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20 May 2015 Newsletter

New Minister For Disabled Strongly Against Disability Benefits And Human Rights Plus Member's Maximus Victory

The info on this site really does change people's livesImage of Benefits and Work guide covers.
“I am over the moon to report that on a paper based review the DWP decision was overturned and my daughter was awarded enhanced rate daily living and enhanced rate mobility. I cannot thank B&W enough for giving me the knowledge of how to challenge the decision and write an appeal submission. So glad that the tribunal members viewed all the evidence impartially and justly. The info on this site really does change people's lives. Good luck to everyone else in a similar situation.”

You can read this newsletter online

Dear Reader

Like a lot of people, we’re still coming to terms with finding ourselves in a country ruled by a Conservative majority.

Tomlinson, new minister for disabledThe new administration’s attitude towards sick and disabled claimants is probably summed up in a single act: the appointment of a new minister for the disabled who is strongly against disability benefits and human rights.

It’s not surprising then that many of our members are deeply worried about what the future might hold, particularly with £12 billion in benefits cuts now about to become a reality.

We’re not going to make any further guesses as to where those cuts might fall. There was good reason to hunt for clues prior to the election when people were deciding how to vote.

But now that the votes have been cast, all we can do is wait, watch and bring you news as soon as it’s available. At the moment that looks likely to be on 8 July, when George Osborne’s second budget of the year will be all about where the cuts are going to come from.

Meanwhile, we’ve updated our ESA guides to take account of the ‘right’ of claimants to send in up-to-date ESA50s. One of our members who was refused permission to do so by Maximus staff challenged the refusal and quickly got it overturned.

We’ve also updated our PIP guides to warn of the increased likelihood that claimants with suicidal tendencies will be forced to attend a face-to-face assessment – possibly with a physiotherapist – instead of having their own health professionals contacted by Atos or Capita. And we have some advice on what to do about it.

We also have news that ESA sanctions, mostly for being too ill to undertake work-related activities, increased by 25% in a single month according to the latest statistics.

And we have a boast by the DWP that the PIP assessment delay crisis is now over, with claimants waiting on average just 15 weeks for a decision.

Has that been your experience?

Finally, we’d like to thank you for putting up with our weekly newsletters over the election period. With much relief, we have now returned to the usual fortnightly mailings.

Good luck,

Steve Donnison

BOOST YOUR ESA, PIP OR DLA CHANCES - 20% OFF ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP – OFFER ENDS MIDNIGHT FRIDAY
DLA to PIP success
“Thanks to this site, I have been successful in my application for PIP, I used to be on DLA like most of you. My award is High Rate Mobility, High Rate Care…Thank God for this site!!! Thanks all so much”

Give yourself the best possible chance of getting the right ESA, PIP or DLA decision, whether you’re making a claim, renewing an existing award or asking for a reconsideration or appeal. Subscribe now and get instant access to all our guides.

If you’re not already a member, join the Benefits and Work community before midnight on Friday and you can get 20% off the cost of your annual subscription.

Just type the following code into the coupon box when you pay: 3386

Claimants and carers get an annual subscription for £15.96, down from £19.95. Professionals get an annual subscription for £77.60, down from £97.00.
Offer ends midnight Friday

BENEFITS NEWS
Benefits and Work member takes on Maximus and wins

Benefits cuts to be revealed on 8 July

ESA sanctions for being too ill to work up by 25% in one month

PIP delays crisis now over, claim DWP

New minister for disabled strongly against disability benefits and human rights

Five more years of IDS

Shock Tory majority is worst possible news for claimants

FEEDBACK BY EMAIL AND FROM THE FORUM
It’s been a while since we published any feedback that we’ve received via email, but we always read it and we are very grateful for it. So, as a bit of an antidote to the endless bad news, we’ve got a bumper selection of email and forum good news from members

PIP successImage of benefits and Work guide covers
“My mum applied for PIP from DLA on the 5th February. This week she was awarded the enhanced rate of both care and mobility with big thanks to this website!”

Support Group with no F2F interview
“Great News!! Thank you to everyone on this site, I could not have done it without your help and support. Well worth the money to subscribe.”

Thank you team PIP so much for your help
“I am so grateful for all the help I have received from the people here at Benefits and work. I doubt very much I could have done this without you…you are doing such a good job helping vulnerable people. The PIP process really is a testing experience, the support, advice and information is invaluable…I am grateful, thank you”

ESA Support Group success
“I used your guidance and have received a text telling me I have been placed in the Support group without the need for a face to face medical...your guides are second to none…. It is a weight off my mind as I am in the contributary ESA group so it would have run dry after 12 months…I can breathe a sigh of relief... for now I am happy and so grateful for your excellent step by step guide to filling out the forms. Nobody can give you face to face advice as excellent as referring to this guide. Thank you so much to you clever people that wrote this guide that helped me to describe my difficulties in the way that scores points.”

SDA to ESA Support Group
“I telephoned ESA yesterday for an update on my claim. They called me back this morning (within the 3 hours opening times limit) I am just transferring from SDA to ESA. They tell me I have been put into the support group because my disability is severe enough. I don't know how many points I was awarded. But I am very happy. Thank you to Benefits and Works for your files that helped me apply…
Thank you again.”


PIP reconsideration success
“Hi, just wanted to say thank you for your recent advice and support, I have now been awarded PIP Mobility & Daily Living Enhanced for both components having submitted a Mandatory Reconsideration, initially I was awarded Standard Mobility only…Thank you.”

PIP victory!!
“at last my very long journey( nearly 2 years) through the pip process came to an end with a victory…
standard rate for 3 years, was in shock when reading it now back down to earth”


ESA Support Group
“hi. I have been put into the support group ESA for 3 years... thank you for this wonderful site. been real help. keep up the good work”

Result!!!!
“I filled in the recently received ESA50 again using the B&W guide, to the letter. 2 weeks and 2 days later (today) i received word by post that I'd been placed in the Support Group from the WRAG. And that was with no face to face assessment. And my award was also raised by a few pounds a week. It doesn't however say how long my award is for… I 'm still stunned and i've said (to myself) at least a hundred times today....I can't believe it!!!! Benefits and Work....you rock. Thank you, thank you, thank you. There's absolutely NO WAY I would have filled in the ESA50 correctly without your guide. I Will renew my subscription to B&W until the year dot. Whether i need it or not! A million thanks.”

ESA Support Group without medical
“Just got word today that my son has been placed in the support group for 12 months, without him having to undergo a Work Capability Assessment medical. Many thanks to Benefits and Work - my husband, son and myself are all disabled, and your Guides have helped us enormously with the form filling, thereby ensuring that we are getting the benefits to which we are entitled.”

DLA award
“I returned my wifes' DLA Renewal form back on the 27th April…Today the 5th May 2 letters arrived. First was standard letter saying that form had been received…imagine our shock when we read DLA had been awarded, high rate care and mobility for the next two years. Total time from sending to getting the decision 8 days and that included a bank holiday!! I don't think we could have filled the form in, giving all the facts and the info required if it hadn't been for your advice notes. Thanks to all the Mods and all the people posting on the site, really couldn't have done it without your help”

Support Group success
“Just received my Decision after a long wait that has had me stressed out & Placed in Support Group & that is thanks to you B&W.”

“My life will be so much better”
“I have about 4 out of 7 bad days when my mobility is very poor. I had tried claiming DLA at least 3 times with professional help on 1 occasion. But it seemed that because some days I could walk the required distance my claim always failed. My daughter took over the challenge of PIP the form and insisted that I subscribe to “Benefits and Work”. And believe it or not I have been awarded enhanced living and mobility allowance with no end date. A very big thank you to the team for providing such excellent guides. My life will be so much better.”
Daniel

“. . . it's peace of mind for another 5 years.”
“I thought you would like to know that my husband has just been awarded the higher rate care & mobility components of DLA again until 2020. It took around 3 weeks for the decision to come through, with no medical. Thanks to you I sent off information that I wouldn't otherwise have known to and reworded some of the answers. Thank you Benefits and Work. At least it's peace of mind for another 5 years. It was getting to the point that we were both shaking with fear as the brown envelopes dropped on the doormat. We even put them to one side out of fear of what they were going to take from us next.”
Jane

“. . . no face to face assessment was necessary”
“Just wanted to say thank you, your guides helped me successfully claim PIP for my 16 year old son who has autism. Was worried that this whole process was going to really upset my son but the supporting evidence which I sent was enough for the decision and no face to face assessment was necessary. For others worried .........don't give up hope.”
Amber

“well worth the subscription”
“Many, many thanks for your website – well worth the subscription for all your advice! Whilst filling in the daunting self-assessment form, I felt I had somebody ‘looking over my shoulder’ at every step. It made such a difference knowing which bits of information were important to stress, as so often I take these points for granted after so many years living with severe chronic pain. Got my medical assessment within 10 weeks, received my notification 11 days later – been awarded standard rate of both ‘daily living’ & ‘mobility’ components, backdated to December when I first plucked up the courage to apply with the help of your guides.”
Billie

“. . . to those who are wondering whether it's worth bothering . . .”
“Thank you for all the hard work you put in to offer such comprehensive advice. This morning I have just received 'the letter'. I applied for ESA in April, and other than being allocated a Disability officer at the local job centre had heard nothing. Knowing about the backlog in applications I was resigned to waiting longer and probably having to attend for a WCA. Imagine my surprise....Support group ! Thank you once again , and to those who are wondering whether it's worth bothering....yes it is. I followed the guidance rigidly and this is the result.”
Charles

“. . . a BIG THANK YOU is a good starter !”
“Just to let you know that by reading your guides on completing the ESA 500 form that my son was required to complete, even though he has had a life threatening disease since birth, we heard today the he has rightly been assessed (without interview) as being in the Support Group. The process has taken 8 weeks since mailing the completed form into Atos. Without following your comprehensive guide hints and tips: adding further additional information than asked for, and by qualifying all answers (not just answering the question directly with a Yes or No), I’m sure the outcome would have been detrimental to my sons situation.”
Daniel

“The relief is beyond words”
"I have been on DLA for 6+ years and the prospect of facing a PiP medical has 'terrified' me for over a year.
“My DLA ended in July, however it was December before I faced my medical.
I had thought that the only way to be awarded PiP was to exaggerate and lie, which terrified me even more. With the guidance I received, I was able to word my answers accurately and most importantly "Truthfully", keeping my morals intact. The site taught me how each question was structured which allowed me to answer the questions directly.
I received the DWP letter this morning and it took four gruelling hours of emotions before I could actually open it. The result was enhanced rate for care and mobility too. The relief is beyond words and I feel a great weight of depression has eased for as long as my Wife & I can remember as today progressed.
“To anyone thinking of joining; this is not a place to learn how to cheat the system, but a guide with genuine support for genuine people.
“Thank You.”

Bill

“thanks again to your awesome team”
“I'd just like to say I joined your web page after a friend recommended it to me I was to fill in ESA forms and I had sat with it for two weeks before asking for her help.
“It was the best money spent I read and reread the pip forms filled it in to claim was granted higher rate care standard mobility till 2017 what a great success story.
“Then I was on contribution ESA and was called in by ATOS to go for a assessment again I read everything on here and I went on the 8 th of January, have now been advised that I'm to be moved to the support group and I will be called again in 2017 for another assessment, Worry over for a couple of years and now can relax as there was no way with my medical conditions I would have been able to work.
“I will be renewing my subs when it's due thanks again to your awesome team, and your members for sharing.”

Gill

“I still can’t believe it!”
“Unbelievable – we just got the letter for my autistic son, and they have already made the decision that they will put him in the support group as soon as his 13 week assessment phase is up.
“Thank you! Your guides were just so helpful.
“I still can’t believe it!”

Jez

“I'm a solicitor”
“I'm a solicitor, I work with the elderly, the disabled and the vulnerable. I've successfully achieved PIP and AA claims for several clients thanks to the B&W guides and the training we have done with CPAG. Two amazing and increasingly, not just necessary but fundamental organisations.”
Facebook post

“. . . enhanced rate of care AND also the low rate of mobility.”
“My wife has recently gone from DLA to PIP.
“She used to get the low rate of care on the DLA.
“We have just had the result of her PIP claim and she now gets the enhanced rate of care AND also the low rate of mobility.
“That is only because we followed your guides. Thanks very much for your help.”

Paul

“Your site is an invaluable resource.”
“I would like to say a huge thank you for all your online information & guides which have helped me enormously to increase my rate from DLA care only low rate to added mobility which I am really pleased with. Your site is an invaluable resource and I am very pleased that I joined.”
Alison

“Very well worth the subscription fee.”
“I was dreading the transfer from SDA to ESA so when the dreaded forms arrived I looked around the internet for guidance. Found your website with the superb guides on form filling. Sent my form in and just one month later received a letter saying I have been placed in the support group! No face to face required. Thank you so much for your excellent notes and feedback from others which is very encouraging. Very well worth the subscription fee.”
Caroline

“been awarded high for both , your site was a great help”
“i wanted to say a big thank you to benefits and work ,my DLA was nearing ending and i was sent a letter saying i had to apply for pip instead ,i filled in the forms with your help and had a medical at home ,the lady was very pleasant ,although i worried this may be a tactic to put me at ease and therefore slip up in some way ,she did have to ring and see me four hours after my appointment time as she said her boss had given her an impossible time to get between appointments spread all over . I received the dreaded brown envelope a few weeks later and have been awarded high for both , your site was a great help thanks again”
Sheri

“Such a relief and weight off my shoulders”
“I just wanted to express my thanks for your guides and the help of the National Autistic Society (NAS) regarding PIP, after submitting my application in March 2014 and being ordered for a medical assessment early February 2015, which was cancelled two days before I had to attend as they were doing a paper based assessment instead, I was awarded PIP for standard rate daily living & standard rate mobility until 20th January 2019 and also backdated to when the claim was submitted. Such a relief and weight off my shoulders.”
Andy

“Best money ever spent on a subscription”
“I would like to thank B&W for helping with my PIP claim. The first time I claimed I didn't know about B&W and was turned down immediately. This time I used all the help and advice on the website and after a 5 month wait for a medical, I was awarded enhanced rate on both daily living and mobility backdated to when I first phoned. It only took a week and a half from medical to the dreaded brown envelope! Best money ever spent on a subscription!
“Thank you so much”

Sheila

BOOST YOUR ESA, PIP OR DLA CHANCES - 20% OFF ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP – OFFER ENDS MIDNIGHT FRIDAY
Give yourself the best possible chance of getting the right ESA, PIP or DLA decision, whether you’re making a claim, renewing an existing award or asking for a reconsideration or appeal. Subscribe now and get instant access to all our guides.

If you’re not already a member, join the Benefits and Work community before midnight on Friday and you can get 20% off the cost of your annual subscription.

Just type the following code into the coupon box when you pay: 3386

Claimants and carers get an annual subscription for £15.96, down from £19.95. Professionals get an annual subscription for £77.60, down from £97.00.
Offer ends midnight Friday

Good luck,

The Office Team
Benefits and Work Publishing Ltd
Company registration No. 5962666