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PIP assessments

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Financial inclusion manager - Wythenshawe Community Housing

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I see that people who had renewals and new claims in before lockdown are supposed to be getting paper/telephone based assessments but what about new claims now? We have someone who has been told they will be waiting until Sept 2020 for an assessment. I would expect that they should consider other medical evidence in these circs – making people wait 5 months does not seem reasonable. Also it could end up being more than 5 months as, by definition, the people waiting for assessment have health conditions and may be more at risk and therefore be reluctant to go to a face to face assessment.

Anyone heard anything?

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Welfare Rights Officer with SWAMP Glasgow

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Anecdotally, none of the PIP claims I helped submit in the months prior to the lockdown have been processed. Those clients that have contacted DWP have been told a few different things: to prepare to wait a few months, an undefined period of time, or to wait to be contacted by phone/text for a phone assessment time (with no indication when this might happen).

Makes sense for DWP to prioritise resources to UC, but there is obviously a growing backlog of disability benefit claims. Graciously extending awards is all well and good, but does nothing for all the claimants who have wrongly lost their DLA/PIP during the lockdown (due to health assessments carried out earlier in the year etc), who will now have absurd waiting times for both MRs and if the wish to submit a new claim.

EDIT: Ah! What do you know, that’s another client just phoned me to say her DLA is stopping…

It makes sense, given that they had their assessments prior to lockdown. Extending these award would only make sense if DWP admitted they make mistakes all the bloody time.

[ Edited: 7 May 2020 at 10:48 am by Va1der ]
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Benefits adviser - Maggie's Centre, Edinburgh

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Va1der - 07 May 2020 10:14 AM

Anecdotally, none of the PIP claims I helped submit in the months prior to the lockdown have been processed.

I have had a few claims that were put in just before lockdown that have been processed. They have either had a telephone appointment with the assessor, or their nurse specialists have been contacted. I have been getting some good awards as well, some with very long renewal dates.
In saying that, I still have quite a few claims from last year outstanding, so there is no consistency.