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Is dla-pip switch/pip reassessment considered a 'change in circumstances '

apple85 Community member Posts: 551 Pioneering

i like many others am worried about the esa to universal credit switchover as in worse case it would leave me without the money to pay for food or some household bills so I want to hold it off as long as possible to give myself more options.

i am currently in the esa support group which in the current dwp timetable would mean the switchover would happen no earlier than July 2019 unless you have a 'change of circumstances' in a full service area.

my area doesn't turn into a full service area until may 2018 so to my understanding I can have a change in circumstances within the next 4 months without triggering the switchover

I still haven't had my dla to pip switchover (which no one has a clue when that would happen - could be tomorrow could be 2 years) - would the dwp sending that paperwork count as a change in circumstance?

Also my health since my last dla assessment (low care/mobility indefinite award) is basically the same though now I have 2 new conditions (one was recorded in my esa reassessment interview last year so is already on record the other I haven't mentioned yet) I feel mentioning these two condition would improve my chances of being successful in the pip claim once the dwp decide it's my turn in the natural order of things and even though it could mean more money I'm happy with my dla and don't unnecessarily want to lose that - but at the same time if there is no way around it it would be better to risk triggering the pip switchover earlier than I'm due it so it's not considered a change in circumstance after my county council becomes a full service area.
if that makes sense - is a new condition/illness considered to be a change of circumstance if already on dla/pip as far as the universal credit switchover is concerned

Is it possible to mention this (new condition- it's an issue with my nerves) to to the jobcentre for them to put on record now without triggering a pip assessment?

sorry for all the long winded typing and thanks in advance


  • CockneyRebel
    CockneyRebel Community member Posts: 5,209 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi apple and welcome

    DLA/PIP has no relevance to ESA/UC

    As I understand it, it is only a change in claiming an income related benefit that would trigger a possible switch over, For example moving area and making a new claim for housing benefit

    Any change in circumstance should be reported to the DWP and your new and worstening condition are no exception. This would trigger your change to PIP and a f2f assesment.
    A new or worstening condition should normally be reported within one month but has to be in place for three months before it is considered for inclusion in your award.
    If your new circumstance is unlikely to change the level of your award the DWP really aren't interested

    It is a good idea to start preparing for your changeover. It is important to understand the difference between DLA and PIP as the criteria are not the same. A good starting place is the B&W self test.

    This will give you an understanding of the points system, descriprors and the criteria for an award

    there is also lots of info on this site , please look round and come back with your questions


    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • apple85
    apple85 Community member Posts: 551 Pioneering
    So to clarify your comment by income related benefit you mean the 5 old benefits to come under the umbrella universal credit (jsa, esa, housing benefit, working/child tax credits)

    if one of those was to change once your had had become a full service area then you'd be moved to uc before the 2019-2022 timetable

    As Dla/pip is not under the universal credit it will not trigger a uc switchover if you have a dla/pip (re)assessment or even apply for pip for the first time? (Regardless of if you are in a full service area or not) - have I got that right?

    i guess the only time it may trigger a uc early switchover is if any change in condition means you get moved from jsa to esa or viva versa?

    i guess that as I'm already in the esa support group a new condition and no change in the existing ones would have no effect on my award as I'm already on the highest award so it would be as you were?

    thank you for taking the time in answering
    any other opinions or info would be great as there is isn't much info on this scenario and there's got to be a few out their with the impending dla to pip switch due with some things changed from their last assessment, especially if their dla award is indefinite 
  • Debbie_Alumni
    Debbie_Alumni Community member Posts: 932 Pioneering
    Hi @apple85,

    Thanks for your post. Don't worry about the long-winded post, mine is going to be too. It shows how complicated Universal Credit gets when complex situations are involved. The legacy benefits it replaces have also changed in varying and complex ways. All of those varying changes have got to fit into Universal Credit in some form

    The DWP expects to invite all existing DLA claimants to claim PIP by the end of 2018. Reporting a change in circumstances can trigger the invitation early and sometimes even just asking about PIP can trigger that invitation. 

    The transfer onto PIP from DLA is not technically a change in circumstances that would trigger moving onto Universal Credit (if you're in a full-service area). However DLA and PIP interact with a lot of other benefits and losing DLA or PIP can end entitlement to other benefits such as Carers Allowance. Some carers will have a top up of income support and this could stop too. A new claim for a benefit is needed and in a full-service area it will be Universal Credit. So whilst moving from DLA onto PIP is not a direct trigger of a new Universal Credit claim, it can play a part.
    An example of a carer could be a single parent with a disabled child who has reached the age of 16 and moves over to PIP. The child may not qualify for PIP or receive less support than on DLA. If the parent loses entitlement to Carers Allowance and they have a top-up of Income Support, they may lose this too (depending on their circumstances). We know that many people have been turned down for PIP when they've moved over from DLA. Some people have received no PIP award at all and others have had theirs reduced. We also know that many disabled people have challenged decisions and the success rate is very high, but it comes at a great cost. Not only the finances, but the health and well-being of the person going through the whole journey.

    It's a really sensible approach to think ahead and plan. It's entirely sensible that you look at all the ways in which you can prevent this change from happening early. The first thing to do is work out if you will be better or worse off on Universal Credit. If you're going to be worse off, think about whether the change you are planning or the change that might happen (i.e you want to move) should be delayed until the DWP start automatically moving people onto Universal Credit with transitional protection. This process called managed migration starts sometime in 2019 and all of those who are part of the managed migration will have top-up payments in their Universal Credit so that they're not worse off. Those who move onto Universal Credit due to a change in circumstances are part of the natural migration. They will receive no transitional protection and if there are any losses to their income, they will be immediate. 

    From the queries we get at the helpline, I've been concerned about the number of people who don't know about Universal Credit at all and how it will affect them. @gill_scope and I are running a Facebook Live session today at 12:30pm all about Universal Credit. We hope you're able to join us and that we can answer some of these complicated questions.

    I would also add that it's difficult to give definitive answers on this subject and everyone has very different circumstances. The benefits system is incredibly complex and there's a lot of confusion around so it's always best to get advice tailored to your situation. I hope that this has been a helpful starting point and we hope to see you over on Facebook later on!

    Best wishes
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