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.

People's experience of Mandatory Reconsideration

SystemSystem Posts: 519

Scope community team

edited August 2019 in PIP, DLA and AA
This discussion was created from comments split from: Pip online appeal.

Replies

  • LyndaMcKLyndaMcK Member Posts: 25 Connected
    I have just sent off a Mandatory Review for PIP award, (recorded delivery).
    I am so anxious that I am going to lose the award given to me 3 years ago.
    It would be good to hear how others got on at this stage.
  • jannybjannyb Member Posts: 39 Courageous
    Mine was a no lynda (sorry)
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    HI,

    There's just an 18% chance of the decision changing at MR stage so it's quite low. Most people have to take it to Tribunal. Hopefully you'll be in the 18%, 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.
  • LyndaMcKLyndaMcK Member Posts: 25 Connected
    Thank you Poppy.😥
  • saz11saz11 Member Posts: 121 Pioneering
    @LyndaMcK

    Hi 
    I have been through two MR for different descriptors  , fortunately both times i was successful. My most recent was overturned on 31st July 19.

     I waited in total 10 weeks from initial phone call to request MR for the decision and backdated money but this is not always the case , timescales vary depending on backlogs i believe.

    I wish you luck 🙂

  • tinka1992tinka1992 Member Posts: 97 Connected
    Hi I'm going through MR still waiting I have been waiting 10weeks 
  • boriswhoboriswho Posts: 153 Member
    Mine was a no. My mr was shocking I done 1St time 
    By me 🤔
    Detail is key I think but @ a minimal amount they don't have time to read loads of bull 
    And be straight to the point.
    Why you can't do what stops you and definitely after effects. 
  • ricky1040ricky1040 Member Posts: 99 Pioneering
    Um from what I can gather very very few get the nod at this stage but it's good to have all the information come tribunal. 
  • boriswhoboriswho Posts: 153 Member
    Yeah be prepared with details, I thought medical evidence would have been enough and a diary of problems but diary must have what criteria's of pip form you had problems with so try to identify what problems you have what/where/why etc

  • tinka1992tinka1992 Member Posts: 97 Connected
    I agree I only seen few positives on hear for a mr 
  • JurphJurph Member Posts: 346 Pioneering
    Mine was a no too. Sorry.

    I won at tribunal though.
  • LyndaMcKLyndaMcK Member Posts: 25 Connected
    tinka1992 said:
    Hi I'm going through MR still waiting I have been waiting 10weeks 
    Tinka - 10 weeks???
    That's shocking!! Did you not even get an acknowledgement that they have received it??
  • tinka1992tinka1992 Member Posts: 97 Connected
    Yea so In June i request over phone and my worker done it in writing plus 3 other works send information and they got all this within few weeks phoned last week they said they have had send things bk to assessment centre as the case manger wasnt happy with what she wrote twice so waiting for they said phone Wednesday 
  • AmandaBBAmandaBB Member Posts: 2 Connected
    Hi, I lost my MR in Feb and went down the tribunal route assisted by CAB. My g.p and consultant psychiatrist both wrote supporting evidence letters and the DWP reinstated my PIP with backpay in May without the need for a tribunal. 
    Be prepared to lose your MR, and gather as much evidence on how your disabilities affect you day to day. 
    Also if your moving from DLA to PIP, get advice on filling out your form because the descriptors are different x

  • tinka1992tinka1992 Member Posts: 97 Connected
    I called them up they didnt go through security with me but said to ring back 2morrow morning at 8oclock for decison on my mr I'm.confused 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    tinka1992 said:
    I called them up they didnt go through security with me but said to ring back 2morrow morning at 8oclock for decison on my mr I'm.confused 
    Not going through security means they most likely didn't even look at the screen. :o
    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.
  • tinka1992tinka1992 Member Posts: 97 Connected
    He asked for my name natural insurance number and postcode and date birth that's it 
  • tinka1992tinka1992 Member Posts: 97 Connected
    But he didnt ask what they normally ask lol 
  • tinka1992tinka1992 Member Posts: 97 Connected
    I think he didnt look and they made decisions he didnt wanna tell me today as I said I got told ring back wednesdsy so he said why cant u ring back Wednesday at 8am same thing if I call now 
  • tinka1992tinka1992 Member Posts: 97 Connected
    I'm not gonna ring again now I'm just gonna ring at 8am in morning then I'f nothing I'm gonna leave it till I get letter as it's making my ainexty bad 
  • LyndaMcKLyndaMcK Member Posts: 25 Connected
    AmandaBB said:
    Hi, I lost my MR in Feb and went down the tribunal route assisted by CAB. My g.p and consultant psychiatrist both wrote supporting evidence letters and the DWP reinstated my PIP with backpay in May without the need for a tribunal. 
    Be prepared to lose your MR, and gather as much evidence on how your disabilities affect you day to day. 
    Also if your moving from DLA to PIP, get advice on filling out your form because the descriptors are different x

    Amanda,
    Thank you for sharing your story. I am delighted that your appeal was honoured, even before going to tribunal!👍
    I have been discharged from Psychiatric Care because I am stable, but I am still left with very restrictive and oppressive symtoms. However, this is very hard to 'prove'.
    Also, my doctor doesn't know what I am like day to day, and being a new doctor she can only go on notes from the past. My daughter wrote a supporting letter, but that probably won't hold much weight.😥
    I will just have to wait and see.
  • davetdavet Member Posts: 77 Courageous
    My MR was a no but what staggered me was I sent my request with additional information by recorded delivery, I checked on the royal mail site and found it was delivered and signed for at 16.30 on the same day that the decision letter was typed and posted, which to me, assuming they work to 5pm gave only one hour and a half for the decision maker to review my request and case, make their decision, then get it to a typist to type and get in the post before going home, I did actually take it to a tribunal later at which I was successful
  • LyndaMcKLyndaMcK Member Posts: 25 Connected
    tinka1992 said:
    I called them up they didnt go through security with me but said to ring back 2morrow morning at 8oclock for decison on my mr I'm.confused 
    tinka - I totally understand your frustration and the ongoing anxiety that we could all do without.😥
    I am pretty sure they will not tell you anything over the phone until you receive their decision in writing.
    As hard as it is, you might be better just waiting for your letter.
    I can still hardly believe that you have been waiting 10 weeks! But the good news is that the letter will come through your letter box any day now! 😘

  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    DWP will tell you the decision to a benefit claim over the phone without any problems.
    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.
  • tinka1992tinka1992 Member Posts: 97 Connected
    Hi im getting pip I got over 12points this is through doing a mr request 
  • LyndaMcKLyndaMcK Member Posts: 25 Connected
    tinka - BRILLIANT news!!
    Well done you! You are obviously in the 18% who get a positive result. They must have known this when you phoned.
    There is hope for the rest of us!👍🙂

  • tinka1992tinka1992 Member Posts: 97 Connected
    I always belive there is hope also my cpn nurse said she had spoke to case manger dont know how and also they went to her for little bit more info I have it till 2023 
  • tinka1992tinka1992 Member Posts: 97 Connected
    I fort case managers never go to person for more information 
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 5,937 Disability Gamechanger
    There are lots of people who will describe PIP as a largely random process. For many reasons this is mostly untrue. Your claim is as good as your claim pack (not the HCPs report) and your understanding of what PIP are looking for. That said, the only element of PIP which is truly random appears to MR. The success rate is 19% and there’s not a WRO alive who can tell you what exactly will get you into that 19%. Far better to put your argument together; let them do what they’re going to do and prepare for appeal. 
  • davetdavet Member Posts: 77 Courageous
    I for one fail to see the use of MR's asno consideration is given to anything you say in them I have found, I have gone through this process twice and never been successful in either, but both times I took it to tribunal and won, I have felt that you are dealing with utter idiots with a complete lack of common sense incredible no men I call them, I have had an instance when they claimed they had no medical evidence of one of my symptons, yet when I sent a copy of my GP letter with a note saying that I have already provided two previous copies it was simply ignored, and they believe that as I am able to walk the ten feet from my door to a taxi I have no problems walking, good luck with your MR but prepare for a tribunal
  • scotleagscotleag Member Posts: 88 Courageous
    I think MR is basically a delaying tactic. I submitted 34 pages of additional evidence to MR including what to me seemed the highly important matter that the additional evidence and diary I submitted with the initial PIP application had not been passed on to ATOS/HCP and therefore all available evidence had not been considered (as it should have been) in the HCP's report. I was told the wait time for decision was an average ten weeks which was what it turned out to be. The MR upheld the original decision not to award me anything. It also said I had reported issues with eight of the activities (I had reported four and this was on the form the HCP read, not the additional submission she never received. On my MR request I pointed out that the HCP's claim I reported eight issues was incorrect and it should only be four. This suggests my MR was not read properly as it was word for word the same as the HCP¡s report. They even claimed I had not produced evidence of specialist appointments even though I had given details of all appointments in the six months leading up to the F2F & provided a full prescription list which included several items that were specifically prescribed by specialists not my GP. 

    I felt this to be particularly insulting as it read to me that they were suggesting I had no specialist appointments - I had three during the period in question all on different issues. I submitted dates, times, venues and address, phone number and email contacts for each appointment even though the guidance leaflet for the PIP application says "if we need this evidence we'll ask for it ourselves."

    I made an official complaint to the DWP which brought little by way of satisfaction though it did contain a specific acknowledgement that my additional submission had not been sent to the HCP. 

    I am going through the appeal process and I think the acknowledgement that documentation submitted to the DWP, receipt of which has been acknowledged, was not sent on to the HCP will strengthen my case. 

    However the process is long. I phone the tribunal in mid-December and was told to expect a hearing in 26-30 weeks time. That's June 2020. Th F2F was June 2019. I've told them I'll take a cancellation if one comes up. A year from interview to appeal is ridiculously long and seems designed to encourage people just to give up. 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    @scotleag Hi and welcome,

    I must admit, 34 pages of additional evidence for the MR is rather a lot, especially if it isn't relevant to how your conditions affect you. That's an awful lot of evidence to read through and it may not even be read, at any stage. I always think it's pointless sending in huge amounts of evidence unless it's relevant. Less is very often more!

    I requested my medical records quite a few months ago thinking that there maybe something in there that could be useful for my PIP review coming up this year. Sadly, there's nothing in there at all that could be useful for me to use. I already have letters from past Consultant appointments that i could use, so i'll just send those.

    To add to that when i fill out my review form i intend to put as much information as possible about how my conditions affect me and i'll include a couple of real life examples of what happened the last time i attempted that activity for each descriptor that applies to me. I'd advise you to do that too for your submission to HMCTS.

    Do be aware that the timescale HMCTS have given you is just a guide, like all timescales. Backlogs are huge across most of the country and lots of people are waiting a year (from the time they send the SSCS1 form) for a hearing date. Add that on to the time that you had your face to face assessment and it could be 18 months +.

    Are you appearing in person at your hearing? This will give you the best chance of a decision in your favour.

    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.
  • scotleagscotleag Member Posts: 88 Courageous
    Hi Poppy,

    Thank you for both the welcome and advice. 

    I quite deliberately sent in as much information as I could as when it comes to appeal I want to be able to say "I said A & the response was B/nothing" Also I didn't want to be in the position of being asked at tribunal 'why didn't you say X?' I've also received full details of everything concerning my case both internally in the DWP & externally with ATOS/HCP via SAR requests and this has shown me several areas where DWP advice to ATOS has been ignored completely and brought up the existence of a third party - a mind of middleman between ATOS & HCP that was never referred to at any time during the whole procedure. To my mind the decision was arrived at on a faulty basis - i.e. not sending on my additional submission sent with the initial application (i informed them on the application form that I have difficulties in gripping and writing legibly and that typing was much easier for me and also for them WRT understanding what I was saying). A specific pledge that all information submitted would be read by the HCP prior to interview was simply ignored and I cannot for the life of me see how any decision can be competent on that basis. Nor can I see why he HCP when reading an application that says 'please see additional submission'¡ several times didn't pause to think 'where is this additional submission'

    Anyway, that's by the by. I did exactly as per your advice of including specific examples of how my disabilities affect me but of course it wasn't seen by the HCP. These will be seen by the tribunal. I do intend to appear in person but precisely because of disablity cannot give an absolute guarantee I will be able to do so. Nor give advance notice of being unable to attend. This is yet another reason for being as extensive as possible in written submissions as I felt if I were unable to attend either F2F or tribunal it was important that everything I intended to say in person if able was put down in writing.

    I have previous experience of a tribunal, albeit on a different matter (working tax credit) and a different procedure (one person only - a judge - as opposed to three people for PIP). I was able to appear in person and after about twenty minutes the judge stopped the proceedings and told me she was going to rule in my favour. 

    On that occasion the entire process was seven months from start to finish and perhaps naively I expected more or less the same timescale with PIP. 18 months would take me to December 2020 by which time I will be only fifteen months from retirement age of 66. Yes I know PIP doesn't impinge on retirement age as such but were my appeal to be unsuccessful it wouldn't leave much time to put in a fresh application should I worsen in the interim as my understanding is that only people of working age can apply.

    One other thing is ESA. I am well aware that ESA & PIP are two different benefits designed for different circumstances but the F2F procedure is identical and the conditions that affect eligibility for both are also extremely similar. I have recently had a re-assessment for ESA and stated in my submission that my self-assessment was that while I thought I was unable to return to full-time employment I did NOT consider that my health had worsened enough to be transferred from WRAG to support group.

    The HCP disagreed, stopping the interview before asking questions on about half the activities and the DWP decision maker accepted the HCP report in its entirety. I have now been transferred to the support group. On this occasion both HCP and DWP have not only agreed with what I said was my level of disability but have said it is worse than I thought. My submission was the same as the one sent for PIP and not read by the HCP. So two wings of the DWP have arrived at different conclusions. I will be asking the tribunal to determine the difference between the two HCP reports. The one for PIP written by a paramedic (I'm not knocking paramedics, they do a stressful job often dealing with life and death instances but they are NOT experts on chronic conditions) who has not yet completed the process to describe themselves as an approved disability analyst and who did not read all the available evidence or question why it was unavailable. And the one for ESA written by someone who DID read my submission, is more familiar with how the body works (physiotherapist), IS an approved disability analyst and DID read everything submitted. The former concluded I had no problems whatsoever (zero points) and the latter that my health was in a worse condition than I myself thought it was. 

    My view is that had the latter conducted my PIP interview I would have been awarded at least the lower daily care rate and had the former conducted the ESA assessment I'd be down a building site looking for work the following Monday morning.


  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger

    Concentrating on the assessment report and what was or wasn't said, done or read will not get you a PIP award and this could weaken your case because HMCTS will not be interested in anything that did or didn't happen during the assessment.
    They will only be interested in where and why you think you should have scored those points.

    Regardless of  ESA and PIP assessments being identical they are different benefits with very different criteria and being placed into the Support Group doesn't guarantee you a PIP award because the descriptors for both are different.  Asking the panel to determine the difference between the ESA report and the PIP report isn't going to help you either.

    My advice is to forget about the ESA award and the report and concentrate wholly on the PIP.

    Have a read of this and hopefully it will give you a better understanding of the PIP descriptors, what they mean and the criteria.



    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.
  • OnixOnix Member Posts: 75 Pioneering
    Well, here goes - I should have expected it but I thought decency and compassion might have trumped money, but I was sadly mistaken
    I got my PIP assessment that hadn't changed, so I phoned up to query how to go about a mandatory reconsideration - I received it late on the day they stopped for the holidays and they don't start back till 06Jan so I lose 2 weeks straight away as all the places I need help from are shut till then also. Absolutely unbelievable 😕😕
  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 966 Disability Gamechanger
    @scotleag - I don't know anything about ESA, sorry...

    In relation to PIP I wonder if you might be better concentrating on the reasons why you should be awarded, rather than trying to find flaws in the process? 

    The reason I say this is that even if everything you say was accepted (and i'm fully prepared to accept it, based on my own experience) and the HCP didn't read all of your submission, all it proves is that the assessment process was poor. It doesn't show that you should get PIP - just that the reasons for refusal were rubbish.

    Will someone accept that if you'd had a different assessor then things would have been different? I don't know..

    Personally I'd try and keep it as brief as possible, and concentrate on your evidence not what the HCP has or hasn't done...

    Whatever happens, and whatever you decide, good luck!
  • FlorineFlorine Member Posts: 41 Connected
    davet said:
    My MR was a no but what staggered me was I sent my request with additional information by recorded delivery, I checked on the royal mail site and found it was delivered and signed for at 16.30 on the same day that the decision letter was typed and posted, which to me, assuming they work to 5pm gave only one hour and a half for the decision maker to review my request and case, make their decision, then get it to a typist to type and get in the post before going home, I did actually take it to a tribunal later at which I was successful


    Sounds familiar.  We had to chase ours by phone (probably about 4 pm) because it was so overdue, then the reconsideration was dated the same day.  My guess is that it was moved to the top of the pile and dealt with in a great hurry, because it introduced even more incorrect information than the original HCP report contained.  How anyone is supposed to get a fair deal when the first report is fairly fictitious and the second is even more so, I don't know.

    MR in our case was clearly no more than a rubber-stamping exercise, and didn't take into account that we corrected a couple of claims in the original report which were completely wrong (and in a way which would seriously affect someone's claim to PIP - like being able to walk half a mile, say).  Had I known back then that we could request the assessor's report as soon as it had been written and pick up on such points then, we would have done so.

    Best of luck with your MR, but as others have said, I'd start preparing for an appeal.

  • scotleagscotleag Member Posts: 88 Courageous
    Cristobal, Poppy. Thanks. Don't get me wrong about this. I'm aware the crucial issue is to establish I meet the threshold as per the descriptors. However when there is a report that says I don't do this and I have solid evidence that shows that report was compiled in breach of DWP guidelines and in which evidence submitted wasn't taken into account then that gives me good grounds to question the accuracy of the report. It strikes me as easier to prove my case if I can establish the report on which the decision was reached as unreliable. 

    In order to win my case I have to persuade the tribunal that the conclusions reached in the HCP report are inaccurate. Not using evidence that does precisely that strikes be as being remiss. If the tribunal accept my premise that the HCP report is fundamentally flawed then it will be easier to reverse its verdict.

    As for ESA as I said in the original post I'm well aware it's a totally different benefit for a different purpose and has different descriptors. But it is the same process both WRT questions and physical assessment and again - if an HCP has not only accepted my account of my physical condition but has actually gone on record as saying it is worse than I myself thought then again I think it assists my case to mention it.

    It's not a matter of confusing benefits or emphasising process to the detriment of case-building but of using every piece of information to hand in order to strengthen my case. Further, it doesn't actually do any harm. The tribunal can ignore it (or indeed anything submitted) but they will have to read it. There's nothing there that weakens what I'm saying or subtracts from anything else.
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 5,937 Disability Gamechanger
    It is only easier to win your case if you can discredit the HCP report to some extent AND have strong evidence to support your assertions as regards securing specific points. It is however wrong to say that “In order to win my case I have to persuade the tribunal that the conclusions reached in the HCP report are inaccurate.“. That is not the correct legal position at all. Cases are judged on the balance of probabilities i.e. what is most likely to be correct. You don’t have to prove something is totally wrong or be totally right. 

    Breaching their own guidance is one means of discrediting the report but you need to bear in mind no tribunal will indulge a forensic analysis. You’re largely kicking at an open door. They need a couple of examples of where the report is demonstrably wholly incorrect and then they will move on rapidly to your actual face to face evidence which will carry as much weight as you have credibility i.e. if you contradict yourself even a tiny bit then you’re no more reliable than a HCP report. It is absolutely no means easier to win your case by discrediting the HCP report to any extent. That bit’s easy. They key to this is your evidence. 

    I’m sorry but with all due respect the processes for PIP and ESA are not the same at all. The ESA assessment is a medical whereas the PIP one is a discussion about functional ability. This is immensely confusing and leads many many people to believe that ESA evidence is relevant when it may not be at all. 

    It also has to be borne in mind that representatives and organisations fought the original DWP approach, which assumed reports for each benefit could be used against claimants for the other benefit. There is now clear case law on this and you need an expert eye to be cast over your ESA assessment because actually the most common outcome of sending such things in for PIP is that it’s largely disregarded as evidence but, having had it brought to their attention, the DWP PO on the day uses the PIP outcome to open up the ESA claim to challenge and, yes, I have seen that happen even when PIP is awarded. 

    I must also echo @poppy123456 here. 34 pages of evidence is too much and extremely unlikely to be helpful. It’s easy to confuse volume with quality and an approach which sounds like it’s potentially close to throwing stuff against the wall in the hope that sheer volume will make it stick is likely to undermine a case rather than strengthen it. In 30+ years of doing WR I’ve never yet come across a case that merited the submission of more than 2 distinct report other than for Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit.
Sign in or join us to comment.