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Increase of mobility component by DWP while awaiting appeal

hi everyone,

im new to this site and would appreciate some advice.

long story short, had been receiving DLA highest components for care and mobility for over 15 years.

had to then apply for PIP.

Then had face to face assessment with ATOS pip assessor ( a nurse) but did not receive assessors report till 1 day before time limit by which I had to ask for a review! Complained to DWP but no reply received. Sent my request for review by Special Delivery so it arrived the last day (28 days after receiving letter stating I had been awarded zero points for mobility and lower rate for daily living) but without receiving the assessors report.  

The assessors report arrived 2 weeks after the 28 day time limit so I then sent in extra information to accompany my request for the review.

the assessors reported blatant lies in his report saying that I had left the assessment mid-way because I was angry, got up unaided and went and stood in the corridor before calming down and coming back in to sit down!!!!! He also said that I had walked 40 metres from the car park into the assessment centre without help but due to my OCD I then went back to the car and waited there till I was called!!! I cannot walk more than 20 metres and I never left the assessment mid-way and I waited in my car parked in the nearest disabled entrance to the assessment centre with a max distance of 10 metres from the car to the room!  I have severe OCD and cannot mix with people nor sit in waiting rooms.  My carer/ partner went into the reception when we arrived and explained that I had to wait in the car until my name was called. This I did and my partner waited in the waiting room and came and helped me into the room when the assessor called my name.

the assessor told so many lies so I complained to ATOS and requested them to send me the CCTV to prove he was lying.  But because I had not received the assessors report until 6 weeks after the assessment, ATOS said that they do not keep CCTV longer than 28 days!!!! How convenient!

thr DWP then replied to my request for a review and said that they were not changing the decision makers earlier decision. 

I then hen applied for a mandatory reconsideration and again they replied with the decision unchanged.  I had medical letters to state that I cannot walk more than 20 metres and included other medical reports that showed I need constant help.

as a result, I had to return my motability vehicle and became so I'll with the stress of it all. I also suffer depression, anxiety aswell as other disabling bodily function.

my appeal was then sent to the DWP for their reply, and before receiving their submissions to the appeal, they said they tried to ring me, but being too ill to answer and without leaving any message I did not know they had tried to call as their details show as 'caller withheld' when they ring.  I received the DWP's submission and they have written that they now say I am entitled to the enhanced mobility component and scored 12 points!! Apparently the DWP sent a referral to a second health assessor (again a nurse) who confirmed I should have been awarded the enhanced mobility rate.  The DWP also said in their submissions that this may now lapse the appeal?? My appeal was for both daily living and mobility. they have also said that they are not changing their decision about my standard living award but I do not accept that.

i don't know now what to do. The DWP have not formally offered the increased mobility award from zero award to enhanced rate, they have just suggested that it should be increased.  

Any advice would be most appreciated

thank you


Replies

  • MatildaMatilda Posts: 2,616Member Disability Gamechanger
    You might want to re-post in Ask a benefits advisor category.
  • wildlifewildlife Posts: 1,316Member Pioneering
    Hi @fossoux , Welcome to the community. Unfortunately I don't think there will be any benefit advisors around till next week but I have been through the same process and a few things come to mind from your post. Firstly I'm surprised you got the assessor's report at all as normally you have to ring the PIP number and ask for it to be sent to you. So am not surprised it was so late with no explanation from DWP as to why this was. You may have asked for it and not mentioned that in your post. Anyhow as I understand it you've had the Mandatory Reconsideration which upheld the 1st Decision keeping things the same. So you then thought the only way forward was to Appeal. This is the way it works but in fact it is possible to get the Decision Makers to change the award right up to the Appeal date if you stay in contact and keep writing and sending more evidence. It also helps if you complain to ATOS about your assessment and assessor's report and tell DWP you've done that. I would ignore the DWP saying they tried to phone (this has been known to happen when they haven't by the way) unless it affects anything that happens from here.
                          As regards their mention that you may now be eligible for the higher rate of Mobility there may well be another decision letter on it's way with this new offer but whether or not I suggest you ring after Easter and ask about this and also to inform them you still wish to Appeal for the Daily Living which is still at the standard rate but if you have been offered a higher rate for mobility you need to know there is a risk of the Appeal Tribunal changing i.e. reducing/keeping the same or increasing any part of your claim as they review the whole thing not just the bit you're not happy about.So you need to think whether it's worth the risk. Only you can decide but it's basically down to how strong a case you've got to keep what you've already got.
                       Whatever you do you need to talk to DWP to ask why they've changed your mobility without sending it in writing and how binding that is or is it just a suggestion to the Appeal. They may be trying to avoid you going to Appeal in which case ask them to look at your DL again. If they refuse then Apealing will be your only option but tread carefully. Hope that helps..      
  • wildlifewildlife Posts: 1,316Member Pioneering
    Yes @Matilda I was going to say that. Also forgot to say @fossoux that if you can't get the answers you want from a DWP advisor you can ask whoever you're speaking to for a call back from a Decision Maker. It will be anytime over a 24hr. period and may not be the same one as did your MR but they will have your case notes and you should be able to find out what's going on. 
  • fossouxfossoux Posts: 32Member Connected
    Thank you Matilda & Wildfire.

    i only realised after posting my blurb that I should've posted in 'ask an advisor' section, which I've done also.

    thanks wildfire for your lengthy reply and advice.  I did actually inform the DWP of the lies that the assessor reports and that I'd complained to ATOS and included copies of that complaint and their reply within my mandatory recon.

    the DWP, in their submissions in reply to my appeal, have not mentioned my  complaint to ATOS but I most definitely did in my points to appeal.

    the DWP had referred my case to a second Health Professional ( a nurse) who have stated in a form that was copied within the appeal papers, that the DWP should increase my mobility component to a the enhanced rate and the DWP decision maker has restated that in his advice to the appeal panel but has recommended that my DL award remain at the standard rate.

    Whether that means it's just a recommendation or not is questionable but I will contact them after Easter.

    thank you so much for your advice
  • wildlifewildlife Posts: 1,316Member Pioneering
    edited August 2017
    @fossoux, You're welcome, DWP and ATOS have their own complaints procedure but from my experience it's well worth letting DWP know about your ATOS complaint as you have done. I've got DWP to look at my claim again after the MR because I've made a complaint to ATOS and have also sent in more evidence. I've been told I'll still have a month from the next "brown envelope" to appeal. 
             I wonder if DWP refer your case to a second HP as part of collecting info. for their Appeal submission does anyone know?  
  • fossouxfossoux Posts: 32Member Connected
    I'm not sure if that's fine as part of their collecting info but it was put in as part of their submissions in reply to the appeal which are collected.  

    I am am totally incensed at how disingenuous both the DWP and ATOS have been, not only in my case but many numerous others!

    i got some advice from the CAB who said that with my medical evidence he would be surprised if the DWP didn't increase my award so am thinking that they're attempting to try and lapse the need for appeal as the evidence is so overwhelming that they would appear to be acting not in the interests of justice if they did not.

    the fact that the initial assessors need to lie in their reports does not leave much to question why they feel they must do that; orders from those above undoubtedly.
  • wildlifewildlife Posts: 1,316Member Pioneering
    edited April 2017
    @fossoux Yes, you're right about the contracted assessment companies lying as so many people have had reports that are not about what happened in the room but more about meeting targets and complying with what they are told to do. I'm getting no joy with my ATOS complaint at grass roots level although it's still being investigated. I had a heated conversation with the lady dealing with it about something my assessor said I did that I did not do that I've described on other posts. She said that it couldn't be proved and that my husband who was with me all the time is not an independent witness. The advisors on here have said he is a witness. I've written to the National Customer Services Manager to complain to someone higher up. You're not alone in the way you feel there are lots of forum members in the same situation but many of them haven't got the strength or know how to fight for their rights. 
                  The DWP also are to blame and are not about justice otherwise they'd be over ruling assessor's reports that are clearly based on false info. not any evidence supplied by Doctors. Instead they are basing their first offer and MR in most cases on the report alone. However I wonder if they do care how many are going to Appeal and winning as this must reflect on their ability to get the claims right before then. Do let us know how you get on next week...
  • fossouxfossoux Posts: 32Member Connected
    It's a travesty! I was so amazed that professional could or would act in the ways they have; letting people down in the most absurd ways is nothing short of criminal! Even the way in which the Goverment rushed through the statutory instruments following two upper tribunal rulings just goes to show that they have little empathy, regard or sense of justice as far as disabled people are concerned- as I said nothing short of criminal. It takes the resolve, perseverance and belief of us all to make a stand against this shameful treatment. I will update the forum when I have more information and know exactly what the suggestion is re the up rating of the award! Best wishes to everybody in this leaking boat!
  • janice_in_wonderlandjanice_in_wonderland Posts: 259Member Pioneering
    edited April 2017
    @fossoux what an amazing story and fight 

    there's a lady writing a book on cases like this I'm sure she would be interested to add your experience if you would allow her to and use another name

    how do you feel about that? 

    Ill let her know and can provide her email if you both agree 

    Her name is Paula 
  • fossouxfossoux Posts: 32Member Connected
    @janice_in_wonderland

    hello, thank you for the message. Unfortunately, I don't think that sensationalising shambolic difficulties that PIP brings is best served to be dealt with in book form; it requires direct approach and lobbying of Govt & ministers to make them see that PIP is clearly unjust in its present form and to seek overhaul that way, that is in the immediate and short term.  I wish your friend success with her endeavours.
  • janice_in_wonderlandjanice_in_wonderland Posts: 259Member Pioneering
    I've never met the lady who plans to write the book she's someone on here @fossoux
  • wildlifewildlife Posts: 1,316Member Pioneering
    @janice_in_wonderland I don't think we're allowed to put people's real names on here but maybe that's the full name? Does anyone know?
  • JusticeJustice Posts: 206Member Pioneering
    @fossoux,
        Hi, and welcome to the forum. I am fairly new myself, well a few weeks. I think. You will find it very helpful, and friendly too. By the way I am the one writing the book, as you can see my name on here at least is Justice.

     I am not intending to sensationalize anything. It is a combination of real stories from real People, what happened to them, how they felt, and how they dealt with it. Also lots of info in it on where to get help. I have first hand experience of the trials and tribulations one has to go through when being assessed for the various benefits. I am not looking in from the outside, so to speak. I also have on board the CEO of one of the major Charities which should help a great deal.

    It will not be all doom , and gloom either. I have had some positive, and funny tales too. One doesn't lose ones sense of humour just because one has a disability.

    I still would love to be able to tell some of the stories I read on here. I am not able to whisper though so not sure how to give my e mail. if anyone IS interested let me know on here, and perhaps I can have a word with Admin and see what they say. I am not about to break any rules.

    Fossoux I hope you get sorted out soon. I agree that it seems almost normal for the assessors to lie. From the stories I already have, and from our own experience I do see a pattern emerging.

    I must go to bed. Happy Easter to all, by the way.
    Night


  • wildlifewildlife Posts: 1,316Member Pioneering
    @Justice, You have my permission to use any of the post material I have put on Scope. You did give us an email address. I will email the same message to you. Last night I wrote a reply to the student doing a dissitation (not sure if this is the right word) you might like to have a read of it. 
  • JusticeJustice Posts: 206Member Pioneering
    @wildlife. Thanks Wildlife for giving me permission. Your posts are very interesting, and you do seem clued up, which is good to see. I would like to have a read of that reply you mentioned, do please mail me. 
  • wildlifewildlife Posts: 1,316Member Pioneering
    @Justice, Can you put your email for the book info. on here please, I wrote it down but have lost it. I am clued up because I've got 2 disabled adopted boys, now grown men but had to fight authority for them all through their childhood. I also worked as a carer and looked after my Aunt for 10 years. She had Dementia so I had to do everything. No-one gets the better of me once I make up my mind to do something. So my assessor chose the wrong person to write what she did. Even when my claim is sorted out I will still continue to get her to face up to what she did to me. 
  • fossouxfossoux Posts: 32Member Connected
    @wildlife good for you, when you're beat, one has to beat back with resilient determination. It's a shame though that life sometimes seems an endless fight! Hope everybody had a very peaceful Easter.
  • JusticeJustice Posts: 206Member Pioneering
    @wildlife I am glad you are a fighter, but sorry that you have to keep on fighting. It is the same for me. I don't give up either, not when I know I am in the right, been fighting for Justice one way or another most of my life, and I am similar in age to yourself. I have sent you the email you asked for in another post.
    I have also altered my profile so that the e mail can be seen by anyone who looks at my profile.
    Anyone else reading this who would like to drop me a quick mail I will explain in full for you what I am doing. I am writing a book about the plight of Disabled People in the UK, with particular reference to the trials and tribulations they have to face when trying to claim what they are entitled to.
    I am not, as one poster suggested trying to sensationalize anything, no need for that.I also am not someone looking in from the outside, being a carer for a Husband with Parkinson's Disease, and also who has been profoundly deaf since birth, I have first hand experience of the terrible procedures one has to endure from DWP, etc.

    No real names will be used in the book, If you contact me I will not spam you with mail. That I can promise you.
    I look forward to hearing from those who may be interested.
    Thanks in advance
    Justice
  • wildlifewildlife Posts: 1,316Member Pioneering
    @Justice, Have emailed you. Geting back to the original subject of this discussion it's good to hear about @fossoux being offered a higher rate of Mobility after the MR. Just goes to show if you put enough pressure on the DM's they will keep on reviewing your claim as I would imagine they are suffering the backlash of so many going to Appeal with such a high percentage winning. My PIP journey is not over yet. I keep reading about people who are afraid of losing what they've already been offered. To be honest I haven't really thought much about that. I know the risk is there but will keep going to get what I'm entitled to and also to prove how wrong my assessor was in her report. Looking forward to hearing from you @justice.
  • janice_in_wonderlandjanice_in_wonderland Posts: 259Member Pioneering
    At the end of this week I have the opportunity to request MR 

    the past week week has been a rollercoaster of emotions bc I have gone through the pattern of thoughts most others no doubt go through...

    I'm still 50/50 about my going ahead with my decision but as there were so many lies I feel I will sway towards pursuing it also bc I have nothing to lose as they took the lot! 

    I know people who are fitter than me and thought I would be ok 

    Fortunately having observed and I knew what was going I was a bit prepared but others who aren't I'm sure will be in a sorry state 

    A friends father went to his assessment alone...extremely vulnerable so now they have a big fight on their hands 

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