Personal Independence Payment

To qualify for Personal Independence Payment (PIP), you must be aged 16 to 64 and have problems moving around or caring for yourself. You must have had these problems for three months and expect them to last for more than nine months. You can claim PIP whether you are working or not.

If you claim PIP, a health professional will assess your mobility.

There are two components to Personal Independence Payment:

  • A daily living component, which includes help with preparing food, bathing and dressing. You will receive either £55.65 or £83.10 per week.
  • A mobility component, if you need help getting around. You will receive either £22.80 or £58.00 per week.

To claim if you live in England, Scotland or Wales, call the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) on 0800 917 2222. In Northern Ireland, you can claim by calling the Department for Communities (DfC) on 0800 012 1573.

Personal Independence Payment

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is a benefit for people aged 16 to 64. It is for people who have problems moving around or looking after themselves.

If you are aged 65 or over, you should claim Attendance Allowance instead of PIP.

PIP replaces an older benefit called Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for adults. If you are aged between 16 and 64 and making a new claim, you will need to apply for PIP.


Who can claim

To get Personal Independence Payment (PIP), you must be aged 16 to 64 and have problems moving around or caring for yourself. You must have had these problems for three months, and expect them to last for at least nine months. However, there are special rules for people who are terminally ill.

You can claim PIP whether you are working or not. If you get PIP, it does not reduce other benefits. In some cases, your other benefits may even increase.

PIP is based on how your condition affects you, not on the condition you have.

PIP has two parts:

  • the daily living component
  • the mobility component.

You may get one or both parts.


The daily living component

The daily living component is for people who have problems with at least one of the following:

  • preparing food
  • eating and drinking
  • taking medicines
  • having treatments
  • monitoring a health condition
  • washing and bathing
  • using the toilet or managing incontinence
  • dressing and undressing
  • speaking with other people
  • reading and understanding signs, symbols and words
  • engaging with others face to face
  • making financial decisions.


The mobility component

The mobility component is for people who have problems:

  • planning and going on journeys
  • moving around (for example, walking or doing things around the house).


Terminal illness

If you are terminally ill, and may be expected to live for less than six months, you can apply using a fast-track process called special rules. You can keep getting the benefit under the special rules if you live longer than expected.

Claiming under special rules means:

  • you do not need to have had mobility or care problems for the last three months
  • you do not need to have a face-to-face consultation
  • you will get the daily living component at the enhanced rate
  • you may also be able apply for the mobility component and get it immediately, depending on your needs
  • someone else can make a claim on your behalf.

All special rules claims are reviewed after three years.

To claim under the special rules, tell the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) or Department for Communities (DfC) about your situation. You will then need to ask your GP, oncologist or specialist nurse to send them a form called a DS1500.

If you become terminally ill while you are already claiming PIP, you can still ask your doctor or specialist nurse to write a DS1500. This may increase the amount of PIP you get.


Assessment

If you claim Personal Independence Payment (PIP), a health professional may need to assess your needs. Most people have a face-to-face assessment. You can take someone with you for support if you want to.

If you need to travel to an assessment centre, you can claim help with your travel costs. You can find out more about this from the assessment centre.

If you are too unwell to travel, you can ask for a home visit. You may need a letter from your doctor or consultant to support your request.

The assessment looks at how well you can move around and do daily activities. It looks at whether you can carry out certain activities:

  • safely
  • repeatedly
  • to an acceptable standard
  • within a reasonable period of time.

Your claim will also be reviewed regularly, based on how likely it is that your condition will change.


How much you could get

Each component is paid weekly at either a standard rate or an enhanced rate, depending on your needs.

The weekly daily living component is £55.65 at the standard rate, and £83.10 at the enhanced rate.

The weekly mobility component is £22 at the standard rate, and £58.00 at the enhanced rate.


How to claim

  • If you live in England, Scotland or Wales, you can call the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) Personal Independence Payment (PIP) claims line on 0800 917 2222 or use textphone 0800 917 7777.
  • If you live in Northern Ireland, you can call the Department for Communities (DfC) Personal Independence Payment (PIP) centre on 0800 012 1573 or use textphone 0800 012 1574.

Someone else can call on your behalf to apply, but you will need to be with them when they call. You will need to give your permission for the DWP or DfC to speak to that person about your claim. You will not need to do this if you are claiming under the special rules.

It is important to have the following information with you when applying:

  • your National Insurance number
  • your full address, including postcode
  • your date of birth
  • your bank or building society account details that payments can be made into
  • a daytime contact number
  • your GP or other health professional’s details
  • details of any time you have spent abroad in the last three years
  • details of any recent time you have spent in a care home or hospital.

You will not have to answer any detailed questions about your health when you call.

The DWP or DfC will then post you a claim form to fill in. The form asks personal questions about how your health problems affect your daily life. It will ask about your ability to do a range of activities.  There is more information in the section How you will be assessed.

The claim form is long and you should set aside a good amount of time to fill it in. You may find it helpful to read through the form before you start filling it in, so that you can get the information you need before you start. It will help your application if you include as much detail as possible.

It is a good idea to get help from an experienced welfare rights adviser to fill in the form. You can do this by calling the Macmillan Support Line on 0808 808 00 00. Or visit In Your Area to find out whether you can see a Macmillan welfare rights adviser in person.

It is also a good idea to get evidence about your illness from the people treating you, for example your doctor, cancer specialist or a support worker. You should submit this evidence with your claim, or soon afterwards.

You will have one calendar month to complete and return it.

My welfare rights adviser helped me fill out my application form for Personal Independence Payment. I wouldn’t have been able to do that myself as it was quite lengthy.

Shola

Back to Disability-related benefits

Attendance Allowance

You may be eligible for Attendance Allowance if you are aged 65 or over and have difficulty looking after yourself.