15 January 2018
The Government has rejected its independent PIP reviewer’s recommendation that PIP claimants to receive their assessment report at the same time as they receive their decision letter.
P I P
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PIP or personal independence payment, is the benefit for disabled people that is replacing DLA or disability living allowance. Everyone will eventually change to PIP even if you have been awarded DLA for life. PIP is a new benefit so that means you have to make a new claim and be assessed. PIP is not based on what is wrong with you it is based on how much help you need to do daily tasks.
You can claim PIP from the age of 16 until the age of 64. Under the age of 16 you can claim DLA but this will automatically change to a PIP claim once you are 16.
You can still claim PIP if you are working.
The amount of money you have does not effect your PIP claim.
PIP is broken down into two parts daily living component and the mobility componant
Personal Independence Payments (PIP) for people with epilepsy
This information is for people living in England, Scotland and Wales. Personal Independence Payments have not yet been introduced in Northern Ireland.
If you are looking for information about benefits in another country, please contact your local epilepsy organisation.
• General information about PIP
• Completing the form
• The assessment
• The decision
• If you’re not happy with the decision
• Personal Independence Payments and epilepsy
• Organisations that offer benefits advice
Personal Independence Payments (PIP) update June 2015
PIP has gradually been replacing Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for people aged 16 to 64.
You may have been told you won’t be contacted about changing from DLA to PIP until later in the year. The government has now brought this timetable forward.
You may receive a letter from The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) about changing your claim from DLA to PIP in the next few months. The links below give you more information about this.
A list of the postcode areas where letters are being sent ,
Information about how PIP might affect people who claim DLA at the moment
PIP statement from the Minister for Disabled People
At-a-glance guide to abbreviations used in the chart
Initials Name in full
DLA Disability Living Allowance
DWP Department for Work and Pensions
PIP Personal Independence Payment
View a chart giving an idea of the claiming process
General information about Personal Independence Payment
What the benefit is
Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is a benefit which helps with some of the extra costs caused by ill-health or disability. You must be between 16 and 64 to claim PIP. You can receive it whether you are in work or not.
What you’ll get is based on how your condition affects your ability to complete certain tasks, not on a particular condition.
You can be paid either the daily living component, or the mobility component, or both components at the same time.
You will need an assessment to work out the level of help you get. Your needs will be regularly reassessed to make sure you’re getting the right support.Who can claim PIP
Since 8 April 2013 Personal Independence Payment (PIP) has replaced Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for people aged 16 to 64. People aged under16 or 65 and over who are getting DLA at the moment will continue to receive DLA. However since October 2013, people have been assessed for PIP as soon as they registered a change in circumstances, or their current DLA award ended.
To find out when you might be assessed for PIP you can use the PIP checker gov.uk/pip-checker.
If you are under 16, you apply for Disability Living Allowance.
If you are aged 65 or over and are not currently claiming DLA, you can apply for Attendance Allowance.
The key tasks
To qualify for Personal Independence Payment (PIP) you must be aged 16 to 64 and have difficulty with activities of daily living or with mobility. You may get the daily living component of PIP if you need help with things like:
Preparing or eating food
Washing and bathing
Dressing and undressing
Reading and communicating
Managing your medicines or treatments
Making decisions about money
You must have had these difficulties for three months and expect them to last for at least nine months
What you’ll get
Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is paid every four weeks. It is tax free and can be paid if you are in or out of work. It is made up of two parts. Whether you get one or both of these depends on how your condition affects you. They are paid at a standard or an enhanced rate depending on whether your abilities are limited or severely limited.
You score points according to how difficult it is for you to carry out a list of activities. You need to score at least eight points to be entitled to the standard rate and at least 12 points to be entitled to the enhanced rate. This is the same for each component
Rates of PIP
Daily living component weekly rateStandard £58.70
Mobility component weekly rateStandard £23.20
These amounts were correct in Sep 2019.
To claim Personal Independence Payment (PIP) you have to phone the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). They need to know your:
Contact details and date of birth
National Insurance number
Bank or building society details
Doctor’s or health worker’s name
Details of any time you’ve spent abroad, in a care home or in a hospital
To make a claim from any part of England, Scotland or Wales call 0800 917 2222.
When you make the phone call, you will be put through to a DWP officer. The officer will ask you a number of questions.
The call should take about 15 minutes.
You will be asked whether you have any of the following:
A mental health condition
A behavioural condition
A learning difficulty
A developmental disorder
A memory problem
This is to help the DWP find out if you might need additional support or help through the claim process.
You can also write to the address below asking for a form to send the above information by post. Bear in mind this can delay the decision on your claim.
Personal Independence Payment New Claims
Post Handling Site B
Wolverhampton WV99 1AH
Completing the form
You will then be sent a form called PIP2 ‘How your condition affects you’. It comes with notes to help you fill it in. When completed, return the form to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). The address is on the form.
There are 14 questions on the form. Questions 1 and 2 are about your personal details. Questions 3 to 14 are about your ability to carry out daily activities.
Points are scored if you are not able to carry out a task reliably. ‘Reliably’ here means to an acceptable standard, repeatedly and in a reasonable time.
In a variable condition like epilepsy, you should choose descriptors for things which reflect your experience over fifty per cent (half) of the time.
For more information on PIP and epilepsy including the 50 per cent rule, see below.
Describing your situation
Here are some questions from the Personal Independence Payment (PIP) factsheet on the Disability Rights UK website. They will help you describe your situation as clearly and fully as possible:
Do you need help from another person to do the activity?
If you do need help, what kind of help do you need?
Does someone physically help you, reassure you, encourage you, remind or explain to you how to do something?
Or do they need to supervise you?
Do you use aids and/or appliances to help you in an activity? If you do, say what they are and how useful they are
Can you do some parts of the activity but not others?
Are you unable to do the activity at all? Explain why
Can you do an activity but it takes you a long time?
If your needs vary, describe in what way and how often?
Explain about good and bad days or how your needs vary throughout the day
If you regularly have accidents – such as falls – or are at risk of having accidents, explain why and when they happen now and what has happened in the past
Do you have any side-effects from doing the activity? Do you experience pain, breathlessness, tiredness, stress or anxiety either during or after the activity?
For a list of descriptors see Appendix B and C of the PIP factsheet on the Disability Rights UK website
For a sample of the PIP2 form see the government website
Question 1 This asks you for details of a health professional. Whoever you put down, they need to know about how you manage daily activities. If necessary, make an appointment to see them. This gives you the opportunity to make sure they have all the information they need about you.
Question 2 This asks you for a copy of your prescription and a list of your side-effects. You can write about details of your side-effects later.
Questions 3 to 14. For more detailed help with the answers to these questions, see pages 18 to 22 of the PIP factsheet on the Disability Rights UK website
If you need to answer that your situation varies, make sure you explain this more fully in the extra information box.
The form must be returned within one calendar month of it being sent out to you. Always keep at least one copy of it.
When we enquired in November 2014, the DWP were taking about 26 weeks to respond to these forms and invite you for assessment.The assessment
The in-person assessment is not done by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). It is done on their behalf by one of two companies called Capita and Atos. Which one you get depends on where in the UK you live. Once they have received your form, a healthcare professional will invite you to interview. They may also contact your health professional for more information before your assessment.
The assessment takes place in an examination centre, or in your home, depending on which company you are with. If you have to go to them, you can claim travel expenses.
The company has to give you seven days notice of an assessment.
Taking someone with you
You can take someone with you. They will not be able to answer any questions for you. But they are allowed to add information, if you want them to.
Answering the questions
Tell the healthcare professional about any pain or tiredness you feel, or would feel, while carrying out tasks, both on the day of the examination and over time. Consider how you would feel if you had to do the same task repeatedly. Tell them if you need reminding or encouraging to complete the tasks.
Don’t overestimate your ability to do things
Make sure you are honest about how these activities would feel on a bad day, rather than a good day. Sounding positive about your condition is really useful in general life, but will not help to get you the financial support you may need.
The healthcare professional may, with your consent, give you a brief medical examination. But mostly they will observe how you are during the interview, including how you got there.
At the end of the assessment the healthcare professional should give you an overview of how they see your situation. And you should get an opportunity to add any final information.
The healthcare professional sends a report to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) case manager.
They make the final decision.
If you are entitled to Personal Independence Payments (PIP), you will be told at what rate and for how long you will be entitled to it.
Your needs will be regularly reassessed to make sure you’re getting the right support. If there’s a change in how your condition affects you, you need to tell the DWP straight away.
If you are not entitled to PIP, you will get a letter and a follow-up phone call from the DWP explaining their decision. If you disagree with the decision, tell the person in the phone call.
If you’re not happy with the decision, you have one calendar month in which to challenge it.
Once the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) have made their decision about whether you are entitled to PIP, there are three aspects you could challenge. You may want to challenge the actual decision (if they have refused you PIP) or the rate or the length of time of the benefit award.
Bear in mind that if you are challenging the rate or length of time, the DWP will look at your whole claim again. And this may result in you being entitled to less than with the first decision.
You can also ask for reconsideration if your condition worsens. But be aware your benefit could go down as well as up. It’s always good to get advice before you do this
How to challenge the decision
Ring the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and ask for a reconsideration of the decision. Explain why you want it. Ask for copies of the evidence used to make their decision. And ask them not to do anything till you’ve had a chance to think about your appeal.
As well as the phone call, write them a letter with all this information in, and keep a copy. If you haven’t heard anything in two weeks, ring them again.
If the DWP don’t change their mind they will send you a mandatory reconsideration notice which proves that you have asked for a reconsideration. You will need this if you want to lodge an appeal.
If you still want to challenge the decision, you now have one calendar month from the date of the mandatory reconsideration notice to lodge an appeal to an independent tribunal.
In order to appeal, you must have asked for a reconsideration first. You will have to download a copy of the official notice of appeal form SSCS1. Alternatively, you can phone your local HM Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCTS) and ask to be sent the appeal form.
HMCTS website: courttribunalfinder
How to prepare for an appeal:
Be aware of time limits
Make sure you have all possible useful documents. These could include anything medical such as a care plan, a seizure diary or evidence from a carer
Keep a record of all contact you have with the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP)
If at all possible, get a welfare benefits worker to help you. You may be able to find one from your nearest Citizens Advice Bureau or Welfare Rights Unit
Be as prepared as you possibly can be
Your chances of a successful appeal are much higher if you ask for a hearing and, if possible, you have someone to represent you. The tribunal is a fairly informal affair. You can take someone with you for support.
You will usually get the decision very soon afterwards.
For more information on appeals and reconsiderations see the appeals and reconsiderations factsheet on the Disability Rights UK website
Personal Independence Payments and epilepsy
The fifty per cent (50%) rule
To qualify for Personal Independence Payments (PIP) you must meet the ‘fifty per cent rule’. You must need support fifty per cent or more of the time. For example, during a month, you must need support in order to be able to complete key tasks, at least 16 out of the 30 or 31 days of the month. In this situation you might qualify for PIP. But if you only needed support for 14 or less of the days, then you won’t qualify for PIP.
How to approach the interview
Give yourself some time to think about your answer before you start speaking.If you pause too long during an answer they may think you have finished and move on to the next question. So once you’ve started, keep going!Make sure you don’t just talk about seizure frequency. They need to know about all possible impact on your life, including such things as anxiety and memory problems
Know about your epilepsy
Make sure you can explain clearly about your epilepsy pattern and what epilepsy medicines you’re taking. A seizure diary may well help you to do this efficiently.
Use our list to help
Here is a list of the sorts of things that a person with epilepsy may need to mention. You could use this list to make notes about your situation:
If there is a particular cause for your epilepsy – for example a brain tumour
What happens to you before a seizure
What happens to you during a seizure
How often you lose control of your bladder or bowel and any anxiety that may cause
What your seizure recovery is like – for example whether you need to go to sleep, or if your awareness is affected and how much help you need afterwards
How long it takes you to recover from a seizure
Whether you have had to go to hospital because of a seizure
Whether you have recently been injured during a seizure – for example cut your head
Whether rescue medicine has been given to you by a carer or health professional after a seizure
Any support you are given by a partner or carer
What the side-effects of your medicines are for you
Whether your memory and/or concentration are affected
Any other impact your epilepsy may have on your life
Any relevant information about other health conditions
Make notes beforehand
A lot of people understandably get anxious about the Personal Independence Payments (PIP) assessment. And a lot of people with epilepsy have problems with their memory. This can make it really difficult to get all your information across. Making notes beforehand of the things you think will be most important to say can really help once you are in the assessment. And don’t forget to take your seizure diary with you.
Take someone with you
As with any important meeting, it can help to take someone with you. Ideally this will be someone who can help you feel as relaxed as possible. And someone who could remind you to look at your notes, if there are things you don’t remember.
Organisations that offer benefits advice
For more detailed information on Personal Independence Payments (PIP) see any of these websites.
Government websiteTel: 0345 850 3322Website:
Disability Rights UK Website:https://www.disabilityrightsuk.org/
and mandatory reconsideration factsheet: disabilityrightsuk.org/appeals-and-mandatory-reconsideration
Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB)CAB gives free, confidential, impartial and independent advice about your rights, including benefits. They can also help you fill out claim forms for benefits.Tel: 08444 111 444 (for advice by telephone)Tel: 0207 833 2181 (for details of your local branch)Website: adviceguide.org.uk/England
The Equality Act 2010 and the United Nations (UN) Convention on disability rights help to enforce, protect and promote your rights.
Supporting pupils with medical conditions: links to other useful resources
Updated 11 December 2015
1. Departmental guidance and advice
The early years foundation stage - sets out specific requirements on early years settings in managing medicines for children under 5 years of age
Working together to safeguard children - statutory guidance on inter-agency working
Safeguarding children: keeping children safe in education - statutory guidance for schools and colleges
Ensuring a good education for children who cannot attend school because of health needs - statutory guidance for local authorities
Drug advice for schools - published by DfE/Association of Chief Police Officers, this document provides advice on controlled drugs
Home to school transport - statutory guidance for local authorities
Equality Act 2010: advice for schools - to help schools understand how the Act affects them
School Admissions Code 2012 - statutory guidance that schools must follow when carrying out duties relating to school admissions
Health and safety - advice for schools covering activities that take place on or off school premises, including school trips
Alternative provision - statutory guidance for local authorities and headteachers and governing bodies of all educational settings providing alternative provision
First aid - departmental advice on first aid provision in schools
Automated external defibrillators (AEDs) - how schools can buy, install and maintain an automated external defibrillator
School exclusion - statutory guidance for maintained schools, academies and pupil referral units (PRUs)
School premises - departmental advice to help schools and local authorities understand their obligations in relation to the School Premises Regulations 2012
Mental health and behaviour in schools - departmental advice to help schools identify and support those pupils whose behaviour suggests they may have unmet mental health needs
Department for Education - contact details
2. Associated resources and organisations - wider government
NHS Choices - provides an A to Z of health conditions and medicines
Managing children with health care needs: delegation of clinical procedures, training and accountability issues - published by the Royal College of Nursing in 2008, this document highlights the clinical procedures which could be safely taught and delegated to unregistered health and non-health qualified staff
Getting it right for children, young people and families - provides information on the Department of Health vision for the role of the school nurse
The NHS Information Prescription Service - part of NHS Choices, this service provides personalised information on health conditions that parents may wish to share with schools
Health and Safety Executive - this website covers schools (state-funded and independent), further education establishments and higher education institutions.
School trips and outdoor learning activities: dealing with the health and safety myths - provides information for managers and staff in local authorities and schools
Standards for medicines management (2010) - produced by the Nursing and Midwifery Council this document sets standards for nurses, including over delegation of the administration of medicinal products
Healthy child programme 5 to 19 - this good practice guidance sets out the recommended framework of universal and progressive services for children and young people to promote health and wellbeing
Directors of children’s services: roles and responsibilities - statutory guidance for local authorities with responsibility for education and children’s social services functions
Department of Health - contact details
Updated Feb 2019