DO YOU KNOWYOU MUST BE ALMOST A VEGETABLE TO GET THE
ENHANCED RATE FOR MOBILITY ON P.I.P.?
Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
Just how does the scoring system work to calculate your entitlement to the Mobility Section of the Personal Independancy Payment benefit?
I was surprised to find that the method of awarding points was angled to ensure that those with real mobility problems could not have a real hope of obtaining this benefit at the enhanced rate.
I am looking at the enhanced level on this benefit as that is the only point whereby a disabled person can apply to obtain access to the Motability Scheme, which is where you need to be to lease a decent mobility scooter, powered wheelchair, or for those with more requirements, a converted vehicle. A lower level (6 points plus) can provide some financial help, but not provide access to the services required for real support.
Let me start by explaining the mobility scoring system for you:
- There is a maximum uppermost point count of 24.
- 8 Points will qualify you for the lower rate of payment.
- You require at least 12 points to receive the enhanced level.
- 12 Points are dependant on: “Are you able to plan a journey”
- The remaining 12 points are openly classified as: “Your Mobility”
Therefore, you may be a tetraplegic, but if you can plan your own journey, the first 12 points are unobtainable to you.
As a result of this, there are now only 12 further points available within the system.
As there is no fixed questionaire as to how your disability affects you travelling, or how many points each problem deserves, the remaining 12 point maximum is totally at the discression of the assessor. The assessor may simply consider that being able to turn your head could easily result in the loss of 1 point, which will be enough to ensure that you are unable to achieve the enhanced level of 12!
I can now fully understand why so many people who were on the old Disability Living Allowance, and assessed fairly, were awarded a mobility scooter or adapted car, are now finding that on transferring to the new PIP they are no longer qualified for their vehicle, and end out losing that vital piece of equipment.
Why can’t the mobility section of the benefit relfect the domestic requirements, and be evenly pointed out with specific questions?
Why are a whole 12 points allocated to something minor and as mundane as planning your journey? Allowing the scoring to operate in this way is disasterous to those with major disabilities, but whose minds are still clear, as they would be unable to obtain access to Motability services.
Most towns now operate accessable transport advice lines, step-free rail maps and so on, so surely there should be some flexibility with regards planning your trip. For a person living in a major city compared with someone living in remote regions, the facilities for route planning varies greatly, and so the point allocation should display this fact.
The very title of this benefit, the Personal Independance Payment, implies that this benefit is supposed to support those who are struggling to live an independant life.
This part of the benefit assessment is titled “Mobility” when half of the points are solely related to do with mental ability. Therefore as an Enhanced Level of PIP is a requirement to give smooth access to other services like Dial-a-Ride, and Taxi Card Schemes, the unfair scoring method could place all of these services out of reach to those in desperate need of them most.
I feel strongly that this method of assessment is totally unfair to those applying for it, and that the assessment method for it’s Mobility section requires review and alteration to ensure that those in need are still able to obtain that support.
On the Government’s own website, the section on Eligibility for the Mobility section, all it says is:
You may get the mobility part of PIP if you need help going out or moving around.
and nothing further. Check the link yourself.
Note From Mr Bloggy:
As many of my regular readers and friends will know, Although with my spine damaged in 3 points, plus other problems, I applied for this benefit and only received a score of 4 out of 24. I am currently awaiting for a date for my appeal court hearing. This is how I became aware of the unfairness of this benefit.
I realise that there must be tight controls over public finances, it is totally wrong that those in desperate need of help are left in a hopeless state.