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Worrying news for ESA claimants converting from DLA to PIP.
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Old 12-02-2018, 11:23   #556
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Re: Worrying news for ESA claimants converting from DLA to PIP.

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Originally Posted by RichardCoulter View Post
My worry is that not every disabled person has the strength to fight or the resources to appoint a solicitor to deal with this problem.
I am a member of several online groups, and the number of people who give up at the first refusal is staggering.

I suspect this is what HMG and the DWP actually want.

Most of those who wanted to give up, but took forum or legal advice to fight on, went on to win the same levels they had previously under DLA.

Renewal is started a year before the award ends, so I have seen people finish one round of hell only to have to start it all again immediately, and then be refused any award until they get to Tribunal.

And now large numbers are being reassessed for ESA and being found ineligible until they get to Tribunal.

It might be weeding-out some malingerers, but it is probably affecting the mental and physical strength of many who deserve the support.
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Old 12-02-2018, 15:10   #557
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Re: Worrying news for ESA claimants converting from DLA to PIP.

Totally agree.

The Cameron Government changed the whole culture of the DWP from being a service to help those in need to one where everyone is viewed with suspicion as a fraudster or malingerer.

The May Government has ever so slightly moderated this by agreeing that it's pointless continuing to reassess some people over and over again (although the criteria for this is so limited that it's virtually useless).

The fact that her Government decided not to appeal the legislation found to be unlawful that was designed to cut help to people including the blind and mentally ill/disabled was a welcome unexpected surprise.

My fear is that if she is ousted by the more right wing members of the Conservative Party that things will worsen again.
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Old 14-02-2018, 17:54   #558
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Re: Worrying news for ESA claimants converting from DLA to PIP.

After someone with an amputation was asked when it was expected to grow back again, today's Victoria Derbyshire programme reported that someone with Downs Syndrome was asked how they caught it!

An assessor was also interviewed who resigned after two weeks because she passed someone with learning difficulties and was overruled by an auditor who had never met the person, even though the individual had been to a special school etc. Included in her claims was the fact that reports are frequently compiled by copy/pasting word documents!

This assessor was a trained nurse who said that she was only given for weeks training for the post. As well as resigning, she has also reported the matter to her professional body.
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Old 14-02-2018, 18:40   #559
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Re: Worrying news for ESA claimants converting from DLA to PIP.

There are reports going back years(ie before 2010) of problems with assessments and reports.

I have personally experienced times when Decision Makers have phoned me to explain a decision and are completely unwilling to explain any of the points raised. A big bugbear of mine is that even the ATOS/Maximus assessors don't include the medically known impact of proven conditions.

I had a report where one moment it said "Breathless on exertion", yet claimed "no breathlessness when shaving" to be proof of no problems when exerting myself to mobilise. Been around the houses with that claim. Losing at a First Tier Tribunal, appeal to Upper Tribunal, Upper Tribunal agreeing that there was an "error in law", First Tier Tribunal rehearing and finally winning support group. That all took a long time(18 months). In the meantime I had to initially sign on for JSA, and quickly signed myself off sick with an Extended Period of Sickness(EPS), which lasts for up to 3 months, made a new claim for ESA, was initially accepted(which is difficult with a previous failed ESA claim), turned down, now waiting for another Tribunal hearing, which with any luck won't need to go ahead, as I now have a very recent Tribunal ruling in my favour.

Even the Jobcentre agreed that I shouldn't be on JSA. They set things up for jobs with a maximum of 16hrs/week, which was the minimum hours they were allowed to set, and I didn't have to sign on daily as I would normally be expected to do. Crazy situation, but it looks like I'm managing to get around the roadblocks put in place.

Last edited by nomadking; 14-02-2018 at 19:25.
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Old 14-02-2018, 23:15   #560
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Re: Worrying news for ESA claimants converting from DLA to PIP.

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Originally Posted by nomadking View Post
There are reports going back years(ie before 2010) of problems with assessments and reports.

I have personally experienced times when Decision Makers have phoned me to explain a decision and are completely unwilling to explain any of the points raised. A big bugbear of mine is that even the ATOS/Maximus assessors don't include the medically known impact of proven conditions.

I had a report where one moment it said "Breathless on exertion", yet claimed "no breathlessness when shaving" to be proof of no problems when exerting myself to mobilise. Been around the houses with that claim. Losing at a First Tier Tribunal, appeal to Upper Tribunal, Upper Tribunal agreeing that there was an "error in law", First Tier Tribunal rehearing and finally winning support group. That all took a long time(18 months). In the meantime I had to initially sign on for JSA, and quickly signed myself off sick with an Extended Period of Sickness(EPS), which lasts for up to 3 months, made a new claim for ESA, was initially accepted(which is difficult with a previous failed ESA claim), turned down, now waiting for another Tribunal hearing, which with any luck won't need to go ahead, as I now have a very recent Tribunal ruling in my favour.

Even the Jobcentre agreed that I shouldn't be on JSA. They set things up for jobs with a maximum of 16hrs/week, which was the minimum hours they were allowed to set, and I didn't have to sign on daily as I would normally be expected to do. Crazy situation, but it looks like I'm managing to get around the roadblocks put in place.
I am really sorry to hear this. Unfortunately, it is the true shirkers in society that are ruining so many lives by having all these checks imposed on genuine claimants.
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Old 15-02-2018, 00:32   #561
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Re: Worrying news for ESA claimants converting from DLA to PIP.

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Originally Posted by OLD BOY View Post
I am really sorry to hear this. Unfortunately, it is the true shirkers in society that are ruining so many lives by having all these checks imposed on genuine claimants.
No it is isnít. Itís the politicians that keep moving the goalposts as a cost cutting excercise at the expense of all claimants. As those at the bottom has less voice than anyone else. But weíve been vilified long enough now so the likes of you will continue to think the way way you do.
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Old 15-02-2018, 00:59   #562
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Re: Worrying news for ESA claimants converting from DLA to PIP.

But watch such people change their mind when something happens to them or their loved ones, they soon change their tune.

I have a friend who has done just that, she used to come out with similar nonsense...then she became disabled herself. All of a sudden it's terrible what this Government is doing, she's paid in all her working life etc etc.

The amount of fraud present in the disability benefits caseload, according to the Governments own figures, is 0.5%- the lowest along with state pension fraud.

You have hit the nail on the head Peanut about changing the goalposts simply to save money, yet they can afford to subsidise theatre goers.
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Old 15-02-2018, 07:23   #563
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Re: Worrying news for ESA claimants converting from DLA to PIP.

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Originally Posted by peanut View Post
No it is isnít. Itís the politicians that keep moving the goalposts as a cost cutting excercise at the expense of all claimants. As those at the bottom has less voice than anyone else. But weíve been vilified long enough now so the likes of you will continue to think the way way you do.
Some of the issues may be down to the rules/laws that are set, but in the main it is the application of the rules/laws that is the problem.

When you look at the guidance for the assessors, you can clearly see what they are not doing at all or not doing properly. Doesn't matter what laws the government passes, as long as the attitude of the assessors and decision makers remains the same.
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Old 15-02-2018, 10:10   #564
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Re: Worrying news for ESA claimants converting from DLA to PIP.

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Originally Posted by nomadking View Post
.... as long as the attitude of the assessors and decision makers remains the same.
Some "insiders" have said that they were basically told to write up reports to heavily favour the DWP position and not those of the claimant. "Errors and omissions" became the norm to weaken the claimants' cases. But they were easily spotted at Tribunal after comparison between the claim forms, medical evidence and assessor reports.

With a starting salary of £34k, it's a very lucrative post to get for a basic nurse, physiotherapist or paramedic. No long experience required, just enough training to be called "a health professional".
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Old 15-02-2018, 10:16   #565
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Re: Worrying news for ESA claimants converting from DLA to PIP.

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Originally Posted by nomadking View Post
Some of the issues may be down to the rules/laws that are set, but in the main it is the application of the rules/laws that is the problem.

When you look at the guidance for the assessors, you can clearly see what they are not doing at all or not doing properly. Doesn't matter what laws the government passes, as long as the attitude of the assessors and decision makers remains the same.
I totally agree but when the assessors have incentives to meet certain targets set from above, whether that means a target amount of claimants processed per day or a given a target pass rate per day then it is never going to be fair. Wasn't there an undercover video showing that if they pass too many they get reprimanded. The blame has to go to the top.
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Old 15-02-2018, 11:46   #566
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Re: Worrying news for ESA claimants converting from DLA to PIP.

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Originally Posted by peanut View Post
I totally agree but when the assessors have incentives to meet certain targets set from above, whether that means a target amount of claimants processed per day or a given a target pass rate per day then it is never going to be fair. Wasn't there an undercover video showing that if they pass too many they get reprimanded. The blame has to go to the top.
They are not targets as such. If they reject too many, then that would also be looked into. It would be too easy for an assessor to simply pass everybody. Eg People go on about traffic wardens having "targets". Again it would be all too easy for them to sit at home and/or ignore any parking infringements. Without "targets" it can be all too easy for people to dodge doing their jobs properly.
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Old 15-02-2018, 14:25   #567
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Re: Worrying news for ESA claimants converting from DLA to PIP.

As I have previously stated I must have been one of the lucky ones as the lady who did my assessment wrote pain relief somewhat effective, she also added to my claim in where I was awarded the mobility - standard rate. Overall all I found my assessment with this lady to be very informative as she made me aware that I could apply for a blue badge from my local council which I did and also got.

I think you get good and bad everywhere and I'm just grateful that my first assessment for PIP was a good one, in her report she rationalised her findings in great detail and backed it up with all the supporting medical evidence given to her, she left nothing out my report in fact she added to it.
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Old 15-02-2018, 15:27   #568
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Re: Worrying news for ESA claimants converting from DLA to PIP.

Our council now only issues blue badges based on "Higher Rate of the Mobility Component of the Disability Living Allowance" or "Personal Independence Payment for being unable to walk further than 50 metres (a score of 8 points or more under the ‘moving around’ activity of the mobility component)".

Discretionary issues cost them money , so they are withdrawing the eligibility assessments.
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