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Benefits And Work Asking How Far Claimants Were Asked To Travel For A PIP Assessment

December 1, 2015

With many thanks to Benefits And Work.

When there was an enormous backlog for personal independence payment (PIP) assessments, claimants were often given an appointment at a distant assessment centre, even though there was one much closer to them.

The explanation given was that it was necessary to book claimants in wherever there were available appointments, rather than keeping them waiting for the closest centre to have a vacancy.

But those enormous waiting lists have vanished now, with waiting times generally down to weeks rather than months.

Yet we’re still hearing from members who are being asked to travel almost 90 minutes for a face-to-face assessment, even when there is a centre in their own town.

Very often this means that the claimant cancels the first appointment. But then they must attend the next appointment they are given, no matter how problematic, or risk being refused PIP for failure to attend an assessment.

We would like to find out how common and how widespread this issue is. So, please let us know by commenting below or dropping us an email to and telling us how far you were asked to travel to a medical, when this happened and whether there was another centre closer to you.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. charliefoulkes permalink
    December 1, 2015 1:26 pm

    Not PIP but ESA WCA. Must travel to Canterbury, over an hour away. Have asked for Saturday appointment so someone can drive me there and help with the baby. We got in the car and 20 minutes later my mobile rang and they cancelled it. They promised another weekend appointment and then wrote arranging one for Monday.😦

  2. December 1, 2015 4:50 pm

    For my PIP assesment they wanted me to travel to a center on the outskirts of Lancaster, would have taken me 90 mins by car and over 2 hours by bus/train! I rearranged it to one in my town, Preston, which was 10 minutes away from my home!

  3. December 1, 2015 5:15 pm

    Reblogged this on campertess and commented:
    I’m waiting on an appointment for pip but seemingly the nearest is over an hour away.

  4. December 1, 2015 6:45 pm

    They tried to make me go to Scarborough a round trip of nearly 100 miles I told them what they could do by detailing the trip as I would have to make it a 1 mile trip to the train station 1 hour the train journey 47 to 54 minutes, already over the 90 minutes they say a person must be willing to travel for work, then stating that I didn’t even know if I would get the 0.2 miles from the station to the centre. I emailed it to the CEO of ATOS the DWP and my MP they replied the following day saying they tried to call me, only I gave no phone numbers on the PIP2 then realised that my daughter had put the numbers down on my ESA form in 2010 but I wasn’t at the same address or had the same mobile number.
    They rearranged the assessment for a local one, but even that wasn’t straight forward they tried to say the evidence I submitted was old, but I replied “It’s still f**king relevant though.” One of the three times I swore, the final one was when they asked me to do some exercises and I replied “no f**king way.” they stopped it then and they said to daughter “He’ll be OK” I was as I got enhanced on both parts for 10 years.

  5. Icewing permalink
    December 4, 2015 11:21 am

    I live in Largs and had to travel to Ayr for my medical which is 33 miles away.
    The Jobcentre is a large building in Irvine which is 20 miles away.
    There is another large jobcentre in Greenock which is 14 miles away.

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