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My 16 year old son with autism refused pip

shaz0404shaz0404 Member Posts: 1 Listener
Hi I'm new.

My son has autism and we have been receiving dla for 3 years and recently applied for pip. We were assessed at home by a gentlemen which was pretty quick. Anyway got a letter yesterday that they will not award my son pip and dla will be stopping soon. I am so upset as they have said no evidence has been given even though I sent the relevant documents. He has also made assumptions that as he has been to mainstream school he is ok. I have been called to his school countless number of times due to his lack of concentration and how he runs away from teachers and disappears all the time. I don't know how they can assume he has good concentration. He has had a seizure due to the stress at school he will refuse to do things if he feels uncomfortable he shouts screams bangs doors breaks draws rips the clothes off his back when angry. He constantly fights with his younger brother over computer games. Always argumentative. He is going through difficult times I am upset because he always wants me to buy him things at the moment it's the fidget spinners. He loves cinema now he won't be able to go as they are stopping the money. His paeditrician can confirm his difficulties so why are they doing this. I'm finding this difficult to understand he is struggling yet they don't want to help. They also said he looked well kept what's that got to do with anything. Any help will be appreciated. 

Replies

  • GeoarkGeoark Member, Scope Volunteer Posts: 1,372 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello Shaz0404, and welcome to the community.

    Have you asked for a mandatory review?

    You can see a list of descriptors for PIP at https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/Global/Migrated_Documents/adviceguide/pip-9-table-of-activities-descriptors-and-points.pdf

    These are what you need to be addressing, anything else is generally disregarded.

    The fact he is well kept could indicate 0 points for descriptors 4. washing and bathing, 5. managing toilet needs and 6. Dressing and undressing. Which is why his general appearance has a lot to do with it.

    Given the opportunity to play his games when he wants to how long will he play a single game? Knowing the answer for my daughter and from what others have said I would guess this could be a few hours. You also mention he likes the cinema, so assume he can sit and follow a film. Both considered indicators for good concentration.

    You need to go through these and be honest with yourself about what support your son does and does not need against these.

    Using my daughter when she was your son's age.

    Daily Living
    1. Preparing food - 0 points
    2. Taking Nutrition - 0 points
    3. Managing a therapy or monitoring a health condition - 0 points
    4. Washing and Bathing - 2 points she often set the temperature too hot and so one of us would have to check the temperature.
    5. Managing toilet needs or incontinence - 0 points
    6. Dressing or undressing - 0 points
    7. Communicating verbally - 4 points, possibly 8 depending on the circumstances
    8. Reading and understanding signs, symbols and words - 0 points
    9. Engaging with other people face to face - 4 points
    10. Making budgeting decisions - 0 points

    Mobility
    1. Planning and following journeys - 10 points needed someone to go with her on unfamiliar journeys
    2. Moving around - 0 points

    So while she was eligible for DLA at best she would have got low rate for daily living. She is now 24 and would get 0 points, despite being autistic.

    You need to go through each one and see if they fit your son. For example you say he rips the clothes off his back when angry, is this always at home, or when you are out as well? Does it happen often outside, this can affect your replies on 6 for daily living activities as well as 1 for planning and following journeys.

    While much of the behaviour you describe is not really covered in the descriptors depending on your son they could affect your answers. For example you say he runs off a lot. Do you know if your son's state of mind has meant he could unintentionally put himself at risk? For example my daughter was bullied a lot at school, including being chased home, I do know when this happened she would just run across a road with no regard for any traffic which she might be running into. 

    Hopefully you will get this sorted. You mentioned your son loves cinema, in London we have a chain of cinemas called Cineworld. They do a card from £17.50 per month, excludes their West End branch, which allows you to visit as often as you like and provides other discounts https://www.cineworld.co.uk/unlimited there might be something similar close to you.

    @BenefitsTrainingCo anything to add?

    As an individual I stood alone.
    As a member of a group I did things.
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  • Liam_AlumniLiam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 1,113 Pioneering
    Hi @Shaz0404,

    Welcome to Scope's online community. It's great to have you on board.

    I'm sorry to hear about the problems you've been having with PIP. As @Geoark mentions, have you considered applying for a mandatory review? We have lots of information about appealing a DWP benefits decision on our website.

    I've also moved this discussion to our Ask a Benefits Advisor category, where @BenefitsTrainingCo may be able to advise further.
    Liam
  • BenefitsTrainingCoBenefitsTrainingCo Member Posts: 2,692 Pioneering

    Hi @Shaz0404

    I agree with @Geoark that it would be beneficial for you to have a think about the criteria for PIP and how your son may meet them - PIP was introduced as a cost-cutting measure by the government, so unfortunately there are a lot of people who qualified for DLA who no longer qualify under PIP.

    Benefits and Work website have a good PIP self-assessment tool which can help to simplify things. https://www.benefitsandwork.co.uk/personal-independence-payment-pip/pip-self-test

    All that said, lets not forget that the DWP make a LOT of bad decisions which are changed on appeal.

    Make sure you protect your appeal rights while you're assessing the merits of your claim by requesting a Mandatory Reconsideration as soon as possible (if you have not already done so). If you are unsure about the merits of the case, perhaps try and find somewhere face to face, a local CAB, Welfare Rights or Money Advice Service may be able to help - they often have fairly long waits for appointments, but so long as you keep the appeal ticking over to keep your options open you have a fair amount of time (you can always withdraw an appeal at any point if you decide to).

    Hope this helps.

    Kind regards,

    Mary

    The Benefits Training Co:
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    Michael Chambers
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