Major change to disability benefits starting this week – and thousands are expected to be better off

A MAJOR change to disability benefits is rolling out from this week – and thousands of people could be better off.

Personal Independent Payment (PIP) awards will now be extended for 12 months, the Department for Work and Pensions has confirmed.


Those who claim PIP should benefit from a rule change – we explainCredit: PA

This means that if you are currently on the perk, the DWP will give you more time to recover.

The changes went into effect yesterday, September 6.

People aged 16 or over with a long-term illness or disability can get up to £148.50 a week in benefits through the PIP.

You’re assessed by a medical professional to determine the level of help you can get – and your rate is regularly reviewed to ensure you’re getting the right support.

Complete list of benefits paid at the start of the week, including Universal Credit
People who have been denied benefit payments could be owed £13,000 due to a rule change

But there is a big backlog in assessments – according to Citizens Advice, 327,000 people wait an average of five months just to get one.

The charity estimated that £294 million in rewards were tied up due to the long waiting list in July.

PIP exam delays have also caused problems for people to get blue badges – meaning you can park in parking spots closer to where you need to go.

Now the DWP has announced that if you are currently receiving a PIP and your application is about to be renewed, the exams will be extended for 12 months.

This means you won’t have to claim as much and you’ll be entitled to the benefit for another year.

A DWP spokesperson said: “We will automatically extend existing claims pending review for up to 12 months and do so 35 days before their end date.

“The longer extension provides greater certainty for applicants and in particular assistance in continuing to access other supports, for example a blue badge.”

You can request a letter from the DWP confirming the changes and their continued entitlement to benefits.

If you need a letter confirming the extension by October 31, they should contact the PIP helpline on 0800 1214433.

How much can I receive from PIP?

The PIP is made up of two parts – whether you get one or both depends on the severity of your condition.

The amount you receive also depends on how your condition affects you.

You can get the mobility part of the PIP if you need help going out or getting around. The weekly rate for this is £23.70 or £62.55.

In the everyday life part of the PIP, the weekly rate is £60 or £89.60.

You can also get both items, so up to £152.05 in total.

Payments are usually made every four weeks directly to your bank account and are tax free.

Just be aware that if you receive the PIP and the constant assistance allowance or the mobility supplement for war pensioners, the daily life part of your PIP will be reduced.

How to apply for PIP?

You can re-apply for the Personal Independence Payment (PIP) by calling the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) on 0800 917 2222.

There are also other ways to claim if you find it difficult to use a phone. See for more information.

You will need personal information to hand such as your date of birth, national insurance number, bank account or building society number.

You will also need to provide your doctor’s contact details.

You will then receive a form to complete, after which you will be called for an assessment or your social or medical-social worker will be contacted for information.

After that, you will receive a letter telling you if your complaint has been accepted.

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PIP claimants or those who applied but were unable to obtain the benefit may be liable in cash.

Changes to the PIP calculations mean thousands of people could be liable.

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