Saturday, September 11, 2010

Disabled Man Refused Benefits Despite Having 2 False Legs

 Marc Addington, Liverpool Echo, Sept 11 2010

A DOUBLE amputee from Kirkby was refused a disability benefit after he was assessed on his records from before he lost his legs.
Phillip Carr, 44, lost his left leg last year after a painful infection, before losing his right leg due to complications with his diabetes.
But when he attempted to get the “care component” of his disability living allowance, he was refused.
The former railway man said the strain of walking on false legs played havoc with his blood sugar levels and made him prone to a diabetic attack.
He needed the financial help so he could afford to have a carer with him while out and about, rather than have to rely on friends and family.
But he was “dumbfounded” to be told he didn’t qualify – only then to find he had been assessed using records from when he was still able-bodied.
And matters were made worse when he was told he did not qualify for benefits which would help him get a mobility car because, he said, he was told his “situation may change”.
Mr Carr said: “I was absolutely shocked. I was fit and able until I had the first operation.
“I basically thought someone must be taking the Mickey here, that’s what it felt like. People who don’t need it get it and those that do, don’t.”
He said the mobility knock- back was the final straw, and decided to pursue a legal case.
He added: “’Situation may change’? With the best will in the world, I’m not going to grow a new pair of legs.”
But, following the ECHO’s inquiries, the Department for Work and Pensions have “revised their decision” in his favour.
He will not now have to go through the appeals process and hopes the U-turn will help him live a more independent life.
Mr Carr said: “I’m happy that it’s been sorted and that this faceless bureaucracy have seen a bit of sense. I’ve finally got help, and I’m made up with the ECHO and my solicitor at Linskills for his help. It just shows if you battle it out you can come through in the end.”
A spokesman for the Department for Work and Pensions said: “We have spoken to Mr Carr, to discuss further his individual circumstances and based on the facts now presented by him, have been able to revise decisions in his favour.”

5 comments:

Fire Byrd said...

Oh send him down a coal mine, he could shuffle on his bottom!!!!
The world has gone mad no doubt about it.
x

Achelois said...

And did 'The Decision Maker' still get paid.

The world has gone mad indeed Fire Byrd.

Madison Rose said...

I suspect they just knock people back as a matter of routine - I think the attitude is "if you really need it, you'll appeal." Never mind the stress, hassle and fear that this causes sick and vulnerable people.

MissJupiter said...

@Madison, I am not in the UK, but it is a fact in the USA, that Social Security automatically refuses over 60% of applicants, including people with quadriplegia on ventilators, until they "prove their tenacity by appealing," so it does sound like the UK runs very much like the US in that respect.

Aerliss said...

Madison Rose; I absolutely agree with you there. They do the same with council tax help and housing benefit. After several of my friends applied for help with council tax and rent over the course of a few years, we noticed that the council always, always asked for additional information or made extra enquiries three times after the initial request was made. Once they asked me to clarify where money had come from that went into my current account and where the money had gone that went out of my savings account. I very pointedly, with a big red marker on my statements, explained each and every outgoing and incoming; the money went FROM the savings account and directly TO the current account on the very same day (same moment, it being online banking).

*sigh*

All they had to do was look at the dates and amounts. They were identical. I honestly think they were just hoping that we would not bother jumping through their hoops. I have since always explained, very politely, in applications for aid that I know of this tactic and request they move my applications through as quickly as they can. It's worked so far. No more additional hoops or moving of goal posts.