Key tips for phone and video call PIP assessment consultations | Personal Finance | Finance

On Monday, Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) Minister of State Tom Pursglove revealed that around three-quarters of PIP assessments are being conducted remotely, even after the COVID-19 pandemic has subsided. In a written parliamentary question, Conservative MP for Selaine Saxby, North Devon, asked: “Ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how much and what percentage of individual independent payment assessments are made:

“(a) in-person, (b) remotely and (c) every month since January 1, 2022.”

In his response, Mr Pursglove shared DWP data, including the number and percentage of assessments conducted in various ways since January 2022.

In September, DWP data showed that 62,000 PIP assessments were conducted remotely, 15,000 were paper-based and about 6,500 were in-person.

In percentage terms, this is 74%, 18% and 7.6%, respectively.

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The number of remote assessments has decreased since January, but not by much, with the percentage of remote assessments at 83%.

Data for September showed a slight decrease in the number of phone and video assessments from 62,860 in August.

It also showed more face-to-face consultations, up 490 since August.

PIP is a non-means-tested benefit that is taken into account when deciding whether a person is eligible to support their disability or condition and how it affects their life.

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A PIP assessment is “not a diagnosis or a physical exam,” but instead gives people an opportunity to talk about how their condition affects them.

People will be told what their assessment will be, and the date and time of the assessment, by phone, video call or in person.

Disability charities advise Britons to prepare for the assessment, which includes gathering medical evidence about the condition, a list of aids or appliances a person uses, and the required forms, including the ‘How your disability affects you’ form.

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For phone or video assessments, the charity Citizen’s Advice said people should be “open and honest” and tell assessors everything about their condition, even if it’s already mentioned in one of their claims forms.

Someone may also be asked to describe how they accomplish simple tasks, such as preparing and cooking food, washing and dressing, and how they get out of the house.

In answering these questions, the main advice given by several charities was to “don’t rush to respond” and to “pause, reflect and answer” each question asked.

Britons are advised to break down their answers so assessors see how they step through the task to paint an accurate picture of how their disability or health condition affects them.

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People are advised not to speed up or simplify the way they get their work done because they need to show exactly how they get the task done.

Through a telephone assessment, claimants are urged to ensure they heard the question being asked correctly and reminded to ask again if they did not.

People can also ask their evaluator if they heard their answer correctly, and ask the evaluator to repeat it to them if they want confirmation.

People can also be accompanied by an assessment by phone, video call, or in person.

If over the phone, people must remember to put the phone on the speaker and inform the assessor who is with them.

Some charities, including Citizens Advice, Scope, Benefits and Job Guide, include “key tips” and advice on assessing different types of consultation on their websites.


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