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Personal Independence Payment (PIP)

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is not a means-tested benefit. Your earnings, other income or savings do not affect this.

If you struggle with everyday tasks or your mobility, you could be entitled to PIP.

PIP criteria

To qualify you must:

  • be over 16 and have not yet reached State Pension Age

  • have met the criteria for 3 months

  • expect to meet the criteria for at least another 9 months

Use a PIP self-test to help you understand the assessment and see if you might qualify.

Take the PIP self-test (Benefits and Money)

If your child is turning 16 and claims Disability Living Allowance (DLA), they will have to apply for PIP.

Moving from DLA to PIP when your child turns 16  

Applying for PIP

To apply for PIP, you need to contact the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). You can do this by:

  • post

  • phone

  • textphone

  • Relay UK

  • a video relay service

PIP: Contacting the DWP about a claim (GOV.UK)

It can take months to complete the PIP process:

  • contacting the DWP about a claim

  • filling in your PIP claim form and getting evidence

  • attending an assessment

  • receiving the outcome

If you have not received a reply from the DWP, contact them to check on the progress of your claim.

Warning

Claiming PIP if you’re terminally ill

If you are terminally ill, the PIP application is quicker.

Claiming PIP if you're terminally ill (GOV.UK)

Filling in your PIP claim form

When you receive the form, you have 1 month to complete it. If you need more time, call the DWP and ask for an extension.

The form has questions about your care and mobility needs. These include:

  • preparing food

  • eating food

  • washing and bathing

  • using the toilet

  • dressing and undressing

  • reading

  • communicating with speech

  • managing your medicines or treatment

  • making decisions about money

  • engaging with other people

  • planning and following a journey

  • moving around

PIP is assessed on how your condition affects you day to day. You can receive PIP without a diagnosis. You can get support to fill out your form.

Help filling in your PIP form (Citizens Advice)

Evidence to support your claim

You need evidence that shows how your condition affects you. Focus on day-to-day experiences rather than a medical diagnosis. This can include:

  • letters from a health professional

  • a diary you have written

Completing your PIP claim form 

Getting evidence to support your PIP claim (Citizens Advice)

Warning

Make copies

When you have completed your application, make a copy of the form and evidence.

DWP is unable to send your documents back.

A copy of the PIP form can be helpful:

  • to remind you what to say during the PIP assessment

  • if your form gets lost in the post

  • for when you have to reapply at the end of your award

If possible, ask your post office for proof of postage.

PIP assessment

You will have an assessment once the DWP has looked at your form. This is normally in person at an assessment centre. But assessments can be a phone call or home visit.

If you need adjustments to attend your assessment, contact DWP in advance.

If you receive a letter asking you to attend an assessment that is not accessible for you, contact the organisation who arranged it. This will be Capita or Independent Assessment Services (IAS).

Answering questions

The assessor will ask questions like those in your application form. You will need to talk about your condition and how it affects you.

You can bring someone with you to the PIP assessment if you think this would help.

Preparing for your PIP assessment  

Understanding your PIP report

The assessor will write a report based on your assessment. This will decide if you qualify for PIP. When writing the report, they assess your ability to carry out everyday activities.

There are 2 components.

PIP components

PIP looks at 2 parts of your life:

  • the daily living component for people who need help with everyday tasks

  • the mobility component for people who find it hard to get around

You should complete both sections of the form.

Each component has a standard or enhanced level. There are 12 activities, 10 for daily living and 2 for mobility. For each component, you need:

  • 8 to 11 points for the standard rate

  • 12 points or more for the enhanced rate

It is possible to get a different rate for each component. This is because they are assessed separately.

For example, if you received 10 points for daily living and 13 points for mobility, your award would be:

  • standard rate for daily living

  • enhanced rate for mobility

Ask for a copy of your PIP report

A week after your assessment, you can ask for a copy of your PIP assessment report. They will not send it to you unless you do.

You could receive the assessor’s report before the decision letter. The report will give you a score for each activity. Using the PIP points system, you can add up the points you have been given.

PIP points system (Benefits and Work)

You will have a separate score for each component. This is likely the PIP award you will receive. The decision maker normally will agree with the assessor, but this is not always the case.

The decision letter will say what your award is.

You will have to wait for the decision letter before you will receive a PIP payment or can appeal the decision.

PIP rates

The amount of money you receive depends on the number of points for each component. If you do not get enough points, you will not get any PIP.

If you are awarded PIP, you will receive backdated money from the date you submitted your PIP claim.

For the daily living allowance

Your weekly amount will be:

  • £60 for standard rate (8 to 11 points)

  • or £89.60 for enhanced rate (12 or more points)

For the mobility component

Your weekly amount will be:

  • £23.70 for standard rate (8 to 11 points)

  • or £62.55 for enhanced rate (12 or more points)

Appealing your PIP decision

If you disagree with a benefit decision, you have 1 calendar month from the date on your decision letter to ask the DWP to reconsider. This is called a mandatory reconsideration.

Appealing your decision means your award can go up or down. You can speak to a benefits adviser before appealing.

They will look at both components of your award, even if you disagree with only 1 component. If this does not change the decision, you have 2 further chances to appeal:

  • at a tribunal hearing where an independent panel looks at your case

  • at an upper tribunal if you can show the first tribunal did not follow the law

Challenging decisions about PIP  

Last reviewed by Scope on: 05/07/2021

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