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Advice on bringing recording devices to PIP assessment please?

Fight4JusticeFight4Justice Member Posts: 63 Courageous
edited January 2018 in PIP, DLA and AA
Hello all, 

I'm new here. Just wanted to say I've found this forum extremely useful/helpful in preparing for my PIP Assessment, which is taking place soon.

I'll just give some brief background info about me. I have had 3x PIP Assessments in my lifetime. The first in 2013 where I received the enhanced rate of daily living, and the standard rate of mobility. I then had this taken away from me in Dec 2015. I then won this back at a Tribunal in Apr 2016. I received a questionnaire in Dec 2017 that I filled out and returned. I was then informed I had to attend this reassessment in late Jan 2018, taking place in Feb.

Now to the point of my topic

I have already rang them up and requested for my assessment to be recorded. They agreed I could bring 2x devices. I have now become paranoid about losing the copy of my recording, or one of the devices letting me down on the day. I just rang them up today and asked if I could bring a third device so I could make an extra copy. The person I was speaking to then became more confrontational asking "why would you want a third device?", I gave the reasons I stated above. He then informed me "it will be at the discretion of the Health Professional on the day", we then went back and forth for a couple mins. I then asked could I at least get written confirmation on the day, that I was denied the ability to bring a third device, he told me "no".

My plan right now is to go ahead and bring the third device. If I'm not allowed to use it. At the beginning of the interview after the 2x recording devices are running. I will say that I was denied the ability to use a third device. I will then ask on tape for the "Health Professional" to confirm or deny this. What I'm worried about, doing this, is, could the "Health Professional" then end the interview based on this? Saying I was being uncooperative? I'm also now thinking perhaps I should bring a fourth device, just in case they say, it's not fair that I should get 2x copies and them only 1x. That could be a way for them to prevent me from using the third device. Therefore, I'm favouring going for 4x devices just to be on the safe side. Part of my condition is I do have issues with paranoia. However, after spending the last few days, reading what some others have gone through on this forum, with these so-called "Health Professionals", I think my paranoia is justified this time.

I would be interested to know which of the following options you think would be my best course of action.

a) Bring 2x devices and hope nothing happens to my copy.
b) Bring 3x devices and if told I'm not allowed to use it, go with my statement of refusal idea, and risk the interview being ended.
c) Bring 3x devices and accept their decision to prevent me from using it.
d) Bring 4x devices and if told I'm not allowed to use the extra 2, go with my statement of refusal idea, and risk the interview being ended.
e) Bring 4x devices and accept their decision to prevent me from using the extra 2.

Sorry for this long post. But I'm absolutely petrified about what's going to happen. Any advice or suggestions would be welcome.

Replies

  • debsidoodebsidoo Member Posts: 327 Pioneering
    Hi Fight4justice
    I would go with the idea of taking 3 devices explain your reasons to them and if they say you can only use 2 then leave the third unused.
    Just be sure to check batteries beforehand in case there is no available electrical outlet.
    Good luck.
      Debsidoo.x
  • Fight4JusticeFight4Justice Member Posts: 63 Courageous
    Thank you for the reply debsidoo. And thank you for the luck.

    I think you're right. I'm bringing plenty of spare batteries with me! The recorder I have can also produce a digital copy of the tape. My understanding is: that wouldn't be allowed as evidence by DWP. But perhaps at a tribunal it would be allowed. Because it wasn't a covert recording, it was a copy of the recording I was allowed to take. I could just be ignorant, and this is what lots of people do anyway.

    When I had to go to an ESA reassessment in early 2017, I requested recording, and they did this for me with their own device. I didn't think about needing extra copies back then. Fortunately everything went well. I don't think ESA is done by Atos anymore, the woman was actually nice, perhaps the fact she was being recorded played a part in that though.
  • sleepy1sleepy1 Member Posts: 299 Pioneering
    Hi F4J

    Have a look at this other thread on Scope which might give you some helpful advice.  Or might confuse you even more!

    https://community.scope.org.uk/discussion/39244/audio-recording-medical-assessments#latest

    I recently had an ESA assessment that I requested to be recorded because of past HCP's being downright liars that caused me so much stress. 
    My request was granted, I had to sign an agreement form when I arrived at the centre but the recording never went ahead in the end.  Not sure why apart from the assessor telling me "I don't think we need to do it".?

    I don't know what is legal when it comes to doing your own recording during an assessment, lots of different opinions. 
    It is recorded evidence at the end of the day and I am not aware of any Judge saying......hang on a minute we only have one timed recording, not good enough evidence, there should have been at least two copies!

    Also be aware that no matter how many audio devices you take they will not record things like what you sign or present on arrival, how you look or how you are able to move.  The distance from the waiting room to the assessment room and how you managed to get there, for some reason it seems many HCP's are not very good at geography or maths.

    Don't rely on the person that goes with you either because they will in most cases be completely invisible.

    Probably wont be that bad so try not to worry, my case for ESA turned out ok, this time.......PIP another story, the HCP carried out a medical assessment without me even being there Lol

    Good luck with your mission, let us know how you get on.  X Rosie
















  • Fight4JusticeFight4Justice Member Posts: 63 Courageous
    Thanks for the reply Rosie.

    At this point, there's not much I can do, except revise what I'm going to say in the assessment itself (doing so over the weekend). I've done everything I can i.e. request the recording (which was accepted), request a male assessor (accepted, not sexist, I just feel more comfortable speaking to someone the same gender) and I also asked if I'd be allowed to see the HCP's report, when writing. This latter one, now seems redundant, as in another thread, I learned that they write up the report after you leave.

    Fyi, I spent like £100-120 on my 2x recorders, 2x external microphones (highly recommend getting these), batteries (in case no wall plug) and 15x cassette tapes (bit overkill). So if they don't allow me to record... It would be all for nothing. I've rung them up twice, and both times they said my recording request has been accepted. I'm still waiting for my updated appointment letter confirming this though. Going to ring them up again tomorrow, asking specifically about the whereabouts of my appointment letter. The assessment centre my appointment is taking place at, is literally a 10min walk from me. Last time (2015) it was 30ish miles away.

    I will do. My application is entirely MH based, and given solely on my diagnosis of Asperger's syndrome, and long-term depression. Even on a conservative score, I should get 17pts (that's what the tribunal gave me) for daily living, but I believe I'm entitled to 19. I did really badly at the tribunal in terms of relaying what I wanted to say. The disability person, and judge, I think were on my side from the beginning. The doctor was quiet, so couldn't make out whether he was for, or against me. Either way, the suffering I had to endure to get there was worth it. Never give in, never surrender.

    P.S. It's disgusting that ESA would agree to let you record, then deny it to you on the day like that.
  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 128 Courageous
    The user and all related content has been deleted.
  • Fight4JusticeFight4Justice Member Posts: 63 Courageous
    edited February 2018
    Thanks and sorry for the late reply Ella.

    I have been stressed preparing myself. I'm taking lots of notes with me in case I forget anything. Someone from the Assessment Centre I'm attending rang up my mobile number on Friday afternoon. It was to remind me that I have a PIP Assessment on Monday. She then told me that they only have "female" assessors at the Assessment Centre. And if I wanted to have a "male" one, I would need to travel 20+ miles away... I took some minutes to think about it. And decided to proceed with a female assessor. Even though I feel uncomfortable with it. They have already won the first battle. She did confirm that I'm allowed to bring 2x recorders. However, when I received my updated PIP Appointment letter this morning (Saturday), no where did it mention anything about me being able to bring my recorders. It only mentioned the date change. I'm not sure what that means. I will find out on Monday.
    Unfortunately, I can take no one with me. My father is very busy and it's too short notice for him. My mother is ill and on a waiting list to have an operation (non-life threatening, but bad enough she can't visit for the time being). I'm just going to prepare to the best of my abilities. And make sure I state all the reasons my condition affects my daily living & mobility, even if I'm left in a psychological wreck by the end of the assessment. I'm hoping they will allow me to wear my coat hoody. As the only times I normally go outside are from 04:00 to 06:30. This is when I shop at Tesco at 6am on Mon & Fri. And when I take my car to a 24hr petrol station at 4am once a month to refill. I don't like bright lights. I'm worried about how bright the lights will be in the room.
    I can relate to your fear of opening letters. For me it's bills from the bank & utility providers. Whenever I get a letter, I put them in a box in my room. When my dad visits me he goes through them. As I find things other than my interests, uninteresting to read. I use to just throw them away. This is INADVISABLE.
    I'm planning to create a thread called something like "My Mental Health based PIP Reassessment on the 5th Feb 2018" on either Monday evening, or sometime Tuesday, if I'm too stressed to do it on Monday. I'm planning to take my own notes during the assessment. I don't claim for "Reading and understanding symbols and words", as my condition doesn't affect this. Therefore, I think I should be fine to take notes whenever I can. I'm going to try my best not to be provocative in the assessment. As I'm worried they might end my assessment for being an "uncooperative claimant". They really have all the advantages. It's morbidly unfair.
    That's a good idea about taking photocopies for all the forms you fill in. I ignorantly have never done this. But I will be doing, moving forward.
    I'm sorry to hear about the damage to your ankle. Also the pain with ligaments and muscles.
    I will post my "post-Mental Health PIP Reassessment" update in a new thread like mentioned earlier. I feel like this thread has served it's purpose in getting good advice, regarding bringing recordings. I'm happy for this thread to be ignored/locked now.
    Thank you again to everyone that offered advice. It was really helpful. The rest is now down to me.
  • maid08maid08 Member Posts: 307 Member
    please mFight4Justice said:
    Thanks and sorry for the late reply Ella.

    I have been stressed preparing myself. I'm taking lots of notes with me in case I forget anything. Someone from the Assessment Centre I'm attending rang up my mobile number on Friday afternoon. It was to remind me that I have a PIP Assessment on Monday. She then told me that they only have "female" assessors at the Assessment Centre. And if I wanted to have a "male" one, I would need to travel 20+ miles away... I took some minutes to think about it. And decided to proceed with a female assessor. Even though I feel uncomfortable with it. They have already won the first battle. She did confirm that I'm allowed to bring 2x recorders. However, when I received my updated PIP Appointment letter this morning (Saturday), no where did it mention anything about me being able to bring my recorders. It only mentioned the date change. I'm not sure what that means. I will find out on Monday.
    Unfortunately, I can take no one with me. My father is very busy and it's too short notice for him. My mother is ill and on a waiting list to have an operation (non-life threatening, but bad enough she can't visit for the time being). I'm just going to prepare to the best of my abilities. And make sure I state all the reasons my condition affects my daily living & mobility, even if I'm left in a psychological wreck by the end of the assessment. I'm hoping they will allow me to wear my coat hoody. As the only times I normally go outside are from 04:00 to 06:30. This is when I shop at Tesco at 6am on Mon & Fri. And when I take my car to a 24hr petrol station at 4am once a month to refill. I don't like bright lights. I'm worried about how bright the lights will be in the room.
    I can relate to your fear of opening letters. For me it's bills from the bank & utility providers. Whenever I get a letter, I put them in a box in my room. When my dad visits me he goes through them. As I find things other than my interests, uninteresting to read. I use to just throw them away. This is INADVISABLE.
    I'm planning to create a thread called something like "My Mental Health based PIP Reassessment on the 5th Feb 2018" on either Monday evening, or sometime Tuesday, if I'm too stressed to do it on Monday. I'm planning to take my own notes during the assessment. I don't claim for "Reading and understanding symbols and words", as my condition doesn't affect this. Therefore, I think I should be fine to take notes whenever I can. I'm going to try my best not to be provocative in the assessment. As I'm worried they might end my assessment for being an "uncooperative claimant". They really have all the advantages. It's morbidly unfair.
    That's a good idea about taking photocopies for all the forms you fill in. I ignorantly have never done this. But I will be doing, moving forward.
    I'm sorry to hear about the damage to your ankle. Also the pain with ligaments and muscles.
    I will post my "post-Mental Health PIP Reassessment" update in a new thread like mentioned earlier. I feel like this thread has served it's purpose in getting good advice, regarding bringing recordings. I'm happy for this thread to be ignored/locked now.
    Thank you again to everyone that offered advice. It was really helpful. The rest is now down to me.
    ake sure you get their qualifacation and reg number plus full name write it down?? they are useing non qualified peaple ie ofice workers under the name analitical profesinols there is no such thing  if you point it out they shoot thry test and garanteed full benifits

  • maid08maid08 Member Posts: 307 Member
    sorry my spelling rubbish 

  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 128 Courageous
    The user and all related content has been deleted.
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