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How many people have won paper based appeal regarding pip

WebberWebber Member Posts: 3 Listener
edited December 2017 in PIP, DLA and AA
How many people have won paper based appeal regarding pip 

Replies

  • GeoarkGeoark Community champion, Scope Volunteer Posts: 1,348 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @Webber and welcome to the community.

    The evidence suggests that you are much likely to win an appeal if you appear rather than using a paper appeal. One reason the DWP had a consultation last year to change the system to online digital or paper appeals without the option of appearing in person.

    One potential reason for this is that many people do not know or understand the PIP criteria, let alone being able to put a competent paper appeal together. If the paper appeal fails to fill in the gaps the tribunal panel can only judge by what is in front of them, if you appear then they can at least ask for clarification or other questions to help them come to a decision.

    If you are genuinely unable to attend before the appeal panel please get advice and help in putting the paper appeal together.

    As an individual I stood alone.
    As a member of a group I did things.
    As part of a community I helped to create change!

  • WebberWebber Member Posts: 3 Listener
    ThAnku for your reply they ajourned my paperbased hearing as they want oral hearing they have all evidence including drs report I suffer from severve anxiety and deoression and can't leave my house I have already told them that I won't be attending oral hearing my dr also explained that I don't travel this is my second pip as I've already been to one so I no what's it's like but this is a new claim what are my chances of winning with out attentending oral hearing thanku
  • GeoarkGeoark Community champion, Scope Volunteer Posts: 1,348 Disability Gamechanger
    @Webber sorry but besides offering the statistical evidence for winning I am not sure if anyone can tell you how likely you are to succeed. 

    Statistically you have a 65% chance of winning at appeal, but this includes both forms of evidence, paper and appearing. I know one advocacy organisation have the following success rates, 90% for those appearing at the tribunal, 50% for those who opt for paper only. Source: https://www.theguardian.com/society/2016/oct/12/online-benefits-appeals-tribunals-disabled and this was with support from an advocacy group.

    That said another member may be able to give better information.

    As an individual I stood alone.
    As a member of a group I did things.
    As part of a community I helped to create change!

  • WebberWebber Member Posts: 3 Listener
    Ok thanku for advice I no what you are saying but I had oral hearing last year and got no where also this stressed me out so much that is why I opted for paperbased new claim but I do understand what you are saying just just hope they accept my papperbased and accept my wishes thankyou
  • GeoarkGeoark Community champion, Scope Volunteer Posts: 1,348 Disability Gamechanger
    edited February 2018
    @Webber I do appreciate your frustration and that you find the process stressful.

    Please read the whole post first, but you might find it useful to do an online self test, as this may help you, https://www.benefitsandwork.co.uk/personal-independence-payment-pip/pip-self-test

    A lot of the words used have a set definition within the PIP assessment and these can be found at https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/Documents/Advice%20(public)/pip-guide-language-of-descriptors-activities.pdf

    There is also the question of being able to carry out activities safely. There was an upper tribunal decision which has changed the way this should be assessed. The DWP has interpreted this as doing risk assessments to decide the correct description and points awarded. There is a memo which the DWP sent out to enable decision maker to assess what to award.  This can be seen at https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/658567/adm29-17.pdf

    As an individual I stood alone.
    As a member of a group I did things.
    As part of a community I helped to create change!

  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 5,403 Disability Gamechanger
    The win rate for paper hearings is between 3 and 5%. At the very least you need to be represented or request a hearing at home or over the phone. You will need to battle for either option but they are available.
  • hughie1hughie1 Member Posts: 8 Listener
    The win rate for paper hearings is between 3 and 5%. At the very least you need to be represented or request a hearing at home or over the phone. You will need to battle for either option but they are available.
    Where do you get these figures from? What you're implying is it is virtually impossible to win at paper appeal. I've spoke to the courts and they've said they don't release official statistics on paper appeal success rates. Why are you spreading false information?
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 5,403 Disability Gamechanger
    Hmm. First post and it’s an accusation. Welcome to you too. Not an auspicious start. You may wish to reconsider. Can’t help but think we’ve come across each other before! Anyway, to answer the question...

    1) HMCTS do collect statistics and have done so for years. You are exceptionally naive to believe anything the DWP or HMCTS tell you during a phone call. It doesn’t auger well that you think you’ve spoken to “the courts”. Social security appeals are tribunals. Some may be held at court venues. You may have spoken to a HMCTS call centre operative but you definitely won’t have spoken to “the courts”. 

    They simply ceased to publish them as they started to fall below the 15 to 19% which was already embarrassing them. Plenty of research done to bear those figures out. Try www.nuffieldfoundation.org/sites/default/files/files/Tribunal_decision_making_vFINAL.pdf and https://ukaji.org/2017/01/31/oral-and-paper-tribunal-appeals-and-the-online-future/ for starters. Maybe https://www.rightsnet.org.uk/forums/viewthread/5495/#22772 as well. 

    2) Most decent advice organisations keep stats on what happens with their oral hearings and what happens with those where they don’t represent but at most send in a submission. The reported rate is between 3% and 10% at the highest but generally between 3 and 5%. 

    3) Conversations with outdoor clerks (the people who clerk the venues) can be very revealing. In my area they confirm that it’s sbout 5% at best. There are certain panels for whom it would be 0%. Bear in mind that paper appeals are only done if there is space in a session and only if the panel agree. That might be if there are a series of late postponements or the late adjournment of a case which was listed for a double slot. The clerk might have 10 in a drawer but the tribunal might like the idea of an early finish (as might the clerk) so they’ll rush through a couple and that’s that. It should come as a surprise to no-one that paper hearings are an afterthought and that has consequences.

    4) UT case outcomes are public domain and it doesn’t take much reading to see the increase across all benefits in paper hearings that were subsequently taken to UT. Ditto the recent growth in UT decisions where the decision to proceed with a paper hearing was criticised. 

    5) I am not implying anything. I am saying it outright. The success rate for paper appeals is low and low for obvious reasons. It increases if you elect for an oral hearing and it is highest if you attend with a representative.

    Any questions? 
  • hughie1hughie1 Member Posts: 8 Listener
    The rightsnet post you've referenced says between 17-19%. Yes, maybe I spoke to call centre guy, but this one in particular was very intelligent, a good listener and communicator (can't say the same about others I've spoken to.) He also says he doesn't see why there would be a difference since they are going mostly of the papers anyway. I've also read examples of people attending oral hearing and a. They've already made the decision and have no further questions or b. Asked just a few basic questions or just needed clarification on something. I get there's a lower success rate but do you think you've exaggerated how low, maybe? Also this post was regarding pip, are you suggesting esa paper appeals are similarly as low?
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 5,403 Disability Gamechanger
    The figures quoted in the links were 5 or 6 years ago, For reasons 2, 3 and 4 of my previous post they have fallen since. if you were ringing HMCTS then you were talking to someone in a call centre and their statement is one of the most crass misrepresentations of what takes place in an oral hearing I have ever heard. 

    1) Yes there are what the president of the social entitlement chamber memorably called “no brainers” but the number of oral hearings won inside the 1st few minutes are few and far between. They are usually cases where a detailed written submission has been made in advance by a rep and the panel just need to hear the appellant confirm the facts in the sub before they make a decision (a process which in itself is unnecessary and farcically as there’s legally no such need when the burden of proof is the balance of probabilities). There are also a small number of cases where DWP or HMRC simply don’t understand their own law or (as has happened recently) didn’t even know it existed. However, most cases which win quickly are well prepared; have a detailed written submission sent in advance and are represented with the appellant also in attendance. It is absolutely not the norm nor a regular occurance.

    Of my last 100 appeals 3 won inside 5 minutes. 1 was a cohab case with a detailed submission which blew every DWP point out of the water. It would have been adjourned for the appellant to attend had they not done so. 1 was a PIP case arguing over 1 point to enable a move from standard to enhanced. DWP argued that my argument was “outwith the law” and even maintained that line after review by a senior case officer pre hearing following a complaint by me that it was ludicrous to allow it to go to appeal. Again, had the appellant not attended it would have been adjourned. One was a failure to attend which of course would have failed had the appellant not actually attended. They’re memorable precisely because they are that rare.

    2) Your call centre person is unlikely to have ever attended a hearing if they are so deluded they believe they are just decided on the papers. Indeed they should be reported for speaking well outside of their knowledge and being so completely misleading. They’re verging close to maladministration. The whole point of an oral hearing is that either the appellant requested it or a district judge decided the paper evidence contained contradictions which could only be reconciled by hearing direct evidence. Anyone who has ever attended a hearing will tell you that the verbal evidence is the determining factor in how the paper evidence is weighed almost every time.

    3) HMCTS have a significant backlog of appeals across the country as has been well reported. They have a vested interest in persuading people to accept paper hearings because they are easily disposed of within weeks at no additional cost. To say that the person you spoke to may have had a conflict of interest in advising outside of their knowledge and jurisdiction should be fairly obvious. It is outrageous anyone at HMCTS should be biased towards paper hearings. I’d appreciate it if you’d name the region and give their call centre number as it’s a matter of some concern and needs to be raised as a training issue immediately.

    4) There are negligible differences across the benefits. I have already explained why no exaggeration is involved here. I don’t propose to repeat myself. 
  • hughie1hughie1 Member Posts: 8 Listener
    In summary, you're saying my ESA (2nd year) disallowance paper-based appeal (I got a Time Extension as I'm waiting for my mental health notes to arrive) is probably-definitely a waste of time. That I'd have as much chance of winning a scratch card? No matter how well I present my evidence (I read on another forum that presentation is key) it is just a waste of time, basically. I don't want to attend or wait how long it takes to get appeal, it's being over 2 years since decision.
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 5,403 Disability Gamechanger

    With all due respect I haven't said anything about your specific chances of winning at all and nor would I as I have not seen your appeal bundle.

    The chances of winning something on a scratch card are pretty good according to everything I have read. However, there is no meaningful comparison to be made. A scratch card involves nothing but chance. A tribunal involves multiple elements of chance but an awful lot of other things.

    The role of the tribunal is to weigh the evidence; find facts and then apply the law to those facts. Where evidence is contradictory or not obviously supportive then weighing that evidence is much harder and sometimes impossible if the appellant is not there. An excellent written submission with comprehensive supporting evidence (not necessarily medical evidence) may well win a paper hearing but the reality is that the statistics speak for themselves. At best, assuming I know nothing and am completely wrong, you have a chance of being in the 15% who win. If I'm right then it's as low as I've previously stated.

    That doesn't take away from the fact that a percentage do win but it's a low percentage whichever way you dress it up and the reasons for that have already been aired. I fully appreciate why someone with mental health issues may not wish to attend (lots of people with lots of other impairments feel the same) but that doesn't take away from the fact that your best chance of winning will always be with having solid evidence and appearing in person. That has been the case for decades and the question you need to ask yourself is really about how important this is to you. Do you want to gamble with a paper hearing or at the very least give yourself your best chance by appearing in person? Is it something you want to go through again repeatedly or never again? Have you, for example, put anything in about the length of award you ought to have? If not, then how are you going to feel if you win the rate of PIP you have identified as appropriate but only get it for a year?

    It's very easy to build these things up so it can come as a shock if, for example, having settled for a paper hearing you find that the panel on the day decide they need to have you there in person anyway. At minimum you need to be prepared for that as an outcome rather than just a win or a loss.  

    I'd appreciate if, as I politely requested, you would name the HMCTS region as their approach on the phone is something which needs to be flagged up either as a complaint or via upcoming tribunal user group or stakeholder meetings.

  • hughie1hughie1 Member Posts: 8 Listener

    With all due respect I haven't said anything about your specific chances of winning at all and nor would I as I have not seen your appeal bundle.

    The chances of winning something on a scratch card are pretty good according to everything I have read. However, there is no meaningful comparison to be made. A scratch card involves nothing but chance. A tribunal involves multiple elements of chance but an awful lot of other things.

    The role of the tribunal is to weigh the evidence; find facts and then apply the law to those facts. Where evidence is contradictory or not obviously supportive then weighing that evidence is much harder and sometimes impossible if the appellant is not there. An excellent written submission with comprehensive supporting evidence (not necessarily medical evidence) may well win a paper hearing but the reality is that the statistics speak for themselves. At best, assuming I know nothing and am completely wrong, you have a chance of being in the 15% who win. If I'm right then it's as low as I've previously stated.

    That doesn't take away from the fact that a percentage do win but it's a low percentage whichever way you dress it up and the reasons for that have already been aired. I fully appreciate why someone with mental health issues may not wish to attend (lots of people with lots of other impairments feel the same) but that doesn't take away from the fact that your best chance of winning will always be with having solid evidence and appearing in person. That has been the case for decades and the question you need to ask yourself is really about how important this is to you. Do you want to gamble with a paper hearing or at the very least give yourself your best chance by appearing in person? Is it something you want to go through again repeatedly or never again? Have you, for example, put anything in about the length of award you ought to have? If not, then how are you going to feel if you win the rate of PIP you have identified as appropriate but only get it for a year?

    It's very easy to build these things up so it can come as a shock if, for example, having settled for a paper hearing you find that the panel on the day decide they need to have you there in person anyway. At minimum you need to be prepared for that as an outcome rather than just a win or a loss.  

    I'd appreciate if, as I politely requested, you would name the HMCTS region as their approach on the phone is something which needs to be flagged up either as a complaint or via upcoming tribunal user group or stakeholder meetings.

    Sorry I did not get back to you sooner. As you know from my other post I attended the hearing in person and it was accepted. I did set it for paper, then got a letter a couple weeks ago with a date set for oral hearing. After what yoy had told me about the low success rate I was now glad they give me a hearing date and that is was not too long for we to wait for it.

    Apologies for saying you were wrong for saying there was only a 3-5% success rate. I just believed there was no way for that to be true. And of course I was told over the phone there's hardly a difference between paper and oral. But having read some of the links you posted I realised you were more than likely talking sense. And I was glad you informed of this (though, the tribunal went ahead and changed it to oral hearing without me asking anyway.)

    Regarding you wishing for me to name the HMCTS region, I would feel more comfortable if I could PM you this. Is that possible on here? TBH though, weren't it just a call-centre guy I spoked to anyway? Weren't it him giving out this advice (about the paper appeals and oral appeals having virtually the same success rate)? I assumed it was the clerk but it was the call-centre.
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 5,403 Disability Gamechanger
    No need to apologise. It sounds like they’ve had a paper hearing and decided it needs an oral. They don’t have to ask you. It’s what they do when they think the key evidence will be your verbal evidence. 

    Don’t worry about which HMCTS office. I’ve since heard similar stories from 2 different HMCTS regions on a Nathanael web site so it’s clear that duff info is widespread. I missed our local Tribunal User Group for the 1st time in 25 years as I was on holiday. I’d have liked to put it to them that this sort of nonsense is being spouted but no matter. 
  • melissahicking2019melissahicking2019 Member Posts: 122 Courageous
    So you mean to tell me, that just because its a paperbased hearing there is only a 5% success rate. WELL THATS UNFAIR the claimant could be genuinely ill and the evidence suggest this to be the case, But because the courts cant be arsed to do a proper and complete paperbased assessment they will simple fly through a couple at the end of the day and offer a 5% chance of success. even if the claimant was genuinely seriously ill... Great confidence i now have for the TRIBUNAL SERVICE.
  • melissahicking2019melissahicking2019 Member Posts: 122 Courageous
    edited May 2019
    just goes to show that the truth does not matter in a court of law or a tribunal or for the DWP and CAPITA .no wonder innocent people get thier lives taken from them in our benefits system and the courts.
  • melissahicking2019melissahicking2019 Member Posts: 122 Courageous
  • twonkertwonker Member - under moderation Posts: 617 Pioneering
    just goes to show that the truth does not matter in a court of law or a tribunal or for the DWP and CAPITA .no wonder innocent people get thier lives taken from them in our benefits system and the courts.
    It has nothing to do with the truth.
    If the written evidence and submission is not strong enough to get a paper based decision then what is the Tribunal to do?
    They can't very well talk to the claimant so as to understand the problems better because no one has attended.
    Hence it is better for the claimant to give their side of the case to the Tribunal.

  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 5,403 Disability Gamechanger
    With all due respect it has nothing to do with the courts not being bothered. People choose a paper hearing actively or otherwise i.e. in some cases they get listed because someone didn’t send the relevant form back in time for a wide variety of reasons. In others it’s because people are too ill to attend but in others it could be because they are fearful of an oral hearing for non-medical reasons; didn’t know they could have representation or didn’t take on board that an oral hearing was an option. The latter is surprisingly often the case. It is also the case that some people opt for paper hearings because they are aware that the delays for oral hearings are way less for paper hearings. They then get listed so quickly there’s no time to get a submission or further supporting evidence in. 

    I agree that the inequality between paper and oral hearings appears to be unfair but there are other things in play. For example, a person too ill to attend will often be too ill to get representation or get a written submission or evidence which comprehensively makes their case. That can mean that the weakest cases are often the ones which get listed as paper cases too. So it may not just be non-attendance which influences the outcome but how the appeal is presented and evidenced in their absence. Some tribunals will look at those cases and dismiss them. Some will adjourn and insist on an oral hearing. It will vary from case to case and will depend on the specific facts of the case. A well presented case will always have a chance of winning but claimants often don’t know what that means in practical terms. 

    One of the things to bear in mind is that tribunals take the view that nothing is more powerful then face to face evidence and unless you are completely housebound and your GP, dentist, consultant, pharmacist etc. all come to you then you should be capable of attending an appeal with or without support. Most often people forget that a tribunal can’t just accept an assertion someone is too ill to attend. They need evidence of that. More often than not this is forgotten and a tribunal faced with an assertion someone is too ill to attend but no actual evidence of that will opt to go ahead. They take the view that if you can, for example, make it to your GP then with support why would you not attend something which may decide your level of income for many years to come. Another way they think of this is that if your income is not so important then what is? They’re not always right on this but they are more often than not they’re often given little in the way of reasonable alternatives.

    Nowadays of course you could opt for a phone/Skype hearing and soon online dispute resolution will be available too although there’s no evidence that either are any more effective at this stage. 

    It is also worth noting that being “genuinely seriously ill” is not how you qualify for disability benefits. It’s the functional consequences of that which score points rather than just having the condition itself. Two people can have an identical health issue but the symptoms for one may mean they qualify and slightly differing symptoms for another may mean they don’t. 
  • twonkertwonker Member - under moderation Posts: 617 Pioneering
    And there are those that are so fearful of having to appear before a panel and knowingly will be quizzed, sometimes to the point of mental abuse that they simply will not attend. They may also have major problems in speaking to a stranger at say the CAB so will not actively seek any support.

    These people are more likely to be vulnerable in other ways and may well have a 'cast iron' claim but putting it together and having to defend what they have written is probably beyond their capabilities. These claimants will then fail to gain an award despite what the strength of the case is.
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