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TOPIC: Awaiting tribunal

Awaiting tribunal 7 months 4 days ago #204431

Hello, I’m a newbie member... hope you can help.
Previous DLA enhanced mobility/low care - indefinite from 2007.
PIP2 sent July 11 2017, assessment August 24th, decision letter 15th September - 2 points for wearing hearing aids/zero points mobility . mandatory reconciliation sent 7th November, reply 9th November ?? The same of course.
I suffer joint hypermobility (though at 59, female and certain hormones depleted not as bendy as I once was), ligamentous laxity and I walk with a left leg gait. Both congenital and hereditary but together have caused many injuries throughout my life. Broke my spine aged 19 but wasn’t aware for 6 months and consultant said very lucky I’m not paralysed from chest down or shoulders down.
I suffered bunions and developed hammertoes (which I wish had been left alone as caused more problems since than bunions) started having irreversible foot surgeries 2004.to 2014. Never as a cure only to relief symptoms. However I was unaware myself of the jhms and lax ligaments seriousness and 2007 started seeing podiatrist for bespoke orthotic insoles. Have to wear very thick soled footwear as feet hypersensitive with all the surgeries, scars, misshapen toes, big toes don’t contact with floor or shoe sole and other toes now splay out to compensate poor balance. I wish I’d never started having the surgeries, my very active busy lifestyle is no more and I now have to use various walking sticks or crutch to be able to have some stability walking, standing.
I like many disabled struggle by means of developing strategies to cope with their daily life, Big ourselves up so life is copeable, bearable... I have suffered depression for decades but worse since realised I could not longer walk properly, Dance (the reason I had the bunionectomies was to dance again - I did ballet until I was 15) and yes I’ve felt seriously suicidal when see the impact it has had on my beautiful family, feel a burden sometimes, feel lonely don’t go out anymore. I do work six hours a week in a pharmacy and love it, gives me a purpose; helps my moral and helping others; training to progress to a dispenser. But this has been taken incorrectly throughout from the PA4 assessor and the decisions, when the assessor has stated I work 23 1/2 hours - 3-4 days a week. Infact I was doing holiday cover and caused me significant pain, fatigue, joints ceasing up, full analgesia, resting when got home. My doctor has written to clarify this twice. My entire PA4 is full of discrepancies the most significant one is my musculoskeletal which makes me out to be a gymnast if you understand the medical terms used...flexion degrees etc. That I can crouch down and needed no help getting on and off the couch. 1. I was sat down and did reach for a tissue in my bag when she asked questions about my depression and suicidal thoughts. This wasn’t noted not how upset I got just her inaccurate observation. My partner lost his mum and then uncle three months apart last year, and I’ve tried so hard to swallow my depression to support him and my family. As for the couch, I held the table to the side and asked for a step. She proceeded to do the mobility test but did get hold of my leg to move it further!! Apparently I can get my knee to my chin... I can’t and hence been in great pain since...but she was doing her job and I was naive thinking I had to do this examination. My worsening of pain mobility etc could have happened at anytime, like a fall, and I don’t want to go down The blaming scenario.
Mandatory reconciliation sent 7th November 2017 with evidence from my patient access - previous DLA gp report stating Bilateral forefoot disabilities, irreversible surgeries, surgeries not successful. X-ray report from October stating several medical facts of degenerative spine and Ive been for two mri scans (total spine and left knee) I’ve shrunk 7cms since 2009! Sent appointment letter from physiotherapist who referred me to hydrotherapy as muscles too weak for land therapy. On both my claim form and MR and on the telephone I said if they want me to forward awaiting evidence to let me know... never heard from DWP. I now have a bundle of my own supporting evidence relating to all my physical mobility problems mentioned in the claim form.
Anyway, sorry waffling on about my ailments xx I had a very good few sessions with CAB chap and between us both we contacted DWP several times as since the day of my assessment examination my pain, mobility has deteriorated. Prescribed stronger analgesia, ibuprofen, and ongoing physio/mri and spinal consultant and urology too soon, as I suffer bladder urgency incontinence. I’ve now been referred to welfare rights and had an hours session with the officer. We’ve sent off appeal sscs1 papers and received my DWP bundle. I’ve been busy going through this getting my folder in similar order and photocopying everything for myself, WR and tribunal.
I’m very anxious indeed, feel like I’m living, eating, breathing it all since July. The WR officer I’m not sure I have confidence in as she umma and arrs a lot and we’re not meeting again she said until nearer the tribunal date. I’m worried we’re not on the same page in all seriousness, that a rapor of what I’m appealing for isn’t quite getting through. My MObility entitlement of course with some award for care I’m hoping.
I’ve found your site invaluable and full of such brilliant advice but I’m just feeling overwhelmed by the enormity of it. Thank fully have the blue badge occupational therapist report and physiotherapist report which strongly show the assessment examination was inaccurate and what my true situation is.
I returned my motability car December and have been lucky that my partner bought me a 12 year old Yaris to keep me independent. He works away four days/home four days so I’d be very housebound without wheels. The DWP bundle appeal to tribunal letter states I drive a manual car and therefore have grip, power and strength in upper and lower limbs. What do they think I’m driving, a TanK!! Of course modern cars have power steering, robust very easy to move gear sticks... spring loaded or something. And the clutches are a tap away movement. I’m so short my seat is right up to the steering wheel and hardly move my legs feet at all. They’re clutching at straws now.
Any advice..apart from waffling :)

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Awaiting tribunal 7 months 4 days ago #204455

MadH

Who is producing your submission for the appeal? You mention a Welfare Rights officer are they doing it or have they left it to you?

A submission needs to address two issues, first and foremost why you meet the criteria for an award, PIP has very specific criteria that you need to show that you meet and it is easy not to score points because you have not covered some of that criteria.

Secondly you need to address any issues raised in the assessment report, ideally by reference to your evidence, to show that it incorrect or that the assessors opinions are not justified.

There is a sample submission in the Submissions PDF in the PIP area that may help.

www.benefitsandwork.co.uk/help-for-claimants/pip

If you have further questions then please reply to this post and we will do our best to help.

Gordon

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Nothing on this board constitutes legal advice - always consult a professional about specific problems

Awaiting tribunal 7 months 4 days ago #204467

Thank you Gordon for your reply. I’ve marked BW’s pip submission file with all the different submission letters for documents. Yes I was wondering too...who is writing my submission. I have a feeling she said she was, however, I’ve got to drop of (at reception, my extra bundle of evidence and an extra copy for tribunal which she said she’d forward?.. not happy dropping my confidential stuff off would prefer to hand over directly to the officer)
But as I mentioned I’m not sure we’re on the same page. For example, I have mild undiagnosed dyslexia... slipped through the school system. It means I double treble read words, sentences as I can miscomprehend context otherwise. Not a bed practice in a pharmacy and they’re aware of this. Black and white text bounces about and I use blue overlay film to overcome..etc and numbers 3,5,8 digital I mix up. The decision letter does say they can see I have difficulties though not specified what. I also have trans tint prescription glasses not just for purpose of seeing but because I suffer occular migraines/visual stress. Now this has a bearing on the reading and understanding words, symbols, signs which also includes planning/following a journey. In my case unfamiliar journeys... I get in an anxious state and make a written plan with arrows, circles for roundabouts..land marks. I have to do this days before to revise the route. I also had a satnav but only listened to it (the maps distracting) or rather I need a passenger to be with me to prompt correct turnings. I don’t always register the direction signs and if I lorry is in the way I’m stuffed lol. End up on many magical mystery trips as have such a rubbish sense of direction. If there’s a change in route by an accident, roadworks I’m right up the creek. I cannot travel by public transport, my mobility capabilities pain, fatigue, joints ceasing up etc couldn’t do this.
The WR officer says I have no chance of getting any award for these two activities, especially the mobility planning activity! My mobility effects all activities except talking and dexterity :)
I feel I should write the submission myself, let her read through and query / discuss amendments. She said my tribunal has a 6/7 month waiting time but I want to do it while it’s fresh in my head, even if there’s more reports from spine consultant etc to forward later.
What do you think?

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Awaiting tribunal 7 months 4 days ago #204480

MadH

As you have access to an advisor I need to be circumspect with my advice as they will have access to your papers and an understanding of your problems that we can never replicate on the forum.

What I will say is that this is your claim and only you profit or lose by the result so you do need take ownership of the process and make sure that activities are complete and that you are happy with everything that is submitted as part of your appeal.

My best advice is for you to talk to your advisor about what needs to be done.

Gordon

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Nothing on this board constitutes legal advice - always consult a professional about specific problems

Awaiting tribunal 7 months 4 days ago #204484

Many thanks Gordon... taking ownership is exactly what I’m doing. I just have this little niggle from my recent conversation over the phone, with my advisor, that they also want to have ownership putting my case forward. I’m going to contact her again and say I’d appreciate a second meeting though this isn’t usual...just so we both know where we are up to.

Just been looking at an article on RightNet, Gordon. Relating to DWP email address.
As of yesterday 15 January, any claimant who requests an email address under “reasonable adjustment to correspondence “ because of disability effecting vocal, hearing, communication or I would imagine anxiety too, and disabilities reducing ability to send paperwork can be given an email address but DWP have to advise the security of this method. Just thought it might help some of your members.
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Awaiting tribunal 7 months 3 days ago #204523

Feel like I am constantly wading through my paperwork. Putting or checking it’s in order. Last night spent couple of hours going through my PIP2 claim form copy. Yellow highlighter and pen. Underlined relevant, important statements relating to the descriptor and highlighting, marking and making brief (believe it or not lol) remarks important for submission / tribunal. Of course noting too where evidence medical fact can be found in OT, Doctors, physio, x rays and spine consultant letters and reports.
Tonight, Gordon, I’ll be going through the decision letters again, as there’s a couple of contradictions...oh we love the contradictions. But also trying to quantify their appeal reasons letter remarking on decrepancies in my claim/assessment!?!
My poor house is dusty but like I said one eats, lives and breaths this fight.
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