DWP questions answered as PIP set to be replaced by vouchers in major overhaul

People until now have been receiving cash bonuses for switching banks - but those deals have now disappeared
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Cash Personal Independence Payments are looking more likely to be replaced by vouchers in the near future, amid a major overhaul of the benefits system.

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is considering a shift from cash payments to vouchers under a widescale revamp. Under the new scheme, individuals receiving Personal Independence Payments (PIP) could experience substantial alterations in how they obtain financial aid from the Government.

The DWP has outlined these potential changes in a Green Paper, which targets the welfare support system for approximately 2.6 million working-age adult claimants across England and Wales. The proposed reforms include adjustments to the eligibility criteria for PIP, a reconfiguration of the assessment process to better reflect an individual's health condition, and exploring alternatives to the standard monthly payment format.

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The "Modernising support for independent living: the health and disability Green Paper" suggests moving away from the traditional fixed monthly cash payment model towards options such as vouchers, a receipts system, one-time grants, or purchasing items or services via a catalogue, reports the Liverpool Echo.

Who will be eligible for PIP vouchers?

It is thought that the right to apply for PIP would not change under the voucher system. The current guidelines, at a glance, state you can get Personal Independence Payment (PIP) if all of the following apply to you:

Can PIP vouchers be claimed yet?

At the time of writing, there is no option to apply for DWP PIP vouchers because the voucher system isn't currently in use. PIP continues to be distributed through usual cash payments.

PIP was introduced in 2013 to provide non-means-tested cash payments to disabled people and those with health conditions to help them live independent lives. PIP was designed to be a contribution to extra costs arising from their disability and be a more sustainable, dynamic benefit that would also pay greater attention to mental health than its predecessor, Disability Living Allowance (DLA).

The idea of PIP vouchers was proposed by the DWP in a 2017 Green Paper but never implemented. This was due to concerns from disability rights groups. It is worth noting that the proposed changes could depend on the outcome of the General Election on July 4.