DWP gives PIP claimants '50 days' to act before cash payments are 'axed'

The Department for Work and Pensions has given people 50 days to respond ahead of a major shake-up to the PIP system and changes to eligibility and assessments. The DWP green paper consultation will end on 11.59pm on July 22 with exactly 50 days left.

The green paper explores the reform of the Personal Independence Payment (PIP), with options that include making changes to eligibility criteria for PIP and redesigning the PIP assessment to better target it towards the needs of disabled people and people with health conditions.

It also explores reforming the PIP assessment so that it is more linked to a person's condition. Action for ME, a charity, warned: "We understand that these proposals will cause a significant level of concern for people with disabilities and we are working to ensure that the voices of people with ME are heard and represented throughout the consultation process.

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"It is also important to note that any proposed legislation will need to be brought before Parliament and cannot be enacted quickly, meaning any legislative changes would need to be taken up by whichever Government forms after the next general election, who may have separate ideas regarding any reforms to welfare."

Among the proposed changes are the axing of cash payments, in favour of a voucher or a catalogue system. Other proposals include a changing of the eligibility criteria and assessment. Andy Cook, Chief Executive of the Centre for Social Justice, said: “With the welfare system now grappling with the combined challenges of economic inactivity, school absence and mental health, this consultation provides a meaningful opportunity to shape the future of Britain’s welfare state.

“We owe it to those most struggling to make sure the benefit system provides the best support to those who need it. And with costs skyrocketing, it is time to bring the welfare system into the post-lockdown age."