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Good cause for PIP form not returned in time

 

Lee42
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Caseworker, Law Centre(NI)

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Total Posts: 53

Joined: 6 September 2010

Hi all,

As some may know, PIP is still relatively new-ish here in Northern Ireland. This is the first case I’ve come across of someone failing to return the form in time, albeit that it’s not as straightforward as that (it never is!).

The lady who has contacted us is an appointee for her son. Previously on HRM and HRC. He was selected for conversion to PIP and she started the claim via the telephone. She requested and was granted additional time to return the PIP form. She posted it well within the extended deadline. Few weeks later got a decision letter from PIP stating that as the form was not returned, her son’s claim for PIP would be refused. She contacted PIP to explain that she had returned the form but they’ve stated they have no record of it being received. She did however keep a complete photocopy of the form and she offered to send that in. She sent that in and PIP have confirmed they received it. They also confirmed that her son’s case had been referred to Capita for assessment.

I’m still trying to find out exactly what happened in her case but I’m proceeding on the basis that good cause was accepted.  As she hasn’t had any further letters from PIP, it’s hard to tell exactly what’s happened. But I wanted to check is what is the position regarding the ongoing payments of DLA? The son’s DLA payments have stopped, which is what the decision letter stated. But if good cause has been accepted, it’s not clear what happens to the DLA payments. I’ve seen this thread https://www.rightsnet.org.uk/forums/viewthread/10528/ and I’d already had a look at reg 13 of the TP regs. The thread confirms what I had thought would happen, the negative determination is revised on the basis of good cause and so reg 13 isnt’ engaged. But reg 13(2) of the TP regs then makes specific provision for revision of the reg 8 decision in terms of when the PIP award starts, if eventually awarded. Has there been any further guidance or clarification on this?

I still have an issue that they made the negative determination at all. The power in reg 8(3) to make the determination is subject to the person demonstrating good cause. A person should be given the opportunity to show good cause first rather than have to challenge the negative determination through MR which then potentially engages reg 13 of the TP regs. She had no further correspondence from PIP prior to the decision letter.

Grateful for any views.