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Thread: First time PIP Claim (and first time poster)

  1. #1

    First time PIP Claim (and first time poster)

    Hello everyone, I've been reading through some threads on here and its set my poorly mind racing...

    Firstly a bit about me... I'm 38 and work (well, I'm employed) as an engineer who designs things. I played rugby, and I used to cycle a lot. I used to be confident, healthy, smart and active.

    In November I was admitted to hospital after suffering a TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury) which was odd as nothing new had happened to me but I became very unwell very quickly. They told me it was a bleed on my brain called a subdural hematoma. Still unsure what caused it but It could've been a blood clot that caused the bleed.

    I was in hospital for about a week during which they drained my brain and gave me lots of steriods to reduce the swelling that it has caused. I was signed off work till the new year. Told not to drive and to be careful.

    Since then I've had more scans where the bleed has gone down, then on the next scan the bleed has increased. It's horrible to know. It's still there and will be for the foreseeable.

    While my symptons are not as bad as they were when I as admitted I still suffer massively with my mood, concentration and memory problems. My cognitive understandings are way off point. Some days I can't get my words out properly and I slur and stutter. Some days I have severe headaches and I can't go anywhere. Other days I'm better, I'm never brilliant. These are all symptomatic of a subdural haematoma.

    I struggle to go to the office. I don't feel safe to drive. I can't get a train or bus as its too much, and too confusing and the only time I tried to get the train I had no idea (where as before I was confident) even though I knew I knew the route. I had to ring my 75 year old dad to pick me up. Luckily he was around, and my mum wasn't driving off to her coffee mornings or whatever they do

    These symptons have brought on depression and I am now on fluoxetine to help my moods.

    I have regular check ups and CT scans which are a nightmare for me to go to. I have to arrange lifts for anything. I haven't been to the office, and I can't just work from home forever. My partner has to take time off work to drive but she won't get paid when she has too. I have to arrange lifts for any appointment, and that's if they have their car.

    I spoke to the Headway charity support who recommended I make a PIP claim (I've never claimed anything, ever) which I had never heard of. I've now got the forms, and the mobility section rings true....

    Cannot follow the route of a familiar journey without another person (I just can't do it on my own, but how do I prove that?) & Cannot undertake any journey because it would cause overwhelming psychological distress to the claimant.

    I think they are both in the same question. I can physically walk but I'm sure It wouldn't take long for me to get disorientated or panic. Again, I can show any assessor that this is a symptom of the illness I have, but how do I prove it?

    I occasionally need prompting to take medication, and to look after myself, but nothing I would consider an external carer would need to do for me. I'm an absolute shadow of my former self.

    Reading through here has made me not want to apply for anything.

    Do I have a case to apply for mobility, as I'd rather not have the stress of being evaluated. It's not a world I'm used to. I feel for you all with health and disability issues I really do.
    Last edited by Markh; 02-11-2019 at 03:50 PM.

  2. #2
    To be honest you have to notify DVLA and will more than likely have to rescind your license, it is a notifiable condition.

    The DWP run an Access to Work scheme which will either help or cover the cost of transport for you to get to work. https://www.gov.uk/access-to-work

    I would say you do have a case to claim PIP but get help to fill the "tomes" in from a Welfare Rights Adviser as they are daunting. With that sort of help you should have a better chance of success. If you fail to get an award then you will have to appeal if you still believe that you are entitled to it

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by beau View Post
    To be honest you have to notify DVLA and will more than likely have to rescind your license, it is a notifiable condition.

    The DWP run an Access to Work scheme which will either help or cover the cost of transport for you to get to work. https://www.gov.uk/access-to-work

    I would say you do have a case to claim PIP but get help to fill the "tomes" in from a Welfare Rights Adviser as they are daunting. With that sort of help you should have a better chance of success. If you fail to get an award then you will have to appeal if you still believe that you are entitled to it
    Thanks for that, not even heard of 'Access to Work' I'll do some research.

    I have supporting evidence from my GP. Hospital letters and I've filled in my Consultant details too. I will need help with the rest of the form that's for sure. Its daunting.

    Appreciate any advice really

  4. #4
    Send copies of the supporting evidence, do not send originals, make sure that your name and NI number is on every sheet. If there is not enough space on the form for you to go into detail add extra sheets and point to them at the question, again identification on every sheet. CAB may be able to help, google Welfare Rights Advisors in your area. Even Headway may have them and some councils and county councils have them. Unemployed Workers Centres may be able to help even if you are employed.

    Some one should be along who will be able to give you better advice, I am just a novice who has learnt through trial and error.
    Unfortunately recent spam attacks on this site has made it difficult to find those posts requesting help.
    I wish you the best of luck in your claim.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Lighttouch's Avatar
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    I agree. Get onto the Gov.uk website and search for the number one support service for disabled people. Access to Work. It’s a self-referral service. Initially you need to phone them to say your having trouble driving or using public transport due to your medical condition that causes xyz.

    What you need to ask them is about help getting to work. This usually means getting a taxi thereto work and from work back home. They expect you to pay the fares but get a receipt for each journey. AtW will refund you each week

    check on the DVLA website to see if your medical condition is mentioned. If it’s listed you need to inform them in case they want to restrict the type of vehicle they’ll allow you to drive temporarily.

    Hospitals. If you don’t feel safe driving ask the hospital if an ambulance can pick you up and drop you home. They are more efficient these days and quicker.

    Applying for PIP. I applied and got PIP. I can’t write these days due to a weak hand so I just typed out each question and added my reply. When replying remember they don’t know you. They aren’t that interested in your medical problem but they are interested in how it affests your daily life getting around. Just ‘paint a picture’ of your life and the barriers you face getting about and the effects it has on you.

    Tell them what goes on in your head when getting on a bus or train ‘paint a picture in words’ so they can see your world through your eyes.

  6. #6
    Thank you so much people! I appreciate the kind words, the advice and the support.

    I'm going to the GPs today to get a letter from her, and any think else she can add like CT Scans and hopefully explain in medical terms what my illness causes. I will then be using that, and advice from headway to assist me fill in the rest of the form. I will keep CAB in mind also. Hopefully I will send it all back by the end of this week.

    I will try and paint a picture on the form. But its all rather overwhelming. I wonder how many people just give us out of how difficult it is to process.

    I will keep this updated. Thanks again!

  7. #7
    Does everyone who applies have a face to face assessment? What if that's a 'better' day? What if the day before you've completely broke down, the pain in the head was awful and you cognitive functions were all over the place. I can't imagine its easy to paint that picture of ill-health when your assessment is on a day when I'm much more functional.

    I'm probably panicking too much. I wasn't like this at all before my injury.

  8. #8
    Just a tip, keep a copy of the form and any paperwork, for your own records, that you return to DWP.

    As for DVLA, it is a notifiable condition. I have almost the same and do not have my licence any more. Like losing a limb.

    99.9% of applicants do have a face to face for PIP. Yes it is difficult to paint a picture of your struggles, possibly keeping a daily diary of events may help you to give an accurate report.
    Last edited by beau; 02-12-2019 at 10:17 AM.

  9. #9
    Thanks. I'm currently in the process of making the DVLA aware. Forgot to mention that.

    I will be making copies also. So much to take in. thanks again!

  10. #10
    I agree that you should try to get some help with completing the PIP form.

    As an aside, what is your work situation? You say that you have been working from home? Do you ever go into the office?
    What has your employer said about your continuing in your job?

    Having had a look at the Access to Work application, I notice that they ask the question (if you are working from home) 'Why can you not continue to do this?'

    Just raising this issue as I think it is important to know exactly how your employer views your continued employment and whether you have met with them to ask for ' reasonable adjustments to allow you to continue to work' (if this is appropriate)
    I try my best

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