There are just a few days to go until the Personal Independence Payment (PIP) legislation formally comes into place.
Disability Living Allowance (DLA) will be replaced by Personal Independence Payment (PIP) for people aged 16 to 64 from 8 April 2013. It will begin with people who are making new claims and most people receiving DLA now won’t be affected before 2015, although some may be affected earlier.
PIP starts for people living in areas including Cheshire, Cumbria, Merseyside, north east and north west England. When a DLA claim is received by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) from these areas, it will be treated as a claim to PIP instead. The DWP will inform people if this is the case for them.
The new benefit has been designed by the DWP and they have appointed Service Providers, including Atos Healthcare, to give them independent advice on the impact of an individual’s disability or health condition on their daily lives.
Some of the advice to be provided by Atos Healthcare will be based on evaluation of the information given by claimants when they complete the DWP form called “How Your Disability Affects You” along with any additional evidence provided by the claimant or obtained from professionals who are treating them. If there is enough evidence at this stage Atos Healthcare can complete a report and return it to DWP without the need to see the claimant. However, most reports will be completed following a face to face consultation with a Health Professional.
The consultations will last about 60 minutes and are to understand how a person’s health condition or disability affects their ability to live an independent life, using criteria that are set out by the government.
DWP will use the Health Professional’s report and, along with other information, decide what level of benefit should be awarded.
More information on PIP can be found on our website.