DWP update for PIP claimants with award due to end this year

Millions of people across the country are currently claiming Personal Independence Payment (PIP). There are now 3.5 million people receiving up to £737.20 every four-week pay period.

According to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), there were 392,000 outstanding award reviews for PIP in England and Wales at the end of May. The DWP announced earlier this year that its priority is processing first-time claimants so that they get the financial help they need as quickly as possible.

But steps have also been taken to make sure existing claimants do not miss out on payments when their award comes to an end. People whose PIP award will end soon will see payments automatically extended by up to 12 months - until the review process can be completed.

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But the DWP said some people may experience a 'break in payment' if they delay submitting their renewal until just shortly before their existing PIP award ends, Daily Record reports. This could affect anyone with a fixed-term award but without a review date.

If this is the case, it is important to be aware that PIP can be backdated to the date of the claim. It means that claimants whose current PIP award ends and payments stop, would receive missing money if their renewal claim is successful.

The DWP typically sends out a reminder six months before the award is due to end, asking if the claimant wishes to continue to receive PIP. If they do, they need to make a new claim.

Latest DWP figures indicate 51.7 per cent of all new PIP claims are processed within the target time of 75 working days - just under 15 weeks. A Freedom of Information (FOI) request about PIP award review backlogs and processing times was answered by the DWP in June.

It said: "As of May 31, 2024, there were 392,000 Award Reviews outstanding in England and Wales." There is no timeline for clearing the backlog, it said.

It added: "The main reason for the length of time to complete PIP award reviews is very high demand for PIP. We are seeing unprecedented numbers of new claims being made.

"To manage this demand, and ensure cases are put into payment as soon as possible, we are prioritising these claims." The DWP said claimants who request a review are prioritised over department-initiated reviews.

The response continued: "We have been actively recruiting additional case managers to meet the additional demand. However, it takes time to train and consolidate new entrants.

"Our assessment providers have also been taking steps to increase the number of healthcare professionals they employ, but again this takes time and there is an extensive training period to make sure quality standards are met.

"For customers waiting for a review, we keep them updated using SMS text messages. We also ensure that all PIP awards remain in payment for those affected by delays, extending awards for up to 12 months where necessary and informing customers in writing."

If your PIP award is due to end this year, make sure the DWP has your correct contact details. Full details can be found on GOV.UK here.