What do you think would happen if you missed a DWP deadline, with no explanation?
Yep, you’d be ‘struck off’ and told to apply again, if at all.
Since first being contacted for my transition from DLA to PIP in October last year, I have hit all deadlines bar one – I was extremely ill and needed a couple of extra weeks to complete the forms.
The DWP were swiftly informed and sent out re-adjusted timelines accordingly.
Since then, I have had a decision, had a home visit, had another decision, had a mandatory reconsideration and been turned down on the points I made.
So now it’s going to a tribunal. I duly sent off the forms and had a letter back from the HM Courts & Tribunals Service. The DWP had 28 days to send a response.
That date was 3rd August. Hearing nothing, I phoned the Tribunals Service for information. I discovered the DWP has ignored them and will be sent a letter to prompt them for a response. Anyone here ever had a gentle ‘prompt’ letter with no sanctions attached?
This letter will give them an extra 14 days to respond. If they still ignore my case, a judge will decide how best to proceed.
If the DWP had responded on time, a likely tribunal would be held at the end of November this year, a full 14 months after first starting this endless, pointless paper trail. 22 weeks is the standard waiting time from lodging an appeal to it being heard.
With their non-response, it’ll probably be Christmas Eve.
To be fair, the woman I spoke to at the Tribunals Service was amazing; my story is nothing she has not heard before. Day after day she takes similar phone-calls, digging down in to the whole ‘lifetime’ award scenario for incurable illness, such as MS.
As an unexpected aside, a wonderful regular reader of my blog met my MP at a local event last week and outlined my case to her, even giving her my blog address. Long story short, I have since contacted my MP’s office and hopefully they will be taking up my fight, alongside my fantastically patient supporters who helped me fill in all the forms.
I’ve just dug out a letter from Capita about my home assessment. Clearly stated, there is the line, ‘if you fail to attend without a good reason, the decision-maker at the DWP is likely to refuse your claim’.
One rule for them ..?