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Disability benefit awards extended by six months if due for reassessment in next three months

23 April 2020

Minister for Disabled People Justin Tomlinson today said that the DWP is automatically extending disability benefit awards by six months if they are due for reassessment in the next three months.

Giving evidence to the  Work and Pensions Select Committee today, Mr Tomlinson said that:

“What we have done, for those that would be due for a reassessment in the next three months, we’ve automatically extended their benefit by six months.

If their condition has deteriorated, and they feel they would be entitled to more money, they can still request a reassessment but otherwise they are automatically extended.

For those new claimants, the terminally ill, and for those who ask for it, we are seeking to do it by telephone, by paper based reviews adopting a very sympathetic, claimant supportive view of this because we recognise that there are increasing challenges to be able to get adequate medical evidence so we are relying very much on the claimant’s case as they explain it.”

The Minister also said that the DWP’s experiences of assessing claims by paper-based reviews during the COVID-19 outbreak will provide valuable lessons on using medical evidence and claimant evidence in a better way which should reduce the need for face-to-face assessments in the future

The Work and Pensions Committee evidence session is available from parliamentlive.tv.