Search rightsnet
Search options

Where

Benefit

Jurisdiction

Jurisdiction

From

to

Forum Home  →  Discussion  →  Disability benefits  →  Thread

PIP claim ending on Monday but assessment has been cancelled

JAS1
forum member

Advice Worker, Gaddum Centre

Send message

Total Posts: 360

Joined: 14 February 2017

I’m slightly short on details for this one as it’s an email, but client was due phone assessment today, however ATOS have cancelled. Her PIP is due to end next Monday, she called PIP and they confirmed it will end next Monday despite no assessment being able to be done.

Is this right? Have they stopped extending awards?

Paul Stockton
forum member

Epping Forest CAB

Send message

Total Posts: 116

Joined: 6 May 2014

I haven’t discerned any consistency on this. I have a client whose PIP ends in May this year and she has been told it definitely won’t be extended. On the other hand I have a client whose PIP ends in May 2024, and that’s already been extended to November 2024.

Greeny
forum member

Salford Welfare Rights (Health)

Send message

Total Posts: 29

Joined: 3 April 2017

JAS1 - 01 February 2021 10:20 AM

I’m slightly short on details for this one as it’s an email, but client was due phone assessment today, however ATOS have cancelled. Her PIP is due to end next Monday, she called PIP and they confirmed it will end next Monday despite no assessment being able to be done.

Is this right? Have they stopped extending awards?

I have been contacted by a client who’s PIP ended on 31 December without offer of an extension. She returned a form on time which has been received, she is waiting for assessment - DWP have told her she has to wait in date order for hers to come up.
The claim that ended recently was won at appeal.
I am waiting to see what we can do - Jess Stone has been emailed.

Helen Rogers
forum member

Welfare rights officer - Stockport MBC

Send message

Total Posts: 167

Joined: 17 June 2010

I have a client who returned her form straight away but was told that her PIP would end last week and she can’t have an extension.  I lodged a complaint and she contacted her MP.  PIP have now said that this was an error and her award has been extended.

JAS1
forum member

Advice Worker, Gaddum Centre

Send message

Total Posts: 360

Joined: 14 February 2017

Thanks all, that’s worrying that so many seem to be ending.

Seems massively unfair to end in this case seeing as ATOS cancelled their own assessment.

MP an excellent idea given short notice, they usually get a response faster than I do.

JP 007
forum member

Welfare rights - Dundee City Council

Send message

Total Posts: 80

Joined: 2 February 2012

Client awarded PIP sdl at appeal with end date Jan 2021
He made new claim as instructed and was eventually sent a PIP2 due 30th November 2020. Duly completed by us and returned but still PIP stopped in January.
See other thread in Covid discussion but seems to imply government statement that all awards should be extended due to Covid.. There is a CPAG template for Judicial Reviews.

MP intervention got following reply from DWP;

I can see that Mr XXXXXXXXs PIP benefit award was awarded until 2 January 2021
Unfortunately, we are unable to extend PIP benefit awards where a short term award was made at Tribunal by HM Courts and Tribunal Services (HMCTS).  This is because your constituent’s award will be ending and he is required to submit a new application for PIP benefit .I   can   confirm   that   we   received   your   constituent’s   PIP2   questionnaire   on   23 November 2020, and we referred Mr XXXXXXXX’s case to our healthcare provider to arrange a medical assessment appointment.  I contacted them to request an update on your behalf.  Independent Assessment Services (IAS)  the provider in your constituent’s case have confirmed that they have made a telephone appointment for 25 January 2021 at 08:30am.  This is the earliest appointment available and they confirmed that they will send a letter to your constituent and a reminder text message closer to the appointment date.  Please advise Mr XXXXXXXX that he will have the opportunity to change this date/time should this not be convenient.  Following this consultation, a report will be prepared and returned to DWP.  A PIP case   manager   will   then   look   again   at all   evidence   held   on   file   alongside   the assessment report to determine whether a further award of PIP benefit can be made. I will ensure that this decision is expedited and a letter will be sent to your constituent informing him of the full reasons for our decision.
I hope we have addressed your concerns, however, if you would like to discuss the content of this letter please telephone   02920   291155 and we   will   arrange   for someone to return your call.
Yours sincerely,

Complaints Resolution ManagerDWP Complaints Team

Client has learning difficulties and difficult to contact but I am trying to confirm last payment date with him.

 

Paul Stockton
forum member

Epping Forest CAB

Send message

Total Posts: 116

Joined: 6 May 2014

“Unfortunately, we are unable to extend PIP benefit awards where a short term award was made at Tribunal by HM Courts and Tribunal Services (HMCTS).  This is because your constituent’s award will be ending and he is required to submit a new application for PIP benefit .”

This extract from the letter seems to confirm that DWP takes the view that it cannot extend tribunal awards, at least if they are “short-term”, whatever that means. Presumably the second sentence I’ve quoted should start “Because of this” rather than “This because”, otherwise it makes no sense.

As discussed in other threads, this begs the question as to what power the DWP has to extend awards when the award was not made by a tribunal, and why that power does not extend to tribunal awards. Could this be raised at the stakeholder group? Or has someone already got a JR under way on it?

Daphne
Administrator

rightsnet writer / editor

Send message

Total Posts: 3012

Joined: 14 March 2014

Justin Tomlinson said on 7 December that they were extending awards made at tribunal

JP 007
forum member

Welfare rights - Dundee City Council

Send message

Total Posts: 80

Joined: 2 February 2012

‘The Department has been automatically applying extension of awards of PIP for all decisions in scope of the COVID-19 easements including those decisions first instated at First-tier Tribunals. All customers receiving an extension will be notified of their new award end date early 2021, the planned completion date for all extension activity.’

This is clearly at odds with DWP complaints resolution managers response to my client.(above)

I have completed CPAG’s JR100 and forwarded to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
There is clearly a avalanche of forms, of all sorts, emanating from PIP so either they have a lot of staff to keep busy and they can waste time stopping awards against the SOS’s instructions…....or they are just stupid?
It sure generates a lot of work for us!

wbamic
forum member

Mind in Croydon

Send message

Total Posts: 50

Joined: 19 June 2019

I have had the response below by using the CPAG template letter.  Looks to be a good outcome . 


‘You claim that (1) the Department of Work and Pensions (‘DWP’) failed to follow law and guidance by failing to recognise the power to supersede the Claimant’s PIP award to extend the term; and (2) failed to have regard to and apply stated policy to extend PIP awards, including fixed term awards made at Tribunal.
This is on the basis that following a Tribunal appeal, the Claimant was awarded a PIP award from 17 January 2018 to 16 January 2021.
The Claimant received a letter from DWP stating that her award would end on 16 January 2021. She received the PIP2 Questionnaire on or around 23 October 2020. The Claimant returned the completed questionnaire in December 2020.
The Claimant was not called for a medical assessment. On 16 January 2021 her PIP award came to an end.
As you will be aware, the Department gave extensions for all fixed term awards ending between 24 March 2020 and 2 October 2020, on its understanding of the COVID situation as it existed at the time. The policy as it applied after 2 October 2020 (again, on the basis of the COVID situation at the time) in relation to Tribunal awards where there is less than 2 years to run from the date the Tribunal decision is promulgated (where there is no award review scheduled) has been to invite advance claims.
The Department believed at the relevant time that the above policy would be sufficient to prevent claimants whose fixed term awards were not extended, from falling out of payment. However, it has recently become aware that some claimants are falling out of payment before their advance claims have been decided.
It is the ongoing, and rapidly fluctuating, COVID situation (including a reduction of assessment capacity) that has hampered the Department’s ability to decide all advance claims before a fixed term award ends. The policy as it applied at 2 October 2020 was made before the impact of the changing COVID situation was known. Therefore, now that the Department is aware of the issue, it is urgently currently considering various policy and handling options, with the intention of rectifying the issue. As you may appreciate, the impact of COVID on assessment capacity is a complex subject with many interdependencies, and therefore a range of possible solutions (including but not limited to award extensions) needs to be considered.’
You will be aware that the Claimant’s PIP award was extended on 24 February 2021, and will run to 16 July 2021. The Claimant’s advance claim has been referred to the Assessment Provider for assessment.

Sara Leeroth
forum member

North Somerset CAB

Send message

Total Posts: 5

Joined: 9 July 2010

Exactly the same response as we have had to ours - do you think they will actually do anything urgently though?
It is also a markedly different reply to the one we had from Disability Services a few days later which said:

“When the announcement was made regarding the extension of PIP awards it stated that Reassessment cases and Reviews would have the length of the award extended, which they were. However when a short term award has been given at appeal by HMCTS (as the claimant is expected to improve in most cases) these are called Advanced Claims and the claimant has to make a new claim to PIP and these are not classed as reviews and were ‘not in scope’ for extension. We have no legislation that allows us to extend these claims as these last decision was made by HMCTS. We cannot supersede this HMCTS decision either as we do not know that the claimant still has the claimed needs without an assessment report to support the claim.

Advanced claim invitation letters (inviting the claimant to call the PIP new claim line) were sent out 3 months before the end of the award as there was enough time pre-Covid to action them before the claim ran out. Unfortunately due to Covid we now have a situation where there is a delay at the Assessment Provider where some claims are running out before the assessment has been carried out.  We now send out the invitation letter 6 months before the end on the award.

We fully understand that there are some claimants who’s award is running out or has run out due to the delays however we are currently looking at ways we can improve this and there are lines to take coming out very soon which I will copy you into. If we are alerted to any hardship or vulnerable claimants then we are highlighting these cases through to the Assessment Provider who is prioritising these cases for us.”

Paul Stockton
forum member

Epping Forest CAB

Send message

Total Posts: 116

Joined: 6 May 2014

This disability services letter at least has the merit of exposing the DWP thinking, so we can pick holes in it!

As many contributors to this and other threads have pointed out, where does the DWP get the power to extend any award, whether made by the SoS or the tribunal? If it’s the supersession power it has to come within the list of grounds in the Decisions and Appeals Regulations. The only appropriate one would seem to be regulation 23 - change of circumstances - and that is available for both SoS and tribunal decisions.

Or are the extensions of SoS awards not supersessions at all? Maybe there is a clue in Justin Tomlinson’s answer of 7/12/20, posted by Daphne on 8/2/21. It gives the impression that tribunal awards are being extended but what he actually says is: “all decisions in scope of the COVID-19 easements including those decisions first instated at First-tier Tribunals”

The key phrase is “in scope of the Covid-19 easements”. What are these easements? Google them and you won’t get an answer but what they seem to be are powers for departments to pay out money outside of the normal legislative framework, using a thoroughly obscure power in a Supply and Appropriation Act. Maybe that’s what been used here. In which case the exclusion of tribunal awards is a consequence of DWP failing to get the necessary consent from the Treasury.

DUWC
forum member

Derbyshire Unemployed Workers Centre

Send message

Total Posts: 6

Joined: 16 June 2010

The dwp have not extended a four year award that was decided after appeal to UTT and decided by FTT after 3 1/2 years last year. They said due to FTT decision they couldn’t. However, I have sent Minister statement, original legislation, internal guidance and complaint.
The problem is any award over 2 years is a LTA and not fixed term. Ie it should have created a review. I need to find out why the dwp are not applying the law correctly with the award period. Can someone please advise what they are doing and if any person can assist with JR? I’ve sent pre letter but that’s it.
I attached this.. Hanson source (Citation: HC Deb, 21 January 2021,
Justin TomlinsonThe Minister of State, Department for Work and Pensions
The Department has been automatically applying extension of awards of Personal Independence Payment (PIP) for
ALL claims due to end between March 2020 and January 2021 including short term and decisions made by a tribunal.

Ianb
forum member

Macmillan benefits team, Citizens Advice Bristol

Send message

Total Posts: 673

Joined: 24 November 2017

Are there any more recent statements regarding extending claims? The last quotation by DUWC refers to claims due to end between march 2020 and January 2021. Obviously we are now well past that but we know many claimants are waiting six months for assessments so the need to extend existing awards to avoid a break in payment appears unchanged.