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Thread: DWP claim that my Mandatory Reconsideration request has not been received

  1. #1
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    Angry DWP claim that my Mandatory Reconsideration request has not been received

    Hi,

    In 2019 I had to go through the DLA to PIP move and for various (physical and mental) medical reasons was unable to attend the F2F as 'invited' by DWP (I had been on low rate DL and high Mobility for 10 years previously). As IAS (ATOS) refused to accomodate my conditions I couldn't attend, and as I had no support at the time I was very reluctantly forced to drop the claim completely.

    By mid-2020 I got a new support package and was encouraged to reapply for PIP, and happily (for me) it coincided with the dropping of F2F due to the pandemic. So my telephone assessment was not pleasant, but at least I was able to get through it with the help of a support worker.

    As a result I was finally awarded PIP but at a much reduced rate (low Mobility only) even though my conditions are severe and have not improved since the award of DLA. My support worker was outraged and we decided to put in an MR to try to get me at least some form of DL back, and I duly put in my MR request. I sent it recorded delivery with a dispatch receipt and full tracking, and tracking shows it was received and signed for two days later at the end of April.

    The DWP claim to write to let you know when they receive these requests, but I had heard nothing, and so last week I finally bit the bullet and called them to ask if there was any progress. I (eventually) spoke to an extremely brusque individual who said they had never received my request and it was now too late for me to do anything about it, and that was all there was to it. I informed her that I had proof of postage and proof that it had been received and signed for, and I could hear her quietly make something that sounded like a snort of derision before saying "No, sorry I'm afraid if we don't have it here then there's nothing I can do to help.". I realised there and then I wasn't going to get any further with her, so politely ended the call rather than argue with her (just in case they were recording it).

    I have however heard that there is a huge backlog of unprocessed mail/claims/etc that the DWP are working slowly through, and it's taking months for some people to hear anything from them. So I suppose, if it's a simple case of it just not having landed on a particular desk yet, I might still hear something about my MR?

    If not, could anyone tell me what the procedure is when they claim they haven't received a time-limited MR request?

    Thanks in advance.
    Last edited by Wobbler; 21-06-21 at 09:30.

  2. #2
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    Annoying person who doesn't know what they are talking about. (Probably not the DWP at all, the PIP enquiry lines are contracted out to a call centre).

    You could ring again and hope to get someone who does know what they are talking about, it's surprising how often that works.

    First missinformation:
    Although MR's should be requested within one month of the date on the decision letter that is not set in stone, and you can ask for a late MR up to 13 months after the decision if you have good reason for being late. (so depending just when the decision was you probably still had time for a late MR - BUT

    Second missinformation:
    You have proof that your letter was delivered well in time, and so they should at least look into what's happened to it.
    (Of course that's not proof of what was in the letter but the probability is that it is what you say it is).

    A big question here is when did you get that reduced rate decision letter?
    Mid-2020 is not clear enough, the date on the decision letter is important - because of that 13 months.


    As well as or instead of ringing again, myself personally, I would lodge an appeal with the tribunal.

    Although you are supposed to have a MR decision notice before you can appeal there are circumstances where the court will accept an appeal without one.
    The DWP claiming to have lost your MR letter/form, or that your request for MR is too late, is one of those circumstances.

    The application form for tribunal appeal has a box in "Section 2: About your benefit appeal" that states:
    my underlining
    In most cases, you need a Mandatory Reconsideration Notice (MRN) before you can appeal a benefit decision,
    but not in all. If you do not have an MRN, you should explain why in the space provided below
    or confirm that
    the decision letter you received from the DWP told you that you did not need one.
    The online application has a similar note/box:
    Explain why you don’t have a Mandatory Reconsideration Notice (MRN)

    Include the date that you contacted DWP about their decision, if you can
    remember, or confirm that the decision letter you received from the DWP told
    you that you did not need one.
    So whichever one you use you just tell them the date that you sent your MR by post, and the date that it was signed for, but that the DWP are now saying they never got it.

    Again though you normally only have 13 months from the original decision to appeal to the Tribunal, so you need to do this quickly if you are still within the 13 months.

    Have a read of this about MRs and appeals, it also has a link to the appeal application form and online appeal form(SSCS1):
    https://www.turn2us.org.uk/Benefit-g...al-to-Tribunal

    I suggest that you get advice about this (if you can get it quickly before the 13 months are up), your Support Worker would be the obvious first to go to for help.
    Or put your postcode in here to find advisors local to you:
    https://advicelocal.uk/find-an-adviser
    I don't know everything. - But I'm good at searching for, and finding, stuff.

    Migration from ESA to Universal Credit- Click here for information.

  3. #3
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    Ah, I didn't know about the 13 month limit, thanks for that.

    Sorry it wasn't clear - the mid-2020 date is just when I finally got a new care support package (nothing to do with DWP) which prompted me to reapply - we didn't actually put the PIP claim itself in until that September (and then it was a protracted six month wait to get an assessment in February this year, followed by the decision letter at the beginning of April). The MR was in by the end of April 2021 (about eight weeks ago to be exact), so I'm still well within that 13 month limit apparently.

    I don't want to launch into a full-blown appeal unless I absolutely have to, so I was just wondering (considering the backlog in processing mail/forms etc the DWP are apparently having) if it's worth giving it another few weeks to show up on someone's desk. If I have 13 (now 11) months to dispute it if it comes to it, I suppose I can.

    Thanks for your help.
    Last edited by Wobbler; 21-06-21 at 15:06.

  4. #4
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    I see, as it's only been about 8 weeks then it could well still be sat in a pile (I think PIP MR's are currently running at about 16 weeks).

    I'd just try ringing again to ask what happening, and hope you don't get an obnoxious bugger this time.
    I don't know everything. - But I'm good at searching for, and finding, stuff.

    Migration from ESA to Universal Credit- Click here for information.

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