THOUSANDS will face PIP changes this year including brand new rates for 2023.
The Department for Work and Pensions is planning a series of new rules for PIP claimants, which we'll round up below.
Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is for those aged 16 or over who have not reached state pension age.
You must have lived in England, Scotland or Wales for at least two of the last three years, and be in one of these countries when you apply.
The process is different in Northern Ireland, and there are additional rules if you live abroad or if you’re not a British citizen.
There are two rates for each part – standard or enhanced – depending on the level of your needs.
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The weekly rates are:
- Standard daily living component: £61.85
- Enhanced daily living component: £92.40
- Standard mobility component: £64.50
- Enhanced mobility component: £24.45
This means you could get up to £627.60 a month if you get the higher weekly rates for both parts.
Crucially, you must also have a health condition or disability where you either have had difficulties with daily living or getting around (or both) for three months, and you expect these difficulties to continue for at least nine months (unless you’re terminally ill with less than six months to live).
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Difficulties with daily living can include the following:
- preparing or eating food
- bathing and using the toilet
- dressing and undressing
- reading and communicating
- managing your medicines or treatments
- making decisions about money
- engaging with other people
Here are some changes coming to the benefit this year.
The government has promised to increase benefits with inflation, so incomes can keep up with rising prices.
Benefits usually rise in April each year, according to inflation in the previous September.
The rate of inflation for that month was 10.1%, Data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed.
Those on a range of benefits will see their payments go up next year by this amount – including many supporting those with disabilities.
For those on PIP, this increased rate will apply next year. They will be:
- Standard weekly rate living component: £68.10 per week
- Enhanced weekly rate living component: £101.75 a week.
- Standard weekly rate component: £26.90 a week.
- Enhanced weekly rate component: £64.50 a week.
You can make a new PIP claim by calling the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) on 0800 917 2222.
There are also other ways to claim if you find it difficult to use a telephone. See Gov.uk for more information.
When you claim, you'll need:
- Your contact details
- Date of birth
- National Insurance number
- Bank or building society account number and sort code
- Your doctor or health worker’s name, address and telephone number
- Dates and addresses for any time you’ve spent abroad, in a care home or hospital
Someone else can call on your behalf, but you’ll need to be with them when they call.
Sped up disability claims
The Department for Work and Pensions is planning to test speeding up some disability claims, meaning they could avoid lengthy paperwork and health assessments.
It comes after an online petition was set up calling for disability benefit claims to be based on medical advice only.
Currently, some people who want to claim PIP have to go through assessments and detailed forms to determine whether they are eligible.
These claims take on average 18 weeks, which campaigners say can leave ill and vulnerable people without access to the financial support they need.
But the petition set up by Ray Vanderahe said claims should be based "solely" on evidence from medical professionals, such as a letter from a GP or consultant.
It will count towards other disability benefits too like Universal Credit and Employment and Support Allowance (ESA).
You can read more about the petition here.
New cost of living payment
The Chancellor announced a second £150 disability cost of living payment during his Autumn Statement last year.
It comes after millions of disabled Brits were entitled to an initial £150 instalment last September.
Millions of people on disability benefits were eligible for the previous one-off payment, and it's believed the next one will work the same way.
That means those on the following benefits may be eligible, although it's important to note this has not yet been confirmed:
- Disability Living Allowance
- Personal Independence Payment
- Attendance Allowance
- Armed Forces Independence Payment
- Constant Attendance Allowance
- War Pension Mobility Supplement
- Adult Disability Payment (in Scotland)
- Child Disability Payment (in Scotland)
It'll go specifically to Brits who claim a qualifying disability benefit from either the Ministry of Defence or the Department for Work and Pensions.
Make sure to check what you could be eligible for, as there are also 24 respiratory conditions which entitle you to PIP.
And if your application for PIP has been turned down or you don't think you've been offered enough cash you can appeal the decision.
You first need to ask for a “mandatory reconsideration notice”.
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This is where the DWP looks at the decision again.
If you are still unhappy with this outcome, you can then appeal to an independent tribunal.
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