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TOPIC: informing DLA of going into hospital

informing DLA of going into hospital 7 years 1 day ago #13628

  • koolkatz_casper
:( Hi all, had a bit of a shock yesterday when I received a call from DLA demanding to know why I hadn't informed them of my son's hospital admissions.

I am in the process of re-applying and they asked for a consultants report,they received this yesterday and it stated my son has had a number of admissions. I got a call wanting to know exact dates on all admissions and why I had not told them about them. I don't know why this has all come about from the report as I wrote on my form my son had had 2 admissions in the past 6 weeks (as requested) and also mentioned a number of times on the form he is admissed to hospital regularly! They seem to have ignored this and used the report to say I have failed to inform them of a change of circumstance. My son has been receiving DLA since he was 5 and was first admitted when he was 7. A few years ago I called to ask if they needed to know when he went into hospital (as it said on the award letter) and was told it was only necessary if he went in for a long period of time. I have not received any notification since then to suggest this has changed. I have spoken to a few friends of mine who also claim DLA and none of them were aware of this either.
I have since discovered money is stopped after 84 consecutive days in hospital (i think) but any admission within 28 days after discharge is classed as a continuation.
I can honestly say my son has never been in hospital for anywhere near that length of time without a 28 day break but am now worried I can be done for failing to inform them of a change in circumstance!

They have also done something else I have never come across. The consultants report arrived 2 days after they made a decison on my sons claim and a letter was sent out to me. But they have now recalled his file to look at all the evidence again to make another decision. I wasn't aware they did this, has this happened to anyone else and if so did the decision change. I know it can't get any better for me as my son was awarded HRC and HRM, so am wondering what was in the report to make them look at the claim again straight away.

Any thoughts on these matters would be greatly appreciated as I am now sitting at home stressing about the whole situation.
Last Edit: 7 years 1 day ago by Gareth. Reason: Amended username as it was revealing complete email address.
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Re:informing DLA of going into hospital 7 years 23 hours ago #13635

  • pata1
  • OFFLINE
  • Retired Nurse & Former Moderator.
Hi,

The rules on receiving benefits (including DLA) are on the Direct Government website here Hospital stays and your benefits

Hope this helps.

I'll leave any advice on decisions to our resident expert Crazydiamond who is a former DSS Adjudication Officer, which is the equivalent of a Decision Maker in the DWP.

Kind regards.

Pat
PLEASE READ THE SPOTLIGHTS AREA OF THE FORUM REGULARLY, OTHERWISE YOU MAY MISS OUT ON IMPORTANT INFORMATION. Nothing on this board constitutes legal advice - always consult a professional about specific problems
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Re:informing DLA of going into hospital 7 years 12 hours ago #13664

koolkatz wrote:
:( Hi all, had a bit of a shock yesterday when I received a call from DLA demanding to know why I hadn't informed them of my son's hospital admissions.

I am in the process of re-applying and they asked for a consultants report,they received this yesterday and it stated my son has had a number of admissions. I got a call wanting to know exact dates on all admissions and why I had not told them about them. I don't know why this has all come about from the report as I wrote on my form my son had had 2 admissions in the past 6 weeks (as requested) and also mentioned a number of times on the form he is admissed to hospital regularly! They seem to have ignored this and used the report to say I have failed to inform them of a change of circumstance. My son has been receiving DLA since he was 5 and was first admitted when he was 7. A few years ago I called to ask if they needed to know when he went into hospital (as it said on the award letter) and was told it was only necessary if he went in for a long period of time. I have not received any notification since then to suggest this has changed. I have spoken to a few friends of mine who also claim DLA and none of them were aware of this either.
I have since discovered money is stopped after 84 consecutive days in hospital (i think) but any admission within 28 days after discharge is classed as a continuation.
I can honestly say my son has never been in hospital for anywhere near that length of time without a 28 day break but am now worried I can be done for failing to inform them of a change in circumstance!

They have also done something else I have never come across. The consultants report arrived 2 days after they made a decison on my sons claim and a letter was sent out to me. But they have now recalled his file to look at all the evidence again to make another decision. I wasn't aware they did this, has this happened to anyone else and if so did the decision change. I know it can't get any better for me as my son was awarded HRC and HRM, so am wondering what was in the report to make them look at the claim again straight away.

Any thoughts on these matters would be greatly appreciated as I am now sitting at home stressing about the whole situation.

I don't have a copy of the DLA instructions which detail changes of circumstances that need to be reported, but for social security benefits in general the following obligations are expected of a claimant/appointee.

Any changes affecting the recipient of DLA must be reported immediately preferably in writing. However, when the change of circumstances has been reported, unless the disclosure was made to a different office to the one handling the claim, no further disclosure is expected of the claimant/appointee.

In the situation as described, if all the admissions to hospital have been disclosed to the DLA unit then that is the end of the matter. If the change of circumstances as reported were not acted upon, then this amounts to official error. If the hospital stays were for a cumulative period of less than 84 days, even though you would be expected to report the admissions to hospital as a relevant change of circumstances, this would have no material effect on the DLA award. Consequently you couldn't be "done" for non-disclosure. It is in my opinion always advisable to report all potential changes of circumstances no matter how trivial they may seem, in writing, as soon as possible.

On the question of making an award of DLA then subsequently considering a revision of entitlement following the receipt of new evidence, in this case from a consultant, is not in my view the correct procedure. If the DLA Unit had requested a consultant's report, they should have waited for its return before making an award. Furthermore, it causes unnecessary distress to the claimant/appointee to be informed of an award, only to have doubts raised about its correctness shortly thereafter. It should not happen.

Unfortunately we have another member who has recently posted in the forum and found herself with a DLA award of HRM/HRC, only to have it withdrawn altogether on revision. If my memory serves me correctly, I believe her name is elljay and I understand she is currently appealing the revised decision.
Nothing on this board constitutes legal advice - always consult a professional about specific problems
Last Edit: 7 years 12 hours ago by Crazydiamond.
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