Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is still causing misery for thousands of people three years after it was introduced, with over 500 people a day wanting advice on the benefit during 2016, according to Citizens Advice.
The charity has also revealed that in the past 12 months almost, 125,000 people sought help with the sickness and disability benefit from their local Citizens Advice, up 36% on the year before. 13% of people seeking help were in work, and many will rely on PIP to be able to keep their jobs.
Furthermore, since its introduction in 2013, local Citizens Advice bureaus have helped people with over 630,000 enquiries about PIP and over this time it has become the most common issue people need support with.
Assessments causing unnecessary stress
The charity is urging the Government and companies delivering PIP assessments to ensure that people can actually get to the medical assessments and also to get the tests right the first time to reduce people’s worry and need for appeals.
Citizens Advice comment
Gillian Guy, Chief Executive of Citizens Advice said: “PIP can be a lifeline for anyone living with a disability or long term health condition such as arthritis; because it helps them with the additional costs they face like having someone come in to help with household chores or specialist equipment so they can get around.
“But every day hundreds of people are turning to Citizens Advice for help with the benefit. To get PIP most people have to go for medical assessment, but many feel that their medical does not accurately reflect the day-to-day challenges they face with their disability or illness. And in some cases the appointment is so far away from home that it can be very difficult to get there particularly if you’re in a wheelchair or on crutches.”
She added that: “These problems with PIP assessments not only cause people unnecessary stress but can lead to serious money worries and threaten their ability to stay or return to work.”
If you are ill, disabled or injured, our website has information you may find useful. You can also find out more about Personal Independence Payment.
You can also use the free Turn2us Benefits Calculator to check your benefits entitlements. Even if you have checked before, it is worth checking again, especially if there has been a change in your circumstances.
You can also check if you are eligible for a charitable grant or other support by using the Turn2us Grants Search.
If you are worried about your situation and would like further advice, you can use the Turn2us Find an Adviser tool to locate face-to-face advice in your local area.
Source: Citizens Advice press release