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Thread: MH/RJ Review of (some) Tribunal decided PIP cases.

  1. #1
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    MH/RJ Review of (some) Tribunal decided PIP cases.

    It's been noted in previous posts on here that those who may have been affected by the Upper Tier Tribunal decisions in MH & RJ were not having their cases reviewed by the DWP if their award had been made following appeal to the First Tier Tribunal.
    They were told that the DWP could not change a decision made by the First Tier Tribunal, so there was no DWP decision to review.

    TBH I've always thought/said that wasn't correct and in a surprise move the DWP have changed their minds and will now be reviewing some FT Tribunal made decisions.
    (So much for "We can't revise a decision made by the Tribunal" then. I've always said that they can increase an award made by tribunal but they can't decrease one).

    This hasn't been given a big announcement, it's burried in the regular progress update on the review excercise:
    https://www.gov.uk/government/public...-november-2021
    (My bolding)
    Another group of claimants had their PIP claim decided by a First-tier Tribunal (shortened hereafter to ‘tribunal’). This was when the claimant had appealed the decision made by the department. The department does not have the power to change a tribunal decision on the basis that their decision is wrong in law. Tribunals are obliged to apply the law to all appeals, and to award claimants accordingly. Therefore, in these cases the tribunal should have applied MH and RJ to the claimant’s PIP decision and there is no DWP decision to review, so they were not considered in the administrative exercise.

    DWP plans to write to some claimants with a tribunal decision on their claim. This is to offer them the opportunity to have their claim reviewed if they think they are now affected by the MH or RJ Upper Tribunal (‘UT’) decisions. Following receipt of a letter, we will review claims where claimants ask us to. These letters are planned to be sent out in 2022.
    I know from previous posts that some here were affected by this and this will be welcome news.
    Last edited by nukecad; 15-12-21 at 06:41.
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    Hi Nukecad, this is my situation and have been getting nowhere with it so this is interesting. I'll be taking some advice to see what to do about this. Thanks for posting.

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    I've spoken to PIP regarding this matter and the statement is very badly worded. All they will be doing is sending out letters on how to appeal to Upper Tribunal. They will continue to not (be able) review cases that were awarded by tribunal during the relevant period.

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    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    Mmmm, I'd wait and see what happens.

    The phone jockeys are not exactly known for having any clue about what is going on, they just work from basic scripts, (and make things up when they have to).
    What you were told sounds simply just what they have been doing up to now, which is all they will know about.

    TBH that's all I'd expect a phone jockey to say - what's been happening up to now plus a bit of made up waffle to get you off the phone so they can take the next call.

    I'd not expect a phone jockey to have been told anything about future changes, lets face it they usually don't know about made changes for months (even years).
    They trot out the same old stuff until someone changes their scripts.

    Oh, and always remember that the PIP enquiry line is contracted out, so you were talking to a Serco call centre worker (minimum wage) and not the DWP.

    EDIT- I've just been on rightsnet and one of the advisors there made the same point yesterday (albeit about a different matter in UC):
    That confirms my suspicion that first-tier agents and call handlers do not have sufficient resources and training but most importantly, no access to fast, adequate support if they have queries and don’t know the answers.
    As a result, they make it up as they go along and pass it on to unsuspecting and often vulnerable claimants.
    This has deteriorated even further with subcontracting telephone service to Serco/Capita. I can detect fairly quickly, when I call UC Helpline, if I speak to DWP employer (who demonstrates higher level of knowledge) or subcontractor (who often mask lack of knowledge by arrogance).
    Last edited by nukecad; 18-01-22 at 08:43.
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    Yeah first tier people are useless. I spoke to the Leap team directly as I had been dealing with them during the summer about this very subject.

  6. #6
    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    Personally I'd wonder if the even Leap Team 'front line' have been trained about this yet, maybe they won't get told until after any letters have been sent out?
    These letters are planned to be sent out in 2022.
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    I'd prefer if you were correct but I've seen no legislative changes that would cause/allow the change in their position.

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    Senior Member nukecad's Avatar
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    It's not a case of changes to legislation, just how the DWP is interpreting the current legislation.

    And we all know that the DWP are masters at misinterpreting legislation - usually until a High Court Judical Review tells them that their 'creative' interpretation is wrong.

    I've always argued that their position of "We can't change a tribunal award" is only half of the truth.
    They can't reduce a tribunal award, that is set in law, but there is nothing in law to stop them increasing one.
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