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Interview under caution - should I bring a legal representative?

romacromac Member Posts: 4 Listener
edited May 2018 in PIP, DLA and AA
Hello, I have been summonsed to an interview, under caution, by DWP. Would you advise me to take a legal representative with me or to attend without. This is my first experience of dealing with DWP.
Thanks for any advice.

Replies

  • JennysDadJennysDad Member Posts: 2,308 Pioneering
    Hi @romac and welcome to the community. Sorry to hear your news.
    I am not the best person to advise on this, so I am going to forward it to those who can do better for you.
    Bear with us and keep in touch,
    Best wishes,
    Richard
    @JennysDad
  • romacromac Member Posts: 4 Listener
    Appreciated, thanks
  • Lasian_ScopeLasian_Scope Member Posts: 660 Pioneering
    Welcome to the community, @romac

    Advicenow has some information on interview under caution and what support would be useful when attending one. I hope this helps!

    Do you know what benefit this might be about?
  • romacromac Member Posts: 4 Listener
    I've just spoke to DWP. They would not give me any info on what benefit they are investigating. I asked them if I would need an advisor. She said, 'in this case it would be advisable to bring along an advisor'. She was not forthcoming with any more info.
  • romacromac Member Posts: 4 Listener
    Just read 'advice now' and I think it has gave me an idea of what the problem is. Tom's story appears to be similar to my problem.
  • steve51steve51 Community champion Posts: 7,175 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @romac

    Good Afternoon & Welcome.

    We have got a number of “Benefit Advisors” on our site to hand.

    I will forward your post onto them if that is ok????

    You really need “professional” help with this which is way over my head!!!

     Hi @BenefitsTrainingCo
     
    I have come across this post that really needs some “input” from yourselves please?????



  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 5,327 Disability Gamechanger
    Interviews under caution are often erroneously undertaken as information gathering exercises by fraud staff covering for a dearth of home visiting staff so don’t panic as there may be nothing to this at all. 

    The AdviceNow stuff is as good a place to start as any but I would add a few more things. 

    1) DWP and local authorities are notoriously bad at complying with PACE and so knowing some of the basics of PACE and interviews is a good thing.

    2) Go in with a solicitor. One who does know PACE.

    3) It’s a sad fact of life that solicitors are not that great at benefits with some honourable exceptions. I’ve heard solicitors tell claimants “We’ll you’ll have to pay it back” when there was more than enough scope to challenge and win any recoverable overpayment decision. So, as well as a solicitor, get yourself a welfare rights officer ASAP. 

    4) Be prepared to be asked stupid questions by people who may know literally nothing about the benefit they’re asking you about. Be clear why you get what you get and whether or not it’s correct before you go in the room. Back to 3) for that. A common favourite is asking people on DLA or PIP about starting work, which is not in itself a change of circumstance which needs to be declared.

    5) Do not be duped into the line around “we have enough to prosecute you so why don’t you end your claim; sign here to pay the money back and accept an administrative penalty on top in order to avoid prosecution.” If they have enough to prosecute then they’ll be keen enough to show you the evidence. Having enough to prosecute is not the same as having enough to successfully prosecute though and that’s why you need a solicitor and WRO to work in tandem. 

    6) You’ll be recorded. Ask for a written transcription and challenge any inaccuracies immediately. 

    Last case I had with an IUC the claimant agreed to repay three benefits in full and accept three administrative penalties to avoid prosecution before I came along. After reading 28 pages of laughable IUC, and despite being out of time on appealing, by the time I’d finished the client had had all three penalties cancelled; all three overpayments cancelled and all monies paid returned to them plus an apology. 

    These matters are never as clear cut as they seem.
  • Chelseyrd91Chelseyrd91 Member Posts: 3 Listener
    Are you able to help me please? I can't seem to get in touch with a WRO in my area. 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    edited September 2019
    Are you able to help me please? I can't seem to get in touch with a WRO in my area. 
    Hi,

    What is it you want help with?
    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.
  • Chelseyrd91Chelseyrd91 Member Posts: 3 Listener
    Finding a Welfare Rights Officer for me please. I can't find any!
  • woodbinewoodbine Member Posts: 2,884 Disability Gamechanger
    Have you checked to see if your local council has WRO? some still do.
  • Chelseyrd91Chelseyrd91 Member Posts: 3 Listener
    They don't see to, have a unit but the guy I spoke to didn't Have a clue 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Finding a Welfare Rights Officer for me please. I can't find any!
    Sometimes it's not possible to give that sort of help on an online forum. Put your postcode into this link and it will tell you what's available local to you. https://advicelocal.uk/

    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.
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