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My experience of PIP and unlawful behaviour of the DWP

MarkmywordsMarkmywords Member Posts: 421 Pioneering
edited December 2016 in PIP, DLA and AA
Before an administrator gets upset, I have a court order from the Birmingham Courts and Tribunal service which means the title of this post is not an opinion but a legal fact. I am willing to send a copy to an admin. I have been careful not to write anything that is my opinion.

I am severely disabled and have been since my cancer treatment ravaged my body. I now have a chronically degenerative prognosis. Also this year my wife left me and this was mostly due to my being disabled and I am now alone.

I had been receiving PIP at enhanced rate for daily living component (DLC) and standard rate mobility component for two years. The saga went as follows;

  • In Feb '16 I received a routine statement confirming my award.
  • Shortly after I was directed to attend Atos for an assessment.
  • Two weeks later I was informed that my condition did not qualify for the enhanced rate. Also it stated that I did not need any assistance so my DLC would be lowered to standard.
  • I wrote to the DWP asking for a Mandatory Reconsideration.(MR)
  • Three months on no MR had been conducted so I wrote a letter of complaint.
  • One month on no complaints process had been actioned.
  • I then received a phone call from the DWP / PIP department where a woman told me they had reconsidered and decided they were right all along. She kept repeating the words "You can put your hand to your mouth so you do not need any assistance." This went on and on like the chant of a cult member.
  • A written MR arrived with different wording that avoided the "Because we say so" language of the agent who called me. However it was totally illogical and rewrote reality to justify their view.
  • I collected all the information I had sent to the DWP and sent it to the court to appeal.
  • A couple of months later I received a court judgement in my favour "setting aside" all of the DWP's position.

The result of nearly an entire year of stress is that the DWP's assessment was found to be improperly conducted. The DWP had also refused to approach my consultant at the hospital or GP.

The court's finding was that a) I was unarguably entitled to enhanced rate DLC, b) The DWP was ordered to never assess me again as my condition is unrecoverable and c) The judgement is backdated to when they first changed it.

The lessons I learned;

  • Expect anything sent to the DWP to be ignored
  • Expect the DWP to say literally anything to get their own way
  • Expect to be RESISTED
  • Do not accept the contractor's (Atos or whoever else) or DWP assessments without a fight.
  • Keep copies of everything sent and received.
  • Find a way to record any calls with the DWP/PIP Dept.

It only takes one person to submit to an unjust assessment to offset the cost of ten successful appeals.

Is this now unwritten DWP policy? You decide.


  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 211 Pioneering
    The user and all related content has been deleted.
  • MatildaMatilda Member Posts: 2,616 Disability Gamechanger
    Well done, @Markmywords, the courts must have realised long ago that the DWP and Atos, etc are basket cases and that the purpose of PIP 'assessments' is to cut the benefits bill by hook or by crook.  Which is why so many appeals are successful.
  • MarkmywordsMarkmywords Member Posts: 421 Pioneering
    Thank you @mumof3boys and @Matilda. I have to admit I wasn't confident of winning even though I was in the right.

    If the elected politicians would say "Sorry, the country is broke, everyone must share the belt tightening" then I'd accept that. Doing it like this is shameful.

    What if I hadn't been a resourceful type of person?
  • MatildaMatilda Member Posts: 2,616 Disability Gamechanger
    Indeed, @Markmywords, there are some members on this board who, sadly, haven't had experience of being resourceful. I hope that they all find people who can advice them.

    I am a resourceful person but claiming PIP nevertheless has been a stressful experience.  The Scope site has been a great help.
  • patsypatsy Member Posts: 1 Listener
    I too had to appeal, the first time, it was just basically sent back saying they were right.I re appealed and it was put before a judge, who said  the assessment was so full of discrepancies and blatant falsehoods that he over ruled their decisions. Although you wait a long time, it is worth standing up for your rights. The DWP assessments are a disgrace. Certainly taught me a lesson, I will always record now if I'm ever sent back.
  • MarkmywordsMarkmywords Member Posts: 421 Pioneering
    I agree @charlee78 and the contractors are just doing what the government has told them to do. They do the dirty work until the government needs a scapegoat.

    Disabled people are targetted for cuts as they are a soft target and probably don't vote Tory.

    Why is it that the young and the disabled are targetted when the old get a "triple lock?"

    The pensions are the biggest single item on the budget, bigger even than the NHS.

    I've nothing against pensioners. They deserve looking after too but not by sacrificing the young and the disabled.
  • MatildaMatilda Member Posts: 2,616 Disability Gamechanger
    Many pensioners - I am one - are also disabled.  The government do not have to favour one group of vulnerable people at the expense of another.  They could find money for all vulnerable groups if this were their priority.  Governments always seem to find money for what they want to spend it on - but of course they don't want to spend money on vulnerable groups of any kind.

    And the triple lock amounts to minimal increases in State Pensions for most people - as most State Pensions are so low to start with.
  • nanof6nanof6 Member Posts: 200 Pioneering
    i am a pentioner, i get £150 a week pention, now i get pip which helps towards my dayly liveing like payeing people to dress wash brush my hair, cook my food, shop, the normal things able body people do for free, as for a life , no life, so dont say its ok for pentioners,MARKMYWORDS, im just about copeing with my situation.
  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 211 Pioneering
    The user and all related content has been deleted.
  • emkins40emkins40 Member Posts: 28 Connected
    The judge who adjourned my case recently also pointed out many inconsistencies and has ordered a presenting officer to attend an oral hearing with the full bundle of papers. Do you think this could be a positive sign. At some parts of DWP reports they said I was a man and even gave incorrect medical details ! ;-) 
  • salwil89salwil89 Member Posts: 61 Courageous
    Hi @Markmywords. So glad you finally got onto a winning streak. It is most unpleasant to have to deal with all of this when one is not well so I empathize completely.
  • MarkmywordsMarkmywords Member Posts: 421 Pioneering
    Thanks @salwil89. It's a pity the law doesn't allow for some form of punishment of the DWP but of course the Government wouldn't allow that. The DWP is just doing what it is told but in my book such behaviour is as corrupt as a banana republic.

    If someone is going to ignore evidence and rewrite facts that might go before a court then they are idiots. Some of the statements made by the DWP are no better than a five year old might come up with.

    Once someone does one stupid thing then their whole case is discredited. I think @emkins40 above has a good chance given the doubt the court is showing. There are never any certainties though.
  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 211 Pioneering
    The user and all related content has been deleted.
  • salwil89salwil89 Member Posts: 61 Courageous
  • emkins40emkins40 Member Posts: 28 Connected
    @Markmywords I really really really hope you are right! When I see other people's experiences on here I feel as if I should feel grateful for what I have. It is a big risk just to gain an extra £26 per week but that additional 3 hours of a carer will help me so much. If I think at any point it's no going my way I will be terminating my appeal but st the moment it looks ok
  • salwil89salwil89 Member Posts: 61 Courageous
    @Markmywords Gratitude travels far. :smile:
  • rhino1rhino1 Member Posts: 32 Courageous
    Wow the comments on pensioners triple lock pensions  was a bit controversial. I do understand where you are coming from with this but I do have to point out many have paid into the system throughout their working life. I object more to the people thinking that its as if we are being given something for nothing and not seeing the difference when freeloaders come to into this country and receive the healthcare and benefits that we have paid into for 50 years, how can that be right. 

  • rhino1rhino1 Member Posts: 32 Courageous
    Sorry I've posted in the wrong category 
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