Tag Archives: refusal

Fewer appeals against PIP refusal due to stress? The DWP plan is working well

The stress created by the Department for Work and Pensions – to stop benefit claimants from appealing against wrong Personal Independence Payment decisions – is now well-known.

The Conservative government that runs the DWP wants to discourage as many people from claiming the benefit as possible.

This study shows that the department’s dirty tactics appear to be succeeding.

study released by the DWP yesterday has revealed that 37% of people who do not appeal the decision made in their PIP appeal during mandatory reconsideration (MR) do not do so because the process would be too stressful.

The study also shows that a fifth of people who do not appeal at MR did not do so because they were sure there would be no change to the award, and another fifth said they were too unwell.

While 83% of people in the survey knew what the first step in claiming PIP was, 46% said they knew nothing of the process, while 36% said they had no idea why people would claim PIP.

The report notes that the main reasons for appealing is that 42% do not receive their award, 26% find that the DWP did not take their evidence into account, and that 25% found the face-to-face assessment unfair. They also found that claimants feared the DWP would treat them unfairly during their appeal, saying: “The qualitative research revealed that claimants were sometimes reluctant to contact the DWP for advice or further information after receiving their decision letter, due to concerns that it would not be impartial.”

Source: Over a third do not appeal PIP decision due to stress shows DWP study | UNITE Magazine

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Theresa May’s failure to sack Boris Johnson is risking an international incident

She’ll be gone before the end of the year but in the meantime, Theresa May is covering herself in: Denial.

Mrs May must know she cannot go on like this.

Sure, the Tories can treat a country like Libya with contempt – as she is doing, by failing to offer restitution after Boris Johnson’s unforgivable remarks about Sirte – because Libya is weak and cannot cause immediate harm to the UK.

But the knock-on effect among the international community could be huge.

Other, more influential countries will see the UK behaving thuggishly like this, and draw their own conclusions about future relations with our country.

At a time when the UK is pulling out of the EU and seeking trade deals with other nations, this is the height of stupidity.

Mrs May must know this. Her advisors certainly should.

Yet she dithers. It seems her loyalty to her party is greater than to her country.

But she is a public servant and, in government, her loyalty to her country should weigh more heavily on her decisions.

This is yet another reason she should reason, and take her whole rotton government with her.

A key committee in Libya’s parliament has condemned Boris Johnson for joking about “dead bodies” preventing the country’s business growth.

The Foreign Secretary was widely criticised for controversially suggesting that the Libyan city of Sirte only had to “clear the dead bodies” before it could become the next Dubai.

He was speaking at a fringe event at the Conservative Party conference in Manchester.

The Libyan House of Representatives’ foreign affairs committee demanded an apology from Theresa May over the “unacceptable” comments.

“The committee demands a clarification from the British Prime Minister and an apology to the Libyan people,” it said in a statement.

Mr Johnson’s comments about British businessmen investing in Libya were a “violation of Libyan sovereignty”, the committee added.

Source: Libyan parliament demands Theresa May formally apologise for Boris Johnson’s ‘dead bodies’ comment


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DWP’s enormous court costs are a FRACTION of what it spends pushing the disabled off benefits

The vast majority of appeals were lost by the Government last year and early indications now show the problem is becoming even worse in 2017.

The figures quoted below – and in the source article for which there is a link at the bottom – represent only a part of what the Department for Work and Pensions is spending on pushing as many people as possible (not just the sick and disabled) off of social security benefits.

Yes, the costs quoted here are bad enough, but what about the amount spent hiring private companies to run sickness and disability benefit assessments? It has long been established that they are expected to refuse a high percentage of applications, whether the claimant deserves the payments or not.

And what about the latest version of Workfare? What is it called now?

Add it all up and you’ll find the total cost comes to far more than £40 million, I reckon.

Ministers have spent almost £40m in an “appalling” attempt to stop sick and disabled people receiving the financial help they are entitled to.

Freedom of Information requests have exposed how taxpayers’ money has been spent on futile legal battles to prevent vulnerable people receiving help.

The hit to the public purse could also be far higher than the new data suggests because it is still unclear how much more the state spends running courts where sanctions are challenged.

The vast majority of appeals were lost by the Government last year, making the expense appear unnecessary. Early indications now show the problem is becoming even worse in 2017, with a 77 per cent rise in money spent trying to stop people from getting Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) payments.

New figures show that in 2016 the Government spent £22m processing claimants’ initial appeals against sanctions – a stage most people must pass through before they reach a tribunal.

It emerged earlier this year that government officials are given targets to reject four out of five initial appeals – known as mandatory reconsiderations – for some disability benefits.

Further data obtained by The Independent under Freedom of Information law shows the Government then spent a further £17m fighting cases in the courts that were not settled at the initial appeal stage, bringing the total appeals process cost to £39m last year.

In the same period the Government lost 62 per cent of the tribunal cases in which it was attempting to sanction a claimant’s ESA – which supports people when impairments prevent them working.

They also lost 65 per cent of the cases in the latter half of 2016, the most recent period for which figures are available, relating to the Personal Independence Payment (PIP), a longer-term benefit.

But the defeats suffered by government lawyers are not persuading ministers of the need to change tack, with the figures actually pointing to a more costly appeals process in 2017.

Read more: DWP spends £39m defending decisions to strip benefits from sick and disabled people


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