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D.L.A. to P.I.P.s from forms, assessment to award letter. To laugh or scream...

MadDukkMadDukk Member Posts: 7 Listener
I'm not usually the one to give in or be easily defeated, I'm the person who most turn to for help with benefit forms/meetings etc.  I didn't even claim disability benefit for my son or myself as early as I could. I'm stubborn & didn't want to be labelled but eventually I had to for both of us. My son's claim changed first & went through without a hitch, even easier if I say so myself. Now February this year it was my turn! So it began, first the telephone conversation, then the atos medical assessment & today the award letter..... OMG  what a total load of 'twaddle & fluff'. Between  atos & the DWP, there seems to have been a MIRACLE  recovery in my health conditions but it must of bypassed  ME! Now the long hard haul begins. Firstly a bit about me


  • wildlifewildlife Member Posts: 1,314 Pioneering
    edited August 2017
    @MadDukk, Hello and welcome to the place where you can let off steam. We know exactly what you are going through. A Mandatory Reconsideration is your next hurdle as well as trying to overcome the feelings of anger and frustration at not being believed. Looks like you had more to say?  
  • JusticeJustice Member Posts: 206 Pioneering
    edited August 2017
    @madDukk, welcome. As Wildlife says next step is the MR. If you do believe that they have written false information about you in your assessment form I would suggest that you send a letter of complaint about that too, to the assessment Company, make sure you send it recorded so that they cannot pretend they didn't receive it.Good luck with it all , and rant as much as you like, we all need that from time to time :-)
  • Skippy1976Skippy1976 Member Posts: 13 Connected
    Hi, sounds all to familiar! For 17 years my sons condition has/won't change. On dwp he had indefinite award of high on both daily/mobility. Pip assessed...now, apparently my son who is 19 has recovered enough to get standard daily and no mobility.
    like you the battle begins
  • MadDukkMadDukk Member Posts: 7 Listener
    Thanks everyone, as I'm now sitting on the bed in my pjamas surrounded by a sea of paperwork with brain fog! I've also just found a letter from DWP awarding me an indefinite award of high care n high mobility but Pip assessed now standard care & no mobility...  It feels like they want to go back to the time when people with disabilities were hidden from society & put in institutions/hospitals. Yet they say that Pip's is designed to help disabled people live more independently  & support those with the greatest need. I depend on my DLA,  without the mobility component I will be trapped in the house with no independence......
  • wildlifewildlife Member Posts: 1,314 Pioneering
    edited August 2017
    @MadDukk have you been sent your assessor's report or are you just talking about the Decision letter? If you've got both and they're both the same you will see how it works. In my experience DWP don't make any decisions about how many points to award they just go by what the assessor suggests so that's mostly where the problem starts. So bearing that in mind a complaint to ATOS is useful if only to start to convince DWP that you don't agree with their findings, that the report contains lies etc. Then you no doubt know you have a month from the date of the decision letter to send in a Mandatory Reconsideration. You can do other things as well. You can extend this date by ringing DWP and asking for more time. I did this and was given another date a month from the phone call. I took the name of the advisor, and recorded the date and time of the call. Then if you write a letter asking for an MR put forward your argument as to why the Decision isn't correct making reference to what actually happens on a day to day basis and to medical evidence if you have it. Tell them you've complained to ATOS if you decide to do this and it helps to let your MP know and tell DWP that as well. I had my MR turned down but I didn't give up. I booked a call back from a Decision Maker and managed to get them to look at everything again for a 3rd time. This resulted in getting higher rate mobility from standard and 2 more points added to Daily Living. I'm happy with this for now but am carrying on with the ATOS complaint. Hope that helps. If not what are your thoughts...
  • MadDukkMadDukk Member Posts: 7 Listener
    Hi wildlife, it's the decision letter from Atos healthcare after an assessment for Pip's with an apparent healthcare professional. If you have a month from the date on the decision letter to ask for a MR, then I've already lost 9 days. The date on decision letter says 29th April 2017 but I didn't receive it until yesterday 8th May 2017! What is the assessors report & do I need this/how do I get a copy of this? A few people have also said to write letter of complaint to Atos as well. So bearing in mind I'm 9 days behind, I've rang hospital consultant for letter of support, got a doctor's appointment to see if they will write supporting letter regarding all my illnesses as hospital  consultant is only for neurology for 1 of my illnesses. Is it a good idea to get a copy of my medical history/ongoing treatments ect? Ring DWP asking for more time also & I have to write everything down because of memory problems anyway. I'm  sitting with an A4 note pad now & I'm sure I'm going to need a file to keep all letters n info...  LOL
  • JusticeJustice Member Posts: 206 Pioneering
    @ MadDukk. You may laugh about the file, but that is exactly what you do need. I went out and bought a shiny new one to keep every bit of information in, including the times of calls, and the names of those I spoke with.Write to DWP but follow it with a call, and tell them you want a full copy of the notes from your assessment, you cannot pull it to bits if you only have the Decision Maker's statement of reason ( I am assuming here that PIP procedure is pretty much the same as for ESA) we have not yet had the " delights" of PIP as yet.
    Read the notes again, and again, anything you don't agree with then highlight it so you can find it again easily.If there are things in it which are blatantly untrue, and you can prove that this is the case, then put that in the letter of complaint. Tell them if you do not receive a response in a timely fashion that you will be getting in touch with ICE, and or your Solicitor( They are not to know if you have a Solicitor or not).
    As others on here have said DO get your MP involved, give them a call, ours helped alot just with keeping on at the DWP day after day.
    That is another thing. I know you are not well, I know you are exhausted and stressed, because these people make you that way, BUT keep on at them over, and over, and over again Make yourself known, and make them realize that you have alot of People helping you with this, and that you expect an honest assessment, and that you expect to be kept informed. Remind them of their Customer Charter, and tell them they are not abiding by it.

    These are just People doing a job, nobody special, remind them that they need to do it properly. Keep us informed we are all here for each other x
  • wildlifewildlife Member Posts: 1,314 Pioneering
    edited May 2017
    OK let's try and sort this out. You're getting confused. You have had your assessment with an ATOS assessor. Next thing that happens is the assessor writes a report called a PA4 and sends it to DWP almost straight away after your assessment. You have to ring DWP to ask for this to be sent to you. It sounds like you didn't ring for the assessor's report and you have now been sent a Decision Letter from the DWP. Is that right? No need to worry about the time limit at the moment just take it step by step..
  • wildlifewildlife Member Posts: 1,314 Pioneering
    Or have you got the actual Decision Letter from DWP?
  • munchkinmunchkin Member Posts: 4 Listener
    Hi I only discovered this group today but I have been exactly where @MadDukk is at....I have 4 prolapsed discs in my lumbar region and arthritis in both hips. I had the discs operated on in 2010 which gave some relief but also made my left leg virtually useless as the surgeon hit my sciatic nerve with the laser and gave me permanent sciatica. At the time I was awarded the highest rates of mobility and care for DLA and later that year I realised I was also entitled to ESA,  which I was awarded.
    Then 3 years ago (now a single parent too) all the fun started. I attended for a health assessment by ATOS. After 2 hours of sitting waiting, the receptionist told me I was going to be another hour before I saw a doctor and the appt itself would take another hour! (I had arrived early for my appt as requested) and I told her I couldnt wait that long as I had to collect my children from school. She typed into the computer that I "was not prepared to wait 15 minutes"!!! and I was told I would get another appt through the post. That was July. In November a man arrived at my house to collect my mobility car...I had no idea he was coming, and spent half an hour ringing various depts to find out what was going on. The DWP had my inability to wait 4 HOURS longer than I was advised, down as a NO SHOW and they stopped my benefit in November....took away my car and left me with a very small income and 4 kids to provide for. I rang DWP and spoke to a young lad who couldn't have been more unhelpful if he tried...after telling him what had happened and the situation I was in, his reply to EVERYTHING was "what do you want me to do about it?"!! I only wish I'd gotten his name.....he certainly DIDN'T tell me about mandatory reconsideration, as he should have done. I found out about THAT via the debt team at my local council when I was on the point of being evicted due to rent arrears.
    The debt team made the call to DWP and explained that I HAD attended the appointment in July but had been kept waiting for more than 2 hours past my appointment time. They arranged for an assessor to visit me at home (as I had no car now). The assessor came out on 29th December and I answered all of his questions, despite thinking that some were totally irrelevant to my condition...he asked if I could give him directions to the nearest crossroads, for example. I could be paralysed from the neck down but I would STILL be able to give those directions....how can the DWP use THAT to judge my mobility? There were more questions about my mental ability, which has NO BEARING AT ALL on my mobility....my problems are from the waist down,  NOT the neck up!
    In the new year of 2016 I got a reply from the DWP, regarding the assessment and stating they were not prepared to overturn their decision to stop my benefit. At this point I had to take DWP to tribunal. I was very lucky in that I had help filling in the forms and a friend also wrote a letter for me, explaining my situation and pointing out all the things the DWP had done incorrectly. In March of that year I attended court....before I had managed to manoeuvre myself into the chair, the judge said he was allowing my appeal and the DWP not only had to recommence my payments (although they were now PIP and not DLA) they also had to back date the payments to the previous November. A victory!!! So I thought....and in truth, despite the reduced payments and no longer qualifying for a mobility car, it WAS a victory.
    However last September I had to attend a fit for work assessment at the same ATOS building; this time for my ESA. Despite being in constant pain, bed ridden most days and hardly able to walk, even with 2 sticks, I was declared fit for work....and the whole process began again! As it stands now, my tribunal hearing is this Friday..12th May.
    I am absolutely CONVINCED that all these so called health professionals who carry out these assessments are there PURELY to stop disability benefits of any kind. The last one I saw even had the temerity to suggest I could use a wheelchair in order to work...a wheelchair that could be kept at an employers address, get taxis to and from any employer who would even employ me AND store a wheelchair (if such an employer even exists) AND this was all based on assumption that I can actually propel myself in a wheelchair! (Which I can't, due to the pain it causes in my spine) At no point was I asked if I could use a wheelchair, or pick up a box (another of the criteria that makes me "fit for work") In fact, the so called health professional spent 90% of the interview transferring information from a 4 years out-of-date claim form, onto a computer. She barely even made eye contact with me. At one point I told her I needed a chair with arm rests (I had to grab her desk in order to stand up) AND SHE COMPLETELY IGNORED ME, didn't even acknowledge that I had spoken to her!
    My honest opinion is, that in both filling in the forms and attending the health assessments, if you are NOT catatonic and drooling while staring blankly at a wall, your benefit WILL BE STOPPED and you WILL have to fight to get it back. I am sorry if this is not what you wanted to hear @MadDukk but it is my truthful account of my experience. It has, however, given me an insight into how this corrupt system works...if you need any advice on filling in forms or which step to take next, PLEASE get in touch. I'll help as much as possible, for anyone in this situation. Both times my benefit was stopped were right before Xmas..no money, debts piling up, 4 kids who weren't getting any presents....I'll admit I was suicidal both times. The government should not be allowed to treat disabled people this way, but we are the easiest target for their plan to "reduce the welfare bill"...and they are doing just that. There was a case of a man who had his benefit stopped because he failed to attend a health assessment....he was in a coma in hospital the time. That says it all....PLEASE get in touch if you need any help at all.
  • MadDukkMadDukk Member Posts: 7 Listener
    @wildlife Hi your 1st comment was extremely helpful & informative, leading me to sit n ring numerous people/places etc. My reply was confusing but I am now on track. I have rang DWP n they are sending a copy of the ATOS assessment report, I stated I was making a complaint ABOUT to ATOS, my request for a MR has been registered with DWP, I've rang ATOS stating I don't agree with their finding & the Atos decision letter contains lies ect & they are sending a complaints pack out. I also now understand that I have 28 days from the telephone call today to DWP for them to receive my MR letter & other information. Thank for getting me on track even if it's jst the 1st step of the long haul...  
  • MadDukkMadDukk Member Posts: 7 Listener
    @munchkin  Hi I only discovered this site/group yesterday myself after someone posted on Facebook LOL In fact I'm not too sure how it all works or how to do some of the things yet but from my 1st post & the comments/reply I've had it has made me more hopeful n see there could be light at the end of the tunnel! I'm usually the people come to & don't usually ask for support ect... My story is long & a lot like your journey, going back at least 10yrs or so with benefits n problems. I have in the last year gave in/up n let the DWPs  decision stay, they signed my partner off sick saying he's fit for work blah blah. He's had epilepsy for at 18yrs, has cough apnea which causes him to blackout anytime day & night, back pain problems jst to name a few ailments. This time I'm not going to let them win, I didn't ask for any of the health issues I have & most are genetic, hereditary long term & will get worse.......
  • wildlifewildlife Member Posts: 1,314 Pioneering
    Wow @MadDukk that's great. The complaint pack is only a leaflet telling you how to complain. I thought the same that I would wait for that to come. But you'll still have to write a letter telling them it's a formal compliant. Try to make it about the report and not what happened in the assessment as my 1st letter to ATOS was rejected saying they couldn't prove what went on inside the assessment room, but the report is in writing for all to see so they have to accept a complaint about that. Also get as much further medical evidence as you can to send off with your MR letter. Good luck.
  • MadDukkMadDukk Member Posts: 7 Listener
    Again thank you so much for all the info ect it's made things a lot clearer for me @wildlife I only discovered this site/group yesterday & I'm learning how things work slowly LOL I have just told 1 of my daughters to have a look n join this group as there's a lot of information she could benefit from. I've jst saw a "Hello/welcome page" were people can introduce themselves how do I write an introduction on this? 
  • munchkinmunchkin Member Posts: 4 Listener
    edited August 2017
    Yes I know exactly how you feel...the DWP are a cold, uncaring, incompetent group of jobsworths who think they can play God with other people's lives. I was so despondent when it happened a second time (the ESA) I got to the point where I almost thought it would be easier just to give in. But with ESA, the DWP still have to pay it, unless the judge at the tribunal says otherwise. It's different than other benefits that way, I don't know why. What made me the most angry was that the so called professional barely even acknowledged me in my health assessment....then her report was full of lies and assumptions, questions she hadn't even asked me! I think these awful people should be hold to account. Well as I said, my tribunal is on Friday. I'm hoping it will go the same way as the PIP one...but they still reduced me from high to low for both mobility and care, which means I no longer qualify for a mobility car or a disabled tax disc. Even more annoying is that my condition is getting worse...the pain in my right hip is becoming unbearable but I don't want to go back to the specialist as he told me 3 years ago my next option was either another operation or steroid injections into my spine and I don't fancy either....but I'm going to have to bite the bullet at some point and go to my gp.
    I'm glad that you're in fighting mood now...if you're stuck with your forms let me know if I can help any. I've been through the whole process twice now.
    And just a daft question...i live in the part of Staffordshire where we call everyone duck....is that where you are? Your name just made me wonder lol
    And I can't find out how to write an introduction either....
  • AnitacardosoAnitacardoso Member Posts: 1 Listener
    Hello, I claimed pip not for the money but to have something to say I am disabled because for some support they ask for the pip letter, they did not give because I still work. I have heart disease and arthritis in my feet (one toe is dislocated) and I can work (if I stay at home I feel more depressed), just Need support to have a qualification to can work sit, but...... 
  • peaches16626peaches16626 Member Posts: 3 Listener
    If sending a formal letter get the welfare at the council help as my assessor had put down that I like to spend time planting plant in my garden 
    Photo's were send showing I live in a top floor flat and did not have a garden 
    Did not get mentioned again until tribunal and they mentioned it 
  • wildlifewildlife Member Posts: 1,314 Pioneering
    Did you win your Tribunal? X
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