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DLA to PIP success
“Thank you so much B&W for your guides and forums I transfered from dla to pip receiveing standard care and enhanced mobility I've been with you a couple of years but with this application I used the guides from the start and thank God it paid off this is the first application that I have not had to go to tribunal”
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You can read this newsletter online.

Dear [fname],

In this edition we look at the grim fact that 43% of DLA Motability claimants who are forced to apply for PIP lose their vehicle as a result.

We also reveal the rather happier fact the latest Tribunals Service statistics show that the success rate for PIP and ESA appeals has now hit 69%.

We alert you to a new mandatory reconsideration form that the DWP are desperate for you not use – even though it’s one of their own.

And, following responses our last newsletter, we’ve asked the DWP where exactly all that positive PIP and ESA assessment feedback actually comes from?

 

DLA TO PIP MOTABILITY CLAIMS
In evidence to MPs this month, the director of Motability revealed that 43% of all DLA to PIP claimants have lost their car as a result of being assessed for PIP.

Declan O’Mahony told MPs:

“To date we have seen about 175,000 of our current scheme customers go through the DWP’s reassessment process from DLA to PIP. In round numbers, 100,000 of those have retained higher-level mobility so, as far as the scheme is concerned, it is fine and they continue in the same place. Seventy-five thousand have lost higher rate mobility. They have either dropped to standard rate or to nil and, as a consequence, they have to leave the scheme.”

Claimants who lose their car get a one-off grant of £2,000 and most spend this on a used car.

In addition, 8,500 claimants – around 11% of those who lose their vehicle - have received additional grants averaging £2,353 each because they need their cars to be specially adapted for wheelchair access.

 

APPEAL SUCCESS RISES
The latest figures from the Tribunals service show that the proportion of claimants who win their PIP and ESA appeals now stands at a staggering 69%.

For PIP claimants this represents a rise from 65% in the first quarter of 2016/17.

For ESA claimants it represents a small fall of 1%.

For the DWP it represents the utter failure of every attempt they have made to reduce the politically damaging level of success that claimants achieve when someone from outside the DWP looks at the standard of assessments and decision making.

Even the small army of DWP presenting officers employed to nobble successful claims – see the last newsletter - have yet to make a difference, it would seem.

 

MANDATORY RECONSIDERATION FORM
The DWP have published a mandatory reconsideration form you can download, complete offline then print off and sign.

However, the form is unusual in trying to persuade people not to use it, but to phone instead.

Prominent text on the form argues:

“It is easier to call

You can ask for a Mandatory Reconsideration over the phone. Your claim will be looked at in exactly the same way. It’s much quicker and you can explain why you think the decision is wrong over the phone, without needing to fill anything.”

Benefits and Work would encourage readers to always make their mandatory reconsideration request in writing, so that you can give precisely the information you wish and don’t have to justify what you are saying to a potentially discouraging DWP staff member.

You can still write a letter rather than using the form. But we would be interested to hear from anyone who does try it out.

 

MYSTERY OF GLOWING PIP AND ESA FEEDBACK
In the last newsletter we asked you if you had been intimidated into giving good feedback about your PIP or ESA assessment.

The DWP have told MPs that the private assessment companies Atos, Capita and Maximus “consistently exceed” their customer satisfaction targets of 90% for PIP and 91% for ESA. Which may surprise some readers.

But we heard from one member who had been asked to give signed feedback to a PIP assessor who stood over her as she wrote it. Not surprisingly she gave the health professional top marks.

We wanted to discover if this was a common experience.

However, far from providing an answer, all we have done is deepen the mystery.

Because out of the many tens of thousands of claimants, advice workers and support workers who read our newsletters, only two people contacted us to say that they had been asked to give feedback.

One gave feedback in person and one in writing.

Such a low level of response is very unusual for Benefits and Work and does raise at least a suspicion that the number of people that the feedback responses are based on is quite small.

We have now made a freedom of information request to the DWP asking how and when feedback is collected, who it is collected by and how many responses the latest statistics are based upon.

We’ll let you know what we discover.

Good luck,

Steve Donnison

 Benefits and Work guides covers

DLA to PIP success – thank you
“I just want to say a big thank you for guides and advice. I've just received my DLA to PIP decision. From lower care higher mobility to standard care enhanced mobility. Thank you.”

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ESA Support Group awarded
“Hi, I was awarded esa and placed in the support group again, thanks to your guides.”

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: 85685

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
Mystery of glowing PIP and ESA feedback deepens
The mystery of how PIP and ESA assessment companies achieve over 90% customer satisfaction ratings has deepened after Benefits and Work tried to find readers who had been asked to provide feedback.

DWP produces mandatory reconsideration form they don’t want you to use
The DWP have published a 7 page mandatory reconsideration form which can be used with any benefit, but they make it clear they would rather you didn’t use it.

69% of claimants win their PIP and ESA appeals
The proportion of PIP and ESA claimants who win their appeal at first tier tribunal has now climbed to an extraordinary 69%, according to figures released this week by the Tribunals Service.

43% of DLA to PIP Motability claimants lose car
43% of all DLA claimants who had a car under the Motability scheme but who have had to go through the transfer to PIP have lost their vehicle as a result, it was revealed this week.

 

GOOD NEWS FROM THE FORUM
As always, many thanks to everyone who takes the trouble to post in the forum or email us with news of your success. We know it’s many readers favourite, and most encouraging, bit of the newsletter.

Benefits and Work guides coversESA Support Group reassessment success
“Thank you to all at B&W for your help and advice. I had my first re-assessment for ESA and was kept in the support group. It is thanks to your website and the unfailing moderators, that make the difference to all of us, who struggle with this unjust government system. Well done and keep up the fantastic work, worth every penny of the subscription!”

Exceeded all my expectations with Gordon’s help
“Good afternoon all; I am posting today with news I have been awarded standard rate on both care and mobility components for 3 years. At the beginning I was convinced I wouldn't get any award in this transfer over from dla. So my message is it can be a seem a tough fight but don't give up. I would like to give thanks to Gordon for all the advice he has provided. I have read another members comment, that he deserves an MBE for the work he does for disabled people and I can only second that.”

PIP Review success
“Delighted to hear today that after a PIP review my son has been awarded enhanced daily living and enhanced mobility. Backdated to a random date in November. Hurrah! He was previously on standard rate for both and I feared he was at risk of losing the mobility element because the Govt had changed the rules to discriminate against claimants with mental illness. Thank goodness that legal battle was won in the end. Benefits crusaders can sometimes triumph! I can't tell you what a support B&W has been to me through this stress inducing process. I rely so heavily on the advice in your guides, which I follow to the letter. So THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!”

PIP Result
“I was on DLA middle rate care and high rate mobility I had to apply for PIP and had a f2f the assessor even she said it was crazy to have to assess me but went where she was told. I was awarded enhanced care and enhanced mobility. I got 26 points for care and 16 mobility. It's upsetting to see how ill i am being acknowledged but a huge relief. Thank you for your help, I paid extra to be a member and is worth it. I did it all on my own with your website”

ESA Result!
“Hello Gordon and all the other extremely hardworking mods. Just to let you know I have been a member here for a number of years and after following the excellent guides here I am pleased to say that following a recent WCA I have been placed in the Support group for another 18months. Thanks for all that you do!”

Thank you B&W. ESA & PIP all done
“Just wanted to thank the team at B&W. Without the comprehensive guides I am sure that the outcome would not have been as positive as I would not have thought to include so much information with my application forms. I intend to remain a member and subscribe to B & W.
My ESA review kept me in the Support Group, process stated March 2017 and I was notified in Oct 2017. Three days after I received that notification I was ‘invited’ to apply for PIP (was on DLA). That process is now complete, F2F end of Jan 2018 & notification received today, Standard Care & Enhanced Mobility. Award lasts until 2025…My advice to anyone going through it is, subscribe to B&W, read the guides, print off the sections that apply to your individual problems and concentrate on the advice/guidance in those sections whilst answering the questions. With the PIP there was no problem getting an extension of 2 weeks to complete the form. Even though it is very stressful, don’t give in. B&W has all the information you need and if you can’t find it then the forum is excellent. Many, many thanks”


Judge apologises at PIP appeal
“I attended my PIP Appeal hearing last week to challenge the HP for disregarding my anxiety and depression, also for the abundance of inaccurate statements (20) in their paperwork. My HP assessment was in December 2016. I was fortunate that the Tribunal panel had made a decision on all the evidence that I submitted. The Judge was outraged and apologised that my case had gone this far, he said the medical evidence I provided originally should have been acknowledged. He apologised for the distress and upset that this ordeal had caused. He went on to praise the Doctor's report as being 'outstanding' and 'concise'. I left within 2 minutes of entering the room with a judgement of Enhanced for both Daily Living and Mobility (previously standard for both). The additional points were awarded for going out and mixing with people. My advice to others is this; I prepared rigorously with the help of my family and the excellent Benefit & Work Guides; I gathered all medical evidence to the time I became ill and my Doctor provided a comprehensive report stating clearly each condition, then my symptoms and finally how they affected my daily life.”

ESA appeal win
“Thank you B&W . After waiting since may 17 finally win my appeal for esa”

PIP Reassessment – Result
“Following a dramatic worsening of my health and disabilities I had a home visit for a F2F reassessment 5 weeks ago. Got the dreaded Brown Envelope....drum roll......re-awarded Daily Living at the standard rate, and awarded Enhanced mobility (was previously standard rate). Oh and its till January 2021! Im so pleased at the outcome, I hadn't dared hope for such a good result. I haven't been up to posting much recently but the Guides have been invaluable to me in preparing for my assessments. So a big THANK YOU to everyone who contributes to this fabulous site!”

PIP Tribunal success
“Just to say a big thank you for help from here. Come back from my pip tribunal and been awarded 8 points for daily living and 12 points for mobility for my epilepsy…Many thanks”

BOOST YOUR PIP AND ESA 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: 85685

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

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