Around 2.7m people are currently claiming personal independence payments (PIP) in the UK. The benefit is given to claimants who qualify for additional financial assistance if they have a long-term physical or mental health condition or disability.
But many do not claim the payments or fail to check if they're entitled to it as they believe they aren't eligible. Some are unaware of which conditions qualify for the payment and others are confused about how to apply.
But the Daily Record has broken down the information you need to know about PIP including exactly how to apply. Here's what you need to know about personal independence payments including how to claim, how much you get, and which conditions qualify.
Read more:How much is universal credit and how can I claim it?
How much do you get with PIP?
Each component has two payment rates – a standard rate and an enhanced rate.
Daily living component
If you qualify for PIP you will also receive a Christmas bonus which is £10 each year – this is paid automatically and it does not affect any other benefits which you may be receiving.
How do I know which component I will be on and what questions will I be asked?
The decision about whether you are entitled to the daily living component, and if so at what rate, is based on the number of points you score in total for the following activities:
1. Preparing food
2. Taking nutrition
3. Managing therapy or monitoring a health condition
4. Washing and bathing
5. Managing toilet needs or incontinence
6. Dressing and undressing
7. Communicating verbally
8. Reading and understanding signs, symbols, and words
9. Engaging with other people face-to-face
10. Making budgeting decisions
Each of these activities is divided into a number of point scoring descriptors. To get an award of the daily living component you need to score eight points for the standard rate and 12 points for the enhanced rate.
You can only score one set of points from each activity. If two or more apply from the same activity only the highest will count. The decision about whether you are entitled to the mobility component, and if so at what rate, is based on the number of points you score in total for the following activities:
1. Planning and following journeys
2. Moving around
Both of these activities are divided into a number of point scoring descriptors. To get an award of the mobility component you need to score eight points for the standard rate and 12 points for the enhanced rate. As with the daily living component you only score the highest points that apply to you from each activity.
These are the questions on the PIP claim form, also referred to as the 'How your disability affects you' evidence document.
Q1: List your health professionals
You need to give the DWP details of any health professional you've seen about your condition.
Q2: List your conditions, medications, and treatments
List all the physical and mental health conditions and disabilities you have and the date they started.
Q3: Preparing and cooking a meal
This question is about how your condition makes it difficult for you to prepare a simple meal for one and heating it on a hob or in a microwave until it's safe to eat. This includes food preparation, using utensils and kitchen equipment, and cooking the meal itself.
Q4: Eating and drinking
This question is about how your condition makes it difficult for you to eat and drink. This means being able to cut up food into pieces, put it in your mouth, chew and swallow it. You should say if you need prompting or reminding to eat as well if you have physical difficulties.
Q5: Managing treatments
This question is about how your health condition makes it difficult for you to manage your treatments, monitor your own health condition, including your mental health, or take action to stop your condition getting worse.
Q6: Washing and bathing
This question is about whether your condition makes it difficult for you to wash or bathe in a standard bath or shower that hasn’t been adapted in any way. It’s also about whether you use any aids or appliances to help you wash or bathe.
Q7: Managing toilet needs
This question is about how your condition makes it difficult for you to get on and off an unadapted toilet seat, clean yourself afterwards or, if applicable, manage your incontinence.
Q8: Dressing and undressing
This question is for you to describe any difficulties you have dressing or undressing. This means putting on and taking off unmodified, appropriate clothes including shoes and socks. 'Appropriate clothes' means clothes that are appropriate for the weather, occasion, or time of day.
Q9: Communicating verbally
This question is about how your condition makes it difficult for you to speak to others so that you're understood or hear and understand what other people are saying to you.
This question is about how your condition makes it difficult for you to read information that is a standard text size (not large print) on signs – for example emergency exit signs – or read indoors and outside.
Q11: Mixing with other people
This question is about how your condition makes it difficult for you to meet people and mix with them, judge situations when you're with other people and behave appropriately, or establish relationships with people – for example make friends.
Q12: Making decisions about money
This question is about how your condition makes it difficult for you to manage everyday purchases and transactions. This means things like paying in shops and restaurants, budgeting for and paying your bills, and budgeting for bigger things such as a TV.
Q13: Going out
This question is about how your condition makes it difficult for you to plan and follow a route to a place you know (it doesn't matter how you get there), plan and follow a bus or train route to a place you don't know, cope in places that you don't know or, if applicable, leave the house because of stress or anxiety.
Q14: Moving around outside the home
This question is about how your condition makes it difficult for you to stand safely without help or walk safely without stopping and without help.
How do I apply for PIP?
To start the application process you will need to contact the DWP on 0800 917 2222 or textphone 0800 917 7777. You can ask for a paper form to complete if you are unable to claim by phone although this may delay your claim. For more information about PIP visit GOV.UK here.
What conditions qualify for PIP?
These are the main disability categories, the umbrella term by which a multitude of other conditions fall under, according to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). This list is only an overview of conditions, disorders, and diseases and how the DWP lists the main disabilities being claimed for:
You can get PIP whether you’re working or not, and you don't have to have worked or paid National Insurance contributions. You must be aged 16 or over and usually have not reached state pension age to claim.
You must also have a physical or mental health condition or disability where you:
You usually need to have lived in England, Scotland, or Wales for at least two of the last three years and be in one of these countries when you apply. If you’ve recently returned from living in a European Economic Area (EEA) country you might be able to get PIP sooner.