Repeat assessments for disabled pensioners have been deemed “unnecessary” by Amber Rudd, the work and pensions secretary, this will mean that in the coming months upwards of 200,000 people will no longer be required to go back for regular checks to ensure they still qualify for Personal Independence Payment (PIP).
It is standard practice for those who receive PIP benefits to have an annual review, or at least one every couple of years. This is deemed excessive for those who have long term conditions which will not improve. This new system will allow pensioners to have fewer checks and may even allow them to simply fill in a form, rather than having to go and see an assessor in person.
PIP reassessments have had negative press in recent times based on the sheer number of applications which were accepted after appealing assessment decisions. The MS society had posted numbers of 83% for people who had had benefits stopped but won them back through the appeals process, leading many to feel that the assessment system just does not work. Despite this positive change for pensioners, young people will not receive this, many disability groups agreed that young people would still be stuck in a failing system.
This has been seen as a step forward in a system judged by most as needing a revamp and a step towards Ms Rudd’s plans to “significantly improve” the Department of Work and Pensions support of disabled people.