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  1. The other half's PIP is not due for renewal till next year (the end of april I believe it is) however he got a phonecall last week to say he hadn't replied to a letter he had never received saying he was to go for assessment. Now I'm raging about that to say the least as they are not supposed to contact him by phone on instruction of myself and his GP but that's a different issue. We are obviously going to have all the same issues we had a few years ago with regards to him getting a home assessment rather than going to the assessment centre. And given their 'health professional' apparently thinks he is not on any medication for mental health, only for pain when he is on max dose anti-depressants, I do not hold out hope for this going well. However my question is, given we are almost 11 months away from him actually needing this reassessment, is there any way to get it delayed even slightly? We are in the middle of moving house and I am actually off on the sick right now so the timing is just awful. We are moving out of the area we were in so that means all the health professionals he currently sees will be changing very soon. the stress of the move and the idea of moving away from health professionals he knows and trusts is more than enough for him to be dealing with right now without ATOS or whatever they are calling themselves these days joining in. Even if I could get it delayed till I have a new GP/CPN/Psychiatrist sorted for him that would be a huge help I think. is it worth asking the DWP for a delay? anyone have any experience of this?
  2. ruby12

    atos letter

    Was due to attend a medical assessment for esa. Got a letter from Atos saying that they have cancelled appointment and that I don't need to attend now. I'm not sure what this means has anybody else had this happen to them? as I feel a bit worried is this good or bad news.
  3. My partner who is on lifetime DLA is being reassessed for PIP. Having had an uphill struggle to claim other benefits and his pension, we are well versed with their tricks by now. This morning he a received a random phonecall from someone unwilling to identify themselves, who was asking for personal information. He refused, unless the person identified themselves and gave a return phone number (it was a 'private number on the caller ID) for him to call on. They refused point blank and said "There's no point in continuing the conversation and slammed the phone down" Despite the fact my partner has had no contact from the DWP or ATOS since he filled in his form. I immediately suspected this was ATOS, fortunately I was around the corner from their assessment centre at the time and went round. When I went in the person who I saw was the person who had called my partner! However they kept refusing to discuss anything with me (which is fair enough, except confirm it was them who had called my partner), but I requested a phone no so he could call up, confirm his details but much more importantly find out when his assessment is! She refused point blank and said that's "his problem for refusing to hand over his details". Cut a long story short (which was mainly filled with lies from this person about the PIP procedure) I found out his appointment is this Friday from the main ATOS call centre. WTF! we have had no letters, no text's and most importantly this woman was refusing to tell us when it was was! Anyway we have had the appointment shifted. Some quick questions. 1) Is there any chance this lady I spoke to, will be the one who will be doing the assessment ? i.e. is it the assessor who makes that phonecall before the appointment 2) We want to record assessment, how do i get written permission ?
  4. Sent my appeal off with some brief details of why i was appealing , Had a Letter from DWP confirming that they received my appeal, and about how much ESA i will get until it's heard, But so far over 1mth since requesting the full written statement of the Atos wca Form IB /ESA85, But so far i have not been sent it, The person that i recently spoke with from DWP ,Confirmed that they could see that i had previously requested it, but could not understand why i had not yet received it, What can be done to force them to supply this info,(assuming it actually exists) ?
  5. JHi, and thanks to all those who contributed to my other thread in respect of ESA, the help has been greatly appreciated and I would appreciate any same kind advice on my PIP Tribunal was has now been listed and will proceed in a few weeks time. My initial reason for the Appeal has been based on the time it took the assessment, (approximately 14 minutes) and this was for two conditions, physical because I have a heart condition and for my mental problems which are secondary to the heart condition, PTSD, anxiety and depression. During the examination, the assessor just repeated the same questions that l had provided in the questionnaire and no physical examination was carried out, giving the time it took as opposed to other assessments that I have taking , it was as if the decision was already made before I walked in there, the assessor was and in theory just going through the bare minimal motions which I feel is unfair and not to mention the fabricated report which if true would have taking the assessor about 45 minutes to an hour to conclude what he concluded which was a complete pack of lies in all honesty, my wife who cares for me was at this assessment. I feel and this is purely based on previous assessments and not just an assumption that I was denied the right to a full and proper assessment which every claimant should have any rights too, have I got grounds?, thanks
  6. Shamelessly stolen from Rightsnet administrators Stuarts thread ATOS Healthcare is now called Independent Assessment Services when it comes to PIP assessments. All references to ATOS have been replaced in gov.uk PIP publications including in the PIP handbook https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/personal-independence-payment-fact-sheets and the PIP quick guide for support organisations. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/pip-quick-guide-for-support-organisations The renaming comes with a website for PIP assessments (still having to say ‘delivered by Atos’ in its logo though) which says - https://www.mypipassessment.co.uk/ That quoted sentence has almost made me vomit!
  7. hi im new on this site, been reading some of the threads re:esa appeals, ive got mine in 2 weeks and im really nervous/anxious about it, i suffer from lower back problem and anxiety/panic attacks. i failed my atos last june (nil points) a lot of information is missing from the atos report, ie it states i was there longer than i actually was , never asked questions re:anxiety or the incontinence i suffer with ,and a lot of it is exaggerated to say the least, i got a solicitor involved to help with tribunal, with the info i gave her she had scored me more than 15 points ,the only downfall is that my dr,s report is not helpfull says my solicitor, which has made me feel worse than ever ,solicitor thinks i will scrape through with out the dr,s report which she is not submitting, she told me to go through the atos report and make notes of which i agree, any help would be gratefull as im very down about this ,todays not been a good day. other thing is i have to travel out of town to the tribunal and they are paying for a taxi to and from the tribunal, but dont have anyone to go with me, the solicitor says it will not go against me as there will be the taxi driver with me going and the clerk when i get there, as i get really anxies/panic attacks in unformiliar places ,and usually rely on help from friend/family, but they are unable to come with me, do you think this will go against me. many thanks.
  8. So I will start with a brief bit on my situation - Two years ago, I was on ESA for social anxiety, failed the ATOS test and had to go on JSA. http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?327891-Help-with-applying-for-ESA-due-to-social-anxiety My disability adviser was/is great and I was referred to an organisation who dealt with people with disability's looking for work. The programme was for a year and they found me a placement, suitable for someone with my condition. This all ended and I was back to the Job Centre, where I was told I will now be referred to "Triage"(Work Programme) Ive been with them for a few weeks, my anxiety is pretty high and they were understanding to an extent, one to one meetings and such, but that's changed and they want to stick me in a crowded classroom (Which a 10 on the richter scale of social anxiety for me) I explained this, but they claim as I am on JSA, their hands are tied. I dont know what to do now. I failed the ATOS test 2 years ago(Not been claiming ESA since) and wondering if I should see my doctor to claim it again? Would I even be allowed to or would it be denied as it is the same condition and I had previously failed ATOS and never turned up to my appeal(Anxiety be damned) Thanks for any replies in advance.
  9. Hi all. A friend of mine has had his DLA stopped because he missed an appointment for a Health Assessment. He knew nothing about the appointment because for some reason they were sending all correspondence to the wrong flat in the house he shares. When someone moved in to the empty flat, the letters were unnearthed. This was unfortunately a couple of days after he was meant to have gone to the assessment. He then recieved a letter (wrong address again) saying his DLA is stopping, and his claim for PIP was denied. All because he never turned up for assessment. He telephoned last month and explained the problem to the DWP, they changed all address details to the correct address, and said they would put it to the claims manager to be dealt with. He was meant to get paid today (if he was still getting DLA) but nothing went in his bank. He has rang them and a rather rude man said it's still waiting for a decision on the claim to be made. A decision was already made as they had sent a letter stopping his DLA, and refusing PIP. But that was not his fault. Should they not still keep paying him his DLA (which he was originally meant to get until the year 2020) until they ask for another Health Assessment? I think it's a bit cruel since they were sending his letters to the wrong place. Please help.
  10. Hi, folks I recently had a PIP assessment and was shocked when the HP admitted that she hadn't bothered to read either the form or the supporting evidence, prior to the "assessment". I was wondering how this will play out at a tribunal? I recorded the whole assessment on my wife's phone
  11. Hi, I wonder if anyone can give me help. My husband has been on DLA & Income support for several years, now they say he has to be on PIP. He has various mental health problems over the years now he has another one, he will not leave the house, he has only left the house 3 times in four years twice during a heart attack and the last time last year with a severe panic attack, on all three occasions he was in a ambulance and off to hospital. He is frightened of so many things (to many to mention) but two of the things he is most scared of is hearing people talk, and germs. So he will not go and see a GP, he discharged himself after a few hours in hospital after his second heart attack, (which was brought on by me telling him that I have had enough, and was demanding that he see a GP) . This is the problem, he has to have a visit next Monday 25th at our home, there is NO WAY he will agree to that, so what shall I do, I have a appointment tomorrow with his GP, I was thinking of asking for a letter from him telling them that he is too ill, our old GP did this two years ago, but they have just ignored this. I do know that they can not just take my word for it, that he is too mentally ill to speak to them, he wont even speak on the phone to people. When they wanted a face to face about 2 years ago, and he would not attend, they cancelled his claim, he had a Tribunal case, (which he would not attend) they eventually awarded him (after the second tribunal) his claim, and they back dated his money. This took months of having no money, I am frightened that this will happen with his ESSA as well, the only reason they have not bothered yet, is because they said a home visit will take time to arrange? All this is keeping me awake at night, he will not see anyone, he wont go anywhere, all I can do is go to see his GP. Has anybody got any ideas what I can do.
  12. hi and thanks my husband had a medical 2 years ago and was declared fit for work we then took t to a tribunal which overturned there decision he now as to attend another in a weeks time we have been to see his GP and he said they have not sent im any form to be filled in regarding his medical condition i find this rather strange all though his condition as not improved as he as severe copd and been on none stop antibiotic and steroids over the last 6 months any advice would be much appreciate thank you in advance
  13. ThePain

    ATOS reports

    Morning has anybody used passed ATOS reports in present ATOS medical's I have medical in few days and was wondering if it would help if I took my past medical reports from ATOS to my next medical They are all positive Ca
  14. Yesterday, I got a phone call from the ATOS assessment center in Weston S Mare, both on my landline and my mobile number, as I was attending a hospital appointment my son answered the home phone and the lady refused to identify herself or leave a message. When they called the mobile number the caller display showed it to be Adams Childrens Ware (a clothing shop now long gone), I was a little creeped out when I phoned the number only to find that it was ATOS calling to confirm that I would be attending my interrogation on Monday. Is it me or am I being paranoid that they are trying to trick people into not responding to calls by using a false caller ID?
  15. Sorry guys this is a long story, I will try to keep it as short as possible. My partner has been suffering from depression for a while which eventually led to him beginning to self harm due to his work environment making his life unbearable. He was signed off on the sick and very quickly unfairly dismissed from his job (totally different issue being dealt with separately) this made his mental health even worse and our lawyer advised he apply for PIP. We applied towards the end of last year and got an ATOS appointment through in January. It stated he had been assessed as requiring a home visit and they were coming to the house on a set date. Problem was that date was only three days from when we received the letter with my work I cannot change shifts that short notice so I called them to rearrange. They told me the next available appointment was weeks away but they could give me a date and I asked them if they could leave it with me as I didn't have my rota that far in advance and I need to be with him. They told me on the phone that I could simply change the appointment again if needs be. I ended up not being able to get that date either because there were too many people on annual leave that week (I am a nurse we cant get time off easily, it usually has to be organised quite far in advance) so I called to reschedule and was told this wasn't possible. I was told that if you cancelled twice it went down as a missed appointment. I argued my case and ended up phoning a complaint in to DWP who said ATOS were being unnecessarily harsh and told them to reissue the appointment. ATOS also said I hadn't called to cancel it on the day I did, they said I called the morning of which I clearly didn't since I work 0730 till 2000 and was in that day. We waited ages weeks and weeks for a new appointment and nothing came, Called atos who said no we had missed the appointment and weren't getting another. Called DWP again who fixed it and the next day we had a letter (miraculously dated the day before my call to DWP) but it said we had to go to the assessment centre which is right in the middle of the city centre. My partner doesn't cope in social situations, and does not cope well when around people he doesn't know he also has a learning disability that makes the prospect of going to an appointment like this even more scary for him which DWP and ATOS are aware of. I figured this was a mistake and called ATOS who said that his mental health nurse had told them he can go to the assessment centre. The mental health nurse claims she has made no such statement as she is not allowed to give a recommendation on someone she hasn't known for at least a year. The girl on the phone said she would put it through to the medical people to ask for it to be changed to a home appointment. Literally the next day we get a letter stating he would need to attend the assessment centre, and the day after we get an appointment through for one of the other assessment centres which is in the busiest possible part of the city centre. So I called today and got the same girl (what are the chances of that?) she was so lovely on the phone stated she didn't understand how they had come to a decision that quickly and then proceeded to read out to me the report from the mental health nurse (the one who stated she hadn't been allowed to give one) she stated she had known my partner for two months (an outright lie, he has been seeing her since October and was known to the service before that) and that he has no intention to return to work (again not true he would love to return to work, just not the job he had due to what they done to him, when he is better) and that he was fit to attend an appointment. I asked if our GP had been contacted and the girl said no, I asked why and she had no idea only telling me that the medical decision maker doesn't have to contact the GP its up to them. I then asked why they had based a decision on a statement which I disputed and was clearly an outright lie and was told it was the medical person that made the decision. I then asked to be put through to them but they don't speak to people apparently. I also informed her that my partner had cut himself the day the letter arrived and twice since because of the fear of this appointment, previous to this he had gone a fortnight or so without harming and that I would rather not go to the appointment and not get awarded pip than put him through anymore of this stress. He already had serious thoughts of ending his life on two previous occasions and I wasn't letting it get to that again. She suggested getting our gp to contact them because he can be put through to the medical decision maker people that I cant speak to and if he explains the situation they might change their minds. I have called the GP and asked for the doctor to call me back but he isn't in till tomorrow so I will need to wait. Our GP is brilliant and I know he will do what he can to help but what can I do if they wont change their minds? He was approved for a home appointment before the cpn put in that funny report that she promised me she hadn't done when I asked her about it stating that she wouldn't be allowed to because she hadn't known him a year. I also plan on asking the gp to confirm that he has been seeing the cpn for way more than two months, proving she is not telling the truth. nothing about his medical condition has changed or improved since he was originally approved for a home appointment so how can they state he needs to go to them. He cannot go to the city centre, hasn't been in the town for almost a year now because of fear of people. the only place he goes by himself is the doctors surgery which is on our street. he will come out with me to the shops but only if we go at night when its quiet (we have a 24hr asda close by which we go to in the early hours of the morning sometimes) but other than that he pretty much wont leave the house. The doctor has had to put him back on diazepam since this letter arrived and I am honest to god worried that I am going to come home from a shift to find him lying in a pool of his own blood. How can I fix this? Can I fix this? How are ATOS being allowed to get away with the way they treat people? and who can I complain to?
  16. Child diagnosed with a disability at age 4, made a claim for DLA a few years later and has been receiving it to date, child now 16 and has made a claim for PIP after being invited to. With an unrelated issue, contact was made to GP to ask proof of disability, GP's can't find medical notes so were unable to help, all records computerised, there are notes relating to his disability though not an actual diagonsis - child has very rarely seen GP and his difficulties have been dealt with by his family. Fast forward with regards claim for PIP, child would not go to an assessment so Atos writing to GP. we understand its going to be very hard to get PIP, so are not holding out much hope - it's not a problem. Now to my question, if GP can't provide confirmation of diagnosis, can Atos/ Decision maker ask that previous DLA awards by repaid? Forms have always been filled in correctly and child has never been asked to attend an appointment for assessment prior to this, we assumed DLA would have already contacted GP, especially given the amount of times the award has been issued.
  17. Hello. I am currently getting income based JSA for about 1 year now. I stay with my mum, But all of a sudden my mum is saying i need to pay £27 towards to rent as the council will only pay £109. So why now do i need to pay. I have a brother who gets ESA, and my mum gets income support. What are causing the housing benefit deduction, My brother only started claiming ESA this year in march, And all of a sudden the housing benefit is cut. So could someone help me because i am getting the impression the cut is because of me but i have been getting jsa for around a year and my mum has been getting full housing benefit since untill now.
  18. Does anyone know if there is a correct way to raise a complaint about the way ATOS have handled my assessment? I've been messed about from the beginning, finally got a home assessment booked for just before Christmas which they then cancelled less than 18 hours before the time. They sent me another date for 3 weeks later but I'll be in hospital recovering from a major op a few days before then. Phoned and explained, had to 'request' a call back from a supervisor, explained it all again the next day and the upshot from this is today I receive no less than 4 letters. Two are identical and are as if I have only just begun my claim, one advises me they cannot do this by a paper-based assessment (I told them that) and the fourth is yet another appointment for the day after the last one they sent out. IF by some miracle I am fit enough to return home, it won't be until that day and I'm going to be very stressed and needing loads of help to just get back settled in as I live on my own and have no-one to support me. But I may not be fit enough to come home that day or the next and it's setting me up to fail because I won't be able to keep the appointment. So far I have been given no less than 5 different appointments since November and I'm just losing it completely. Is there an official complaint process because I cannot seem to find it on their website at all. I'm finding it very difficult to even read their website too because it's small pale font and it's so much information to wade through to realise I cannot find the answer I'm looking for.
  19. This E-Petition is requesting "Let GP's Do Fit For Work Assessments Instead of ATOS" If this were to happen it would mean that GP's who know about their patients ailments could complete these assessments using the medical knowledge and history that they have and know about. This would also save the cost of utilising companies like ATOS who have been proven to not be fit for purpose, it would stop the misery caused to sick and disabled people who have their benefits stopped while waiting appeals and of course the cost of these appeals. I feel sure this would be much more cost effective and therefore save taxpayers money. If you wish to sign please go to this link :: http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/54430 Thank you in advance to anyone who signs.
  20. Hi, I’m new to your forum, and I’m need of desperate help. My friend Is coming up to my two year deadline regards Atos/ Maximus (I understand it’s not Atos anymore?) so I am completely out of the loop. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- He suffers from many of the below from aged 25 years old *Severe drug use amphetamines cocaine, alcohol for 20+ (Drug use stopped 18 months ago) medication for alcohol and drugs given *Severe Depression been on-going for 20+ years, antidepressants, medication- (but increased due to father dying suddenly 3 months ago and his elderly mother mom having a stroke recently. – His drinking has gone through the roof 60+ units a weeks at least. *seen Councillors for drugs and drink for almost two years, up until a few years ago .*Severe Social anxiety/ and before that extreme agoraphobia- major most severe problem that he was written off work for- 20+ years *Bdp – (made worse by face damage) body dysmorhpic disorder – on-going Also BDP worsened by mugging in 2007 -Resulting in an operation- (MAJOR OP.) (8 years ago) Maxiofacial reconstruction- facial reconstructive surgery- This was two 4 hour operations that were botched within weeks of another and then another massive operation - Zygomatic osteotomy 3 months later - 15 hour op, 8 surgeons. (Traumatic MENTAL recovery took 18 months) Has on-going hernia problem, operation was pencilled in and missed twice over three years due to on-going mental health issues Left Knee operation probably required (ligament rupture and miniscule tear in cartilage of left know) and possible lesser in right knee- missed appointment through on-going mental health issues- anti- inflammatory, pain killers given Weakened Achilles tendons, possibly causing altered gait, causing knee issues- cannot run and limps. Gastro- stomach problem (collapsed a few years ago- symptoms never followed up as discharged himself from hospital due to anxiety- consultant arranged op for hernia- never went BACK FOR SCAN These things are all facts but the psychological issues were accepted and written down by THE gp (AND ATOS) but were never followed up by a psychiatrist -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------. He was written off to such an extent that (Atos twice over a 4 year period attempted to get him into an interview and he DIDN’T EVEN NEED TO ATTEND THE INTERVIEW AFTER THE DR WROTE TO ATOS *BOTH TIMES) The last appointment request was two years ago (august) and the letter provided by that same GP at the time meant Atos left him alone. But time could be running out! The dilemma really is this: 1 his original doctor left to go back to the USA. He was progressive and understood the situation! 2 He has since failed to find/ trust any replacement DR at that clinic, he virtually never attended the clinic unless it was, hernia, or knee related or injury related; maybe 5 times in the last two years, Worse he gave up thinking about a future Atos appointment until recently, and because of the way he hasn’t attended interviews, EVER, we don’t know what his current (ATOS) situation is! I.e. SUPPORT GROUP ETC 3 we are guessing that Atos will send him an appointment soon? (But feel we have left it extremely late, if the timing is correct) As mentioned previously, the last call up was two years ago, which he didn't need to attend, due to the intensity of his Dr's letter (august two years ago) It would seem that Atos are no longer company that runs this situation. And we are unaware of new guidelines in terms of new appointments. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ My uninformed approach is to: 1 Get him to see a new GP consistently over next three weeks (providing that is the time Atos /Maximus) send him an appointment and build up a rapport with that GP? 2 then ask for a letter of update? 3 I have spoken to the clinic and the manager and they are willing to get a printout of all medical records and all previous correspondence with his old good GP to send to Atos /Maximus but this will be two years old. Would that still help? 4 if we do manage to see a new GP (patient friendly!) And build up a good rapport and then get a more or less updated full report? 4a would it be best to DEFINITELY get the (possible impending) appointment in august delayed somehow, and if so how would we go about this? 5 I suppose most important question is the two year gap a problem? 5a would ringing Atos to find out his current situation be positive or would that just remind them and hasten the process 6 does the two year medical rule still applies in terms of being served an interview notice? My MAIN questions are- 1 what is the criteria required to pass the ‘Atos’ medical or indeed in my client’s case not need to attend. Are they the same as before? Is there still a two year reapplication rule for a medical? What’s forms need to be read or groups can one be placed in nowadays? 2 will it be now difficult to ‘prove’ my clients illness, due to the fact he didn’t really see any new DR’s in the last two years, in a capacity to dealing with the psychological issues or at least attending consistently - i.e. he has been ‘off the radar?’ 3 the length of time between a GP letter for Atos, almost two years ago) and now? - a patient can’t just turn up to a NEW GP and demand a letter to write him off work for two years. 4 any important info needed for the current system/ company Maximus? Is there any more information that I need to know to pass on to the current GP he is about to see? 5 any links to information and help/ professional forum or otherwise as I’m running out of time to help this person! Has it been left too late? 6 is it essential to bring proof ALL proof of, physical injuries that have affected him, i.e. hernia, knee, face x-rays, letters appointments, etc. and that some of these injuries that would have also affected his mental well-being. For instance the massive op on his face? Maybe getting a personal letter from his surgeon even if the op was years ago? You have to remember my client is ill and he’s going to have to approach a new GP, and ask for a letter? I have been advised by the manager of the clinic (who is not a GP) to see the DR first and explain all issues so they can get to know the patient. INSTEAD of just asking for a Dr’s letter, as this may seem manipulative to the GP? I am loath to offer any advice that could possibly hinder my client’s success at an appointment or (preferably an abstention from a medial interview in the first place!) Finally I am not personally an advocate- Are there any private advocates or free ones that you can get that thoroughly know the maximus/benefit medical interview system? So they can go with my client? And can you point me to a guideline for passing said interviews. As stated before through my client has had letters that have meant he has never needed to attend the previous two interviews! Would this still be the case? PLEASE HELP AS IT’S URGENT ON BEHALF OF A GOOD PERSON IN A BAD SITUATION.
  21. Does anyone know what Atos have gotten into since walking away from the DLA fiasco? Believe it or not they are or may be running/managing the Child Care Payments from HMRC with National Savings and Investments (NS&I) The reason for this is whilst watching a case in the Supreme Court (SC) recorded cases "TV" here https://www.supremecourt.uk/watch/uksc-2015-0080/130515-am.html It now appears they are getting involved in the child care market? If you want to know more please follow the above link and have a look for yourself. This case was heard in the SC on the 31/03/2015, if they manage to do with the Child Care Payments as they did with DLA I wonder what could happen..... Any thoughts? The attachment is from here http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWCA/Civ/2015/326.html
  22. I have started a new thread here http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?446131-Atos-what-are-they-doing-next-(1-Viewing)-nbsp For anyone interested
  23. Hi all, I will provide the edited version here - any advice wold be greatly appreciated. ATOS agreed to provide a taxi to take me from my house to their Medical assessment, and return me home again afterwards. This was as a result of medical evidence provided by my GP. On the day of the appointment I was to be ready 1 hour before my appointment, when the taxi would pick me up. It was a journey of around 25 miles. No taxi arrived. No phone call from ATOS. I called ATOS who told me that my file had been marked "Failed to attend" and sent back to the DWP. No explanation was forthcoming for them not providing the taxi they said they would. It's out of their hands now. I received a form today from the DWP asking for my reasons for not attending, and making it quite clear that my benefits are at risk if I don't have a reason that they define acceptable. I suspect that there are alarmingly few acceptable reasons, irrespective of what they are. I have written a 4 page letter detailing every aspect of my involvement with atos, including them not providing the transport, which is the main thing. The whole thing is ridiculous. How on earth can my benefits be at risk because ATOS didn't fill their part of the bargain? I'm quite concerned about this.
  24. Hi, I have discovered today that the DWP and/or Atos have sent some letters to the wrong address- two appointment letters and a copy of a PIP assessment report. All 3 (and possibly others) were sent to the wrong house number, about 30 houses down. However other letters, such as the PIP decision, did come to the right address. I only found out about this because the person who received the report asked my neighbour if they recognised the name on the assessment report! What is the most effective way to complain about this? I am currently going to tribunal about the PIP decision, but think this is a separate issue as the letters going astray has not affected the decision maker's reasoning in any way. However, it did mean that my assessment was not recorded, as I only found out about the appointment a couple of weeks before the date when I called for an update. There was no time to arrange recording then and I decided not to put off the assessment as I had already waited ten months for a date. If the assessment had been recorded, I would not be going to tribunal now, as the assessor would not have been able to get away with writing an extremely inaccurate report. Additionally, if I hadn't called Atos to find out what was taking so long, I wouldn't have known about the appointment, missed it and presumably been thrown out of the system. So this definitely needs to be dealt with properly.
  25. Hi CAG, Not posted for a while but decided I would share my experience of the ATOS Medical I had this morning. Like I'm sure most of you have/will, I did a fair bit of research on what to expect and prepared myself mentally. I got very little sleep last night and was a nervous wreck on the way there as I suffer from severe anxiety in high pressure situations as well as the main issue I was there for which I won't discuss. I can full on understand people who don't normally have anxiety to be anxious as the day of the ATOS medical is one im sure we have all come to dread in the build up. Anyhow, Location: Manchester, Albert Bridge House Appointment Time: 10.00am 11/02/2015 (I went on to ESA in March of 2014) Arrived : 9.45am - Name Called: 9:55am - Was expected to be kept waiting but I wasn't...... Initially. My first note is that the bloke on the reception desk seemed pretty rude. Didn't seem to care, very to the point, slid a clipboard under my nose to do with ID, i had to sign it and then show my ID's. He then disappeared in to the back room for a minute and I had read that they sometimes keep you waiting purposely to see if you can. As I was just about to go and sit down because I was sick of waiting he returned and told me to take a seat. Maybe he was just a bit of a rude person, maybe it was part of the game, or maybe it was a combination of both. Now what my just be paranoia to me, but at an ATOS medical, I know you are pretty much judged from the minute you step foot inside, cameras everywhere, lots of staff wondering around pointlessly, but this is where I may have been being paranoid or misinterpreting something to be to do with me.... A few minutes after sitting down, the same bloke who dealt with me on reception popped out the back, looked me up and down breifly and then returned to the bit behind the reception. A few seconds later a female voice, said rather loudly "WHAT? HE'S FAILED THEN HAS HE? HAHAHA" Bare in mind I am the only person in the waiting room at this point, coupled with the fact the bloke had just come out and give me the once over and seconds after returning to the back office that was said, maybe it is paranoia but it just seemed an odd thing to hear when the day is simply about passing or failing. I was called through to a room just around the corner, maybe 20m away. I was for some reason expecting a room with about 3 people in it but it was just me and her.. She made a swoop behind me as we got to the door, so i would have to open it. It wasn't overly heavy so I pushed it slowly open. (I had read that they walk behind you on purpose so you have to open doors). There was barley any time for small talk on the way to the room. I was told that seemingly innocent questions are all part of the medical, so I was expecting some seemingly normal questions to be part of the medical. There we're none. As I entered the room she asked "Have you been waiting long?" to which i replied "about 11 months). That's me not being a smart arse and trying to be funny, but my little way of confirming what we and they already know, that ATOS is a shambles. She watched me sit down and asked me 4 questions before telling me she wasn't qualified to deal with my condition and so she would get somebody else, who was, to do it. She sent me back to the waiting room, I asked how long i could expect to be waiting and she said somebody would be with me very soon. To me this was all part of the game they play. From the most mundane waiting room I've ever sat it.. I've seen more atmosphere at the Etihad and that's saying something. 10-15 Minutes later I was called by another lady who took me to the room at the very far end of the corridor) most ofthe rooms on the way we're empty but I was taken maybe 50m to the far end, again, all part of the game i'm sure. This lady asked me the exact same initial questions as the first lady had and I immediately knew this was to catch me out or see if my story differed. I have seen enough detective shows to know this is how interrogations are often done. Thew first lady I saw was never going to do the medical, she was simply weighing me up. I was in for around 30-40 minutes for my medical with the second lady during which she asked about my condition, my medications/treatments, how it affects day to day living and because my condition is much worse on some days than others i mentally put myself in the mind frame of my worst day. I was thinking back to a day last week where i was bed bound because of the pain. With every answer I used the words Reliably Repeatedly and Safely, which I had seen on this forum as well as various other guides to the medical. Now the lady was very nice. She seemed understanding, she seemed to listen to my answer as she typed away. This could have been genuine but everything was telling me, it is this persons job to find me fit for work and I felt i was being lulled in to a false sense of security so she could try and trip me up, so after every question she asked, I paused, re-asked the question in my own head rather than just blurting something out which could and almost certainly would he used against me. She then told me we would do a physical test now. She asked me how far we had parked (my dad drove me) from the venue, which i told her about 100m and although I had walked it, I was already feeling the tension build in my lower back and was in discomfort. She told me I didn't have to do any of the things she asked me if I did not want to. The upper body stuff i was ok with because even on my worst day i can move my arms/hands. When it came to the lower half, bending over and anything involving using my back or legs i refused. She asked me to get on the bed, and again I refused as it was fairly high. Now there and then i could have, no questions i could have got on to that bed, but on my worst day there was not a chance i was getting on to it without screaming when i catch my back in an awkward position and feel the shooting pains up my back. My bed at home is at a height where it is fairly simple to just lower myself on to it when my backs in a not so bad way. The bed in the room she asked me to get on was certainly around 2ft higher and it was more of a climb on than a get in if you follow me. As with all my questions on the spoken part of the medical I kept saying, most of the time I can do this but if you ask me to do it x amount of times there will be a point where the tension in my back and the spasms get so severe I just can not do it Reliably, Repeatedly and Safely. She concluded by asking if there was anything i would like her to see. I gave her a letter from my GP stating all my dates, medications, treatments and referrals to specialists. I also gave her a copy of my MRI scan (dated 2012) and told her my condition is significantly worse now than when that MRI was done, and to include a note stating this when sending it to a decision maker. All of the GP's and Specialists I have seen since 2012 keep referring to the 2012 MRI scan results and it annoys me no end, that somehow now I'm assumed to be in that exact same physical state. She told me that was the end of the medical. That it would take 2-6 weeks to hear from the DWP with the decision and it is not her that makes the decision, it will be passed to a decision maker. She told me to go and wait in the waiting room while she took copies of the GP letter and MRI scan. Now on the way back up to reception (50m away), I noticed her walking much faster and I immediately knew that this was to see if i would try and keep up with here. She had told me that the medical was completed down in the room, but at all costs remember this. The medical is underway from the second you step in (reception staff are often, and i think in my case, all part of the game, and the medical will end when you leave the area, I still felt like i was being watched as I made my way out of the building and around the corner. Now this little story of how my medical went is in no way to scare or unnerve you when it comes to your ATOS Medical. It is simply an idea of what to expect. I'm sure some medicals will be similar, and i'm sure some will be almost identical. There's no changing the fact that the ATOS Medical is a huge thing for us all, and we have all done some research. The key is to remember this research come the medical day. As i said earlier I felt like I was being set up to stumble but I just stayed focused, re-asked the question in my own head and stuck to the words of Reliably Repeatedly and Safely. with every answer. To summarize: 1.) Reliably, Repeatedly and Safely. 2.) You are being assessed from the second you walk in. 3.) You are being assessed until the second you walk out. 4.) However nice they seem, be clear they are there to find you fir for work 5.) If you don't understand a question - ask them to repeat it. 6.) Re-ask yourself the questions in your head before answering 7.) If they keep you waiting at the reception upon entering, take a seat - they are testing you 8.) If you cannot open a door, do not try and open a door, make the assessor do it. 9.) Get the names and professions of all the people involved in your Medical - Use a voice recorder if necessary 10.) If you do not feel comfortable doing something, do not do it. 11.) Reliably, Repeatedly and Safely. (This isn't a dupe, drill this in to every answer you give if your condition fluctuates. I am fully expecting to get 0 points for simply turning up. Yet if I hadn't turned up my ESA would have been stopped. It's a catch 22. I hope in anyway this story can somehow prepare you and your answers and your general understanding of the medical. I was a bag of nerves last night, felt sick through anxiety and got very little sleep, but if there was one positive to take from today, I felt amazing once i'd got out of there. Not physically, my back had already locked up on me from the walking, sitting standing, and I am in a fair bit of discomfort as I type this, I am pretty much written off for the day.. After the day loomed closer for the last 6 weeks (when i got my date for the medical) and the nerves and anxiety grew stronger I felt amazing that it was over and done with. Adam
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