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How much evidence do they need?!?!?!?

Sdag1973Sdag1973 Member Posts: 11 Connected
Hi.
Just joined for some advice. I know these things have been asked probably a million times so please forgive me. 

I've had an ileostomy since 2016, an emergency procedure. Since then I've been in and out of hospital, sepsis several times, 18 major operations, full abominable restructuring, proctetomy, critical care coma, etc etc. Still have huge inoperable parastomal hernia, arthralgia which is being treated, PTSD with counseling referral etc. I had a PIP assessment recently and although I've not had a decision yet I have received my copy of the report and as I'm sure you'll all expect, it is full of inaccuracies and not a reflection of what was said at the meeting at all, which was a home assessment. It even says I haven't been in hospital in the last 12 months when I was in hospital in September through to November and had 7 emergency operations including sepsis and being in critical care an hour from death. That is just one of the major errors. It says I was relaxed and in good spirits, I was in tears..... points recommended are 2 overall even though at one paragraph it says I need help getting in and out of the bath but on the tick sheet it says I can wash with an aid so 2 points. When I sent my forms off I sent loads of letters and assesment reports from my hospital stays, my rheumatology specialist, Crohn's nurse etc etc which shows I have all these conditions and all hospital stays. I'm lost basically as to how all the evidence can be ignored and will the decision maker just go along with the report even though they already have reports to the contrary of what was said? 

If you've made it to the end of this post I thank you for your patience 😂😂😂 

Replies

  • anistyanisty Member Posts: 171 Pioneering
    Hi i can only answer a bit of your post about how your evidence can be ignored.

    It is because pip isnt based on a diagnosis. It is crucial to understand the descriptors and to show how your disabilities affect you.

    Just stating the names of your diagnosis/s doesnt give the assessor any information on how they impact your ADL. You need to paint that picture for the assessor.

    Others will be able to add to this and answer your other points
  • Sdag1973Sdag1973 Member Posts: 11 Connected
    @anisty thank you for your reply. The letters etc from stoma nurse, counselor, rheumatology specialist, surgeon all state what happened and how my conditions affect me along with how they will carry on affecting me. That's why it seems bizarre that this seems to have been ignored. Before the major surgeries which have left me in a worse state than before, I've spent 27 years explaining how invisible chronic illness affects my daily life. That's what I was saying in my post. In my assessment I was in tears explaining how my PTSD make me feel and stops me carrying out normal activities, the assessor says I was focussed and in good spirits. My partner explained how she helps me in and out of the shower, the assessor has written this but then ticked the box that I do not need help. There are things she says which do not match the box ticked. This is my confusion. I read all the advice and explanations before applying. 

    Thank you. 
  • anistyanisty Member Posts: 171 Pioneering
    It isnt just saying how your disabilities affect you - it is understanding exactly what each descriptor is getting at. Im not an expert on this by any means but will tag @poppy123456 and @mikehughescq who will be able to answer your post fully.

    The way your answers on the pip2 are worded need to show how you are affected with specific reference to each descriptor.
    And that can be difficult to do - it's not about having lots of medical evidence; it's about picking out your evidence very selectively with regard to each activity.
  • Sdag1973Sdag1973 Member Posts: 11 Connected
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 6,621 Disability Gamechanger
    Sdag1973 said:
    I have all these conditions and all hospital stays. I'm lost basically as to how all the evidence can be ignored and will the decision maker just go along with the report even though they already have reports to the contrary of what was said? 

    If you've made it to the end of this post I thank you for your patience 😂😂😂 
    @anisty pretty much nails it. Look back at your PIP 2 form. It asks you to list your conditions and your meds but the overwhelming majority of the form is about whether you can reliably perform any of the 12 activities. Your focus has been on the list but not on the activities. Thus your claim and face to face have been focused on something which is not in dispute (that you have your conditions) and something which is not directly relevant (hospital stays show the seriousness of a condition but not, for example, how a condition affects cooking, eating, therapy, taking meds, bathing, toiketing, dressing, communicating, social engagement, budgeting or mobility) as opposed to the thing which is actually relevant i.e. those activities and whether you can do them reliably.

    Your evidence has not been ignored. It’s simply not relevant to the consequences of your condition. Even the inaccuracies in the report aren’t directly relevant to that. Nevertheless a case manager will most likely follow the recommendations of the report so you need to expect a reject and prepare to do a mandatory reconsideration which must finally address the ability to reliably perform the relevant activities. 
  • Sdag1973Sdag1973 Member Posts: 11 Connected
    @anisty thank you for your reply. 
    I think what confused me is that I supplied letters from the specialists explaining how the conditions affect me daily plus the health assessor has written in the notes things like, needs prompting to drink which causes his dehydration and effects his fatigue making activities difficult, but then they've ticked I can take nutrition without prompting. Says on some days I cannot leave the house and if walking 200 metres would need to stop twice to rest due to pain, then ticked I can walk 250 unaided. It's filled with these conflicting points thats thrown me. 

    Thank you

  • anistyanisty Member Posts: 171 Pioneering
    edited March 2020
    You will need to look back on your form. The 'needs prompting to drink' one is quite specifically aimed at people who cannot get physically get nutrition to their mouths (either because they have a physical condition affecting their ability to hold a cup or perhaps a cognitive disability which causes them to lack any drive to drink)

    You will need to specifically say WHY you are unable to take fluid and food to your mouth by yourself without being reminded. If you can eat without being prompted, what specifically is it about drinking?  Are you able to take enough fluids throughout the day, are you choking, are you at risk of aspiration? Do you get chest infections from choking? Are you on laxitives due to constipation caused by lack of fluid?

    Are your lips cracked and dry (if you need to apply creams to your skin/lips for moisture, it would be relevent to reference here) have you been hospitalised for dehydration? Very relevent if so.

    Who prompts you? If you live alone, be sure to say how often someone is with you to prompt you. Think about what would happen without someone there to prompt you. Has that ever happened, that no one was there? Write about that time.  Does thirst ever kick in, is it your medications that take away your thirst drive? Or something else? 

    Would you have the ability to set a timer to remind you to drink regularly? 

    Have a real good think about exactly what would happen if no one reminded you to drink. What stops you from drinking yourself. And does it affect eating too? If it really is just fluids, you will need to explain that very specifically as if talking to someone with no medical knowledge. Dont expect them to automaticallt fill in the gaps. An obvious reason to you will not be obvious at all to them!


    So this question is about your ability to actually get nutrition into you reliably and in a reasonable time.


    If the reason you need prompting to take fluid is because you cant make yourself a cup of coffee, cant turn on a tap, actually get a drink ready for yourself - well im not sure that can score points at all because the prepare a meal one is to prepare a cooked meal comprising 3 fresh ingredients once a day. I dont think there is any scope to score there on not being able to make a drink.


    This is why it is so important to understand the descriptors.


    Remember also if you need prompting to eat and drink, the assessor will likely be expecting to see a very slim person at f2f!!!  I dont mean to be cheeky, but if you are a good size, they might view that as being inconsistant with needs prompting to take nutrition.


    Just a few things to be wary of. 

    *  I havent got the experience and knowledge of mike and poppy. I am not disabled myself but act on behalf of my son. I am only aware of the things that can trip people up from reading around guides and forums.i hope i have the gist of the way to answer this question correctly but if mike or poppy come in here to correct me, it is them you should listen to*
  • Alice_HoltAlice_Holt Member Posts: 46 Courageous
    OP - As anisty and mike say, the focus is on the activities and descriptors, not your diagnosis.
    PIP looks at the help you need to reliably achieve those PIP descriptors.

    Here are the PIP descriptors:
    https://www.benefitsandwork.co.uk/personal-independence-payment-pip/pip-points-system

    This gives an idea of how the PIP descriptors should be interpreted:
    https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/831253/PIP-assessment-guide-part-2-the_assessment-criteria.pdf

    Looking at this information will help you better understand the PIP criteria.

    Also think about how fatigue might affect you doing other PIP activities reliably (including in a reasonable time scale) for the majority of the time, and the variability of your fatigue over the course of a day. Are there periods in the day when your fatigue might stop you doing an activity to an acceptable standard, so you can't do them as you might reasonably require without help or aids. 

    Some of the guides on the sites I've linked to explain this much better than my attempt.
    You may also wish to get advice from your local advice agency.



    If you need to appeal, here is a good guide to the process:
     https://www.advicenow.org.uk/guides/how-win-pip-appeal

    And:
    https://www.gov.uk/mandatory-reconsideration
    https://www.advicenow.org.uk/pip-tool
    https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/sick-or-disabled-people-and-carers/pip/appeals/mandatory-reconsideration/
     
         
       
  • woodbinewoodbine Community Co-Production Group Posts: 4,493 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi when you get the decision you should ask for an MR (mandatory reconsideration) which means that someone else at the DWP will look at the decision, this can but often doesn't lead to a change, the next step is to appeal.
    Its worth noting that PIP isn't paid for the conditions you have but the care and or mobility issues that arise because of them and that often sending too much "evidence" that doesn't relate to this won't help.
    Good luck
    "Putting a child into care, isn't caring for a child" (T.Rhattigan)
  • skullcapskullcap Posts: 172 Member
    anisty said:
    It isnt just saying how your disabilities affect you - it is understanding exactly what each descriptor is getting at. Im not an expert on this by any means but will tag @poppy123456 and @mikehughescq who will be able to answer your post fully.

    The way your answers on the pip2 are worded need to show how you are affected with specific reference to each descriptor.
    And that can be difficult to do - it's not about having lots of medical evidence; it's about picking out your evidence very selectively with regard to each activity.
    Are you sure?
    I can find no such advice or instruction on any of the PIP forms that tell you that it must be completed in that manner.
    You are simply required to explain what your issues are with relevance to the questions asked and it is for the DWP to decide if what you describe entitles you to points. 
    As for  handing over selective medical evidence, you do realise that if your claim ends up at a Tribunal they may well ask you to supply all of your medical files from the GP including letters/reports etc that are not helpful to your claim.
    Just be honest when filling out the claim forms and not try to fit what your problem is with a descriptor.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    skullcap said:

    Are you sure?
    I can find no such advice or instruction on any of the PIP forms that tell you that it must be completed in that manner.
    Now where have i heard this before? Why on earth would a form give you instructions on how to fill it in?
    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.
  • anistyanisty Member Posts: 171 Pioneering

    @skullcap no im not sure of anything!! That is why i added a 'disclaimer' at the bottom.

    I think, though, what i am trying to say about selecting evidence to fit each descriptor has come over wrongly. I really just mean it helps to properly understand what the descriptors mean.

    I had no idea when i filled my son's form out and made a real hash of it. Luckily, it seems the assessor has taken the time to sort it out.

    On the nutrition one i had put that my son lacks drive to eat and needs prompted to eat some meals.

    That scored nil with the comment that my son has no physical disability with his hands stopping him getting food to his mouth and some of my info from that section had been moved over to the prepare a meal section.

    For understanding language, my answer was totally disregarded and they had turned to the report i provided and called his support worker because i had totally confused that question and put info in there that should have been put into the mixing with people section.

    Yes i answered honestly but i think we were lucky in having an assessor that has taken the time to get the info i provided onto the correct descriptors.


    I dont mean to suggest that anyone hides evidence or exagerate any evidence at all.  Just that there is no point reeling off a list of prescription medications and surgeries it is of no relevance to the descriptor .


    And - no - im not sure!!!! This is just what i now think after doing my sons form all wrong. I think i could have given the assessor a much easier job but she has actually credited my son with points where i claimed none.


    So maybe your idea of just being honest is the best policy :)
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 6,621 Disability Gamechanger
    skullcap said:
    anisty said:
    It isnt just saying how your disabilities affect you - it is understanding exactly what each descriptor is getting at. Im not an expert on this by any means but will tag @poppy123456 and @mikehughescq who will be able to answer your post fully.

    The way your answers on the pip2 are worded need to show how you are affected with specific reference to each descriptor.
    And that can be difficult to do - it's not about having lots of medical evidence; it's about picking out your evidence very selectively with regard to each activity.
    Are you sure?
    I can find no such advice or instruction on any of the PIP forms that tell you that it must be completed in that manner.
    You are simply required to explain what your issues are with relevance to the questions asked and it is for the DWP to decide if what you describe entitles you to points. 
    As for  handing over selective medical evidence, you do realise that if your claim ends up at a Tribunal they may well ask you to supply all of your medical files from the GP including letters/reports etc that are not helpful to your claim.
    Just be honest when filling out the claim forms and not try to fit what your problem is with a descriptor.
    @skullcap the advice given is spot on. DWP provide notes on how to complete the form. They are so off beam I advise claimants to throw them away. 

    I will also politely disagree with your assertion one should “ not try to fit what your problem is with a descriptor.”

    If you read the law (as opposed to the PIP 2 or the DWP guidance, neither of which are accurate reflections of the law as written) you may believe that actually your issue DOES fit the descriptors. Arguing that things come within the law because of how the law is worded as opposed to how the government or DWP think it ought to be interpreted is how precedents are set and how case law widens the interpretation. As with PIP so it always was with DLA. Left to just answer the questions on the forms or read the DWP guidance no agoraphobic would ever have deduced entitlement to DLA mobility at the lower rate. Cases were taken by two reps on behalf of three claimants who argued that the wording of the law itself did mean they qualified. Case law was established and an accurate interpretation forced upon the DWP. 
  • anistyanisty Member Posts: 171 Pioneering
    Cheers @mikehughescq - I do think I am now thinking along the right lines when it comes these forms but I've had to get to grips with it only recently so im not totally confident. My knowledge is so new so your comment here is reassuring :)


  • skullcapskullcap Posts: 172 Member



    @skullcap the advice given is spot on. DWP provide notes on how to complete the form. They are so off beam I advise claimants to throw them away. 

    I will also politely disagree with your assertion one should “ not try to fit what your problem is with a descriptor.”

    If you read the law (as opposed to the PIP 2 or the DWP guidance, neither of which are accurate reflections of the law as written) you may believe that actually your issue DOES fit the descriptors. Arguing that things come within the law because of how the law is worded as opposed to how the government or DWP think it ought to be interpreted is how precedents are set and how case law widens the interpretation. As with PIP so it always was with DLA. Left to just answer the questions on the forms or read the DWP guidance no agoraphobic would ever have deduced entitlement to DLA mobility at the lower rate. Cases were taken by two reps on behalf of three claimants who argued that the wording of the law itself did mean they qualified. Case law was established and an accurate interpretation forced upon the DWP. 
    I won't argue on what you say other than to point out respectfully that you need not only to have knowledge of the case law but where to find it and how to use it.
    Not everybody seeks out professional advice and support even if it is available. The majority of claimants are at best 'self taught' welfare advisors which I believe features Poppy on this site..

  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 968 Disability Gamechanger
    @skullcap....this is one of Yadnad's favourites....and Gruber ..

     I'd advise whenever you're applying for anything you need to find out what the criteria are and what they are looking for. No-one would applying for a job without doing this - 

    PIP is no different - there's no point in filling out a form without researching what is needed and framing your application around the activities and the descriptors that the DWP use.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    @skullcap i'm not a welfare advisor.
    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.
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 6,621 Disability Gamechanger
    Apologies for the length of this but it needs explaining in detail. 

    @anisty thanks for your post but there is danger is in stating that specific descriptors are aimed at certain things. The intent of a life of the law can be inferred from several places but absolutely not from DWP guidance for example. 

    @Alice_Holt could I please please politely ask you to stop posting a link to DWP guidance and saying it’s how the descriptors “should” be interpreted. It absolutely is not. It is a useful document to read if you want to know why DWP keep getting decisions wrong and certain issues keep going to appeal and winning but it is not the law as written and it explicitly misinterprets the law in multiple places and that’s why it’s regularly challenged. 

    You can find a clear cut example of this at page 107 where it states 

    “Most claimants with sensory impairments will be able to fully engage with others independently, however they may score on both activities 7 and 9 if, for example anxiety arising from their impairment means they reasonably require social support to engage with people generally.”

    This is, to be blunt, utter tosh. Most claimants with sight impairment involving even a slight loss of focus cannot reliably do facial recognition and will score 9b. Many will score 9c because unless a person self-identifies they will have no clue who they’re talking to in all manner of circumstances. Similarly, with hearing impairment the person can’t engage with anyone unless they’re actually facing them and even then it may nor be clear who is being addressed. The hospital waiting room question nicely brings this to light. If you were waiting with your family in a hospital to hear news on an ill relative how would you know that the doctor is talking to you?! 

    No-one reading the above guidance would have a clue that tribunals routinely award 2 or 4 points to those with sensory loss. 

    Let’s take activity 2, taking nutrition given that it’s the one recently put at issue. It’s detailed on pages 86 and 87 of the guidance and it says unequivocally

    “ Needs –
    i. to use an aid or appliance to be able to take nutrition; or ii. supervision to be able to take nutrition; or
        2iii. assistance to be able to cut up food. 
    2 4
      Applies to claimants who need to use specially adapted cutlery; claimants who are at significant risk of choking when taking nutrition; claimants who regularly spill food due to tremors or other factors and claimants who have difficulty cutting up food which is ready to be eaten (not raw ingredients as these are considered in activity 1).”

    Now, who would read into that that a claimant with sensory loss would score 2 points? I can’t imagine anyone would. Yet tribunals routinely hear arguments around whether someone with sight impairment or loss can reliably feed themselves food and drink. They may have full motor skills and yet be unable to locate food in the first place or consistently drop food off their fork and not know about it and so on. 

    The guidance is riddled with rubbish like this. Look at p110 on budgeting. Any mention of people with sensory issues? Nope. Yet people with sensory issues regularly score on this and there’s a great John Mesher UT decision which even points out that it’s possible. DWP guidance? Zilch. 

    If you want to know what the law is then read the law. There are many excellent guides to interpret that law. DWP guidance is not and never has been one of them and constantly referring to it risks people reading it and self-excluding. Given that take-up is low amongst those with sensory issues and mental ill health I would think the last thing we’d want to do is give people links to things which might lead to them wrongly concluding they have no entitlement. 




  • anistyanisty Member Posts: 171 Pioneering
    Thanks again @mikehughescq I do love a bit of straight talking!

    And i would hate to be leading anyone up the garden path with wrong info.


  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 968 Disability Gamechanger
    @mikehughescq ....."If you want to know what the law is then read the law. There are many excellent guides to interpret that law. DWP guidance is not and never has been one of them..."

    Knowledge of the law is good but personally I think that knowing how the people who actually make the decisions interpret it is just as valuable, if not more so. If you know what the 'rules' that the DWP use (even if they are wrong in a lawyer's eyes) then you are more likely (in my opinion) to be awarded without having to go to a tribunal.

    You make a very good point however that some people might 'self exclude' and not apply because their condition doesn't meet the guidelines...

    Have a good day ...keep up the good work...
  • anistyanisty Member Posts: 171 Pioneering
    For anyone reading this who is getting panicked that it is just all too difficult and overwhelming, I can confirm that @skullcap's advice to 'just be honest' really can be all you need to do.

    I managed to get a paper based decision for my son by just being honest about what he can and cant do. And it seems to have worked out well for him.


    The evidence i included was 9 years old. Maybe we just landed lucky but, just to give hope to others, I just said how things were. No recent evidence available so i thought this old stuff at least proves i am not making the whole thing up.

    And posted it off. That can work too :)
  • skullcapskullcap Posts: 172 Member
    @skullcap i'm not a welfare advisor.
    I know that and I never said that you were, I was just pointing out that you appear to be a 'self taught' welfare advisor given that you (a) never have a problem with claiming benefits for you and your family and (b) give important advice that seems to come from someone who is extremely knowledgeable.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    skullcap said:
    @skullcap i'm not a welfare advisor.
    I know that and I never said that you were, I was just pointing out that you appear to be a 'self taught' welfare advisor given that you (a) never have a problem with claiming benefits for you and your family and (b) give important advice that seems to come from someone who is extremely knowledgeable.

    May i ask how you know myself and another member of my family haven't had any problems with benefit claims? It's been quite sometime since i told my story here and certainly not since you joined here....
    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.
  • skullcapskullcap Posts: 172 Member
    Two sides of the same coin.
    I have yet to talk to any 'normal' individual that understands the law regarding the make up of these benefits, never mind the vast amount of case law that goes with it. So the first thing a new claimant would do is to look at the notes attached to the claim form and possibly spend countless nights reading the DWP 'advice' and 'guidance' both  for the claimant as well as the assessor. Let's be honest the average person would have an extremely difficult job even preparing a submission for a Tribunal setting out in legal terms why they should get x points.

    We are dealing with people from all works of life that feel that the benefit may well financially help them.

    I agree with Mike that you need this quality knowledge to be able to ask for the points. I am completely deaf and have to wear hearing aids which to be honest don't work that well at all but hey I can hear something sometimes. With that ailment I haven't got a clue what points could be in the offering other than those for simply having to use the two aids and that is all that I put on the claim form and in a potential submission. Being awarded the additional points that I may be entitled to is entirely down to the assessor and the DWP decision maker. I presume that if you don't make a case for these extra points you just don't get them awarded. Being ignorant of them would most likely result in accepting what points are given not knowing that it could be challenged.

    As for 'old' medical reports I could have possibly 'drowned' the DWP in them going back to the late 90's. They are still certainly relevant today but my thinking was that I would be expecting a lot from the DWP to accept that what I was like then is like I am now without up to date independent validation from the GP or Consultant. In fact 9 years ago I had numerous tests for brain damage which resulted in a 6 page report detailing the injury and how it had left me. Putting myself in the shoes of the DWP decision maker would I just accept that report and not question if the contents of it are still relevant? No, I would expect an up to date report identifying 9 years on as to what extent I am still suffering. Hence why none of this was put on the claim form, it would have looked like I was trying to scrape the bottom of the barrel for extra points.

    So unintentional underplaying and the lack of knowledge of the legal position leads most claimants to a point of accepting what they are given 'if they think it is reasonable.
  • anistyanisty Member Posts: 171 Pioneering
    * Just to be clear my son suffers from autism and cognitive difficulties which cause him severe difficulties with speed of processing information, sequencing tasks together and in comprehension which affect practically all areas of functionality.

    So that is not going to remediate and that is perhaps why the reports were accepted. It is possible for him to learn new tasks so functional improvement can occur. 9 yrs ago he could not board a bus alone. Now he has learned to travel one route alone.  Hopefully, in future, he will learn more skills but he is never going to function at the same level as an able person.

    Whoever looked at his application did call his support worker by phone and, on the assessment report, it seems that they had a lengthy conversation and the support worker has been able to give some very recent examples of his struggles.

    Throughout the PA3, though, there are references to the 9 yr old reports so they have definitely taken those into account.

    I was very suprised myself that he was not called for f2f on the basis of that old evidence and phone call but it just goes to show that some applicants can have a smooth ride through the process and i hope that gives people a bit of faith that there are some decent hcps in there somewhere . ..
  • anistyanisty Member Posts: 171 Pioneering
    Btw i dont think it is true that being ignorant of where points are awarded means that they wont be awarded. I ticked the box to say my son had no problem dressing/undressing and even wrote 'no problems' in the information box.

    The hcp has looked at my reply to the showering question and noticed my son doesnt have many showers as he hates the feeling of being undressed (sensory) and also doesnt care if he is smelling unpleasant (autism means he cant understand/care what others think about him)

    And points have been awarded on the dressing question i think on the strength of these sensory issues being highlighted in the old reports. Rather than being awarded no points for showering, the hcp has realised, correctly, that he probably does need help to get clean clothes on.


    And maybe the support worker confirmed an aroma from him :)



  • skullcapskullcap Posts: 172 Member


    May i ask how you know myself and another member of my family haven't had any problems with benefit claims? It's been quite sometime since i told my story here and certainly not since you joined here....
    You mentioned it in another posting that both of you received awards without the need of a face to face assessment or having to go to a Tribunal.
  • skullcapskullcap Posts: 172 Member
    anisty said:
    I was very suprised myself that he was not called for f2f on the basis of that old evidence and phone call but it just goes to show that some applicants can have a smooth ride through the process and i hope that gives people a bit of faith that there are some decent hcps in there somewhere . ..
    I think that what swung it for you was that the assessor took it upon themselves to clarify the contents of the report with the support worker.
    Unfortunately they don't normally contact anyone believing that it is for the claimant to produce the level of evidence that is required.

  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    skullcap said:

    Unfortunately they don't normally contact anyone believing that it is for the claimant to produce the level of evidence that is required.


    Although this is rare, it has been known for them to contact someone on your list of contacts, especially if a paper based assessment can be done. They contacted my daughter's college the first time (face to face)  and her Pyschologist the 2nd time, which was a paper based assessment.
    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.
  • chiariedschiarieds Community Co-Production Group Posts: 9,175 Disability Gamechanger
    @skullcap - I'm unsure what point you're trying to make. Whilst it would be great if everyone understood case law, 'just in case,' this will likely not occur. However, the vast majority of the info given by Poppy undoubtedly helps an awful lot of people, whilst she is at pains to say that if someone is facing a tribunal then they ought to get local advice.
    An understanding of the PIP 'descriptors' at least is more helpful than going with the instructions included with the initial PIP 'How your disability affects you' booklet. It shows many people how to include information in detail, whilst it may fail some. An understanding of the reliability criteria is also helpful, which many will not have known about. So her advice helps a lot of people filling out their initial (or review) PIP claim or a MR.
    A tribunal is a different matter, & understanding case law would, I'm sure, help someone going through this. However this forum is made up of individuals who give their personal experience hoping to help others. Poppy has an incredible knowledge of the benefit system through her research. What is wrong with that? We're all here trying to help each other.
    I think the whole point that mikehughesesq was trying to make was that people may need to have an understanding of case law, or seek appropriate advice, if facing a tribunal, whilst an understanding of this may also help some individuals in filling out an initial PIP form as the DWP 'guidance' doesn't help everyone.

  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    skullcap said:


    May i ask how you know myself and another member of my family haven't had any problems with benefit claims? It's been quite sometime since i told my story here and certainly not since you joined here....
    You mentioned it in another posting that both of you received awards without the need of a face to face assessment or having to go to a Tribunal.
    Ah yes, yadnad....
    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.
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 6,621 Disability Gamechanger
    cristobal said:
    @mikehughescq ....."If you want to know what the law is then read the law. There are many excellent guides to interpret that law. DWP guidance is not and never has been one of them..."

    Knowledge of the law is good but personally I think that knowing how the people who actually make the decisions interpret it is just as valuable, if not more so. If you know what the 'rules' that the DWP use (even if they are wrong in a lawyer's eyes) then you are more likely (in my opinion) to be awarded without having to go to a tribunal.

    You make a very good point however that some people might 'self exclude' and not apply because their condition doesn't meet the guidelines...

    Have a good day ...keep up the good work...
    Interesting discussion but “eyes on the ball” for me every time. People who want to get in the head of decision makers end up tied up in knots. People who want to get PIP decide which activities apply based on simple summaries like that at B&W and pipinfo give a couple of detailed recent anecdotal examples per activity and head into their face to face understanding that the key word is “reliably”. After that there’s an awful lot of overthinking which goes on.  
  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 0 Member
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  • skullcapskullcap Posts: 172 Member


    Although this is rare, it has been known for them to contact someone on your list of contacts, especially if a paper based assessment can be done. They contacted my daughter's college the first time (face to face)  and her Pyschologist the 2nd time, which was a paper based assessment.
    This can only happen if the claimant lists down all of the people that are capable and willing to offer support.
    It's not unusual to find that only a GP is entered who probably is the worst possible person to give an insight into how their patient's life is affected. Some, but not many actually don't bother putting anyone down in the belief that there is no point as the assessor/DWP don't bother contacting anyone as it is.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    skullcap said:


    Although this is rare, it has been known for them to contact someone on your list of contacts, especially if a paper based assessment can be done. They contacted my daughter's college the first time (face to face)  and her Pyschologist the 2nd time, which was a paper based assessment.
    This can only happen if the claimant lists down all of the people that are capable and willing to offer support.
    It's not unusual to find that only a GP is entered who probably is the worst possible person to give an insight into how their patient's life is affected. Some, but not many actually don't bother putting anyone down in the belief that there is no point as the assessor/DWP don't bother contacting anyone as it is.
    Why are your comments always so negative? Strange that because yadnad and gruber were both exactly the same.
    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.
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 6,621 Disability Gamechanger
    I’m not sure if you saw it @poppy123456 but on another thread @skullcap did refer to working for HMRC as a “contract self-employed Investigator” which doesn’t sound all that far from the forensic accountancy of another of our posters to whom you regularly refer. I’ve no problem with people being negative. Forums contain all sorts of people and different posting styles but I think creating different personas does need to be addressed. However, a thread is not the place for that. Perhaps we persist with reporting the concern to Scope offline and see what happens.
  • cristobalcristobal Member Posts: 968 Disability Gamechanger
    @mikehughescq - agree ...very confusing when people use several user id's...
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    @mikehughescq i actually missed that. No idea why people create multiple usernames and why the need for them to do it. Especially as it usually becomes very obvious it's the same person..
    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.
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 6,621 Disability Gamechanger
    I’m wary of continuing the debate publicly lest it allows a perception of online bullying. We also have to entertain the idea that we could all be wrong. However, I’m surprised there hasn’t been some statement confirming that it has at least been looked at. Circumstantially it looks like one person with 3 IDs.
  • Sdag1973Sdag1973 Member Posts: 11 Connected
    Guys. Thank you for your original comments but the rest aren't really of any help to me or my mindset.
  • skullcapskullcap Posts: 172 Member
    Sorry if you feel that way.
    The Welfare industry is a mix of bad and good experiences.
    As has been said already very few that have a good experience never post on these websites
    Thus what you are seeing is an exaggeration of the truth in that only bad experiences require help and advice.
    I'm not disputing what Poppy does or says is good advice. 
    I'm the victim here with accusations of having multiple ID's 

    My experience of the DWP and the benefit industry and if you want to include it the CAB, is extremely poor. In fact looking back over the past 25 years that I have needed help I have had to struggle to have my voice heard.
    In fact the only time things went like clockwork was when I had one to one advice, help and support from the Local Authority Welfare Rights team.
    So yes to me I have a negative opinion about anything that involves the DWP.
  • CressidaCressida Member Posts: 839 Pioneering
    Can't the mods check our IP addresses?
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 6,621 Disability Gamechanger
    At the risk of remaining off topic for far too long. 

    The mods can check IP addresses but in itself that only tells you so much. It potentially tells you little if people use different devices and providers. It’s also about whether you use a browser; the location data from the browser; the biographical detail; the login times; the choice of threads and much more.
  • Sdag1973Sdag1973 Member Posts: 11 Connected
    Hello. Its been some time since I posted my original question although it seemed to have been taken off track by some users. So I'm just updating. I sent all my original documents again along with  letter and highlighting where I believe points should have been awarded with my reasons. After a long wait I spoke to one of the nicest ladies ever, a case manager, who seemed to understand my condition and how the surgeries and illness will affect my life. I was originally awarded 2 points overall. I'm pleased to say that I have now been awarded enhanced rate on both sections for 5 years. 

    Never give up. 

  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 6,621 Disability Gamechanger
  • Lulu_1949Lulu_1949 Member Posts: 225 Pioneering
    @Sdag1973 well done, congratulations , now chill🥂xx
  • Lou67Lou67 Member Posts: 891 Pioneering
    Aww great news well done for perceiving, so pleased for you 😊
  • chiariedschiarieds Community Co-Production Group Posts: 9,175 Disability Gamechanger
    Very pleased to read about your result @Sdag1973 & good to hear from you again. Congratulations.  :)
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Scope Posts: 10,653 Disability Gamechanger
    Congratulations @Sdag1973! Thank you for letting us know. :) 
    Scope

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