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Recording your PIP assessment

CatastropheCatastrophe Member Posts: 21 Courageous
edited October 2017 in PIP, DLA and AA
I think that if you have to go for an Assessment, to tell the Assessor that you wish to record the Assessment on your Mobile as your evidence if you are not satisfied with the outcome. I was told my Assessor was a Paramedic but so have a lot of other Claimants. This being allegedly the case, I cannot understand why any Paramedic would be working as a Claims Assessor. Most Assessors have not one medical qualification and Decision Makers are only interpreting Acts or Statutes but only a Judge of the High Bench can really make Decisions supported by appropriate medical support form a General Practitioner or Hospital Consultant. These Clerks paid from the public purse must also be monitored to ensure that PIP claimants get the funds they are entitled to. If it comes to a dispute, you cannot rely on just hearsay. However, a video or voice recording might just be all the evidence you need. They must be held accountable for their Decisions which effect your life. It appears that many Claimants after completing Renewals have either lost their entitlement completely or have had their PIP reduced to the standard rate. If these public servants are on notice that everything is being recorded for your own peace of mind, it might make them sit up and take notice of your psychiatric and physical disabilities rather than just deliberately ticking the wrong box in order to reduce payments from the public coffers whilst these Decision Makers and Assessors do not seem to have any problem at all taking their salaries from the public purse. If your Assessor says they are a Nurse or Paramedic or in fact any title that implies they are medical qualified, this needs to be checked out with the appropriate organisation such as The Royal College of Nursing. Privilege and fancy titles can sometimes hide a multitude of sins. Good luck everyone.

Replies

  • Sam_ScopeSam_Scope Member Posts: 7,732 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Catastrophe
    Welcome to the community, the rules around recording your assessment are very strict and you cannot record it on your phone.

    Your recording equipment must be able to produce two identical copies of the recording at the end of the consultation, either in audio cassette or CD format. You will need to give one copy of the recording to the Health Professional undertaking your consultation, at the end of the consultation.

    So although I understand your frustration, we must point out that it isnt as simple as recording on a mobile device.  Also covertly recording isnt a good idea as if you are found out, they can halt the assessment and I don't believe that the recording would be admissible.
    Scope
    Senior online community officer
  • CatastropheCatastrophe Member Posts: 21 Courageous
    I would need to take legal advice as only a qualified solicitor could confirm whether what you say is right or wrong.  We have the right to decide our own criteria for obtaining evidence and I do not think that any Assessor would have a problem with the interview and assessment being recorded if they do not have anything to hide.   You should be more supportive to those who you are allegedly representing.  How about taking a proper film maker and camera crew along??
  • CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,258 Disability Gamechanger
    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • CatastropheCatastrophe Member Posts: 21 Courageous
    I have not had the chance to read through the DWP pdf document that you supplied the link to CockneyRebel but I am not happy at all about taxpayers money being paid out to private commercial companies.  Massive amounts of money could be saved if PIP Assessments were carried out by our own GPs who have first hand knowledge of how our disabilities both mental and physical effect our daily lives.  They are in the best place to assess how our illnesses make our lives difficult, not some faceless wonder sitting behind a desk somewhere in the country who has not even one medical qualification and who has not even met us face to face.  Public Servants are getting too far above themselves.  At the end of the day they are just Clerks.  Forget all the fancy titles.  Only a doctor can really say whether a patient qualifies for PIP or not and not a public servant.  My opinion!
  • CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,258 Disability Gamechanger
    I agree with your opinion and we should do all we can to challenge this unfair and uneconomic system.
    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • CatastropheCatastrophe Member Posts: 21 Courageous
    Too right CockneyRebel.  Where shall we start??  Maybe writing to our local MP would be a good start.  This is an unacceptable situation.  Maybe an interview on local radio or a write up in the local newspaper.  Copy emails to our MPs to our regional television companies and also the News Editor at the local rag.  I think this is a good start.  Start tapping on those keys.
  • ash5896ash5896 Member Posts: 118 Pioneering
    I wish I was able to record mine. The report from the nurse if full of lies and examinations that didn’t take place at all. During the assessment the chair broke and I fell. The nurse left me there and didn’t ask if I was ok and when complaining she said that she had a back problem and hence couldn’t help. I’ve put a complaint in and I’ve been told that there wa son independent witness I can’t do nothing and my partners statement holds no value as she will support me either way. It’s ridiculous. On a positive my partneris a nurse too and she’s writing to the NMC who are more than happy to look at my report and will take my partners statement into account as she was present at the time.
    im future I will only be asking for home assessments and in my own house I can record whatever I want. We have cctv anyway so my partner can keep an eye on me whilst she’s at work.
    My GP is a little annoyed with me too and said I should have asked for a home assessment and in future that what I will do.
    Ash 
  • YadnadYadnad Member - under moderation Posts: 2,862 Disability Gamechanger
    ash5896 said:
    I will only be asking for home assessments and in my own house I can record whatever I want. We have cctv anyway so my partner can keep an eye on me whilst she’s at work.
    My GP is a little annoyed with me too and said I should have asked for a home assessment and in future that what I will do.
    If you are in the ATOS area getting a home assessment is extremely difficult to get authorised. When I telephoned them for my first assessment in 2013, the person that answered the telephone at ATOS said that unless I have my GP come out to make visits instead of going to the surgery then I was expected to turn up under my own steam (taxi was also refused). Additional to this they wanted a letter from my GP to say that I have to have home visits and the reasons why.
  • whistleswhistles Member Posts: 1,603 Disability Gamechanger
    Any reason why people are digging up old threads?
    Do not follow me, I don't know where I am going.
  • imberimber Member Posts: 1 Listener
    Hi I have just received the appointment for my PIP assessment and will be recording the assessment. I will use two identical audio cassette recorders this is acceptable to Capita and their assessors. You must call the help line on 0808178814 before your assessment and inform them of your wishes and they will go through the procedures with you
  • Icon_MissingIcon_Missing Member Posts: 9 Listener
    edited March 2019

    Sorry to resurrect an old thread but I'm due to have my assessment on April 1st, no really! I've asked for it to be recorded only to be told that the onus is on me to record and provide the equipment to do so. Surely Atos - yes it's those [removed by moderator] - should me made to provide the recording equipment if they want it done in certain formats? Who uses cassettes nowadays?

  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 966 Disability Gamechanger
    If I were being cynical (!) I'd suggest that DWP insist CD/cassette for that very reason i.e.because no-one uses them anymore very few people actually own one. Similarly the restriction on MP3 format seems to be to prevent anyone recording on their phone, most of which are capable of high quality recording. I recorded mine on professional quality equipment which I used for recording wildlife - when I asked which format they would prefer if they didn't want MP3 no-one had a clue.

    Although I've not done this myself, I'd advise just getting a couple of cheap dictaphones off Ebay.

    As with any recording make sure that you are familiar with the equipment before you go, and that the batteries are fully charged etc.

    Take spare batteries and tapes.

    Do a soundcheck before you start - get everyone present to introduce themselves and then play it back to make sure that you've got the sound levels correct etc.

    Good luck!
  • Icon_MissingIcon_Missing Member Posts: 9 Listener

    I had a great result going direct to Amber Rudd (I suggest as many people as possible go direct to her to show the level of contempt they have at the various disability denial factories) so I've gone back to her office. I want a home recording carried out, Atos have stated what format they will accept they can provide the equipment, I don't see why I should lose out financially because of it. I didn't ask for the assessment so it's up to the assessors to bring what is needed.


    I'm toying with asking an interested local newspaper report if he would like to sit in

  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    cristobal said:


    Although I've not done this myself, I'd advise just getting a couple of cheap dictaphones off Ebay.

    Dictaphones/laptops and mobiles can't be used to record an assessment. When recording an assessment you must use either CD/tape recorders and 2 identical copies must be recorded. One copy must then be handed in at the end of the assessment.

    Permission must be given before recording an assessment by ringing the health assessment providers. If an assessment is recorded without permission then the claimant risks having their assessment stopped, their file returned to DWP and very likely a refusal of that benefit.
    Community champion and proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice i have given to members here on the community.
  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 966 Disability Gamechanger
    @poppy123456 - you offer such good advice that I'm reluctant to disagree.

    However, when I say 'dictaphone' I mean one of the hand-held devices that people in the long distant past used to record notes etc. The one I had recorded onto a cassette tape and would have thought would fully comply with the DWP guidelines. I certainly  can't find any mention of them not being allowed although you are correct - laptops and mobile phones are specifically excluded.

    Also, for clarity, you do not need 'permission' to record an assessment. Capita's guidelines are that you 'notify' them in advance, and comply with their conditions - i.e. you are telling them that you are recording the assessment and not seeking permission.

    I fully agree that it's not a good idea to carry out a recording without telling them first - in any event I would have thought it was quite difficult to do covertly.


  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 966 Disability Gamechanger
    @poppy123456 - this is the DWP guidance
    • the claimant must be able to provide a complete and accurate copy of the audio recording to the HP at the end of the consultation. For this reason, certain devices that are capable of editing, real-time streaming or video recording the session are not approved. Non-approved devices include (but are not limited to) PCs, tablets, smart phones, MP3 players, smart watches, and devices that are not capable of providing a verifiable media copy that can be easily checked during the assessment. Acceptable formats for such recordings are restricted to CD and audio cassette only

  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    cristobal said:

     Acceptable formats for such recordings are restricted to CD and audio cassette only

    This means that dictaphones are not allowed. It's CD and cassette recorders only.
    Community champion and proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice i have given to members here on the community.
  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 966 Disability Gamechanger
    @poppy123456....sorry but I still disagree  and I struggling to understand why you believe  that a dictaphone that records onto a cassette tape would not be allowed. 

    Let's move on.....
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    @ilovecats i would appreciate your advice on this one please. Can dictaphones be used to record an assessment?
    Community champion and proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice i have given to members here on the community.
  • twonkertwonker Member - under moderation Posts: 617 Pioneering
    I have not had the chance to read through the DWP pdf document that you supplied the link to CockneyRebel but I am not happy at all about taxpayers money being paid out to private commercial companies.  Massive amounts of money could be saved if PIP Assessments were carried out by our own GPs who have first hand knowledge of how our disabilities both mental and physical effect our daily lives.  They are in the best place to assess how our illnesses make our lives difficult, 
    Why do you think that the Ministry of Transport changed the rules for people trying to get a Blue Badge who did not have the right level of DLA or PIP? Previously your GP would have certified that you needed one and the council would have sent you one. It was found that GP's could not be relied upon to be both objective or not biased. They changed it so that an independent assessor would instead have to assess you for a badge.
    Likewise the DWP would not be happy with a GP certifying someone for PIP, they could well be biased in favour of the claimant/patient, hence why PIP assessors are independent.

    In fact, and unless you live with your GP, how are they to assess how you would fit the PIP descriptors? They would only know if you told them which then is no more than, my patient has informed me....
    You could tell the GP anything, the truth or a complete lie.
  • twonkertwonker Member - under moderation Posts: 617 Pioneering
    cristobal said:
    @poppy123456....sorry but I still disagree  and I struggling to understand why you believe  that a dictaphone that records onto a cassette tape would not be allowed. 

    Let's move on.....
    Maybe because the tape that you will be using is a non standard one and cannot be played back on an ordinary recorder. Dictaphone tapes are specialised miniature ones not normally used in an ordinary day setting. Best stick to CDs 
  • Icon_MissingIcon_Missing Member Posts: 9 Listener
    "hence why PIP assessors are independent" They damn well are not independent! They work for and take their instructions from the DWP, they are sub-contracted companies! Oh and Atos were banned from working in many States in the USA for it's fraudulent practices, they should have been the last company the DWP (Don't Wanna Payout) hired
  • CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,258 Disability Gamechanger
    Even if you do record an assessment it is of little use other than to remind you what went on. To be admissible as evidence the recording would need to be professionally transcribed, and it is hard enough trying to get relevant evidence read. CM's and tribunals will not take the time to read through the transcript of an hours assessment
    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • twonkertwonker Member - under moderation Posts: 617 Pioneering
    "hence why PIP assessors are independent" They damn well are not independent! They work for and take their instructions from the DWP, they are sub-contracted companies! Oh and Atos were banned from working in many States in the USA for it's fraudulent practices, they should have been the last company the DWP (Don't Wanna Payout) hired
    Yes they are contracted by the DWP to carry out an independent assessment as to your claim for the benefit. No doubt you would be jumping up and down if the DWP were to carry out these assessments! They used to via inhouse doctors, then people complained that they weren't independent! As for your GP they too aren't independent either. Who would you suggest should carry out these assessments.

    As for what happened in the USA has absolutely nothing to do what they do in the UK. Our laws and regulations are totally different. You could say that all murderers in the UK should be on death row as in the States!
  • twonkertwonker Member - under moderation Posts: 617 Pioneering
    Even if you do record an assessment it is of little use other than to remind you what went on. To be admissible as evidence the recording would need to be professionally transcribed, and it is hard enough trying to get relevant evidence read. CM's and tribunals will not take the time to read through the transcript of an hours assessment
    Totally correct. The cost of having that transcription done would be beyond their household budget.
  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 966 Disability Gamechanger
    Even if you do record an assessment it is of little use other than to remind you what went on. To be admissible as evidence the recording would need to be professionally transcribed, and it is hard enough trying to get relevant evidence read. CM's and tribunals will not take the time to read through the transcript of an hours assessmen

    In my case I found recording extremely useful. Here’s why:-

    My assessment was appalling. I’m trying to avoid the ‘honest Joe the claimant vs nasty assessor’ debate again but the report that the assessor produced was so riddled with ‘errors’ that it bore no relation to the interview that had taken place. One example - the mobility box was so bad that if you take out everything that was wrong, misunderstood or a lie, there was nothing left. A blank box!

    I complained to the assessment provider who fobbed me off but eventually they listened to the recording. The original report was re-written, based on the original interview. It was so bad that only three of the original points scores remained the same, and these were where we agreed on 0. Everything else was increased.If I had needed a transcript I would have done it myself, although I acknowledge that this does take some time.

    I accept that every case is different but, in my experience, I can only say that I would have been refused PIP if I hadn’t recorded the interview. Definitely. 

    As I suggested to @poppy123456 it’s obvious that there is disagreement on this. My advice remains the same and it’s for the OP to decide whether to take it or not…

  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    @ilovecats thank you for confirming that. This is what i thought. I just didn't want others reading this thread and thinking that they could use dictaphones.
    Community champion and proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice i have given to members here on the community.
  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 966 Disability Gamechanger
    @ilovecats - sorry to harp on here but I'm getting confused now. Can you point me to where in the guidance it mentions about being "freely played back"?? 

    To end on a positive note - what equipment do you suggest is suitable?/ There seems to be an ever increasing list of what's not allowed. What is allowed?
  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 966 Disability Gamechanger
    @ilovecats - thanks. I'm still sticking to my original opinion but thanks to giving everyone yours....

  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 966 Disability Gamechanger
    In case anyone is interested you can get a cassette recorder on Ebay for about £15 each. (other sites are available)

    Be careful if you go for a dual recorder because some of them will only record one tape at a time...
  • twonkertwonker Member - under moderation Posts: 617 Pioneering
    edited March 2019
    cristobal said:
    In case anyone is interested you can get a cassette recorder on Ebay for about £15 each. (other sites are available)

    Be careful if you go for a dual recorder because some of them will only record one tape at a time...
    http://www.neal.co.uk/Products/9221p-portable-interview-recorder/

    That is the type of dual CD recorder used to record interviews/assessments.

    As for messing about with two tape recorders it may go against you if you show both physical and mental competence when setting up the machines on the assessor's desk!
  • twonkertwonker Member - under moderation Posts: 617 Pioneering
    edited March 2019
    cristobal said:
    @ilovecats - sorry to harp on here but I'm getting confused now. Can you point me to where in the guidance it mentions about being "freely played back"?? 

    To end on a positive note - what equipment do you suggest is suitable?/ There seems to be an ever increasing list of what's not allowed. What is allowed?
    It is simply common sense. For a start you would have difficulty in finding new miniature tapes with all of the seals intact.

    Then you would have to think if it would be reasonable for the assessing company to have similar machines to listen to one of the tapes. Full size tapes are pretty standard, CD's more so.

    However if you really want to demonstrate your ability as a 'sound engineer' to the assessor get yourself a couple of these machines!!!
    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/ANTIQUE-SOUND-SCRIBER-RECORD-ENGRAVER-RECORDER-RECORDING-DISCS/283425194910?hash=item41fd75439e:g:stMAAOSwMoZcgKgD

  • wildlifewildlife Member Posts: 1,316 Pioneering
    This is so sad. If assessments were done honestly and correctly there would be need to even think about recording them. 
  • Antonia_ScopeAntonia_Scope Member Posts: 1,783 Pioneering
    Hi all,

    It is important to remember that words read online don’t always convey tone or context and so may be misinterpreted, therefore it is important to consider language and audience. Thank you.
  • Icon_MissingIcon_Missing Member Posts: 9 Listener
    cristobal said:
    In case anyone is interested you can get a cassette recorder on Ebay for about £15 each. (other sites are available)

    Be careful if you go for a dual recorder because some of them will only record one tape at a time...

    Sorry but I still say THEY are doing the assessments so the onus should be on Atos etc to provide the recording equiptment. Why isn't Scope demanding they do this?
  • Icon_MissingIcon_Missing Member Posts: 9 Listener
     wildlife said:
    This is so sad. If assessments were done honestly and correctly there would be need to even think about recording them. /politics/disability-benefit-assessors-trouser

    Having to deal with companies that have been banned in parts of America for their lies regarding disabled people then assessments will never be done honestly, also paying extra for carrying out more than 4 assessments a day https://www.mirror.co.uk/news-50-12535091 encourages them to rattle through as many assessments-denials as possible
  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 966 Disability Gamechanger

    I’m very disappointed at the tone of some of the posts on here, and the wave of negativity that i appear to have generated.

    I do not claim to be a sound engineer but as I mentioned do have experience of making sound recordings and also tape recording interviews when i last worked. I recorded my own PIP assessment, and using this combined experience I was trying to offer some positive advice about what, in my opinion, was a good way to proceed.

    In short, I was trying to help.

    Everyone is entitled to their opinion but unfortunately they all seem to reasons why you shouldn’t tape record interviews. I am giving reasons why I think it’s a good idea - it prevented me being stitched up and it might do the same for others, and it is useful to have a record of what was said. I have produced a transcript - in my experience there’s no need to get someone else to do it.

    @poppy123456 - you commented….

    @ilovecats thank you for confirming that. This is what i thought. I just didn't want others reading this thread and thinking that they could use dictaphones.”

    This is out of order and I’m very surprised at you. It smacks of “I was right all along” and is dismissive of the advice I was offering. Like a lot of people I value Ilovecats input but he/she certainly is not the final arbiter of what’s allowed and what’s not. I've rung Capita three times and got different advice every time - no-one knows..

    Finally don’t forget that your post saying that you have to ring and ask ‘permission’ is completely wrong, and hasn't yet been corrected...

  • Icon_MissingIcon_Missing Member Posts: 9 Listener

    "Everyone is entitled to their opinion but unfortunately they all seem to reasons why you shouldn’t tape record interviews"


    Oh but you should tape these devious swine's, the onus will be on whoever is assessed to prove the benefit denial assessors have lied, if you say they did then it's your word against theirs, if you've recorded it then you have proof, a good example is here https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/where-respect-grandad-brain-tumour-13160844

  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 966 Disability Gamechanger
    @Icon_Missing..... I've every confidence that 99.9% of assessments are done properly. 

    The reason I recorded mine was just,as another poster has said, so that I had a record of what went on.The fact that i ended up with a recording of a stitch-up was just fortunate (or unfortunate, depending on how you look at it!)
  • Antonia_ScopeAntonia_Scope Member Posts: 1,783 Pioneering

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