Hi, I'm Jacqueline_Rose! Is it standard practice for DM's to offer awards before tribunal? — Scope | Disability forum
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Hi, I'm Jacqueline_Rose! Is it standard practice for DM's to offer awards before tribunal?

Jacqueline_Rose
Jacqueline_Rose Member Posts: 4 Listener
edited March 2021 in PIP, DLA, and AA
Prior to my son's tribunal, someone from the DWP a <moderator removed name>  called to say that the DWP had looked at the claim and decided to award Dylan PIP at the standard rate. He emphasised that he was the decision maker and he had conceded that my son (who has early onset psychosis and applied for PIP over 3 years ago) scored sufficient points to be awarded the standard rate.

I questioned how he had come to that decision when his OT, Consultant Psychiatrist, Private Psychotherapist and GP had stated in a report that he should be awarded the enhanced rate. He said that if we agreed he would put the money in our account the next day. His approach was initially quite brusque, and at one point I had to ask him to stop shouting.

The nature of the whole call was highly inappropriate. It felt like he was 'doorstepping' us. It was as if it was a private claim and he was offering to settle out of court. The experience was unnerving and I told him, we would rather take let the judge decide. I'm so glad we made that decision as my son was awarded the enhanced rate. 

I feel calling just before the hearing could be deemed as intimidation (although <moderator removed name> was not threatening), as some people would be very worried about appearing in court (pre-Covid) and for that reason may have accepted the DWP's offer as an easy option. 

Is this normal practice on the part of the DWP to treat sick people in this way and to essentially put them in a position where they could potentially lose out on money which is, not only rightly theirs, but for which they have already waited so long for? I am appalled to know that this practice is condoned by the Government. Please can you keep this email as a record and add it to any Social Change Activity you may have. 

Comments

  • Jacqueline_Rose
    Jacqueline_Rose Member Posts: 4 Listener
    edited March 2021
    Prior to my son's tribunal, someone from the DWP a <moderator removed name>  called to say that the DWP had looked at the claim and decided to award Dylan PIP at the standard rate. He emphasised that he was the decision maker and he had conceded that my son (who has early onset psychosis and applied for PIP over 3 years ago) scored sufficient points to be awarded the standard rate.

    I questioned how he had come to that decision when his OT, Consultant Psychiatrist, Private Psychotherapist and GP had stated in a report that he should be awarded the enhanced rate. He said that if we agreed he would put the money in our account the next day. His approach was initially quite brusque, and at one point I had to ask him to stop shouting.

    The nature of the whole call was highly inappropriate. It felt like he was 'doorstepping' us. It was as if it was a private claim and he was offering to settle out of court. The experience was unnerving and I told him, we would rather take let the judge decide. I'm so glad we made that decision as my son was awarded the enhanced rate. 

    I feel calling just before the hearing could be deemed as intimidation (although <moderator removed name>  was not threatening), as some people would be very worried about appearing in court (pre-Covid) and for that reason may have accepted the DWP's offer as an easy option. 

    Is this normal practice on the part of the DWP to treat sick people in this way and to essentially put them in a position where they could potentially lose out on money which is, not only rightly theirs, but for which they have already waited so long for? I am appalled to know that this practice is condoned by the Government. Please can you keep this email as a record and add it to any Social Change Activity you may have. 
  • calcotti
    calcotti Member Posts: 6,278 Disability Gamechanger
    edited March 2021
    Jacqueline_Rose said: Is this normal practice on the part of the DWP to treat sick people in this way and to essentially put them in a position where they could potentially lose out on money which is, not only rightly theirs, but for which they have already waited so long for? I am appalled to know that this practice is condoned by the Government. Please can you keep this email as a record and add it to any Social Change Activity you may have. 
    Bear in mind that even if the 'offer' is accepted that new decision can then be appealed. So in some cases it can be beneficial to accept so that the award is put into payment and then start the appeal process again.
    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.
  • Cher_Inactive
    Cher_Inactive Posts: 4,400 Scope online community team
    edited March 2021
    Hello @Jacqueline_Rose and welcome to our community.

    I've merged your posts to keep everything in one place and have also edited out the name of the decision maker for confidentiality reasons.

    I have heard of this happening before and you can read about it in this CPAG 'An offer you can't refuse' article and in this Guardian article by Dr. Frances Ryan.   I believe it isn't a universal practice however and am glad to hear your son went onto receive the enhanced rate.

    Thank you for sharing and I'd be interested in hearing others opinions.
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  • Jacqueline_Rose
    Jacqueline_Rose Member Posts: 4 Listener
    I think it's about thinking of lesser empowered people and perhaps those who lack information. We are all in this position either because at this moment in time our health is not at its best, either mentally or physically. Or we in someway lack the ability to go about our daily lives in a way in which most people are expected to; Or even if, as in my case, we are caring for someone in those positions, that too takes its toll on your health.

    So it's all very well saying you can accept and then go on to appeal again, but the process of appealing is very stressful, and to some degree demeaning, and when you are already dealing with the affects your illness has on daily living, quite inhumane. 

    I disagree when you say you can't really lose. The process itself means that sadly we are already losing by the time it comes to a hearing. I appreciate your comment though. Thank you.
  • Jacqueline_Rose
    Jacqueline_Rose Member Posts: 4 Listener
    I'm sorry I do not see it your way and would refer you to the 2 articles presented by the online Co-ordinator above. The whole process needs a revamp in my opinion. But as always, I appreciate your response.
  • calcotti
    calcotti Member Posts: 6,278 Disability Gamechanger
    I'm sorry I do not see it your way and would refer you to the 2 articles presented by the online Co-ordinator above. The whole process needs a revamp in my opinion. But as always, I appreciate your response.
    As the CPAG article says “A claimant to whom an offer is made would be well advised to accept it“. Their argument for saying that, as set out in the article, seems broadly the same as Mike’s..
    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.

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