PIP, DLA and AA
If this is your first visit, check out the community guide. You will have to Join us or Sign in before you can post.

PIP descriptors

worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
edited January 2019 in PIP, DLA and AA
Does anyone have any opinion on the following.

I am putting in a claim for PIP as I need the money and believe I qualify.

However the only thing I Am confident I qualify for is low rate mobility (50m walking distance).

However the following do also apply to me.

I definitely have distress when going out using my stroller, as my age I feel like people are staring at me etc.  It's enough it often prevents me using it, which usually means not going out at all, as I understand it points can be awarded for this.

For daily living the following apply to me, but I believe this only gives me 4 points so no entitlement to anything.

I have an aid for going toilet.
An aid for using the bath.
In considerable pain washing my hair.
I can do basic cooking tasks without an aid like putting something in the oven or microwave, but anything that requires preparation like slicing cheese, hob type cooking and washing up dishes I need to use my stool for so I have something to sit on (an aid).
Occasionally but not all the time I also need to use an aid to help me dress and undress, I have a whats known as a grabber or reacher, which I use to help take socks on and off as well as trousers when on occasions I am unable to bend to do that action.  But it is not all the time.

I would appreciate thoughts, thanks.

Replies

  • maya605maya605 Member Posts: 16 Listener
    Hi @worried33 and welcome. I’m new to all of this as well. The advice I would give you is base all your answers on your worst days. I wouldn’t put some days I can and some days I can’t. Don’t base it on good days. 
  • YadnadYadnad Posts: 2,856 Member
    maya605 said:
    Hi @worried33 and welcome. I’m new to all of this as well. The advice I would give you is base all your answers on your worst days. I wouldn’t put some days I can and some days I can’t. Don’t base it on good days. 
    Wrong! If a disability results in an impact and is matched to a descriptor And it is variable then that is what you should show.

    By claiming that the worst day is like that for every day and that it does not vary, than you are actually carrying out benefit fraud.
    Be truthful and say it as it is.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    edited January 2019
    Sorry, but that's not great advice to base filling out the form on your worst day.  PIP isn't about your worst days. It's how you are 50% of the time based on a 12 month period.

    If someone fills out their form based on their worst day and when it comes to their face to face assessment they're having one of their good days then the HCP will immediately see through this and think "well if that's their bad day, they can't be as bad as they said they were"

    Always tell the truth and nothing more.
    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.
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    edited January 2019
    Yes I have no intention of claiming bad days are an every day occurence.  As has been pointed out a f2f assessor would see through that.

    I just wanted some advise on how I should be reporting my problems and specifically what counts as needing aid to prepare food as its not clear in the descriptors.

    Poppy has partially answered with the 50% of the time criteria which I am grateful for.  I would say I dont need to use aids 50% of the time for undressing so that wont be emphasised.

    But I do need aids more than 50% of the time for hob cooking, preparation type cooking like slicing cheese and as well as washing up.  But I dont need it for very basic cooking, this is the bit I am still confused about, is the descriptor only for basic cooking tasks?
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    The cooking and preparing a simple meal, means from fresh ingredients. A perching stool is an aid for cooking.

    This link, although very long, is well worth reading because it will give you a little more understanding of what the descriptors mean.

    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.
  • minniemoominniemoo Member Posts: 51 Courageous
    Hi @worried33 when completing the pip for I personally broke each section of the questions down and answered in detail onto A4 sheets with heading to each descriptor. I also kept a daily diary and sent a copy of a weekly account in with the pip form. Good Luck 😉 
  • YadnadYadnad Posts: 2,856 Member
    The cooking and preparing a simple meal, means from fresh ingredients. A perching stool is an aid for cooking.

    This link, although very long, is well worth reading because it will give you a little more understanding of what the descriptors mean.

    Just a side issue as regards cooking. I understand what they are asking for but I do really wonder how someone can answer the questions if they have never made a meal (of any size and type) in their life. Obviously I know what a carrot looks like and that you have to peel a potato (having seen it done many times). My wife has done all of the cooking and baking and before that my mother. Being just the two of us now, my wife does very little cooking and I, in the main, have ready meals for one from the supermarkets - M&S, Waitrose etc. - Simple meal from fresh ingredients, I would not know where to start.
     
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Not being able to cook or never having cooked doesn't count. What does count is can you cook a meal from scratch using fresh ingredients. This includes cutting/pealing veg, using pans safely, carrying the pans from the cooker etc. If you can't do any of this, why can't you do it and what would happen if you did try to do it.

    Same for all the other descriptors that apply. You say washing your hair causes you pain but can you wash it yourself? If you can, why can't you do? What happened the last time you attempted to do it yourself?

    You say you use an aid sometimes to dress and undress. How often do you use this aid and why do you use it? What happened the last time you attempt to dress and undress when you didn't use the aid?

    Going by what you said above, you won't score enough points for a daily living award. Are there any other descriptors that may apply to you? Have you looked at the link i posted above?

    You say you're distressed when you go out because of the aid you use. Do you go out alone or do you need someone with you when you do go out? If you need someone with you, what happened the last time you attempted or went out alone?

    These are all the things they will look at when assessing you. You need to give examples for each descriptor that applies.
    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.
  • YadnadYadnad Posts: 2,856 Member
    Not being able to cook or never having cooked doesn't count. What does count is can you cook a meal from scratch using fresh ingredients. This includes cutting/pealing veg, using pans safely, carrying the pans from the cooker etc. If you can't do any of this, why can't you do it and what would happen if you did try to do it. 
    If you have never cooked that question is hypothetical. It may well be the case that if they physically attempted to cook it would be a disaster. Does the descriptor suggest that for those who haven't a clue how to start cooking should try to?
     In a way that descriptor would only apply to those that know how to cook but have problems in doing so.
    Seems a tad unfair to me. Maybe if I did try I would be a natural chef or on the other hand put myself in hospital having sliced a finger off or dropped the pan of boiling water over my legs and feet. 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Whether it would be a disaster or not, not being able to cook because you've never cooked isn't part of the criteria for that descriptor. Lets be honest, if this was taken into consideration there would a lot of people scoring points for this descriptor.
    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.
  • YadnadYadnad Posts: 2,856 Member
    Whether it would be a disaster or not, not being able to cook because you've never cooked isn't part of the criteria for that descriptor. Lets be honest, if this was taken into consideration there would a lot of people scoring points for this descriptor.
    I agree, it is a ridiculous descriptor if we go down that road.
    But it appears that only those claimants that know how to cook and have experience of doing so could ever get points under that heading.
    The mind boggles.

  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    I'm not even sure why your mind boggles on this one because it makes perfect sense to me. I have no idea why you think that those that don't know how to cook, could score points here.
    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
    I agree @poppy123456.....if you don't  cook (through choice, because you've never learned) and prefer to live of microwave meals then you will score nil points.

    Cooking is a basic skill which everyone can attempt to some degree. It's not like you're being asked whether you can ride a unicycle, or weave a Persian rug!
  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 966 Disability Gamechanger
    On a more serious note, I second @minniemoo 's comments about keeping a diary.

    My condition is variable. When I first applied for PIP, if you had asked me how often I could/ could not carry out a task I wouldn't  have know.

    I kept a diary for a couple of weeks which made filling out the form easier. Also, when I had my assessment I could confidently say, for example, that five or six days a week I couldn't do 'X'. The assessor seemed particularly keen to suggest "twice a week" as an alternative but I stuck to my guns....
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    edited January 2019
    I will do the diary thanks for the advice.

    I looked at the descriptors, and do find them confusing but the engaging with other people I think I would score 2 or 4 points on that, I think more likely 2 tho.

    So 2 points bathing aid, 2 points cooking aid, 2 points toilet aid, 2 points engaging face to face with people.  I think this would be maximum, so if an assessor was awkward accepting any of these descriptors I wouldnt meet the criteria.

    Also I have booked an appointment with my GP to get evidence of all of the above.  The aid's will be visible to the assessor, but at the very least I want evidence from my GP for the engaging with people.
  • YadnadYadnad Posts: 2,856 Member

    cristobal said:
    I agree @poppy123456.....if you don't  cook (through choice, because you've never learned) and prefer to live of microwave meals then you will score nil points.

    Cooking is a basic skill which everyone can attempt to some degree. It's not like you're being asked whether you can ride a unicycle, or weave a Persian rug!

    It's not a choice, it's a fact that many people in this country can't cook for many reasons. One being that they have never been taught how to.
    Those of my generation (males born in the 1940's) see the household chores that mum then wife does the cooking.
    Personally I have never had the need to want to cook.
    Many couples of my daughters' age (38) have wonderful and expensive fitted kitchens but the hob and oven are as new as never been used. Couples today just use the microwave combi unit.

    Neither of my daughters' buy fresh ingredients preferring to use packaged meals and/or takeaways. Both are professionally qualified and work full time.  
     
    The descriptor will not change obviously but to me it appears to be biased only towards those that know/have some prior knowledge of how to cook a simple meal.

    I would add and finish on this note. My first wife back in the early 60's also had no idea how to prepare and cook anything. Her idea of a good meal consisted of prepared potatoes that came in a tin, and tinned peas with a chicken that had been cooked by the supermarket. The tins of potatoes and peas were warmed up still in their tins on the hob for a few minutes and served! She was far from uneducated in that she was a brilliant classical musician, composer and head of music at the local grammar school.
  • minniemoominniemoo Member Posts: 51 Courageous
    Thankyou @cristobal I was successful at my appeal only this week and it was defiantly my diaries that won my case as when you actually sit in front of the panel your mind goes blank (well mine did) you say to yourself if they ask me this il say that but honestly with my diary I could reflect back to the panel my exact good days and bad days and why I couldn’t prepare and cook a freshly made meal from starting to finishing the task also safely as well. Also after pointing out which was also reflected in my diary under the realibilty ctiteria I could not carry out the task safely to an acceptable standard repeatedly and in a reasonable time period yes I was asked how far I could walk? I referred them to my diary do you mean until I’m in pain, tired and could not repeat unless I had a reasonable time to rest in between. A diary is worth its weight in gold answers the majority of their questions 😊
  • minniemoominniemoo Member Posts: 51 Courageous
    worried33 said:
    I will do the diary thanks for the advice.

    I looked at the descriptors, and do find them confusing but the engaging with other people I think I would score 2 or 4 points on that, I think more likely 2 tho.

    So 2 points bathing aid, 2 points cooking aid, 2 points toilet aid, 2 points engaging face to face with people.  I think this would be maximum, so if an assessor was awkward accepting any of these descriptors I wouldnt meet the criteria.

    Also I have booked an appointment with my GP to get evidence of all of the above.  The aid's will be visible to the assessor, but at the very least I want evidence from my GP for the engaging with people.

  • minniemoominniemoo Member Posts: 51 Courageous
    Hi @worried33 just a little note they might ask you who issued your aids and when as people can purchase there own from a mobility shop so if they have been issued via physio etc; see if you can get evidence of this I had a walking aid assement at home so I sent in the letter with my info hope this helps x 
  • YadnadYadnad Posts: 2,856 Member
    You will probably have to demonstrate that all of these aids have been acquired for need and not for choice.
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    The aids were provided via a occupational therapist, I also have regular safety checks on the bath lift from the company, I will get proof of this, thanks for the warning.
  • minniemoominniemoo Member Posts: 51 Courageous
    Your very your very welcome 😊
  • YadnadYadnad Posts: 2,856 Member
    edited January 2019
    worried33 said:
    The aids were provided via a occupational therapist, I also have regular safety checks on the bath lift from the company, I will get proof of this, thanks for the warning.
    So do I. They check the chair about once a year. All of my equipment came via Social Services. However even that being the case the assessor and agreed by the DWP that the aids I have were not based on need but on choice. Their opinion regarding the bath chair for example was that I am able to get into and out of an un-adapted bath as evidenced by the MSE carried out at the assessment centre - legs and arms were fully functional with sufficient strength being observed which is quite true. What was never tested was my back and hips which I cannot prove to be the root cause of my difficulties.
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    Well if they decide to be that awkward I will most definitely take silly points like that to tribunal, I mean any awkward assessor could rule that every single person in theory has aids by choice, I mean you can choose to not have a bath right and as such not have the aids, this just seems a silly and petty way to deny people benefits.

    So if you consider I can choose to not have a bath, I suppose it could be considered its by choice.
  • YadnadYadnad Posts: 2,856 Member
    worried33 said:
    Well if they decide to be that awkward I will most definitely take silly points like that to tribunal, I mean any awkward assessor could rule that every single person in theory has aids by choice, I mean you can choose to not have a bath right and as such not have the aids, this just seems a silly and petty way to deny people benefits.

    So if you consider I can choose to not have a bath, I suppose it could be considered its by choice.
    That's not what the assessor said.
    There was no dispute that the aids exist, the assessor agreed with that. But, they didn't believe that I cannot get into and out of an unadapted bath. They reported that there was nothing wrong with my legs and arms so no reason why I need that aid. To put it simply the bath aid was provided because it made things easier for me to have it - it was a choice not a physical necessity.


  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    edited February 2019
    After what happened on my DLA home visit I am not surprised I guess, I hoped you appealed and won the appeal.

    Did you do that?

    My GP has agreed to provide what evidence is necessary in "her own words".

    I am aware that may well get ignored, after all, if I have a f2f it will mean they not prepared to take mine and the GPs word for it.

    Do claimants have the option for a recorded assessment on PIP?
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger

    Taken from the above link and all assessments are the same, whether it's ESA or PIP.

    Should you wish, you may use your own equipment to record the face-to-face consultation. This must be undertaken in line with the following DWP rules:

    • You need to notify us before your appointment that you will like to record your assessment by calling our Enquiry Centre on 0808 1788 114.
    • You will need to provide your own audio-recording equipment. Your recording equipment must be able to produce two identical copies of the recording at the end of the assessment, either on audio cassette or CD. Mobile phones and laptops are not suitable mediums for recording assessments.
    • You will need to give one copy of the recording to the assessor, at the end of the appointment.
    • You will need to sign an agreement that sets out what you are and are not allowed to do with the recording.
    • We will retain a copy of the recording for a maximum of 14 months, at which point it will be destroyed. We do not pass on the recordings to the DWP and they are not used in determining your entitlement or award.
    • Should you attempt to record the assessment without having contact us first and agreeing to the above guidelines, then your assessment is likely to be stopped and we may return your case to the DWP.



    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.
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    Interesting, for ESA its different, on ESA they supply the equipment.  Thanks.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Yes they will record an ESA assessment, if you ask. You may have to wait longer for the assessment though. You can also record it yourself with permission and the same rules apply above, if you do. They don't record PIP assessments for you.
    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.
  • YadnadYadnad Posts: 2,856 Member
    Yes they will record an ESA assessment, if you ask. You may have to wait longer for the assessment though. You can also record it yourself with permission and the same rules apply above, if you do. They don't record PIP assessments for you.
    And why should they? Just imagine having to fund enough recorders for every assessing centre and for every assessor, every day. Who would you think would pick up the tab for that lot - yes us the taxpayers!
  • minniemoominniemoo Member Posts: 51 Courageous
    @Yadnad I understand what your saying but unfortunately because of a lot of lies that are written by the assessor (not all) this may have to be the way forward it happened to me they came into my home and the blaintant lies that where written unbelievable !! 
  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 966 Disability Gamechanger
    Yadnad said:
    Yes they will record an ESA assessment, if you ask. You may have to wait longer for the assessment though. You can also record it yourself with permission and the same rules apply above, if you do. They don't record PIP assessments for you.
    And why should they? Just imagine having to fund enough recorders for every assessing centre and for every assessor, every day. Who would you think would pick up the tab for that lot - yes us the taxpayers!
    Why should they?

    For quality control. How can they check to see whether the assessor is good/bad, what their interview technique is like, whether they need further training, if they don't have a recording of the interview?

  • YadnadYadnad Posts: 2,856 Member
    cristobal said:



    Why should they?

    For quality control. How can they check to see whether the assessor is good/bad, what their interview technique is like, whether they need further training, if they don't have a recording of the interview?
    If you are seriously suggesting that assessors are recorded at every assessment I doubt that many would want to work under those conditions. There has to be trust between employer and employee.
     
  • minniemoominniemoo Member Posts: 51 Courageous
    It’s nothing new anyway any call centre , council, banks, inc DWP , all live calls are recorded for quality call monitoring that can be used in a training environment or to be used as proof of what has been said face to face is no different 
  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 966 Disability Gamechanger
    @yadnad ..going slightly off-topic here for which I apologise...

    It is a serious suggestion, based on my experience in a previous employment where on occasions I had to QC interviews.
    When you say "under those conditions" you'll find that most people nowadays aren't bothered about being tape recorded - it's just the modern way and not a question of trust at all. Monitoring happens in a lot of jobs.

    Prior to tape recording the only other option was to sit in on the interview...


  • STANDUPOAPSTANDUPOAP Posts: 60 Member
    Sorry, but that's not great advice to base filling out the form on your worst day.  PIP isn't about your worst days. It's how you are 50% of the time based on a 12 month period.

    If someone fills out their form based on their worst day and when it comes to their face to face assessment they're having one of their good days then the HCP will immediately see through this and think "well if that's their bad day, they can't be as bad as they said they were"

    Always tell the truth and nothing more.
    So negative
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Sorry, but that's not great advice to base filling out the form on your worst day.  PIP isn't about your worst days. It's how you are 50% of the time based on a 12 month period.

    If someone fills out their form based on their worst day and when it comes to their face to face assessment they're having one of their good days then the HCP will immediately see through this and think "well if that's their bad day, they can't be as bad as they said they were"

    Always tell the truth and nothing more.
    So negative
    Would you like to give some reasons why my comment was in your opinion, so negative?

    I claim benefits myself, the advice i give here comes from my heart and from my own personal experiences in dealing with claiming benefits myself for multiple years. I have researched for years to gain the knowledge i now have and i would never knowingly give any incorrect or negative advice.

    My advice in my post still stands, never ever fill out a form or attend a face to face assessment and base it on your worst day!
    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.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    ilovecats said:

    Poppy is far from negative. She is one of the few people who always provides sound and regular advice based on fact and not popular opinion. She is always supportive so perhaps you may wish to rethink your opinion, especially as your own posts have been reported many times for aggression and incoherence.
    @ilovecats thank you very much for your support, much appreciated!!
    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.
  • YadnadYadnad Posts: 2,856 Member
    edited February 2019
    cristobal said:
    @yadnad ..going slightly off-topic here for which I apologise...

    It is a serious suggestion, based on my experience in a previous employment where on occasions I had to QC interviews.
    When you say "under those conditions" you'll find that most people nowadays aren't bothered about being tape recorded - it's just the modern way and not a question of trust at all. Monitoring happens in a lot of jobs.

    Prior to tape recording the only other option was to sit in on the interview...

    For a start, the ESA assessments were only available to be recorded for the benefit of the claimant - it was never the case that it was used to QC the interviewer. The argument being put forward here is that the recording of assessments is being suggested to control in some way what the assessor does. Are we actually wanting the assessment to be recorded and then audited only to make sure that the assessor does their job properly? If that is the case where is the autonomous position? The assessor much like the DWP decision maker will not be able to form opinion or assumption on anything.

    My last posting within the Civil Service was to the Official Receiver's office as an examiner.

    At no time was it ever suggested that whilst interviewing individuals my position was subject to QC. Nothing was ever recorded - and still isn't to this day as I worked under the Perjury Act. My report was my report - I recorded what I believed was said and as such I could never be challenged on a QC basis. In fact it was prima facia evidence and as such was the backbone of any court proceedings as I had the individual sign every sheet of the written statement stating that the contents were the whole truth.

    If it was suggested that I had to be watched, listened to then you might as well have employed somebody less senior - my job was to extract the truth in a legal manner and record what I believed was being said.

    As in the case of a PIP assessment 90% of what is recorded by the assessor will be assumption based on what has been said, medical knowledge and intuition. If you want to go the whole hog and carry out a full investigation in order to avoid assumptions then the claimant should be made aware that interviews lasting 4+ hours would not be unusual. My longest was 6 hours without a break until I had the truth.

    The recording for QC purposes of an assessor would and should never happen - you will be taking away the very real reason why they are employed in the first place.
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    edited February 2019
    I am getting CAB to help me with this given the clear problem I will probably face with an assessor making assumptions not in my favour, although I am expected to get the evidence from my GP before hand whilst my GP wanted the welfare advisors to request the evidence themselves, so I will have to get it myself as they want it ready for my face to face.

    The idea of me wanting the recording is so that if I go to tribunal there is the audio evidence of the assessment in addition to other evidence, when I had a DLA tribunal several years ago, the assessor made several notes that didnt match what I told them and even lied about my property, I provided proof of the lies about the property to the tribunal, the tribunal then decided the assessor wasnt credible and awarded me DLA based on my audio evidence alone at the tribunal, I didnt bring any new paper evidence to the tribunal (other than the proof that the assessor lied about the size and steps of my property), the only evidence they had was what was supplied to the DWP and my audio evidence.

    However given the way the recordings work for PIP I am not sure if I will bother with requesting one.

    It is interesting that the document that has information on the PIP recordings also states that the recordings are not used by the decision makers, yet on my 2nd ESA WCA the DM had listened to my recording, rang me up, asked me to clarify some things she heard on the recording and then based on the recording and that phone call awarded me a SG descriptor (the atos report recommended FFW and gave one 3 point descriptor), she told me this directly on the phone.  Is that different on ESA assessments as well or was that DM not following policy?
  • YadnadYadnad Posts: 2,856 Member
    worried33 said:
    I am getting CAB to help me with this given the clear problem I will probably face with an assessor making assumptions not in my favour, although I am expected to get the evidence from my GP before hand whilst my GP wanted the welfare advisors to request the evidence themselves, so I will have to get it myself as they want it ready for my face to face.

    The idea of me wanting the recording is so that if I go to tribunal there is the audio evidence of the assessment in addition to other evidence, when I had a DLA tribunal several years ago, the assessor made several notes that didnt match what I told them and even lied about my property, I provided proof of the lies about the property to the tribunal, the tribunal then decided the assessor wasnt credible and awarded me DLA based on my audio evidence alone at the tribunal, I didnt bring any new paper evidence to the tribunal (other than the proof that the assessor lied about the size and steps of my property), the only evidence they had was what was supplied to the DWP and my audio evidence.

    However given the way the recordings work for PIP I am not sure if I will bother with requesting one.

    It is interesting that the document that has information on the PIP recordings also states that the recordings are not used by the decision makers, yet on my 2nd ESA WCA the DM had listened to my recording, rang me up, asked me to clarify some things she heard on the recording and then based on the recording and that phone call awarded me a SG descriptor (the atos report recommended FFW and gave one 3 point descriptor), she told me this directly on the phone.  Is that different on ESA assessments as well or was that DM not following policy?
    Absolutely. With ESA you have the right to have the assessment recorded and they will supply the equipment to carry it out. Also the decision maker is well within their rights to listen to that recording and recordings of telephone conversations.
    Now with PIP, the government decided that they will not offer the same. You have to provide the equipment and any recordings made that are official ones, will have to be transcribed at your cost for them to read it instead of listening to it.

    The only reason why ESA went that way was because of case law that forced them to offer that service. 
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    I went to CAB and its one of the most horrible experiences I have had.

    40 mins standing in absolute agony just to book myself in, then when I had the meeting it was out in the open in a cubicle not private room which I wasnt comfortable with as its my private business.

    They wanted to just put everything for worst days to maximise points going against the advice given here.

    I am still waiting for what the doctor puts on the letter and having to delay the form return a 3rd time now probably as well.

    The issue with my doctor is she wants CAB or another welfare advisor to send her a letter specifically stating what evidence is needed, they are refusing to do this so I had to write a letter to my GP instead and gave her a form that the Leicester city welfare team gave me to give her, that asks her to tick the descriptor boxes and then providing a medical reason for the tick.  I feel like I have mostly done it all myself anyway.  I was in such a mental state with my anxiety I couldnt even open the door myself on my way out, luckily the uber taxi came extremely quickly from around the corner as also the council removed the benches from the area so was nowhere to sit down.
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    edited July 2019
    Hi guys, after a long wait my home visit is next week.

    I am confused tho, what was the point of supplying medical evidence if they still do the face to face, does it mean the evidence is completely disregarded, or is the home visit to supplement the evidence I provided?

    I told my GP and she said she is insulted and insists her medical declaration should be sufficient.

    Also I read the form before submitting it, they didnt put the extreme stuff on there I disagreed with.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    It's very rare that a GP will know how your conditions affect you against the PIP descriptors, which is why letters from a GP aren't the best evidence.
    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.
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    Poppy In my case my GP actually filled in a descriptor form so specifically did what you said is very rare.

    I have had the assessment now, the assessor seemed understanding but I know appearances can be deceiving so will see.

    I accept tho for sure that its likely the form filled in by me and cab did not exactly match up to what my GP was saying, that was never likely from the start, as my GP didnt fill in her form until after I took the form to cab.
  • pollyanna1052pollyanna1052 Member Posts: 1,998 Disability Gamechanger
    just received my PIP application form, after being on DLA for 19 years....I find it a daunting task. But I do have a benefits worker to help me with it.

    As regards basing your answers on a bad day ...seems not the right way to go to me.

    There are 3 possible replies to each question;
    yes, no or sometimes.
    So sometimes must be the right answer to give and there is space to explain on each page, so why not use that?
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    just received my PIP application form, after being on DLA for 19 years....I find it a daunting task. But I do have a benefits worker to help me with it.

    As regards basing your answers on a bad day ...seems not the right way to go to me.

    There are 3 possible replies to each question;
    yes, no or sometimes.
    So sometimes must be the right answer to give and there is space to explain on each page, so why not use that?
    Basing your answers on your worst day is definitely not how you should be filling out the form. If you do this and you attend a face to face assessment when it's one of your better days then the HCP will see straight through that and most likely think that "if this is your worst day then you can't be as bad as you say you are"

    Always be honest and explain exactly how your conditions affect you against the PIP descriptors. Putting as much information as possible and adding 2-3 real life examples of what happened the last time you attempted that activity for each descriptor that applies to you.

    Send any relevant evidence you have to support your claim because they rarely contact anyone for this. You can also request your DLA file to be used as evidence.

    Expect a face to face assessment because most people them.

    Your DLA will continue until a decisions been made on the PIP providing that form is returned on time. You can request a further 14 days to return the form. Good luck.
    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.
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    edited July 2019
    Having had the assessment and dont know what to make of it as keep thinking about it, after ESA assessments I always have a feeling on what the assessor is thinking, usually they give big tell signs and also sometimes tell me what their recommendation is.

    At the end of it the assessor asked me how I think it went which I thought was an odd question, he had no interest in seeing any of my aids, he did ask me how I got the aids (probably to determine if I need them).  Physical examination was minimal, just the testing arm/hand strength thing.  Most of questions were concentrated on diagnosis which I dont like such a heavy emphasis been put upon.

    He told me I will hear from the DWP in 4-8 weeks, and gave absolutely no indication of what he recommended.

    When is the earliest I can ask the DWP for the report?
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    They aren't supposed to mention anything about any recommendations so i wouldn't look into that too much.

    Wait about a week and then ring for the report.
    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.
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    Ok I will give it a try on thursday. (had on friday).
  • WaylayWaylay Member Posts: 922 Pioneering
    (Likely not of interest to OP)
    @clp You wrote:
    <How I react to pain is different to 20 years ago then I hadnt experienced it but now I have so a 10 for me means pain bad enough to pass out.  Generally not most people's experience.>

    YES!! I think about this every time I have to rate my pain. Before I had to have emergency surgery to remove my gall bladder, my average daily pain from chronic knee issues was an 8. After I'd recovered from surgery? 6.

    Then I slipped a disc in my spine. Knees? 4. If I noticed them at all. 

    After the chronic pain began (post spinal surgery), nothing else mattered.

    Now, aftervarious interventions, pain management techniques, and a lot of time? I never say 10. The days-long back spasm that landed me on inpatient IV morphine for 5 days? 9.5. I'm well aware that there is always worse pain out there (although I hope never to experience it!).

    How on earth do medical staff interpret our answers to "rate your pain out of 10" given my individual experience, never mind the fact that there are many other people out there in horrendous pain?
  • pollyanna1052pollyanna1052 Member Posts: 1,998 Disability Gamechanger
    just received my PIP application form, after being on DLA for 19 years....I find it a daunting task. But I do have a benefits worker to help me with it.

    As regards basing your answers on a bad day ...seems not the right way to go to me.

    There are 3 possible replies to each question;
    yes, no or sometimes.
    So sometimes must be the right answer to give and there is space to explain on each page, so why not use that?
    UPDATE

    form filled in for me by benefit expert! just sorting copies and will be posting it off tomorrow.....then wait and see....
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    no report yet arrived at the DWP.
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Scope Posts: 10,652 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @worried33, thank you for updating us. I hope you aren't waiting much longer!

    That's great news @pollyanna1052, I'll keep my fingers crossed!
    Community Partner
    Scope

    Tell us what you think?
    Complete our feedback form to help us to improve your community.
  • pcoventrypcoventry Member Posts: 149 Pioneering
    edited July 2019
    When you get your report make sure it's accurate to the best of your knowledge. I've had to ask for a MR as the DA left off the whole "unable to go out by himself" bit and gave me 0 points in that descriptor.  I have my Tribunal forms ready to go if it's still the same. I also have a Tribunal going for my WCA because my Neurologist DA who did my WCA is SuperGirl, able to see into people's bodies and do a full medical assessment without the need to ACTUALLY go near me!

    The point? don't trust any of them - they are all slimy toads!
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    edited July 2019
    Still isnt there, they said they dont mind me ringing to ask for it but want me to leave it at least a week between each call.

    Why are the DWP so slow? The report is done on day of assessment and a week and half later its not put in the system?
  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 587 Listener
    I'm not 100% sure it is the DWP, in my case we left it three weeks before asking for the report, the DWP adviser was puzzled as they had not yet received the report, they requested it and I got a text the next day to say they had now received the report.
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    It was delayed two and half weeks for audit.

    I got the text on the morning I planned to ring which was wednesday two days ago, rang and they sent it out, luckily it came quickly and I have it here now.

    I think the audit process is dodgy but it looks like that isnt a fight I need to take as the report is good news.

    I went from back to front and seen a prognosis period which was a good sign (you dont give one for 0 points),

    One descriptor I wanted wasnt there, but luckily he gave another one instead.

    8 points care, 8 points mobility. 4 years.

    So hopefully poppy is right and this gets rubber stamped in two months or so time.
  • buzzerbuzzer Member Posts: 107 Pioneering
    @worried33 that’s good news, hopefully the decision letter comes soon. 

    Try & be kind to one another even if we may have different views. 

  • HartleyHartley Posts: 114 Courageous
    ilovecats said:
    Former assessor here.

    It is INCREDIBLY obvious when CAB have filled out the form because it is normally full of trigger words and outlandish claims of which there is normally zero evidence to back it up.

    Furthermore, when the person gets to interview, they normally have no clue and cannot remember what was written on the form and normally their answers are not consistent at all.

    Real example
    e.g - Activity 11
    CAB wrote - due to schizophrenia he is unable to go outside due to overwhelming psychological distress and the violent risk he poses to himself and other people of the majority of days because of the negative voices in his head

    During interview - my MH condition is well managed now as they finally got my medication right so I’ve been dicharged from the CMHT and my wife is a great help. We go for walks with the dogs as it calms me down when I’m having a bad day. I haven’t heard voices in about 6 months but I know they aren’t real so if I hear them I’ll tell my GP.

    By all means get CAB to help you if you don’t understand the form but don’t let them lie on the form for you. Assessors see straight through it.
    So can i ask...where can i find more accurate guidance on how to answer the questions asked.As i am Autistic and do not always understand whats asked and nuance.I tend to see things far deeper than they are ,therefore missing the very meaning of the questions asked.

    Any advice would be welcomed as i need to send form back by 31st Aug 2019 
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    edited August 2019
    Sorry I need to correct.

    I checked the report again and its 8 for care and 4 for mobility, now the care award is much more than mobility (qualifies for SDP also?), I am not greedy so if the DM rubber stamps it I will not appeal.  However his reasoning for not awarding a second descriptor (related to mobiity) I just noticed, is invalid, his reasoning been I regurly go out for walks or rather exercise as what I do can barely be passed as walking so must not be anxious, he missed out that I do it at 3am to avoid the public and its not regular.

    So if the DM rubber stamps it, I still consider it great news, was expecting 0-6 points on both to be honest, but I think I will attempt via a SAR request 'once' to capita to see if I can get the unaudited report as I am curious if any descriptors got downgraded, however I wont take any action based on that report and if the SAR fails I will leave it be.

    I have a horrible feeling tho a descriptor will be removed by DM just so I disqualify.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    It's very rare they go against the report, i think i've only ever heard a couple of stories where this has happened.

    For the SDP then you need to be claiming either ESA/JSA Income Related or Income support, live alone or be classed as living alone. Full criteria here. https://www.entitledto.co.uk/help/severe-disability-premium

    If you think you qualify then once you've had the decision if you're awarded daily living then ring either ESA/JSA or Income support and ask to fill out the IS10 form over the phone. Claims take a couple of weeks and you'll receive it from the start of your PIP award.
    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.
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    edited August 2019
    Yeah I get ESA SG with IR topups so I fit that requirement, thanks for responding poppy. I live by myself and no one is registered as carer for me.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    worried33 said:
    Yeah I get ESA SG with IR topups so I fit that requirement, thanks for responding poppy. I live by myself and no one is registered as carer for me.
    Based on that you'll qualify and the quickest and easiest way to apply is over the phone, if you can do that of course. Once you do claim it then it will mean that any changes of circumstances will disregard you from claiming Universal Credit up until January 2021, so even better news.
    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.
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    edited August 2019
    So I got the text just over 2 weeks ago they had my report, and of course have the report copy here.

    Yet the DWP only just sent me a letter to say they have the information they need, has it really took them 2 weeks to pass on the report to a DM waiting pile, or do they just delay these letters to try and artificially shrink the visible waiting time for a DM?
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Scope Posts: 10,652 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @worried33, this is just an automated letter that has been sent out. The delay would be with the system updating where your report is. :)
    Community Partner
    Scope

    Tell us what you think?
    Complete our feedback form to help us to improve your community.
  • pollyanna1052pollyanna1052 Member Posts: 1,998 Disability Gamechanger

    Taken from the above link and all assessments are the same, whether it's ESA or PIP.

    Should you wish, you may use your own equipment to record the face-to-face consultation. This must be undertaken in line with the following DWP rules:

    • You need to notify us before your appointment that you will like to record your assessment by calling our Enquiry Centre on 0808 1788 114.
    • You will need to provide your own audio-recording equipment. Your recording equipment must be able to produce two identical copies of the recording at the end of the assessment, either on audio cassette or CD. Mobile phones and laptops are not suitable mediums for recording assessments.
    • You will need to give one copy of the recording to the assessor, at the end of the appointment.
    • You will need to sign an agreement that sets out what you are and are not allowed to do with the recording.
    • We will retain a copy of the recording for a maximum of 14 months, at which point it will be destroyed. We do not pass on the recordings to the DWP and they are not used in determining your entitlement or award.
    • Should you attempt to record the assessment without having contact us first and agreeing to the above guidelines, then your assessment is likely to be stopped and we may return your case to the DWP.



    If the recordings are not passed to DWP and are not used in determining your award.......what is the point in making recordings?
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    So you have a audible record of what was said during the assessment.

    Even with that policy tho, I expect the assessor knowing they been recorded is perhaps a bit more likely to take verbal supplied evidence seriously as there will be evidence if its ignored.
  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 966 Disability Gamechanger
    "Even with that policy tho, I expect the assessor knowing they been recorded is perhaps a bit more likely to take verbal supplied evidence seriously as there will be evidence if its ignored."

    @worried33 - I thought the same as you...but we were both completely wrong....

    Having a recording did enable me to get the errors corrected - with a bit of a struggle...
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    Well I didnt say it would be a sure thing.
  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 966 Disability Gamechanger
    @ilovecats - when I listened back to the recording I found that I had said that I drive a manual car (I don't - it's automatic) and that I hadn't seen my GP for a month (I saw her the previous day)...
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    edited August 2019
    I lovecats an example would be.

    Assessor puts.

    I justify this descriptor choice because Mr X says he can do Y and Z.
    Then on the recording it shows Mr X didnt say anything as such.

    On my ESA (and IB) assessments on every single assessment the assessor claimed I said something I didnt, when I started getting them routinely recorded as if by magic these claims stopped.  They can of course still ignore things you say but they stopped pretending I said things I didnt.  Also after one of my recorded ESA assessments I had a DM ring me and ask me to verify what they heard on the recording was accurate.  Then they told me there and then they were overruling the assessors recommendation, that call was interesting as supposedly the DM's dont get the recordings.

    I didnt get my PIP assessment recorded tho as on PIP it is required for the claimant to provide professional recording equipment, so I didnt bother.

    I am not saying tho that assessors make things up out of nowhere, but rather they have a habit of translating something said into something else, so e.g. if they ask do you wash dishes yourself they may translate that into you declaring you can stand up without problems, when the actual question was never asked.
  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 966 Disability Gamechanger
    edited August 2019
    worried33 said:

    I am not saying tho that assessors make things up out of nowhere, but rather they have a habit of translating something said into something else, so e.g. if they ask do you wash dishes yourself they may translate that into you declaring you can stand up without problems, when the actual question was never asked.
    @worried33 - I agree ....

    They're obviously trained to avoid asking direct questions for some reason - I assume that this is to try and trip people up who were spinning a yarn and hadn't worked out their story beforehand.

    If you want to know if someone can stand up without problems then it's fairly obvious what question you need to ask.

    If you ask whether you can wash the dishes this tells you very little, apart from that someone can wash the dishes...whether you bend down to load a dishwasher, stand at the kitchen sink or sit on a chair at the kitchen sink, how long it takes all need further questions.

    If I remember correctly doing the dishes isn't one of the descriptors anyway


  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    edited August 2019
    Yeah my example was from ESA which I think does have a standing related descriptor.

    An example for PIP might be "so you take out the bin for the refuse collection then?" without specifying how often, and how far you have to walk to do that, and then make assumptions for the specifics from the answer.

    They could also possibly spin that answer to the claimant declaring they have no anxiety issue going outside.
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    I rang to see if a decision has been made and got told 1 maybe 2 more weeks as current processing times are 4-5 weeks.

    Annoying as it means without that audit I probably would have a decision by now.
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Scope Posts: 10,652 Disability Gamechanger
    I understand how hard it can be waiting for these decisions! I really hope it is soon @worried33
    Community Partner
    Scope

    Tell us what you think?
    Complete our feedback form to help us to improve your community.
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    edited September 2019
    Decision has been made, same as recommendation except an extra year.

    Glad this anxiety is over.

    Found out on phone, letter not arrived yet but decision was made 30 august.

    Also judging by the amount of backdated money I think they accepted my reason for late return of form as it looks like they backdated to january not march.
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Scope Posts: 10,652 Disability Gamechanger
    I'm glad it is now over @worried33, that must be a huge relief! That's great about it being backdated as well!
    Community Partner
    Scope

    Tell us what you think?
    Complete our feedback form to help us to improve your community.
  • SaffySaffy Member Posts: 88 Courageous
    Good job. So pleased it's all over for you and such a positive outcome:D

  • buzzerbuzzer Member Posts: 107 Pioneering
    worried33 said:
    Decision has been made, same as recommendation except an extra year.

    Glad this anxiety is over.

    Found out on phone, letter not arrived yet but decision was made 30 august.

    Also judging by the amount of backdated money I think they accepted my reason for late return of form as it looks like they backdated to january not march.
    Wonderful news for you @worried33

    Try & be kind to one another even if we may have different views. 

  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    edited September 2019
  • CressidaCressida Member Posts: 770 Pioneering
    @worried33 Congratulations! Due to the length of time and energy these applications take it took me a couple of weeks to actually realise that the waiting was over. My actual award also gave me an extra year more than the assessor recommended. I wonder if that's standard practice? 
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    I read in DWP guidelines that the award end date is supposed to be one year after review date (so during review you still have payments), it might be related to that.  I would assume tho it would be the review date given not the award end date.
  • david235david235 Member Posts: 170 Pioneering
    worried33 said:
    I read in DWP guidelines that the award end date is supposed to be one year after review date (so during review you still have payments), it might be related to that.  I would assume tho it would be the review date given not the award end date.
    It is indeed standard practice for the award end date to be some time after the review date, in order to give time for the renewal process and a decision to be reached. The award end date certainly used to be 12 months after the review date, though I believe a different approach is used for awards made by Tribunals.

    It is important to realise that most awards will not run to the end date - they will be superseded at some point during the last year by the renewal decision.


    The approach used by PIP is better than that used for DLA, where you got renewal forms a certain number of weeks before your award end date. Especially if it took you some time to make your renewal claim, it was far from unusual for the DLA award to run out before a renewal decision was made.
  • worried33worried33 Member Posts: 399 Pioneering
    yep I figured that once a new decision is made, then whatever is left on the old award is no longer valid, it would either terminate (if no award given) or be a new award duration based on new award.  They clearly do this just to make sure people have continuity in payments.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Reviews are now taking place 6 months before the award is due to end, not 12 months before.
    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.
  • david235david235 Member Posts: 170 Pioneering
    Reviews are now taking place 6 months before the award is due to end, not 12 months before.
    Thank you for that - I had some awareness of it changing but didn't know the latest figure.
Sign in or join us to comment.