Re change of circumstance for DLA

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Silverstar

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Re change of circumstance for DLA

  • on: 15 Aug 2013 10:17AM
Hi
Newbie here, please can you tell me how to go about increasing my DLA award from low rate care to middle rate. I also get high rate mobility and ESA in the support group.

I am very concerned I could lose my care/mobility award altogether if I pursue this but my care needs have definitely increased in the time since my DLA award was originally set (2008). It was renewed in 2010 indefinitely.

Does anyone know how likely it is the the DWP could take all or part of my DLA away if I decide to pursue this? Many thanks.

KizzyKazaer

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Re: Re change of circumstance for DLA

  • on: 15 Aug 2013 12:08PM
Hi again Silverstar - I'm afraid there's no way of knowing for anyone which way the decision will go, ie what the possibility is of losing the existing award (it's always a risk when asking for DLA to be 'moved up a level') -  but you can greatly improve your chances if you can supply letters of evidence from anyone involved in your health condition (GP, consultant, physio, etc) which confirm that your care needs now meet the criteria for middle rate care.  Here's some extra information so you can see where your own claim might 'fit' the requirements: (source: NHS Choices http://www.nhs.uk/CarersDirect/moneyandlegal/disabilitybenefits/Pages/DisabilityLivingAllowance.aspx

To get the middle rate care component of Disability Living Allowance (DLA) a person's disability must be severe enough for them to:

- need attention, which includes help with things such as washing, dressing or eating; help with communication; encouraging to look after themself or prompting to do something; or help with reading if they have a visual impairment

- need supervision to avoid them putting themself or others in substantial danger

- need someone with them when they are on dialysis

The middle rate of DLA is paid if:

-   attention is needed frequently throughout the day  or
-   supervision is needed continually (for most of the day)  or
-   prolonged or repeated attention is needed during the night or someone needs to watch over
    the person at night  or
-   someone needs to be with the person while they are on dialysis two or more times a week

Common questions

What does 'frequently throughout the day' mean?

This means that the attention required is spread throughout the day, rather than being needed only in the morning or evening. It is required frequently if it is needed several times, not just once or twice. Different types of attention can count and together they can form a pattern of help needed throughout the day and at different times in the day.

What does 'continual' supervision mean?

'Continual' supervision does not have to be completely non-stop, but it should be more than just occasional supervision. It can include being on standby, ready to intervene if necessary.

What does to avoid 'substantial danger' mean?

It means that the supervision needed would lessen the risk of substantial danger to the person with the disability or to others. The danger must be something that might happen, but it does not have to be something that is likely to happen.

What does 'prolonged' or 'repeated' attention during the night mean?

Prolonged usually means at least 20 minutes and repeated means at least twice. Attention does not have to be required every single night as long as it is regular.

What does 'watch over at night' mean?

Watching over someone at night means being awake and able to keep an eye on the person claiming DLA. Watching over must be needed for at least 20 minutes or more than twice for it to count, and it must be necessary in order to avoid harm to the person or others.

Here are some examples of the kinds of difficulties that may allow someone to qualify for DLA (this is not an exhaustive list):

-   problems getting in or out of bed without help
-   getting dressed or undressed presents problems or takes a long time
-   needing physical help or supervision with activities such as having a bath, showering,
    brushing teeth or shaving
-   difficulty moving around indoors, getting in and out of chairs or getting to and from the toilet
-   being forgetful and needing reminding of activities such as taking medication or turning the
    gas off
-   not realising when a condition is getting worse
-   getting dizzy, stumbling or falling
-   needing encouragement to eat, wash or sleep properly
-   needing help at night to take medication, go to the toilet or needing to be soothed back to
    sleep

Many people will have difficulties other than those listed above. Keeping a diary for a week can help identify what difficulties there are, how often these difficulties arise, what help is needed and for how long.
____

Hope this is useful!

« Last Edit: 15 Aug 2013 12:09PM by KizzyKazaer »

Silverstar

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Re: Re change of circumstance for DLA

  • on: 15 Aug 2013 12:45PM
Hi

Many thanks for that, will sit and peruse it all later as there is a lot to take in, I suppose one of my issues lies in the timing, if I apply before October then by rights it should still be under DLA rules, any later and it will be pip. I wonder if change of circumstance applications are more or less likely to succeed because DLA is being phased out.

If my DLA was soon up for renewal then I would sit and wait but as it is an indefinite award I will not be reassessed for PIP until 2015, unless of course we have an election and a change of govt. I just don't know what to do.

I don't want to lose what I have but I can't deny that I feel I do merit the extra award. Does anyone know how common it is to lose an award altogether or be downgraded?

Monic1511

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Re: Re change of circumstance for DLA

  • on: 15 Aug 2013 08:13PM
Hi Silverstar
"I wonder if change of circumstance applications are more or less likely to succeed because DLA is being phased out. "
Unfortunately its getting more common to lose all the award now that pip is coming in.   As you have an indefinite award you may be swapping a lower award for the next 6 years (indefinite awards being review until 2018 approx) for higher award that only lasts for 3 years, all the DLA renewal awards I've seen have been awarded until 2015 only.

If you really think you meet the higher awards then get the medical evidence first before doing anything.
best wishes
Monic


Silverstar

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Re: Re change of circumstance for DLA

  • on: 16 Aug 2013 10:53AM
Hi

Thanks for the advice, I think I am going to leave it, the extra money would be welcome but is not absolutely essential and the prevailing wind seems to be don't rock the boat. I do not want to risk losing what I already have.

 I have enough stress worrying about my recent ESA renewal without the stress of filling DLA forms and worrying about that. I thought a change of circumstance would be easier than a fresh claim but I was wrong lol. I am very thankful for what I have and I will await the joys of PIP.  Thank you for your valuable help though.

Sunshine Meadows

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Re: Re change of circumstance for DLA

  • on: 20 Aug 2013 12:09PM
Silverstar,

Welcome to Ouch Too  >star<

You already had some good advice about your DLA claim.

Quote
I think I am going to leave it, the extra money would be welcome but is not absolutely essential and the prevailing wind seems to be don't rock the boat. I do not want to risk losing what I already have

Before I read that I was already thinking it depends what you would do with the increase in payment if you did get middle rate care and you pretty much answered that question without it being asked. I agree with your course of action because when it comes to added stress for the possibility of a bit more money (if it is not essential) it is not worth the stress.

One last thing getting Middle Rate Care DLA do mean someone who cares for you can get Carer's Allowance https://www.gov.uk/carers-allowance/overview.


Hurtyback

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Re: Re change of circumstance for DLA

  • on: 20 Aug 2013 03:14PM
Just to pick up on something Monic said - my DLA was renewed earlier this year, my new award is for 5 years.

Silverstar

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Re: Re change of circumstance for DLA

  • on: 20 Aug 2013 03:55PM
Hi

Don't get me wrong, the money would be welcome (who doesn't want more these days), we reluctantly had to give up our Mobility car earlier this year because it was costing too much, even though I was midway through the contract. With the cost of living rises, petrol and the council tax increase we couldn't justify keeping it. The bonus is I now get the DLA allowance instead of Motability but I am paying out more in transport, getting groceries delivered etc. So it evens out really.

I suppose I would like the extra money for the day to day extras that make life liveable, the occasional take away, therapy or even a little holiday (haven't had a holiday in over 10 years) or even some home improvements, as I spend so much blooming time here lol. I also figured if I was getting MRC then the DWP wouldn't keep hassling hubby about going for all these WFI's related to my ESA claim. But as I said, as long as we are careful we can manage as we are.

I contacted the local welfare rights who said if I can get some evidence together they would help me to see if it was feasible or not so am intending to see what, if any, help I can get from my GP. I think running it by the good people at WF would be a good place to start before committing myself. .     

devine63

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Re: Re change of circumstance for DLA

  • on: 20 Aug 2013 09:19PM
Hi Silverstar

are any of the home improvements you need disability related?  e.g. more accessible (level access) bathroom or kitchen?  If yes you might be entitiled to help - contact Social Services talk to Duty Social Worker and request an Occupational therapist somes out to do an assessment of your needs

regards, Deb

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Re: Re change of circumstance for DLA

  • on: 21 Aug 2013 08:48AM
Hi

Not at the moment, we had our downstairs bathroom converted into a shower room a few years ago when I couldn't get out of the bath lol. More in the way of decorating and sorting out a chronic damp/mould problem upstairs before the winter.

bubble

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Re: Re change of circumstance for DLA

  • on: 22 Aug 2013 07:09AM
Hi Silverstar welcome  >thumbsup< theyre a great bunch of people on here  >bighugs< always ready to help everyone

Silverstar

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Re: Re change of circumstance for DLA

  • on: 22 Aug 2013 03:12PM
Hi

Thank you, love the forum already, some great people and advice on here. Look forward to getting to know you all.