide their medical qualifications with regard to surgery and nerve damage .

In all cases so far the person they appointed was a general nurse with no specialisation . Given this before they even get to make any assesment I send a written report from my Orthopeadic Surgeon on what has been carried out and the resuts and a similar report from both a neurological specialist and pain specialist . I then send a with this a written question notorised by a Solicitor (costs about £35) asking the simple question can the person they send offer a professional medical opinion that differs from those given .

In every case they tried for a period of three years they had to respond no they were not able to dispute the specialst medical assesments and any change or interview was cancelled. There last contact was over two years ago and they just seem to leave me alone.

I would echo the advice given , engage with the medical professionals that you are being treated by and try and get them to given you written assements that are relevant taken from your notes (so they do not have to write brand new ones) . In most cases if you tell them why you need them I have found most Specialists to be both supportive and helpful and they are your best line of defence against under qualified assesment officers.

While the individuals are not paid any commision for rejecting claims the overall company is and and it happens to be owned by a school friend of David Cameron which probably tells you all you need to know .

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