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Nottingham Post
Nottingham Post
Karen Antcliff & Linda Howard

DWP monthly payment of £627 could be due to sufferers of stress, anxiety or depression

Millions of people in the UK suffer from mental health related conditions. One in four will experience a problem of some kind and 1 in 6 will report a common mental health problem like depression or anxiety in a typical week, according to mental health charity, Mind,

The figures quoted by the organisation are based on 2014 survey which looked at people over 16 living in England and in private housing - this is not a new problem. If you are living with such mental health condition and it impacts your everyday life to the degree that you have difficulty doing certain everyday tasks or getting around, then you may be eligible for financial support.

People of working age may be eligible for financial support through Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) benefit PIP, which stands for Personal Independence Payment (PIP). If you live in Scotland this benefit is called Adult Disability Payment (ADP). The latest statistics from the DWP show that by the end of October 2022, there were more than three million people across the UK claiming PIP. The regional breakdown includes 2.6 million in England, 226,000 in Wales and nearly 330,000 claimants living in Scotland.

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Last year, according to Nottinghamshire Live sister publication Daily Record, the DWP announced significant changes to its guidance for health professionals carrying out PIP assessments across the country. The updated guidelines published on GOV.UK include details on improved guidance for assessors on the significance of whether or not a claimant with a mental health condition is receiving medication. Assessors may incorrectly interpret the fact that a claimant with, for example depression, is not receiving any medication as evidence that their condition has very little effect on their daily living or mobility needs. The updated guidance now points out that the severity of a mental health condition “does not necessarily correspond with the type or dosage of medication that the claimant is receiving”.

The guidance highlights that factors such as side effects, problems complying with a medication regime or the medication not being effective for that individual may all result in someone with a severe condition not receiving medication. It goes on to say that assessors should take into account the use of treatments such as psychological therapies instead of medication.

The change could mean that more people living with a 'hidden condition' such as stress, anxiety or depression, may now be eligible for PIP.

PIP - who is eligible to claim for a mental health condition

The list of conditions the term 'mental health' covers is long and includes:

  • Mixed anxiety and depressive disorders

  • Mood disorders

  • Stress

  • Anxiety

  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

  • Agoraphobia

  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

  • Panic disorders

You may be eligible for PIP if you have increased costs to support your daily living needs because of a mental health condition. A successful claim for PIP is worth between £24.45 and £156.90 each week in additional financial support. As the benefit is paid every four weeks, this amounts to between £97.80 and £627.60 every payment period.

You don’t need to have worked or paid National Insurance contributions to qualify for PIP or ADP, and it doesn’t matter what your income is, if you have any savings or if you’re in or out of work.

The rules

You usually need to have lived in the UK for at least two of the last three years and be in the country when you apply. You must also have a health condition or disability where you:

  • have had difficulties with daily living or getting around (or both) for three months

  • expect these difficulties to continue for at least nine months

The DWP will evaluate the eligibility of your claim over a period of 12 months, looking back for three months and forward for nine months - they must consider if your illness changes over time.

If you get or need help with any of the following because of your condition, you should consider applying for PIP:

  • preparing, cooking or eating food

  • managing your medication

  • washing, bathing or using the toilet

  • dressing and undressing

  • engaging and communicating with other people

  • reading and understanding written information

  • making decisions about money

  • planning a journey or following a route

  • moving around

What is classified as ‘help’

You are classified as needing help to do an activity if you need a person or a device to:

  • Do it for you

  • Do it with you

  • Remind you to do it

  • Watch you do it to keep you safe

You may also be classified as needing help if you do an activity yourself but:

  • You aren’t safe

  • You can’t complete the task well enough

  • You can’t complete the task often

  • It takes you a long time

How you are assessed

You will be assessed by an independent healthcare professional to help the DWP work out the level of help you need. You may be invited to attend a face-to-face, telephone or video call assessment.

PIP test scoring criteria

The PIP scoring criteria awards points for a statement which applies to you for each activity. The DWP will decide which statement best fits your situation most of the time. You will get a set amount of points ranging from 0 -12 points for each activity. The total number of points you get for each group of activities will decide whether you are entitled to PIP, and how much money you will receive.

To get the standard rate daily living component, you need to score 8 to 11 points in total for the daily living activities. You need 12 points to get the enhanced rate. To get the standard rate mobility component, you need to score 8 to 11 points in total for the mobility activities. You need 12 points to get the enhanced rate.

PIP payment rates until April 2023

PIP is made up of two components - daily living and mobility - Adult Disability Payment is paid at the same rate. Whether you get one or both of these and how much depends on how severely your condition affects you.

You can get the following amounts per week depending on your circumstances:

Daily living

  • Standard rate: £61.85

  • Enhanced rate: £92.40


  • Standard rate: £24.45

  • Enhanced rate: £64.50

The money is usually paid every four weeks, unless you are terminally ill, in which case it is paid every week. It will be paid directly into your bank, building society or credit union account.

How to make a claim for PIP

You can make a new claim by contacting the DWP, you’ll find all the information you need to apply on the website here.

Before you call, you will need:

  • your contact details, for example telephone number

  • your date of birth

  • your National Insurance number - this is on letters about tax, pensions and benefits

  • your bank or building society account number and sort code

  • your doctor or health worker’s name, address and telephone number

  • dates and addresses for any time you’ve spent abroad, in a care home or hospital

Once you have contacted the DWP, they will send you a document to complete which consists of 14 questions and a section for any additional information. The questions focus on how your condition affects you - put as much relevant detail in as you can to help the assessor understand your physical and mental health needs.

If you have difficulty understanding of filling in your form the government website says you can get help from Citizens Advice. Alternatively watch PIP video guides with British Sign Language or use these guides which explain PIP. For more information about PIP, visit GOV.UK here.


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