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I've got to fill in an ATOS questionnaire- how do you do it?

Good evening, GP has signed me off for three months so I was changed from jsa to ESA. Just been awarded £86 per week for both me and hubby - arn’t they generous? How do you live on that? Yesterday an ATOS questionaire (more like an interrogation) arrived. I am signed off because I lost my right arm and dragged my right side. My balance was awful and I was losing it and stumbling. The trouble is, it changes and some days I am OK. Other days I cannot walk without hubby’s arm. I cannot go down steps without help but I can get myself up them. Just been refused DLA - they seemed to think that isn’t a problem. If I fill in the form giving the worst days am I being misleading because I am likely to recover from this as it is a relapse and changes. How do you fill these blasted forms in? Pat

Pat, Ive found the Benefits & Works site invaluable. It gives guides as to how to fill in these forms and helps with your note taking, thinking and mind jogging about what symptoms you need to concentrate on.

It costs to join but others will also tell you it helped them as these forms are a nightmare for the newly initiated into the system.

Best wishes

bren

x

Hi Pat

If you have a DIAL near to you they were always fantastic at helping you fill in forms, hopefully they will be up to speed with these new ones too. I’ve heard that CAB is good as well but I have never used them just what I’ve heard. If they are anything like the other forms keep a copy so you can see what you put if there is a chance you might have to apply again like is normal with DLA. Good luck.

Love Yvonne xx

Hi Appeal your DLA and ensure it dons ASAP. See link enc http://www.advicenow.org.uk/advicenow-guides/problems-with-benefits/turned-down-for-dla-aa-think-youre-not-getting-enough/ http://www.mind.org.uk/assets/0001/3730/Mind_ESA_factsheet_1.pdf Hope these help You could also try disabled law society Trry local authority social services dept too Contact local ms society office they may have CAB contact Hope it goes well

What you should realize they are earning a lot of money from this Government. People like you and me are ideal fodder to take essential Benefits from and how they do it they could not care ATOS.

You can appeal by ringing 0800 882200; you will then receive all the correspondence from your doctors so will see who is to blame. It is invariable your Neuro or GP who are being scarce with the truth: the DLA assessor can only go on what’s in front of them. Sorry to say ATOSers are now involved they seem to be reading from a different hymn book.

The answers below are occurrences doctors would not know about. It is far better to attend a hearing but you can ask for one in your home (bit self destructive if your not badly affected) or a reconsideration (bit pointless as they have already made a decision).

At the appeal there are 3 people asking questions, a doctor, solicitor and social services agent. Don’t worry there usually very nice and make you feel at home.

Just a few ideas of the way you should answer the questions.

While hobbling along the High Street I keep near to the shops. This aids me in two ways; I am less likely to fall into the road and I can stop and look in shop windows to get a rest. I can testify that Ann Summers has the best window display.

To get High Rate you must show you need help during the night. Say something like, “I get up 2/3/4 times per night to go to the toilet, sometimes to no avail.” “My husband has to accompany me; this takes about 45 minutes each time and obviously breaks his sleep.” “It’s amazing just knowing he is there gives me so much confidence.” “He has to accompany me because once I fell over and slept where I lay that night, good job it was the middle of summer and warm.”

Contact DIAL http://www.dialuk.info/ who will come around your house and help with the forms. Or Benefits and work http://www.benefitsandwork.co.uk/ who give excellent advice.

The hearing lasts about 20 minutes and then you are asked to go to another room. Another 20 minutes and then you are asked back in and told the result. It is very important to have someone attend with you.

Simple rule ‘don’t say one word when 100 will do’ in other words explain in detail. Always quote your worst; they appreciate MS is a variable condition but don’t you say it. Be very careful though as there are some mistakes you could make like do not say you’re housebound as that begs the question why do you need the mobility component? Say “I would like to go out more if I could afford to” The examples are that examples if they are not true don’t use them.

Good luck

George

Hi Pat,

I too have just been turned down for DLA…refused on both care and mobility. I have just phoned them for a Statement of Reasons…so I know what has been said about me…I have told them that I am going to appeal…the guy on the phone said that I would have to wait a long time for it to go through (I wonder why that is?, maybe too many people turned down in the first place?) He tried to turn me off of appealling. I said that I would anyway.

You should appeal. Lots of people who have been turned down get awarded on appeal.

Good Luck.

Wendyx

You should appeal; if you are awarded anything payments are backdated to you originally asking for the form. Put in for it again and it starts afresh.

Just a little reminder for the older reader. If you apply for DLA before your 60 (retirement age) you can get awarded both components; care and mobility which carries on.

If your first application is after retirement age you get awarded Attendance Allowance (AA) that is DLA without the mobility component.

George