People rejected for disability benefits should appeal after DWP admits wrongly denying 80,000 people their money - here's how to do it
People who applied for a Personal Independent Payment (Pip) but had their disability benefit claim rejected should appeal the decision after the Department for Work and Pensions confirmed to MoneySavingExpert.com that it wrongly denied 80,000 people their money last year.
According to a freedom of information request submitted by The Independent, almost 80,000 Pip decisions that were initially rejected by the DWP were overturned at initial review, a number that has been verified by MSE.
Claimants who wish to appeal a Pip decision, which are based on assessments by two private firms, must first appeal through the department’s internal process, known as mandatory reconsideration.
According to The Independent, the rate at which these appeals have led to a decision being reversed has jumped from 22 per cent (46,580 of 236,720) three years ago to 43 per cent (78,390 of 182,880) last year.
Here's how to dispute a decision
To ask for a mandatory reconsideration of your claim you can either phone the Pip benefits office on 0800 917 2222, write to the Pip office at Personal Independence Payment New Claims, Post Handling Site B, Wolverhampton, WV99 1AH, or fill in the form here.
You must appeal within ONE month of your decision being rejected. If it has been over one month it is still worth trying, although the DWP might ask for a legitimate reason as to why you were delayed.
If your decision is changed at the mandatory reconsideration stage the DWP will backdate payments to the date of the original decision. To appeal a Pip decision click this link here.
What to do if you're struggling for cash
If you're struggling for cash, go to a Citizens Advice bureau or one of the network of independent advice centres for a one-on-one detailed benefits check-up.
Our forum can provide lots of help too...
A further huge info resource is the Benefits and Tax Credits section in the MSE Forum, where a number of Citizens Advice-trained people and others voluntarily help out answering people's questions. A good place to start is the Useful Links thread. Special thanks to Fran, Alwaysonthego, Fermi and Kimitatsu for organising it.
And if you've serious money worries or debt problems...
This site lists lots of ways to help you try to cut costs, but the first place to start is our Debt problems guide. No debt problems are insoluble and this guide will help you.
If you've also got mental health problems, special solutions apply. For a full guide to handling debts when stressed, working with banks, getting free one-to-one debt counselling and tips for bipolar and depression sufferers, read our free Mental Health & Debt Help PDF booklet.