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Everything posted by della2

  1. Go on then, Yes I am bored with this persona now. It's been great, and lots and lots and lots of really nice people have spent time answering my posts. Errr waste of time really as they were all made up!! Great that I had the RIP thread closed down Be back soon, just hopping back over to MSE where I have a few going over there at the moment. Yes very nice people on here, very patient and understanding. However why has it taken so long for people to realise that they have been taken for a ride? Bye Bye xxxxxxx Andy&Flo
  2. Yes that interests me too! For the Tribunal to agree that my dad should be in the support group, 4 times since 2010, yet the DWP/ATOS always call him for an assessment every 6 months or so, and find him fit for work, I would be very interested to know how they decide who should and who shouldn't go for an assessment. It doesn't seem to have anything to do with the illnesses either as you make that point. Additionally I have read many times that they (ATOS/DWP) don't even read what you put on the ESA50.
  3. Hasn't that been the intention all along? The Support Group equates with the old IB. The 'new' category of 'The Work Group' was only brought about to mop up those that aren't that ill enough for sickness benefit but not yet well enough to be working. A half way house sort of thing. That is how I see it. Instead of under IB, you were either ill or fit, under ESA you still have those two categories plus one in the middle. Isn't that why the government are trying to get those in the work group back into work? Maybe I am missing the whole point of ESA, but it seems quite clear to me what is happening. The only argument I have is that they are not being careful enough in their decision making into which group people should be put. The system seems a good idea but it is being failed by bad reporting.
  4. Wow!!! what a result!! There wasn't a crisp new £50 note tucked inside the ESA50 was there?? Just wondering. If that is a record, then my dad's case must surely be then, 6 months in the support group then ZERO points at the next 6 monthly assessment!!
  5. LOL!!! of course why didn't I think of that. No seriously even with a SAT NAV, we are talking about someone who still wouldn't be able to get there - they would need physical guidance - turn left here etc.
  6. Pardon? Please do not be so rude!!! That is what I said in my post. The GP does get a letter from the DWP telling them not to issue anymore sicknotes. Yes there are alternative actions, but all I was doing was warning the poster that the GP might argue with the poster based on that letter. How many times have I heard it said that the GP takes the letter to mean NO MORE SICKNOTES even though they still can if the decision is appealed against. I should know I have been doing this for my dad since late 2009 and yes his GP did refuse to issue sicknotes after the first failure. It took a telephone call and a letter to get the GP to change his mind!! In future if you want to reply to one of my posts, please do so with respect and consideration!
  7. Where are they and who do they work for? I have tried the CAB - never heard anything back from them after they had promised to make an appointment, tried DIAL and their general opinion is that the DWP will do what they want when they want, and the latest, AgeUK who quite honestly are now avoiding ringing me back after 4 telephone calls made by me over the past 3 weeks. The local authority don't have any due to the cuts - they were all made redundant. The only one person that I have come across over the past 3 years who actually does something is my dad's psychologist!! She gets my mum in with dad every week and tries to help, but even she is now at a dead end.
  8. ATOS are indeed contracted by the DWP, which makes the DWP their managing agent. Anything that ATOS do is done in the name of the DWP. If I accept what you say that they are autonomous, then once DWP had the file back from ATOS why were the comments not cancelled then? ATOS and the DWP are in it together in everything they do. I have yet to find the DWP decision makers go against any of the ATOS reports when making decisions - despite my dad having every decision so far (4 Tribunal decisions since September 2010) for his ESA claim, overturned and placed in the Support Group.
  9. Wow, you are singing the praises of the DWP!!! I still think that asking the DWP to help maximise the amount of benefit payments just doesn't sit right for me. How can you have one part of the DWP trying to cut back on awards by being ultra strict in making decisions yet you are saying that another section will do everything possible to ensure that people can screw the state for as much as they can get!!! It's no different than asking HMRC to advise on the best possible tax avoidance schemes that could save millions in tax payments, yet the other part turning over every stone to make sure that the government get the maximum tax that they can collect! In my mum's case the visiting pension service (brought in by the Attendance Allowance office in Blackpool) even made an appointment which I cancelled. I simply don't trust the DWP in any of it's guises - experience has taught me that even their 'medically qualified' advisors are so useless that I wouldn't want them anywhere near me if they were the last people available to treat me. To be honest, since the last farce with AgeUK, I will make it my job in future to fill out the forms - I couldn't make any more of a hash of them that the so called expert Welfare Rights people have in the past. Even DIAL, who I approached last year about my dad and the ridiculous ESA 6 monthly re-assessments just told me that they couldn't do anything as the DWP can decide what to do and when to do it.
  10. Was he? I don't think so, On one of the ESA85's that came with the appeal pack for my dad, they had inadvertently copied the page " Harmful Information - not to be copied" On that page contained a one sentence, five line comment that described my dad as argumentative, arrogant, awkward and deceptive. The DWP did apologise for allowing it to be copied and after obtaining permission from ATOS (it was written by the assessor) the page was 'blacked out' and a copy sent to my dad to show that the comments had been removed from his file. It does make you wonder just what is recorded that is kept away from the claimant. In the past I knew someone that worked for the DWP and in conversation outside of the office, they always tended to describe JSA claimants as '****'.
  11. Yes it is a whole new world to me is this benefit malarky. I accept that some conditions are variable. As in the case of your late father's partner, the DWP state that: People with asymptomatic diverticular disease found during investigations for other abdominal conditions have no functional restrictions and pursue normal life styles. Similarly those with intermittent symptoms or episodes of acute diverticulitis, that respond readily to standard treatment are unlikely to have any long term functional restrictions necessitating help from others. The abdominal pain experienced is usually intermittent or episodic and does not affect the function of the lower limbs or restrict walking. Most people who undergo surgery for complications can be expected to recover after some weeks or months. Most adults with a temporary or permanent colostomy can be trained to manage it themselves within days or weeks. People with poor manual dexterity, visual impairment, abnormal cognitive function (e.g. dementia) may need colostomy care from another on a long-term basis. and an award of DLA albeit at the lowest rate was made, yet in my mum's case the DWP state: Disabling Effects People with this level of functional restriction would normally have lower limb joint deformity in at least one joint and restriction of movement in that joint. They would also have pain on weight bearing and joint swelling (except for the hip). Joint pain may wake the person at night even with the use of painkillers. Where the knee is affected it is likely to be unstable and give way leading to falls. They may be on the waiting list for hip or knee replacement surgery. Mobility A person with severe restriction would normally need physical assistance from another person in getting around. The use of a walking aid may help prevent falls but it would not improve physical walking ability. The person would not require guidance or supervision outdoors. Care A person with severe restriction would normally have joint deformity with pain and restriction of movement. Knee instability is likely to be present and hence an increased risk of falls. However, the use of a stick may help reduce the risk of falls and may also assist in rising after a fall. Such a person would normally need assistance from another person with dressing, bathing and attending to toilet needs. Help is likely to be needed with rising from sitting, getting out of bed, the bath and in using stairs. No supervision or watching over needs would be present.
  12. They are both worn out due to their individual medical problems + having to look after each other as well when I am not there. Both have given up asking for help from anybody, and it is only me that is trying to sort things out for them. It feels like that I am trying to push water uphill!
  13. Please be aware that the GP will also have had a letter from the DWP telling him/her not to issue anymore sick notes as you have been found fit for work. Some GP's may argue with you that they are not allowed to give out anymore certificates.
  14. What you think or what a Welfare Rights worker thinks and even after completing a self assessment, means nothing! The only person who will give those decisions will be the DWP Decision Maker, based on what ATOS reports. If everything went as it should and everyone was awarded a benefit based on a self assessment or what a WRO thought, the Welfare budget would go up!! Personally and from lots of experience, the decisions bear little regard to what is actually the case.
  15. There is good and bad in all walks of life. I too was offered by the DWP for someone from the visiting team of the Pension Service to come out to help with the completion of the AA claim form for mum. After a lot of thought, I decided that someone independent would be better placed to give that help. I felt that it was like asking the hangman if I could help by putting the noose over my head instead of him. I asked AgeUK, which turned out to be a farce, the experienced Welfare Rights lady sent a trainee who didn't have a clue what the criteria was for AA!! She just couldn't grasp the idea that any of the needs claimed for had to be tempered by what aids and adaptions were or could be available. She attempted to put down that mum had difficulties standing for more than a few minutes in one spot, I had to point out to her that 'perching stools' could be used so that there was no point in mentioning that particular problem. Suffice it to say the claim was refused. Maybe the Pension Service visiting team could have done better, I don't know, but for me they were too close to the DWP to offer any real help.
  16. Why not? They could well be 'casing' the house for a potential hit!!!! On the other hand the poster could approach them and ask what do they think they are doing - explaining that their suspicious actions were causing alarm with the 15 illegal immigrants that are living in the loft space!
  17. I know it has nothing to do with your actual post but it may bring a smile to your face. My brother has a pub way out in the country. Most of his cutomers are locals and two are just 'one step away from prison' types. They behave so he doesn't really care. Anyhow a while ago whilst he was having a 'late' session, he noticed a car with two men in it parked up in a private lane overlooking the property. They certainly weren't a 'couple', so thinking that it might be something untoward, such as preparing for a robbery, he went round the back and approached the vehicle from the rear, carrying a baseball bat - for just in case. I'm not sure who was more surprised my brother or them. It turned out that they were undercover police watching the comings and goings of the two lads that used the pub. With a few choice words from them about the whole exercise having to be abandoned now, and warning my brother about what he was carrying, they sped off into the night!!! Hasn't had any problems since. After that he barred the two lads as he said his regulars were at risk of not being able to get a drink at 4am anymore!!
  18. And I get confused as to why dad has had 6 re-assessments since late 2009 all stating ZERO points. On each occassion the Tribunal reverse the decison to Support Group, which only lasts for 6 months due to the continual re-assessment. He has had 4 reversals so far from the Tribunals. His income goes from '£0' for 6 months, then a one off payment through his bank of generally about £2500, then back to £0!!! What the poster is suffering from is 'normal' for the DWP it seems. To go from the Support Group to fit for work is quite honestly beyond a joke, something with which I can laugh along with you if it wasn't so goddamn serious!
  19. Yes I agree with you entirely and that is what the OP should be doing. However having evidence of an illness or evidence of treatment or medication means zilch in respect of a claim for Attendance Allowance. The only evidence that will move the mountain of disbelief (aka DWP) is that that describes and confirms what the needs are of the person. This does not include any relating to day to day chores, cooking, cleaning, shopping etc. These needs must be personal specific (self caring), provable, regular throughout the day/night, and exist for a reasonable period of time. The DWP will assume that the person has access to all manner of aids and adaptions that could reduce/remove the needs. So it's not the question of what the illness/condition is, it's how it affects the person concerned.
  20. The roll out starts next April and it is anticipated that by Spring 2016, everyone will be on PIP other than the excluded groups. If PIP is in any way similar to ESA, which it seems to be - points based - attending hospitals, having consultants who support you will not cut any ice with the face to face assessment. The assessment will be carried out by (ATOS in our area) probably using a computer driven programme to assess how many points you will be given for the descriptors. The assessment will be carried out by 'open' & 'closed' questioning together with opinion/observation and assumptions. None of that really has any relevance to actual 'hospital visits or supporting consultants'. Much the same as ESA is at the moment. Many people that cannot walk more than 30 metres without having to stop due to severe discomfort or pain are failing to qualify for that particular descriptor of ESA at the moment (as is the case of my dad) - I dread to think what will happen under PIP. There is talk by the DWP that a BB will be issued if you get 8 points under PIP but you need at least 12 points to access a motability car. There is an argument that it should be 12 points or more for a BB as is similar in DLA (HRM = BB + motability) This new BB system is putting off both my mum and my dad in applying for a BB. Mum is riddled with arthritis and dad has major vascular, biliary, digestive, diseased pancreas and spinal disease problems as well as mental illness, none of which would appear to qualify for Attendance Allowance for mum or DLA/PIP for dad. So how they would fare with a BB application is anyboy's opinion.
  21. Option 3 is downgrading what was the HRM. If the government are so satisfied that option 3 is the benchmark for a BB, why then are they only going to allow a motabilty car only with Option 2?? Surely the two go hand in hand as they do at the moment under DLA. HRM = Motability car & automatic right to a BB. Mind you there is no point in wasting my time putting that point to them as the whole thing is a 'done deal'!
  22. Unless that is that they have a serious mental health problem to go with it. Then they can add the two scores to make the 12 points. Being unable or virtually to walk + not being able to get from one place to another that you know well without guidance due to a mental health problem - in which case they wouldn't need a motability car as they wouldn't know where to go in it or how to get there!!
  23. Oh I am so sorry. You do realise that DLA is finishing next April? So even if you are awarded HRM for DLA, it will not last for long. No I don't go in for that sort of thing. Each to their own I say. They will get caught out eventually. Have you read the new descriptors for PIP? I have and to say the least it is not very heartwarming. The mobility one is awful, you will have to have been assessed by the hospital that you are in need of a wheelchair as you simply cannot walk or have a serious mental illness to go with just about able to walk. You are not on your own in this. I too have problems with my dad who is in a similar situation. Let's just hope that things improve somewhat.
  24. I honestly don't know how people are coping with the benefits system for now and in the future. Any certainty of income has been removed or is being removed. Re-assessment of ESA, Re-assessment of DLA/PIP are just two. I also find it impossible to take in what I hear about these 'work schemes' and how easy it is to be sanctioned. I know how I feel, and that is that I would do anything now to avoid having to claim a penny from the state. Then what gets me is that we have genuine claimants that have proven medical conditions, some life threatening, yet they too are made to 'appear before the board' on a regular basis when logic and common sense says that they will never improve - they will deteriorate further in time!! Benefits - there is no attraction unless you enjoy the endless roundabout of being made to feel that you are defrauding the country by asking for a continuation of what you are already getting. And all of that is before I even get onto the subject of those that are playing the system!!!
  25. Yes it is a bit wierd isn't it. Anyone currently over 61 is entitled to the single rate of £142.70 and if they are in a couple where only one of them is over 61 (the other maybe 50!!) they would get £217.90. Yet for a single person under 61 would get £71.00 and for a couple £111.45. For the life of me it makes no sense that as soon as someone gets over the 61 'bridge' their income doubles!!! Why??? Pensioners need less money to live on than young people - and that's a fact. I know my mum & dad manage easilly on what they get and I would struggle.
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