Applying for PIP (Personal Independence Payment)

June 13, 2021
by Rachel

DWP’s 14 questions to claim PIP and how much money you could receive each month

If you as a Disabled person or if you as a parent with a Disabled child who has a long term physical or mental health condition or impairment , you may want to consider applying for Personal Independence Payment (PIP).

You can claim PIP from age 16 to State Pension Age.

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is made up of two parts – a daily living part and a mobility part.

Whether you get one or both of these and how much you’ll get depends on how severely your child’s/ your condition affects you.

You’ll need an assessment to work out how much you’ll get. Yours/ your child’s rate will be regularly reviewed to make sure you’re getting the right support.

The health professional who conducts the assessment will base their questions on the answers you provide in the ‘How Your Disability Affects You’ ( or your child) evidence form, also referred to as the ‘PIP2’.

This form asks about how your/ your child’s health condition or disability/impairment affects you or your child on a daily basis and is your opportunity to explain fully and honestly how it impacts on your daily life.
Along with the form, you will also need to provide any supporting information as ‘evidence’ for your claim – this might be a letter from your doctor, specialist or social worker.

The form itself is quite straightforward and contains 10 activities for the daily living part and two for the mobility part – 14 questions in total.
The DWP will use your answers to look at whether you / your child can carry out these 12 activities safely and the amount of help you/ your child need to do so.

A score is given for each answer, which is why some people refer to this document as the ‘PIP test’.

If your total score for the daily living activities is between 8 and 11, your child/ you’ll be awarded the standard rate of PIP. If your score is 12 or more, you’ll be awarded the enhanced rate.

This points system is the same for responses given to the mobility questions.

However, the most common mistake that PIP claimants make when filling in the form, either by themselves, or having a family member or support worker do it for them, is that the answers are not detailed enough to accurately reflect how their condition affects them.

The reason for this is often that claimants/carers are so used to performing an activity or task in a way that works for them, that they do not realise how complicated or difficult it really is.

These ‘workarounds’ can make a huge difference when it comes to PIP awards and could result in someone receiving no additional financial support or the incorrect amount.

Our advice is to not rush completing the form, take a step back and imagine your child/ you’re doing the task or activity for the first time and explaining it to someone with the same condition as yourself – before your child/ you developed their/ your own workarounds.

While it may seem like a long process, remember, the assessor uses your answers to build a picture of how your impairments/ disability or health condition affects your child / you ( if you are Disabled and claiming for yourself) on a day-to-day basis.

And if the claim form is completed in full with comprehensive detailed information, the assessment may go more smoothly than you expect.

There are also ‘Additional Information’ sections at the end of each question which you should use to add any information that is relevant to the way your condition affects you.

This is particularly important if you feel you have answered questions that did not offer a real chance to demonstrate how your child/ you manage on a day-to-day basis.

While you do not have to fill in every free line available, do not submit your completed form until you are satisfied that when a complete stranger reads it, they will understand exactly how challenging every day can be.

We have listed all 14 questions you will be asked to complete on the form below to help you understand the process.

Here are the 10 daily activity question topics and possible maximum scores:-

Preparing food – scored out of 8
Eating and drinking – scored out of 10
Managing your treatments – scored out of 8
Washing and bathing – scored out of 8
Managing your toilet needs – scored out of 8
Dressing and undressing – scored out of 8
Communicating – scored out of 12
Reading – scored out of 8
Mixing with other people – scored out of 8
Making budgeting decisions – scored out of 6

Here are the 2 mobility question topics and possible maximum scores:

Planning and following a journey – scored out of 12
Moving around (outside the home) – scored out of 12

What are the current PIP payment rates?

You could be awarded the following amounts per week depending on your circumstances, which are paid every four weeks in arrears.

This means a successful claim could be worth between £23.70 and £608.60 every month.

Daily living component
Standard rate: £60.00
Enhanced rate: £89.60

Mobility component
Standard rate: £23.70
Enhanced rate: £62.55

Filling in the ‘how your disability affects you’ (or your child’s) claim form.

Below are all the questions on the claim form.

Q1: List your health professionals
You need to give the DWP details of any health professional you’ve seen about your child’s/your condition.

Q2: List your child’s/your conditions, medications and treatments
List all the physical and mental health conditions and impairments/ disabilities your child or you and the date they started.

Q3: Preparing and cooking a meal
This question is about how the condition(s) makes it difficult for your chikd/you to prepare a simple meal for one and heating it on a hob or in a microwave until it’s safe to eat.

Q4: Eating and drinking
This question is about how the condition (s) makes it difficult for your child/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 there is a need prompting or reminding to eat, as well if you have physical difficulties.

Q5: Managing treatments
This question is about how the health condition(s) makes it difficult for your child/you to:
– manage treatments
– monitor own health condition, including mental health and take action to
– stop the condition getting worse

Q6: Washing and bathing
This question is about whether the condition (s) makes it difficult for your child/ you to wash or bathe in a standard bath or shower that hasn’t been adapted in any way. It’s also about whether your child/you use any aids or appliances to help with washing or bathing.

Q7: Managing toilet needs
This question is about how the condition(s) makes it difficult for your child/you to:
– get on and off an unadapted toilet seat clean themselves/ yourself
– afterwards if applicable, manage incontinence

Q8: Dressing and undressing
This question is for you to describe any difficulties with 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
– the occasion
– the time of day

Q9: Communicating verbally
This question is about how the condition(s) makes it difficult for your child/you to:
– speak to others so that you’re understood
– hear and understand what other people are saying to them/ you

Q10: Reading
This question is about how the condition (s) makes it difficult for them/you to:
– read information that is a standard text size (not large print)
– read signs – for example, emergency exit signs
– read indoors and outside

Q11: Mixing with other people
This question is about how their/ your condition makes it difficult for them/ you to:
– meet people and mix with them
– judge situations when they’re/you’re with other people and behave appropriately
– establish relationships with people – for example make friends

Q12: Making decisions about money
This question is about how their/your condition makes it difficult for them/you to manage everyday purchases
This means things like:
– paying in shops and restaurants
– budgeting for and paying their/ your bills
– budgeting for bigger things such as a TV

Q13: Going out
This question is about how their/ your condition makes it difficult for them/ you to:
– plan and follow a route to a place they/you know (it doesn’t matter how they/ you get there)
– plan and follow a bus or train route to a place they/ you don’t know
– cope in places that they/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 their/your condition makes it difficult for them/you to:
– stand safely outside without help walk safely outside without stopping and without help

Additional information
This is a blank page that you can use if you run out of space on the claim form. You can also use it to give any additional information you think necessary. There’s no right or wrong type of information to include but it’s a good idea to use this space to tell the DWP if:
– someone had to fill in the form for your child/ you and explain why
– your child or you filled in the form slowly or with pain
– filling in the form caused them/ you anxiety or stress,
– you’re attaching medical evidence to support your claim – for example, an EHCP , or other type of health or care plan

How to apply for PIP

To start the application process, you will need to contact the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) on 0800 917 2222 (textphone 0800 917 7777) where you can ask for a paper copy to be sent.