Claimants are having their right to challenge PIP decisions threatened by massive failures in the DWP’s mail and telephone call handling systems, Benefits and Work readers are reporting.

Benefits and Work has a page devoted to the PIP Enquiry Line, where readers can report problems with the service.

It is always extremely difficult to get through to the PIP line, but we have noticed a considerable spike in the number of comments over recent days, suggesting that there are even more problems than usual:

“Tried several days in a row at different times and can not get through now my claim will be stopped before it’s even started due to them not answering. Been on hold over and hour each time.”
Chrystal

“Impossible to speak to anyone. No matter how long you hold, you still get cut off. Absolutely disgusting.”
Robert

“Unable to get through, have tried calling many times just to be cut off every time, obviously they're trying to piss people off so you basically give up on the claim.”
Alex

However, some readers are now reporting that their PIP decision notices are arriving so late that they are out of time, or almost out of time , to request a mandatory reconsideration (though see below for the solution to this).  When they then try to telephone to request a mandatory reconsideration they find it impossible to get through. 

“I have been trying to get a mandatory reconsideration. Filling a award notice received today [11 April], letter states sent 8th March. I only have one month to appeal, which has expired due to the letter only arriving today. 11th April. When I got through to the mandatory reconsideration line, it says go to gov. Org.. then 4 loud bleeps and cuts off. Tried numerous times . Sometimes I can't get past the press one for English. I tried contacting CAB, and that's as frustrating. I feel my letter was deliberately held back as requested my award letter twice.. knowing the appeal date would lapse. I'm so frustrated!!”
Jan

“Pip refused, letter dated March 6th and received April 11th. They know they're sending letters out with huge delays on them so people won't bother to attempt a mandatory reconsideration. It's disgusting.”
Kate

“I have had exactly the same thing - letter dated 4th March arrived yesterday (April 11th). On hold now - hopefully can get it sorted.”
Jonathan

“Trying to do mandatory reconsideration. I have tried 4 times and call has been rejected every time.”
B

It is shameful that the DWP are providing such a broken service and it is undoubtedly leading to claimants losing benefits they are entitled to.

However, in relation to mandatory reconsiderations, readers need to be aware that the one month deadline for a mandatory reconsideration is not an absolute one.  If you miss this deadline, you can put in a late request up to 13 months from the date of your PIP decision letter.

You will need to provide reasons as to why your request is outside the one month time limit.  If the DWP don’t accept your reasons for lateness you can still appeal. 

We would strongly advise readers who find themselves in this position to write requesting a mandatory reconsideration and include the lateness of the decision letter and the number of attempts to get through by telephone in your explanation of why your request is late

There’s more on this in our PIP appeals guide for members on the PIP Guides page.

Comments

Write comments...
or post as a guest
People in conversation:
Loading comment... The comment will be refreshed after 00:00.
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    Jules · 14 days ago
    It’s really ironic that they’re coming out with all sorts of gimmicks to replace PIP when I’ve just read that Ian Duncan Smith has suggested giving couples £550 to enable them to get married 🤦‍♀️

    My daughter has been waiting for her PIP renewal forms, apparently they’ve sent two. Have now asked them to send it to my address. In the meantime they’ve stopped all payments, obviously hoping she’s not bothered renewing, and it’s bloody hopeless trying to get through to them, disgraceful.
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    Leon Carter · 28 days ago
    It's why the DWP send these important letters that have MR and Appeal rights attached by second class mail I also wonder if the DWP have an agreement with Roydl Mail to delay them.

    This certainly needs raising in parliament as it is not good enough.
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    Tony · 28 days ago
    PIP refused, letter dated 6th March, received 11th April, called and got through after only 23 minutes and told them I would be appealing and wanted the delay logging onto my file. Blatant lies and omissions on decision letter. 
    • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
      Leon Carter · 28 days ago
      @anon But they could send them via first class mail instead of second class
    • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
      Dino · 28 days ago
      @anon So sue the royal mail for any benefit that would be received in a claim being sucessful. It will be like the postmasters convictions all over again only this time it's letters that should be received by claimants not arriving on time.
    • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
      anon · 28 days ago
      @Tony the letter is issued through the computer system and from a central location they cannot hold on to the letter , if there is a delay it is the fault of Roya Mail
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    Mark A · 28 days ago
    It would seem this is becoming common practice; probably in a corrupt attempt to get rid of more claims. My PIP reconsideration notice was dated 26/2/2024 and it arrived sometime between 27/3/2024 and 7/4/2024 (when I was away from home). Absolutely outrageous!
    • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
      anon · 28 days ago
      @Mark A again the letter cannot be held on to, its issued by a central location and sent the day tht  on it the fault lies with Royal Mail
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    Stratopaul · 28 days ago
    Probably a little late to write about my daughters renewal.
    She had a telephone assessment with what I can only describe as a wonderful lady who knew exactly what endometriosis is like along with my daughters other problems after a bad R T C ,spinal surgery and a spinal cord implant plus mental health problems,she said on the phone that she is going to request that her pip is upgraded to the full amount for both categories.
    This I can assure you is unheard of as I had a problem with an assessor and my husbands renewal a few years ago after his stroke and heart attack which she lied through her teeth in her report.
    But just to say don't give up or try not to stress out,I know that Benefits and Work are here to help you and they are on your side,I had some great advice and was successful in getting him his award because i had the courage to fight his corner.
    Good luck,and thank you B & W 
    • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
      Dino · 28 days ago
      @Stratopaul In any assessment always phone an request that it is recorded. 'You can tell if the recording equipment is working as it shows a red light whilst it's recording, no red light tell them and refuse the assessment. It's a trick that some assessors do so that the assessment isn't recorded. Under no circumstances let them say the red light doesn't work, it would be repaired if the device has any fault and that includes the red recording light not workling. Another tricjk they use is telling the claimant the recording device isn't working and they will have to go ahead with the assessment and if they refuse they will put it down as a no show by the claimant. Always do your own covert recording then if you refuse the assessment because of no or malfunctioning equipment you can send the DWP a recording you have done 
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    Wwebster · 29 days ago
    I was moved from PIP to ADP (Scottish PIP) last month. Before that, I struggled to get through like everyone else. But, at this very moment in time and space, I am actually astonished that the Social Security Scotland is (for now) much quicker in picking up the phone, they seem to be less stressed and nasty as well and they actually were very helpful. AND they have a chatbox on their website too. Yes, it still takes half an hour to speak/chat to someone, but I was on the phone with PIP much much longer. Dare I hope ... ? As my father would say: " Don't touch it, don't breach on it. Just be grateful."
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    Jane · 1 months ago
    A friend works at the DWP and they are so short staffed they've been told not to answer phones for several hours in a day because each call generates more work and they are snowed under.
    • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
      anon · 28 days ago
      @Jane  that just nor true  the lines are manned al the time
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    Carole L · 1 months ago
    The only way to get through to any DWP department or even any Government department is to be on the phone at 8 am or what ever time they open . Start phoning a couple of minutes before 8 and keep doing it until you hit the right button at exactly 8. It is hard but it does work.
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    Adam · 1 months ago
    This sounds awful.  Surely this is illegal?  It feels like fraudulent behaviour on their part, denying people the money they're entitled to by not allowing them to claim it.  It'd be good if some legal action were taken against them, after all they wouldn't hesitate to take legal action against us if we put down the wrong date and got an extra day's money, or forgot to tell them we had a couple of good days last month.  What a sham. 
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    Elaine · 1 months ago
    Can this site raise this issue with the minister who has responsibility? Maybe also get the media involved? B@W is a well respected advisory site that any complaint from would likely have more sway with ministers than if individuals report it. 
  • Thank you for your comment. Comments are moderated before being published.
    C · 1 months ago
    Tried calling 4 times on 16th, was cut off during the security questions all 4 times. Called 3 times on 17th - cut off twice during the security, then held for 59 minutes before getting an answer. Unfortunately, they were unable to help and would 'probably' call me back within 48 hours. 24 hours in, not heard yet, not massively optimistic that I actually WILL hear from them. 
We use cookies

We use cookies on our website. Some of them are essential for the operation of the site, while others help us to improve this site and the user experience (tracking cookies). You can decide for yourself whether you want to allow cookies or not. Please note that if you reject them, you may not be able to use all the functionalities of the site.