Doing the forms in advance

  • 3 Replies
  • 1298 Views

Sunny Clouds

  • *
  • Charter Member
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4821

Doing the forms in advance

  • on: 23 Jun 2015 04:26PM
Just a tip to pass on.  It works for me, but that doesn't mean I assume it would work for everyone.

I guess most or all people here are on some sort of benefits.

It's a rare person that doesn't have to renew them at intervals these days, and then there are the changes to benefits every time a government brings in a new benefit or rolls it out in a new area.

But I think some of you, like me, like lots of time to fill in forms etc.

So here's my recommendation - don't wait until you have to renew or they send you a form, get ready when you're in the mood, even if that's just after your previous renewal.  You can always amend it later.

You need a word-processing document and the ability to play around with some sort of highlighting such as using bold, or different colour text, or different colour background, or different fonts for different bits or to put it in a table or spreadsheet.

Then find a reliable source for the statutory requirements.  It doesn't have to be the offical one, it could be one off another website so long as it's trustworthy.  I say that, because some people work best with tables, others with indentations or whatever.

Copy and paste your preferred  version into your document.

Then look at any DWP guidelines not just for claimants but for decision makers and copy and paste any relevant ones into the beginning of your document.  Add in any key decisions or guidance from organisations such as charities, advice services.

Again, play with the layout.  Either delete what you think isn't relevant or make it paler or cut and paste to the end of the document so you haven't lost it but it's not in the way.  Highlight all the bits you think are relevant to your own claim. 

Then get going.  Go through each criterion, pick the one you think applies to you, putting in, suitably highlighted or bracketed or in a different column, relevant guidelines and your own commentary (e.g. 'PA washes me' or 'prompted by my support worker' and so on).

You then need a different sort of highlighting to pick out all the points or criteria you've got.  (Think of it like a bingo card.)  My PIP working sheet uses bright orange for points.

Then the last stage, when you're in the mood, take a dekko at the current standard form - the boxes that ask for general info - draft some possible answers.  Again, you can scrap them or change them later.

Importantly, remember when you fill a form in, there's absolutely nothing to stop you putting in nearly every comment box "see appendix".  That means you're not restricted to the size of the box.

I would suggest you also ask yourself "what am I entitled to" and compare it with "what can I prove I'm entitled to" so that you can consider what evidence you might want.

In short, prepare when you're in the mood and even if they change the forms or tweak the criteria, you'll have most of it when they send you that blasted form.
(I'm an obsessive problem-solver, so feel free to ignore any suggestions or solutions I offer, even if they sound terribly insistent.)

KizzyKazaer

  • *
  • Global Moderator
  • Super Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 8774

Re: Doing the forms in advance

  • on: 23 Jun 2015 06:40PM
What a great practical approach to the dreaded task - thanks, Sunny  >thumbsup<


ditchdwellers

  • *
  • Charter Member
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3010

Re: Doing the forms in advance

  • on: 23 Jun 2015 07:06PM
That is such a good idea.  I don't know when I'm going to be transferred from DLA to PIP, so when I feel up to it I'll follow your advice and make a start. Hopefully it will make the whole transfer thing a bit easier.

Sunny Clouds

  • *
  • Charter Member
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4821

Re: Doing the forms in advance

  • on: 23 Jun 2015 08:29PM
I've now got a provisional chart of what points I think I could get PIP for without having to get more evidence than I already  have and without being anywhere near borderline.  But I've only looked at the reliably, repeatedly etc. stuff for some of them.

I want to start on my ESA renewal next.  It was last renewed a few months ago, so it might, in theory, be 3 years until next time (which is what it was last time), but who'd trust that?

I've got the copy of my document from last time with all my answers in it.  I'll copy and highlight bits that may have changed a bit.  Obviously, with any fluctuating condition, that's a pain.

PIP is, I think, horrible over fluctuating conditions.

Let me take the 50% stuff to the extreme.

Let's suppose you've got a condition that means that for 150 days a year you can't feed yourself, can't wash or dress yourself, can't toilet yourself, can't get to the shops or post office or chemist or doctor...

But it wouldn't be more than 50% of the time so who cares?

I'm sure to various MPs who passed the legislation, it makes sense.  They maybe think in terms of days of the week.  Maybe going dirty or hungry say 3 days a week is ok, especially if they think you've got sarnies or something (not that you get asked if you can prepare any meal at all).

But what if it's 150 days in a row?  In theory, you could be incapable of preparing a meal or communicating or doing any basic self-care for around 4 months straight and you wouldn't get PIP. 

Am I missing something here?
(I'm an obsessive problem-solver, so feel free to ignore any suggestions or solutions I offer, even if they sound terribly insistent.)