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Should mum appeal DLA after reconsideration? - Carers UK Forum

Should mum appeal DLA after reconsideration?

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Hi,
I am a carer for my mum who has M.E. and lots of other things. She applied to renew DLA and was awarded none. Previously she had middle rate care and higher mobility. With help from our MP we asked for a reconsideration and she was then awarded higher rate mobility but no care. Thank goodness we can now get a motability car as mum hasn't been out since 22 August but how can they say no care when she had middle rate care before and actually has more illnesses diagnosed? She has M.E., hypothyroidism, restless limb syndrome, carpal tunnel syndrome, fibromyalgia, spinal arthritis, sarcoidosis and irritable bowel syndrome. The last 3 were diagnosed this year. I am now unable to claim carer's allowance but can't really work because mum needs help for toileting, washing dressing and meals. She tries her best but I worry when she is on her own. Do members think it is advisable to appeal the decision about care DLA? Is it possible to only appeal that part of the decision? I am worried that they will take away the mobility component and leave us stranded but I also need to be able to claim carer's allowance. I am 19, my brother is 18 and our dad died when we were 4 and 3 years old so it has always been mum taking care of us till she got sick 6 years ago. Can anyone advise?
It might help to know how the system works a bit. Your initial form gets read by someone fairly junior. Each time you ask for a reconsideration etc. it gradually moves up the ladder of seniority within the DWP. Have the DWP asked for a doctor's assessment. In my own case, my mobility (renewal) claim was initially turned down although I said that every step hurt and I was waiting for two knee replacements. Then the DWP arranged for an ATOS doctor to visit me at home. I wasn't very impressed by him, for various reasons. Then I was turned down again. I rang the department to find out why, and the senior person in charge asked if I'd seen the doctor's report? I hadn't, so he sent it to me. The doctor's report was grossly inaccurate. I went through it with a fine tooth comb, explaining that it was totally inconsistent, and sent it back to DWP. My claim was then accepted and I was paid in full.I have been involved with many DLA claims in the past, so although I don't like the system, I understand how it works. If you genuinely meet the criteria for DLA you should have nothing to fear from the system, ultimately you can go to a tribunal, which sounds intimidating, but isn't. The Carers UK helpline can help, but depending on where you live, there might be someone local, like a disability advice service, who can help you to fill in the forms. Do Social/Adult Services provide any support at the moment? Have you had a Carer's assessment? If so, get copies of the relevant reports/assessments and send them in with your appeal, together with any other "evidence" which might support your claim.
Hi Lewis and welcome.
Was it just a reconsideration you asked for or did it happen because you wanted to appeal to the tribunal? Because if you only asked for the reconsideration you need to get an appeal in as soon as possible, but you want to appeal the care decision only. The tribunal might decide to look at the care and the mobility decision but they should tell you if they are so you can decide whether to go ahead or not.
Hearing of others experiences can be helpful, but do remember everyone's circumstances are different so the outcomes of similar cases can in fact be very different.
You do need to get proper, specific to your case advice so I suggest you ring the CarersUK helpline

freephone number is 0808 808 7777 and we are open on Wednesday and Thursday 10am -12pm and 2pm - 4pm.

Or you can email us at adviceline@carersuk.org We will try to answer your email as soon as possible but we may not be able to do so on the same day.
hi and welcome

do appeal
Hi Lewis and welcome. Image I look after my mum too.
I think i would try and appeal! Image
Hi Lewis, I too look after someone with M.E., fibro myalgia, hypothyroidism, etc.etc. Following a DLA review the mobility component stayed on "high", but the care component was cut to "low", so I have been without Carer`s Allowance since May 2012. An appeal was put in place immediately, with help from the local Citizens Advice Bureau - I don`t hold much faith with them, but got to start somewhere......!
If you don`t appeal against the decision, you won`t get anything - if you do appeal, you still may not get anything, but there`s always the possibility you might !!
Peter
Hi,

Thanks for all the replies, I really appreciate it. We are trying to get some advocacy assistance in our area. I am just worried that they will take away the mobility component because having a car is essential for mum to get out at all. Is it right then that we can say we only want to appeal the care component? The change we got for mobility from none to high was a reconsideration so we haven't actually appealed yet. We are also trying to get a copy of the GP's report compiled for the reconsideration to see if there is anything there that can explain the decision. They also used the dreaded ACOS report from January of this year which was for ESA and gave no points. Foolishly we didn't appeal that because we just didn't know what we were doing and anyway, mum wouldn't qualify for any money as she has a widowed parent's allowance just outside the income support ceiling. She was concerned that she wouldn't be getting any NI contributions after my brother and I went to college and she didn't qualify for Child Benefit anymore (even though we were 18 and 17 at the time). They just make it too hard for everyone don't they?

Lewis
Lewis,

My experience with the DWP and DLA is that they pay no attention to GPs. If possible, the best thing to do is to get support from a consultant.

And hold your ground with appeals; it may take a long time to get what's deserved and I'm sure the DWP hopes that you'll give up ... but don't.

It boggles my mind how someone can be award high mobility but not at least the middle rate for care. It makes no sense to me.
I'm sure if they improved the calibre of the people looking at the claims in the first place, the DWP would save a lot of money and people would save a lot of stress. The figures for successful appeals etc. show that they system isn't working properly.
Lewis you can appeal just the care element, though as I said the tribunal may chose to look at mobility as well.

And yes, they make it as hard as they possibly can..and then some Image