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PIP phone assessment advice

Adora858Adora858 Member Posts: 23 Courageous
Hi everyone, I'm really new here so I hope this is the right place to ask.

I've got my PIP phone assessment this week. It's my first one, I've never claimed before, and honestly I'm so scared about it that I feel physically sick (I've felt like this the past couple days, but as the assessment gets nearer it's been getting even worse). Does anyone have any advice?

For example, when answering the questions, is there anything particularly useful to remember to say - e.g is it more helpful to give a general overview, or to use specific examples? Examples of when it's really bad? And, will they care much about how things make me feel (e.g being unable to do anything for myself makes me feel incredibly depressed and suicidal on a daily basis), or will me talking about how bad I feel come across badly? If they ask something like 'Can you eat and drink unaided?' is it reasonable for me to say 'I can't eat/drink unaided at all', because that is the reality of it (if my husband isn't there to prompt me, I can't eat - when he is away I can't eat anything), even though if you held me at gunpoint and forced me to do it I could technically do it?

Are there any specific do's or don'ts for a telephone assessment? I'm incredibly grateful to be able to do a telephone assessment, rather than see someone in person, but I'm scared that I won't come across very well over the phone, and I'm quite scared that I might cry. I know there's always appealing a decision, and I shouldn't be so scared about making a mistake, but our finances are really not great due to me being unable to work and my husband having to work part time to look after me - I feel like if I mess this up then it'll be really bad.

As a final point - how long on average is it likely to take after my assessment for me to receive a decision? I've heard quite a few different things on the internet.

Thanks in advance, and sorry for the long post.

Replies

  • donz72donz72 Member Posts: 15 Connected
    Hi @Adora858 just tell them what you can’t do. If you can’t eat or drink unaided tell them. 
    My partner had his telephone assessment 2 weeks ago. They asked him things like washing and dressing. How far he could walk etc. 
    He had his results back a week later he was turned down. He has Parkinson’s disease. So our next step is mandatory reconsideration. I’m wishing you the best of luck hopefully you get your award 😊
  • Adora858Adora858 Member Posts: 23 Courageous
    Hi @donz72. Thanks for your advice and kind words. Sorry to hear your partner didn't get a good decision first time round, wishing you guys all the best with the MR.
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Scope Posts: 10,672 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Adora858 and a warm welcome to the community!

    I wish you the best of luck with is! Please do let us know how you get on. :)
    Community Partner
    Scope

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  • katho31katho31 Member - under moderation Posts: 700 Pioneering
    Welcome @Adora858 :) best wishes from us all  :)
  • shazzy93shazzy93 Member Posts: 21 Connected
    Hi @Adora858,

    I have mine on the 7th July and completely understand how you are feeling. I just want it all done and dusted and for there to be the positive outcome I need it to be. 

    Fingers crossed yours is too. 

    All my love. 
    Shaz. Xx

  • Adora858Adora858 Member Posts: 23 Courageous
    Thanks for the support everyone :) . I'm still pretty terrified, and trying not to get my hopes up, but at least it'll be over soon.

    @shazzy93 - Mine's on the 3rd, so hopefully it'll go really well and I'll be able to tell you not to worry for yours - wishing you the best of luck in any case.
  • janer1967janer1967 Community champion Posts: 6,406 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Adora858 Welcome to the community, just tell it how it is and give specific real life examples don't just say I cant eat unaided say you can only eat if prompted, that if your husband is away you don't eat eg you don't eat for days if he isn't there. The more real examples you can give the better.

    You may only score points for needing prompting in this section as it isnt that you cant actually eat due to your disability (eg feeding tube) or similar

    Yes it is ok to say how it makes you feel and dont worry if you get upsety they are used to it and if you want to take a break just ask

    Good luck hope it goes well, as for timescales all depends on how busy they are, but after approx 7 days you can ring and request a copy of your report and this will give indication of points scored it isnt a final decision but gives you assessors recommendaed points
  • Adora858Adora858 Member Posts: 23 Courageous
    @janer1967 - thanks very much for your advice, I really appreciate it. Yes, I'm hoping to get the points for prompting in the eating/drinking section (4 points, I think?), my overall hope is to get enhanced daily living and standard mobility, but I guess I'll just have to see.
    I'll be sure to use real examples as you advise, and hopefully they won't mind if this makes me get a bit emotional. 

    I'll ask for the report when I can too, thank you. 
  • janer1967janer1967 Community champion Posts: 6,406 Disability Gamechanger
    Your welcome fingers crossed and keep us updated on the outcome 
  • shazzy93shazzy93 Member Posts: 21 Connected
    Adora858 said:
    Thanks for the support everyone :) . I'm still pretty terrified, and trying not to get my hopes up, but at least it'll be over soon.

    @shazzy93 - Mine's on the 3rd, so hopefully it'll go really well and I'll be able to tell you not to worry for yours - wishing you the best of luck in any case.
    Thank you - 🙏🏻🙏🏻 For both of us 🤞🏼🥰
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 4,999 Disability Gamechanger
    Some things to consider for your assessment:

    1 - have a copy of your claim pack in front of you during the call so you can quickly refer to what you said. The assessor ought to have had a copy and read it but i suspect some are working from home at present and have limited access to technology so you can’t assume they’ve seen it.

    2 - strange as it sounds, have food and drink nearby. Most calls aren’t taking as long as face to face assessments but if it does then make sure you’ve a snack nearby.

    3 - have a copy of the PIP points system nearby. I always find this one handy at https://www.benefitsandwork.co.uk/personal-independence-payment-pip/pip-points-system.

    4 - be prepared for them to ring earlier than the time they’ve given you. Cancellations can cause havoc with their day as can people simply not answering the phone.

    5 - do not assume they know anything about your conditions. They will only know the clichės and stereotypes. It may be worth politely asking them at the outset what they know and offering them explanations if it’s obvious they don’t know much. 

    6 - the key to PIP is not being able to do things “reliably”. See the page from Benefits and Work above on this. The assessor will try to get you to give yes or no answers. You should try and resist this. They’re looking for you to say that you can do things. You need to pause and try to explain not that you can do things but instead say something along the lines of “no, I can’t do that reliably” and then explain why not e.g. you can’t do it safely, to a reasonable standard or in a reasonable time. Again see the web site about what reliably means.

    7 - take notes as you go along or have someone you trust sat absolutely silently in the background taking notes. Those notes could help a lot further down the line.

    8 - try to go in with a positive attitude to the assessor. This can be difficult but generally telephone assessments have, anecdotally, been better than face to face assessments as a number of the things which can go wrong face to face can’t happen over the telephone. They can’t watch you walking into the centre and draw wrong conclusions. They can’t conduct eye tests in poorly lit rooms and so on. 

  • Adora858Adora858 Member Posts: 23 Courageous
    @mikehughescq - thank you very much for all of this! 
  • Adora858Adora858 Member Posts: 23 Courageous
    Thanks everyone for your support. I've just had my telephone assessment - lasted 1 hour 3 minutes. I struggled a bit in the first half, as I was so nervous I was shaking and struggling a bit to talk (and my assessor brought up some stuff that I wasn't expecting, which made me cry a few times), but I don't think it went too badly. The assessor was kind, and gave me plenty of room to talk - she asked about each area from the form. 

    I'm hoping to ring up for the report to be sent to me in a week or so, but I was wondering if I would be able to get my husband to ring on my behalf? I am so scared of talking to people myself. 
  • mumofthetwinsmumofthetwins Member Posts: 41 Connected
    Hi yes you can they will just ask for you to allow permission .. I have been calling for my mum xx 
  • Adora858Adora858 Member Posts: 23 Courageous
    Great, thanks :) 
  • Lulu_1949Lulu_1949 Member Posts: 213 Pioneering
    @Adora858 , it might be worth getting the forms for your husband to be your Appointee, then he can definitely speak on your behalf. I did this for my son.I can ring up and get updates, if you go to appeal they will want to speak to you as they did with my son but your husband can speak for you at the end incase you have forgot something. Hope this helps , good luck x
  • shazzy93shazzy93 Member Posts: 21 Connected
    edited July 2020
    @Adora858
    Fingers, toes, legs, arms & eyes all firmly crossed for you. ♥️
    Mine is Tuesday 7th (my late moms birthday - hoping that’s a good omen 🤞🏼🙏🏻) at 3:15pm. 

    Hope you don’t have to wait too long. Xxx
  • Lulu_1949Lulu_1949 Member Posts: 213 Pioneering
    @shazzy93 ah, am sure your mum will be looking Down at you and willing you to win 🙏🏻 Xx
  • shazzy93shazzy93 Member Posts: 21 Connected
    Oh @Lulu_1949 I really do hope so 🙏🏻🙏🏻🙏🏻

    Thank you for your reply 🥰🌸🦋
  • katho31katho31 Member - under moderation Posts: 700 Pioneering
    Hi @shazzy93, wishing you all the best and your late mum will be looking down on you  :) x
  • Adora858Adora858 Member Posts: 23 Courageous
    Thanks for your kind words, and good luck for Tuesday @shazzy93 - hope it goes really well for you :) 
  • shazzy93shazzy93 Member Posts: 21 Connected
    Adora858 said:
    Thanks for your kind words, and good luck for Tuesday @shazzy93 - hope it goes really well for you :) 
    Thank you my lovely - I really hope so too - need it to be a positive result 🥰🙏🏻🤞🏼
  • shazzy93shazzy93 Member Posts: 21 Connected
    katho31 said:
    Hi @shazzy93, wishing you all the best and your late mum will be looking down on you  :) x
    Aww Thank you. I really hope she is. 🥰🙏🏻🦋
  • ajhearneajhearne Member Posts: 9 Connected
    Hi Adora858 hope it goes okay.
  • katho31katho31 Member - under moderation Posts: 700 Pioneering
    Hi shazzy, thoughts are with you and we are all praying and wishing you get through this very difficult period  :) xx
  • ell1esell1es Member Posts: 6 Listener
    My husband had his this morning - lovely lady thankfully. Can breathe a bit now. He will hear back within 6-8 weeks :)
  • Lulu_1949Lulu_1949 Member Posts: 213 Pioneering
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