Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is being further rolled out to working age Disability Living Allowance (DLA) claimants in more postcode areas.
From 26 January 2015, PIP will be extended to the following postcode areas:
• G – Glasgow
• NE – Newcastle
• WA – Warrington
• WN – Wigan
• DH – Durham
• SR – Sunderland
• IV – Inverness.
Claimants in these postcodes will be invited to make a claim for PIP where:
• Their existing DLA award is fixed term and is coming to an end;
• They are approaching their 16th birthday;
• DWP has received information about a change in their care or mobility needs;
• Someone chooses to claim PIP instead of DLA.
This follows on from the rollout in November 2014 when PIP was extended to a number of postcode areas including Manchester (M), Liverpool (L), Chester (CH) and Huddersfield (HD).
As part of the on-going drive to improve the PIP process, DWP carried out a small pilot to test the effectiveness of phone calls to claimants whose claims had been disallowed or whose benefit had been reduced.
The pilot showed that most claimants had already received and understood the written notification before being called by DWP and that some of them did not need or want further explanation of the decision.
The first independent review of PIP, carried out by Paul Gray, was published on 17 December 2014. This explored how PIP is operating and the effectiveness of the assessment and made a series of recommendations based on the information that was gathered throughout the review.
These focus on three main areas:
• Improving the experience for claimants;
• Clarifying and improving the collection of further evidence;
• The overall effectiveness of the assessment.
The Government has welcomed the review and will publish a detailed response in due course.
The latest set of experimental official statistics on PIP, up to October 2014, was also published on 17 December 2014 which included detailed breakdowns of people’s medical conditions for the first time.