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TOPIC: PIP Mandatory Consideration and Appeal

PIP Mandatory Consideration and Appeal 2 months 3 weeks ago #212967

I've been lurking in the background for a few months now using the guides to help me navigate the horrendous process of enforced DLA to PIP. I have been on High/Low DLA for 8 years for my bipolar disorder. My DLA award still had 2 years to run when they made me start the application in January.

Today I received the dreaded 0 points letter with justification based on barely half truths from a face to face. It didn't appear to lend any weight to my medical evidence and it omitted all the important details about the support my husband gives me with the daily living activities while dismissing my risk factors because I am managed as an outpatient by a team who knows me extremely well rather than being bounced in and out of hospital (not that there are any beds to do that anyway with the cuts).

I saw my GP this afternoon and he's supporting my wish to appeal (he can't quite believe the situation).

My DLA has been given an end date in 4 weeks time and I'm presuming that an appeal won't change that despite the fact I will be challenging the DWP.

I've had a look at the appeals guide this afternoon but as you can guess my brain isn't quite functioning as well as it could with the stress. Any hints and tips would be much appreciated.

It looks like me and my husband are in for the long haul.

Many thanks.

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PIP Mandatory Consideration and Appeal 2 months 2 weeks ago #213009

Mary

The first stage to challenging a Decision is for you to request a Mandatory Reconsideration, this needs to be done in writing to the DWP, within one month of the Decision, to the office that dealt with your claim, have a look at our PIP MR & Appeal guide for details of the process, the PIP area also has template letters that you can use to make the request with.

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

You should contact the DWP for a copy of the assessment report if you have not already done so, I would phone them but again follow up the request in writing. Once you have the assessment report you will have a better understanding of how the DWP Decision Maker has come to their conclusions and will then be able to argue against them.

Your primary task is to show that you meet the criteria, there are many reasons you may have failed, you need to address each of these but don't get bogged down in criticising the assessment report unless you can clearly show that it is incorrect, it is a lot easier to argue the facts of the situation;

"the assessor recorded that I walked 50m, I did but they have failed to document that I had to stop every 10m for a rest due to breathlessness"

than their opinions

"based on my observations of the claimant walking I believe that they can reliably walk more than 200m.

When you have a better idea of the issues with your claim, come back to the forum 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

PIP Mandatory Consideration and Appeal 2 months 2 weeks ago #213256

Thanks Gordon,

To make matters worse we're on holiday next week - a holiday that we've had booked for 9 months!

I've phoned the DWP today (with my husband on loud speaker) and told them I wanted a Mandatory Reconsideration plus a Subject Access Request on all the information the Decision Maker used. I'm about to follow up everything in writing over the weekend. They've given us until 29th June to submit the Mandatory Reconsideration paperwork (it was a very waffly description of where to find it on the gov.uk website but luckily we're tech savvy). Unfortunately the time scales mean that I guess they'll conveniently manage not to process the SAR in time for MR deadline so all I'll have to go on is the decision letter justification. I would have done it differently - probably stage by stage and pushed the MR another week had we not been away.

My GP is writing a forceful letter of support - he's seen the decision letter. I saw his draft on Wednesday - so that should be ready to slip into the MR to give more gravity to the lengthy submissions my husband and I gave on the PIP2 form. We use the guides to do that so they are very detailed.

Is there anything else that you suggest at this stage? To be honest I'm our minds we're preparing for tribunal. I've been in High/Low DLA for 8 years. My underlying presentation hasn't changed in that time but the amount of support I have has. It seems like the DWP has used the fact that I'm more enabled by the support I currently have to disregard it as a factor in me being more enabled and in turn not take into account what happens if you take that support away.

We believe that I meet quite a few of the descriptors - not necessarily high level points for each of them but all the low level points add up. It doesn't help that making the case for mental health is hard!

Thanks again

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PIP Mandatory Consideration and Appeal 2 months 2 weeks ago #213266

Mary

The only advice I can offer at this time is to make sure that you understand and have shown that you meet the criteria to score, remember that you need to complte the PIP activities reliably and on the majority of days.

Deal with the assessment report but stick to issues that are related to your scoring and try and avoid arguing with the assessors opinions unless you can make a counter argument based on the evidence that you submitted.

Gordon

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