Provide as much evidence as you can. I would also suggest contacting your local Citizens Advice (CAB)
Our members will also be able to help you further.
Best of luck and keep us updated.
First of all I’d recommend getting hold of the PIP descriptors so that you know what you’re applying for….I never seem to post the link properly but search “ DWP PIP Guidance” or similar.
Next think about which of the descriptors you can’t do, or are unable to do fully. Give some examples. If you need to use an aid say why, and also if you can’t do something why you cannot use an aid.
I typed these on a separate sheet, and attached them. Put Name and NI number on each sheet.
Keep a diary. This will be good evidence and can help you be certain in your own mind as to what your limitations are, particularly if it varies from day to day.
Remember what counts is what happens for the majority of the time e.g. if you can walk xx metres four days per week but couldn’t manage it on the other three you would be classed as being able to walk xx.
1 - Identify those activities you have any kind of issue with.
2 - Identify whether the issue is that you can’t do the activity at
all; can’t do it reliably, can’t do it repeatedly; can’t do it safely or
in a reasonable time. If any one of these apply to an activity then you
can’t do it at all and it’s okay to say so. However, as well as ticking
the box saying you either can’t do it all need help or aids, remember
to say which one(s) of the above apply.
3 - Have a copy of the PIP points scoring system in front of you. The
questions in the form don’t match the points scoring so it’s as well to
be aware of this.
4 - For every activity you think you score points you need to think
of 2 or 3 recent examples of incidents when you tried to do that
activity. Describe in detail the what, when, where, who witnessed, what
happened next etc. Don’t skimp on detail. It’s often better to type it
up in Word first rather than write in the form. If it won’t fit then add
extra sheets, remembering to put your name, NINO and the question to
which the answer relates on each sheet. Alternatively, reduce the font
and cut and paste the Word answer into the form. Note that doing point 4
correctly is far more important than supporting medical evidence in
5 - Use the extra information section to describe your conditions in
detail; the specifics of the symptoms and especially how they interact.
Also, if applicable, use it to spell out that you want an ongoing
award and explain why e.g. your condition is degenerative, you’ve done
all the adapting you’re going to do etc. If you don’t specifically ask
for an ongoing award you will almost always get a short one.
6 - Assuming your diagnoses are not in question and ditto the
prognosis then ask yourself what gap in your evidence does medical
evidence fill in terms of points scoring? If you can’t answer that then
consider not sending it in. 10 reports all saying the same thing are no
better than 1. Volume of evidence, especially medical evidence, doesn’t
win you PIP and medical evidence is also not as helpful as your own
anecdotes unless you are someone who lacks insight into their own
condition e.g. someone with a learning disability or certain mental
health conditions. Clarity and focus of evidence wins you PIP.
7 - Whilst PIP ask for the form back in 4 weeks they will grant a 2
week extension without question if you ask. However, there is no actual
deadline for returning the form in the legislation so that deadline can
be extended if reasonable. What could be more reasonable than having a
medical condition which slows you down? Ask for an extension as a
reasonable adjustment under EA 10 if applicable.
8 - By all means get an advice service to do this but if they don’t
do most of the above then you’re better off doing it yourself. Welfare
rights advisers do not have some magic form of words they use and their
knowledge of the law, guidance or case law only occasionally comes into
play at the firm filling stage. No-one especially likes form filling
but unless your impairment creates specific difficulties with form
filling there’s no reason you can’t do it yourself. It’s all about the