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error of law

jillf88jillf88 Member Posts: 3 Listener
edited October 2020 in PIP, DLA and AA
Hi, my daughter has just received her statement of reasons from her PIP Tribunal. It was very upsetting reading what the judge had to say, according to the judge my daughter exaggerates and lacks creditability. There has been assumptions made in the statement, i.e- due to my daughters illness/disability i would often drive her to university, this helped with the fatigue and pain control, the judge has stated that the tribunal found that this was dictated by choice and/or need for me to be able to use the car as i car share with my daughter. This is not the case at all and none of this was said to the tribunal, we have our own cars we do not share. They stated they could only consider the circumstances obtaining as at the date of the decision appealed against (17/04/2019) and not how she was at the time of the tribunal hearing, the hearing was June 2020, if that is the case then should they have took into consideration the fact that we took my daughter on holiday in November 2019 and also should they have considered the new job she started in December 2019?. They are refusing her PIP because there saying she must be very intellectual because she attended university and is able to work part time. We are going to see about appealing to the upper tribunal, but im unsure if there is any error of Law, any advice would be greatly appreciated
Many thanks


  • woodbinewoodbine Community Co-Production Group Posts: 5,060 Disability Gamechanger
    hi and welcome to scope, its quite true that they can only consider the case on the PIP application and not any changes since. I'm not sure if there is an error in law someone will help with that when they see this, if there have been changes since the original application which are backed up by evidence then it should be possible to apply again.
    I will now only offer benefits advice on PIP, and specific benefits advice for other people with Epilepsy. 
  • Tori_ScopeTori_Scope Posts: 5,673

    Scope community team

    Welcome to the community @jillf88 :) I know that woodbine has given you some pointers above, but I've marked your post as unanswered in the hopes that another member with more knowledge on errors of law can give you some guidance. 
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  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 7,150 Disability Gamechanger
    edited October 2020
    Several observations:

    1 - most decisions will have an error of law within them. It’s hard not to make one. That doesn’t mean you should proceed though. There’s no point in going to UT in order to get a fresh hearing at FTT if it has no chance of winning. So, you don’t just need a rep to identify an error of law. You need a basic assessment of the merits of the claim. For similar reasons, don’t even think about a further claim until an assessment of merit has taken place. 

    2 - it’s impossible to comment on the car situation as the tribunal make decisions based on all the evidence and not just what was said. Without knowing more about what was said in the appeal papers or about the specific health issue there’s nothing to be said. 

    3 - I’m not sure I follow your point about the circumstances obtaining on the date of claim. If the date of claim was April 19 then anything which happened in November/December 19 is irrelevant unless it explicitly enlightens somehow about the circumstances back in the April.

    4 - If you’re going to seek advice about an error of law then that’s what you need to do. A forum will not help you. We would need sight of the bundle and at least an hours worth of interview time to do that. Get professional advice. At this point there is no sensible alternative to that.

    5 - The assertion as to the reasons for the refusal of PIP also makes no sense. They will have refused PIP because insufficient points were scored. Being “intellectual”; attending university and working are indirectly relevant but again it’s not clear why from your post. It would only be in relation to,for example, mental ill health or learning disability. 

    6 - The accusation around exaggerating and lacking credibility is one to take very seriously indeed and should give much pause for thought. Many tribunals put this out there as a conclusion in ridiculous circumstances and an error of law follows - usually around insufficient findings of fact or findings of fact for which no evidence exists. 

    However, there are a proportion of appellants for whom it is a not unreasonable conclusion and proceeding further would be unwise indeed. Not least because it risks the publication of a UT decision as a public document which states that it was a reasonable conclusion. You need to understand why the tribunal came to that conclusion and brutally honest, regardless if whether you agree with them, about whether it was one of the reasonable responses open to them.
  • Han_Han_ Member Posts: 154 Pioneering
    Hi @jillf88. The Citizens Advice website here (under the heading 'Challenging a tribunal decision') states to contact them as soon as possible to get help regarding the potential error of law. I hope they are able to help if you decide to contact them.

  • jillf88jillf88 Member Posts: 3 Listener
    Thank you to everyone for responding, my husband is going to speak to Citizens advice this week, he has also been advised to contact our local MP.  
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 23,089 Disability Gamechanger
    I'm not sure what your local MP can do here because they won't know the slightest thing about Tribunals/benefits or errors in law. Unfortunately your local MP can't guarantee a disability benefit award.
    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.
  • jillf88jillf88 Member Posts: 3 Listener
    Im unsure myself what our local MP can/will do, but my husband was advised by a health professional who has contacted the local MP herself on numerous occasions to help her patients with regards the outcome of PIP Tribunals 
  • Han_Han_ Member Posts: 154 Pioneering
    Hi @jillf88, I was just wondering how you got on with Citizens Advice and your local MP?

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