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PIP Tribunal decision

Matilda
Matilda Member Posts: 2,590 Disability Gamechanger
edited May 2017 in PIP, DLA, and AA
Had my Hearing today and have been awarded enhanced daily living and enhanced mobility; indefinite award.

Tips?   Have your wits about you and be prepared for a grilling; and have thorough medical evidence even if it's not recent.

The only medical evidence I had was the DWP doctor's report and my GP's report from 1998 (both very thorough) when I was awarded DLA highest rates both components indefinitely.

The other two tribunal members weren't too bad - but the doctor asked some probing questions.  Asked for how long I could walk (time).  The Atos assessor asked that, too.  Although of course PIP points are supposed to be awarded for distance, not time (or so I thought).

Doc also asked how did I know I could only walk 20 yards?  Had I ever measured it?  I replied no, it was an estimate based on experience of distances.

The judge, doctor (as well as the Atos assessor) all seemed to think that ability to drive indicates a low level of disability.  Which is nonsense.  What's the point of Motability, then?  And many disabled people would be housebound without a car.  

I only take two, maybe three, round trips of 12 miles or less a week; I find driving long distances tiring.  I wouldn't advise any claimant to state that they do a lot of driving, especially longer distances.




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Comments

  • dafflover
    dafflover Member Posts: 7 Connected
    Well done Matilda. Good news. I have been following your blogs with interest as your case sounds very similar to mine. I haven,t got a date yet for my tribunal but your tips have been very useful. I have asked for my medical records to be sent to me but get the impression Doctors surgeries can't be bothered and even though you have the right to see them and have to pay a charge they tell me it is not a priority for them so I have no idea how long I will have to wait. I have also written to my MP but have had no reply from her. An acknowledgment might have been nice at the very least but have heard nothing. Sometimes I think is it worth it but stories like yours have spurred me on.
  • Matilda
    Matilda Member Posts: 2,590 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @dafflover

    It was the positive Tribunal decisions posted on here that encouraged me.  I think it's usually worth appealing despite the slight risk that claimants might lose their entire award.  65% of appeals succeed.

    I think what swung it for me was:

    - medical reports, though old ones
    - that I've had rheumatoid arthritis for nearly 30 years
    - before DLA/PIP changeover I was on DLA highest rates both components
       indefinitely 
    - that I had already been awarded PIP 11points daily living and 10 points mobility

    Were you on DLA before and did you ask for the medical reports from then to be included in your PIP application?

    Because of the Election, there are no MPs at the moment, only candidates.  After the Election you'll probably hear from your MP.

    Good luck with your appeal!
  • dafflover
    dafflover Member Posts: 7 Connected
    Thanks Matilda. Won't give up on my MP yet then. No I didn't think to include my medical reports with my PIP application. I was on higher rate for mobility and lower rate for daily living on DLA awarded indefinitely in 2007. This was changed to no daily living award 7 points for that and lower rate mobility 10 points even though over that 10 years both my mobility and being able to carry out daily living tasks has become a lot more difficult. DWP have ignored this completely and the assessor at Capita lied on my assessment which made the information DWP had on which they made their decision incorrect. I have complained to DWP and  Capita but they will not change their decisions. Why is it so difficult to make DWP understand that what you have told the assessor and what they put into their computer is not correct.
    The assessor put down that I told her I could walk to a friends house in 2 minutes when I distinctly told her it takes me 10 minutes to walk there. This is with a walker as I can't walk at all unaided and I am still prone to falls even aided. This was backed up by a letter from my GP but totally ignored. I just hope the panel will see how difficult it is for me to get around not just on a nice carpeted office floor but outside with paving slabs etc. Did anyone from DWP turn up for your hearing?
  • Matilda
    Matilda Member Posts: 2,590 Disability Gamechanger
    edited May 2017
    Hi dafflover

    No DWP rep for me.  DWP don't attend many tribunals and I think that those that they do usually are for mental illness.

    You could ask PIP helpline for copies of your previous medical reports and submit those to the tribunal as additional evidence.

    Virtually all assessors tell lies!  Mine put in her report that I took my bag off over my head and put it down on the floor.  I never took my bag off at all!

    DWP tend just to rubber stamp assessors' reports.

    I think it's partly because tribunals know that assessors are pathological liars that so many appeals are successful.  Assessment companies are defeating their own ends by lying.

    It's in the claimant's favour at PIP tribunals if they've been on long-term DLA.  And if the DLA award was supported by medical evidence, which it would have been.

    I had a doctor come to my address to assess me for DLA and DWP obtained a report from my GP.  For PIP, I had to go to a centre to be 'assessed' by a paramedic and DWP didn't contact my GP.  So it's nonsense for the government to claim that PIP assessments are more thorough than assessments were for DLA!

    The Tribunal asked quite a lot about my indoor walking (in shops, etc) whereas mobility points are supposed to be for walking outdoors.  

    Disability Rights have a PIP appeals section on their website which is worth reading.

  • wildlife
    wildlife Member Posts: 1,293 Pioneering
    @Matilda, WELL DONE!! so pleased for you. It just goes to show how wrong your decision was before. I notice how the scores are often kept at just 1 point below the higher rate. My DL is currently at 10 but ATOS are still investigating that. @dafflover Your story is interesting and I wonder if you have actually spoken to a Decision Maker by booking a call back? I did this after my MR and got my award changed to advanced mobility and 2 more points on my Daily Living. If you can get hold of further medical records you may be able to negotiate a further review at the same time as you continue with the Appeal. That would actually help DWP to know you still disagree with their Decision. I do believe they know the assessors are lying but cannot admit it until it's proved to them and even then they send claims back to be reviewed by a different Assessor. I also had medical evidence ignored but by accusing DWP of doing this and telling them exactly what they were ignoring I did get them to look at it and use it.
         Matilda good luck for the future. Have a good rest tonight you deserve it after what you've been through....x
  • Justice
    Justice Member Posts: 198 Pioneering
    edited August 2017
    @Matilda I am very late getting on here today with one thing and another , and some technical problems but I am DELIGHTED to see this news before i turn in

    I am really pleased for you Matilda, well done!! it all paid of for you, now you need to give yourself a little treat :-) Congrats xxx
  • Matilda
    Matilda Member Posts: 2,590 Disability Gamechanger
    Thank you, @Justice.  I'm not sure if I'd have stayed the course without all the help and support I've had from people on this site.  So a big 'thank you' to everyone concerned.

    I had some hazelnut chocs earlier as a little reward :).
  • aries
    aries Member Posts: 46 Connected
    GREAT NEWS, so pleased it worked out for you and it's so good to hear you have your award. 
    Strangely they asked me about driving? 
    Anyway great positive outcome
  • jose2
    jose2 Member Posts: 126 Pioneering
    edited August 2017
    @Matilda, that is wonderful news, you and @wildlife and all others spurred me on to fight too.
  • Matilda
    Matilda Member Posts: 2,590 Disability Gamechanger
    @aries

    Thank you.

    Even Tribunals seem to think that if you can drive then you can't be very disabled.  But severely disabled people have been driving for years - otherwise, many would be housebound.


  • jose2
    jose2 Member Posts: 126 Pioneering
    I too agree,without my car I would have been totally house-bound,I do a total of about 50 miles per year,as @Matilda I get so tired ,fatigued  and stiff and the pain in my legs hips and knees is quite unbearable sitting in my car too long,it gets me from A-B and I do only necessary journeys now,and having an automatic car  has been a god-send ,just put in drive and away you go!,feel as though can get on with looking around for other road users and my own safety.
  • Jayne66
    Jayne66 Member Posts: 36 Connected
    @Matilda, Well done,so pleased for you. I have gained so much from this site,in the fight to get my partners pip reinstated. Still waiting for a date,hopefully it won't be to long. Well done again.
  • Alex
    Alex Scope Posts: 1,305 Pioneering
    @Matilda Well done! And thanks for sharing your tips.
  • Matilda
    Matilda Member Posts: 2,590 Disability Gamechanger
    @jose2

    Thank you.  

    MRs are just to rubber stamp the first case worker's decision, with a few exceptions for the sake of form.  The jokers force people to go on to tribunals. Tribunals are so disenchanted that cases reach them that should never have got that far so they are sympathetic to claimants and allow their appeals.

    Despite all the stress, unfortunately I haven't lost any weight ;) .






  • Matilda
    Matilda Member Posts: 2,590 Disability Gamechanger
    Thank you, @Jayne66.

    Hope you don't have to wait too much longer for a date.
  • Matilda
    Matilda Member Posts: 2,590 Disability Gamechanger
  • wildlife
    wildlife Member Posts: 1,293 Pioneering
    edited August 2017
    Everyone I'm amazed at the statistics for MR refusals and consider myself very fortunate in being amongst only 20% that are successful. I hope I have helped someone to fight that bit harder at MR stage. There's good news for me today that the final things my assessor lied about will be proven to be false as I've said all along. Next week I am having a full assessment by someone from the Adult Care Team from Social Services on all movements around the house including showering. I am confident that with medical evidence I already have and her report I will be able to increase my DL score and use the report also for my ATOS/DWP complaint. So although I haven't had to go to Appeal my PIP journey is not over yet.. 
  • jose2
    jose2 Member Posts: 126 Pioneering
    edited August 2017
    Good luck @wildlife,routing for you !, I as you was amongst the 20% that it was over turned at the MR stage,fought like mad at that stage in the stupid process,knew they were turning the disabled down just by conversations I had with them (bit fishy some of the reply's I got back ).I've always had a pen and paper near my phone ,and wrote word for word everything that was said by me and them,(the smell of deceit was incredible)suggestion by me get an  app with a recording devise on,they are great too.They tape us ,so why can't we,'what's good for the goose applies to the gander too'.I'd have even had or got  a listening devise in my home too if they had come to my home to do an assessment,but that's only my point of view on the matter and if or if a time comes again will do both.
    @Matilda everyone noticing how drawn I have become,so weighed myself , shocked I'd lost so much weight,I only weighed 7 stones 4 lbs to begin with.Last phone call from DWP told them never ring me again,that I've had enough of them.Have got brown letter syndrome now,(if there is such a thing ,know I've got it)
    The Benefits advisers on Scope site have been without exception the best !!!!!!!

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