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Benefits for those who are sick and disabled

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) replaced Disability Living Allowance for those aged 16 - 65 from 8th April 2013 and is designed to help with the extra costs of disability or long term health conditions. Disability Living Allowance remains for children aged under 16 and those who are aged 65+. Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) is the sickness benefit which replaced the former Incapacity Benefit and Income Support for sickness in 2008.

Personal Independence Payment (PIP)

This benefit replaced Disability Living Allowance for those aged 16 to 65 from 8th April 2013 and is designed to help with the extra costs of disability or long term health conditions to enable people to participate in everyday life or who find it difficult to get around. Disability Living Allowance remains for children aged under 16 and those who are aged 65+ as at the 8th April 2013

Existing claimants of Disability Living Allowance who are aged between 16 and 64 as at the 8th April 2013 will be invited to claim Personal Independence Payment. Failure to respond to the invite will result in their award of DLA initially being suspended and then terminated.

PIP is non taxable, non means tested (doesn't matter how much other income/savings you have); payable on top of other benefits and can be paid whether you are in or out of work.

To qualify for an award of PIP - a claimant has to score the relevant number of points within set descriptors; only one activity per descriptor can be added together and if a person meets several activities within a descriptor, the activity that they have difficulty for most of the time (at least 50%) will count.

To start your claim you complete a PIP 1 claim form which is usually completed over the telephone: 0800 917 2222 (text phone 0800 917 777). The lines are open from 8 am to 6 pm Monday to Friday and are free from BT landlines and most mobiles.

Once your claim for PIP has been made and the Department for Work and Pensions are satisfied that you meet the basic conditions for entitlement you will be sent out a PIP 2 claim form - 'How your disability affects you' to complete. Below is a guide on how to complete this form.

 

Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)

This is the sickness benefit that replaced the former incapacity benefit (also referred to invalidity benefit) and income support for sickness in 2008. After you have made a claim for ESA, you are sent an ESA 50 Questionnaire which asks for more details about how your illnesses affect your daily life. If the DWP are only aware of physical disabilities, failure to return this form will result in you being found fit for work. Below is a guide to completing the ESA50 Questionnaire.

You will usually be required to attend a medical assessment. It is advisable to take someone with you to ensure that you provide a full account of your illness/disability and how it affects you. If you fail to attend this assessment without notifying Medical Services with a good reason, you will be found fit for work.

If you don't agree with the DWP decision, please see 'How to Challenge a Benefit Decision'.

If you have previously made a claim for ESA, seek independent advice as you may come within the 'repeat claim' rules

 

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