I have a pip interview on Tuesday, it has come out of the blue, they rang me yesterday afternoon and sprang it on me, causing my anxiety to go into overload.
I attended one a couple of years ago, at the time I didn't have a formal diagnosis, but I had been referred and was on a lot of medication for anxiety, I thought it was going ok, until the part about washing and changing clothes came up, at which point I said it wasn't really a priority of mine, the assessor became very judgemental and raised her voice saying "Do you think its acceptable to walk around dirty then?" and similar.
Then near the end of the interview, the assessor made a comment about me being cured, at which point, my partner pointed out there was no cure, the assessor, who clearly had no idea about autism whatsoever, quickly tried to cover up her mistake up by saying "To be fair, there isn't" and looked extremely embarrassed.
It was at this point, I asked her what field of medicine she was in, and she stated she was a nurse. I realised at that point there was no point in continuing, but, as the interview was coming to an end, I went through the motions.
I received a copy of the report a couple of weeks later, and although I did receive a couple of points, most of if was just a load of rubbish, I didn't appeal, due to not having a formal diagnosis, and my anxiety.
I had told the assessor that I had worked all my adult life in the same job, at one point becoming a manager, until the anxiety became really bad 7 or 8 years ago, and I was at that point put on to a simple warehouse duties by myself, due to having an understanding employer, who had made allowances, incredibly the fact that I had worked for 30 years went against me.
Now I have a diagnosis, I am on the highest prescribed medication for anxiety and diazepam to be taken as and when I need it.
My assessment is at the same centre as it was before, and I know the same assessor still works there, although there are others.
So basically it looks like I will be seeing the DWP in court this time. Any advice would be appreciated.
Good luck with the assessment interview.
Mine was a disaster I got Zero points.
I received an unexpected text message on an afternoon to ring them regarding an appointment. The gave me a choice of appointments. 8:45am or 9am the following morning.
My assessor was a paramedic.
He went in great detail through all the early questions on physical health and completely ignored the later mental health/disability questions. Claiming lack of time.
On my report it even stated that I was cleanly shaven in fresh clothes and had a good standard of hygiene. No mention was made of my autism, anxiety or suicide attempts.
I asked for the mandatory reassessment. Even with this they are playing games.
The deadline for the mandatory reassessment was 28 May. I sent my forms off on the 13 May. Then I heard nothing for a month and I thought the forms had been lost in the system. Finally on the 14 June I received a text message acknowledging receipt of my forms and told to expect to wait around ten weeks for a decision.
Good luck. I recently send my renewal form off and am waiting to find out if I'll need to go to an interview or not.
I've been awarded the enhanced rate at the interview twice and I've worked since I was 15, so almost 19 years now. Did they specifically state in your letter that they weren't giving you an award due to your employment status or is that an assumption? I've found working provides me with lots of extra evidence that I would;n't be able to access if I was unemployed.
If you're able to provide a list of evidence you sent in with your application I can let you know if there's anything extra I add.
Hi I sent in
The letter referring me to be tested for autism.
A letter confirming I have been diagnosed with autism and a summary of the diagnostic report.
A letter from my employer, stating that he has made changes for me at work to help me stay employed.
Haven't really got much else.
Thanks for your reply.
There all documents I include too. It's probably too late now but if you do have to pursue MR it sounds like a highlighted and annotated copy of GP notes would be useful too.
I'm not sure what approach you follow but in case you do need to go to MR I like to make things as easy as possible for the assessment team by highlighting the relevant sections of documents and including the page numbers in my answers. E.g as page xxx of my diagnostic report shows due to my sensory needs I am unable to wear a wide range of clothes and can only tolerate soft, stretchy material (mostly jersey) next to my skin. This has had a significant impact on my life as I have been unable to apply for many posts due to the expectations around the dress code. It also means in my current role I will often wear inappropriate clothes to meetings and events, such as a hoody and leggings, when everyone else in the room is wearing business wear.
The highlighting idea is a good one, other than that the weird thing from your reply, is you have basically word for word what I wrote in the box about selecting clothes for myselff, I usually wear the same few outfits, because other than cotton, I dont like the texture of other materials.
Just to follow up on this, I went for my assessment earlier today and things couldn't have been different, I saw a mental health nurse who said she had in interest is autism.
I was in there an hour and 45 minutes and we covered everything, she even allowed my partner to add to the conversation, unlike in like my previous assessment.S
She was very polite and did not judge anything I said. Hopefully I will be awarded something this time. I will update the thread when I hear. Thanks for the replies.