PIP, DLA and AA
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Refused pip again

pashel811pashel811 Member Posts: 4 Listener
I have been refused pip again. It is my second claim, because my osteoarthritis in my thumbs has now been diagnosed as severe and my gp advised me to stop working. My hands have swellings  and deformities and bone  spurs on my wrists.
The assessor saw me for 25 minutes, and asked questions like what books i like to read! 
The letter I received today states that the assessor saw no swellings or deformities in my hands, she didn't once ask to look at them. I have problems making meals and dressing but she stated that I did not look malnourished, unkempt or inappropriately dressed.
Well my partner doesn't leave me to go hungry if im unable to prepare food myself and if only for the sake of common decency he would help me dress!
The list went on and on. Apparently my wrists and hands are strong and show no sign of weakness. The pain is terrible. My wrists ache, all the joints in my fingers feel loose and painful. I cannot lift anything,  all my movements are limited with my hands. Daily life is difficult and I've had to give up all my hobbies, especially sewing as I can't cope with the pain.
No references were made to my GP  and I wonder if she was even consulted.

Replies

  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi,

    As this is your 2nd claim did you request the mandatory reconsideration then Tribunal with the first claim?

    Constantly re-applying and using the same evidence you previously used will very likely see you being constantly refused.

    The only answer here is to request the MR and you have 1 month from the date of the decision to do this. You should put your request in writing stating where you think you should have scored those points and your reasons why. Adding 2-3 examples of what happened the last time you attempted that activity for each descriptor that applies to you.

    Most MR decisions remain the same so you'll most likely have to take it to Tribunal. Appearing in person will give you the best chance of a decision in your favour.

    PIP isn't awarded based on a diagnosis, it's how those conditions affect your ability to carry out daily activity based on the PIP descriptors. It's also not able not being able to work, people claim PIP and work.

    They very rarely contact anyone for any evidence. The onus is on you to make sure it's sent to support your claim.

    This link will help you know what's in your area for help and face to face advice. 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.
  • pashel811pashel811 Member Posts: 4 Listener
    Thanks for your help. I didnt, no, as it has been more than a year since my last claim and I didn't know it would be referred back to.
    I understand people in or out of work can claim it, I just thought it would be more proof of how it affects me that I had to stop work. I think I don't understand the whole system very well. Surely my GP can explain and support my claims better than me alone. I told the assessor, same as the claim form how it affects my daily life, but it was all dismissed and denied. If she had asked i could have shown her the state of my hands, full of lumps and bumps, especially at the base of both thumbs where the severe osteoarthritis is.
    I've been made to feel like a liar. Don't think I can go through it again.
  • drewdundeedrewdundee Member Posts: 49 Courageous
    The old system DLA was done by GP's but these days I am lead to believe GP's have little influence in it. My assessment was all about what i can do, it went well the assessor was honest, but she stuck to the questions she had to ask. I guess I was lucky as the questions she asked were things i mostly had issues with. They don't ask about your disability or what issues you have, only how well you can do these activities as i am sure you know. The whole system is a total farce and only there to make things harder for disabled people. 
  • pashel811pashel811 Member Posts: 4 Listener
    I wasn't really asked any questions. I was in and out so quickly I felt the decision had already been made. And for the life of me I can't understand the relevance of what books i read.
    I also have arthritis in my right knee and big toes. But by looking at me, presumably through x Ray glasses as I was wearing jeans, she could tell there were no problems with my knee or any muscle wastage. Also I have no problems with my neck, spine or shoulders.  Whilst that is reassuring to know, I never said there was!  My main problem is with my hands, and I told her that. Experience has shown me that without use of them,  life is pretty difficult.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Requesting the MR/Tribunal is really the only answer here. Evidence from a GP isn't the best evidence because a GP doesn't really know how your conditions affect you against the PIP descriptors. The only information they will know is what appointments you've had and what medication you take. If a GP knows anything else, it's because a claimant as told them and that's not evidence.

    This link will help you understand the descriptors, what they mean and the criteria. It's long but well worth having a read.

    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
    edited June 2019
    pashel811 said:
     And for the life of me I can't understand the relevance of what books i read.

    @pashel811 - they seem to ask questions that don't relate directly to the descriptors and then use your reply to support what you can/ can't do.

    In the case of reading a book I imagine the assessor will say that you can concentrate for long periods and assimilate information (depending on what book you are reading!), your grip is sufficient to hold the book and repeatedly turn the pages, you have good dexterity, you can sit whilst your reading etc etc...


  • zakbloodzakblood Member Posts: 419 Pioneering
    loaded question etc

    did you open the door by yourself? did you come on your own? did you write your own form and sign it at the desk? did you have paper work with you and give them a copy by hand? i could go on, but tbh you could have done with more support and advice before hand, as it's a minefield and tbh it's not always been this way either, but is getting worse, from a 20+ years thinks he know's it all and failed my last WCA even, lol, so being smart and knowing the pitfalls isn't always the answer either, it's luck on the day and how they feels and see you, or don't if they keep there mind and eyes shut.

    reading as stated above implies you can do what you say you can't, it's all a word game to them.

    you say you have pain in the hands, they say reading a book, holding it for even a few minutes implies you can so aren't ill or unwell, same as do you drive? wash / shower, and it's these sort of loaded question which are aimed to catch you out.

    being unable to do something means you can't a % of the time be able to do it

    https://www.carersuk.org/images/Personal_Independence_Payment_PIP_UK1026_1118_web_version.pdf

    they didn't look at your hands and maybe didn't read any report you had either.

    saying you can't do something when they either see or feel or think you can, you lose, happen'd to me, but not a Pip assessment but had the same remarks, looked ok, well dressed and smart etc and clearly answered questions etc.

    the process now for what you maybe would have received years ago, may have incapacity same as me, now ESA, as the level of disability isn't or maybe isn't high enough to get more, now it's a roll of the dice so yes MR is always best and first port of call, then Tribunal if or when that fails, good luck and sorry for the extra stress and pain your going through, will little empathy and or support, seems the caring part of the UK care system again is somewhat lacking.
  • pashel811pashel811 Member Posts: 4 Listener
    Hi, thank you to everyone who has taken the time to reply.
    I can only conclude the whole system is stacked against the claimant.
    By the way. I do read but I use a Kindle so when I can't hold it, I can pop it up.
    If I had understood the question I would have pointed that out.
    Anyway, thanks again, it was good to be heard.
  • zakbloodzakblood Member Posts: 419 Pioneering
    depending on who you saw,

    this gives a amount of training needed to be suitable to a assessors level of skill and ability, as per 2014 standards

    https://www.disabilityrightsuk.org/sites/default/files/pdf/nurses.pdf

    there's more for the doctors, so as most get a nurse, in the end you can't blame them for having little understanding on complex needs, for there's so many in the disabled range, anyone who isn't a full time worker in it, has little to know chance of understanding only just the smallest part of what is a vast and very complex area, and just another reasons why so many mistakes are made and why the tests aren't fit for purpose for everyone, as one group of assessors doesn't suit all groups of disabled, with many having never even heard of the condition and there first chance to experience it, is an eye opener to some, meaning you either fail or win on a luck of the draw basis and your look & answers on the day.

    and tbh it's always good to hear others thoughts, so thanks for sharing
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