DLA changing to PIP in 2013

Hi - I’ve posted this in the “Living With Secondary Breast Cancer” section of the Forum, as it’s probably most relevant there, but thought I’d also put it here, as it may impact on people who don’t read the “secondaries” sections. There are a lot of parts of the Government’s Welfare Reform Bill that will have an effect on us, including the proposal that Employment Support Allowance (replacing incapacity benefit for people aged 21-64) be means-tested for people with cancer after one year, and if you live with someone who is earning £7,500 per year, your eligibility will end, no matter how many years you’ve paid into the system.

As I’m now retired, my major concern is about the proposed changes to Disability Living Allowance (DLA), which many of us can claim to meet the extra costs of care and mobility if we meet the eligibility criteria, or under “Special Rules” if we are terminally ill.

You may know that the Government is proposing in its Welfare Reform Bill to replace DLA with a new benefit Personal Independence Payment (PIP), starting next year. Many sick & disabled people in the UK are very concerned that the Government’s intention to cut the budget for this type of benefit by 20% will mean fewer of us being eligible, and the draft criteria seem to bear this out.

A group that has been involved in examining the Welfare Reform Bill have put together a simplified summary of the current draft criteria: youngspartacus.files.wordpress.c … format.pdf. The Department for Work & Pensions (DWP), that manages these benefits, has set up a consultation to find out what we think about the changes. The full DWP current draft criteria document is available on their website: dwp.gov.uk/docs/pip-second-d … ations.pdf.

I’m not sure where we’ll fit into all of this, as I haven’t read all of the eligibility criteria as yet - I’m sure BCC will also be looking at this, especially in view of the numbers of us currently receiving DLA under the “Special Rules” DS1500 process. Hopefully, the capacity to claim via a DS1500 will be transferred to PIP, but the Government is intent on using this change to make savings - there are no details, so nothing is certain.

I’m worried that we might lose our benefits next year, benefits that we rely on to pay for the extra costs of the effects of secondary breast cancer and its treatments.

I’d be interested to hear what you think.

Marilyn x

Thanks for posting this. I think I am one of those that will be affected by the changes in benefits. I was awarded DLA under special rules in July 2009. I am due for review this year and I strongly suspect that I will no longer be eligible for this benefit.


hi Marilyn
Thanks for posting,I am due for review 2013.I did not claim under special rules although I could have done.I was granted DLA indefinately but have no idea what that means.
I did try your links but could not connect to a page.Will try another way as I am really concerned about the changes. My husband and I are both retired and without DLA will have to make real cutbacks to survive.

Linda xx

Thanks Mariff. Hopefully everyone will write to their MP’s so that the Government know the extent of opposition.
What the Government is doing is despicable in my opinion. People don’t choose to get cancer, and cancer patients didn’t cause the deficit, so why are we being punished. They say we’re all in it together, but what I see are those in most desperate circumstances being made to pay, while the city fat cats just get richer.
Like AlexD I wonder if those claiming under DS1500 will be immune from these changes. Even if they don’t have to prove they cannot work, will they have to wait six months for their benefit, of be means tested?

Hi Alex & Lucinda - I got full DLA (higher rate mobility & highest rate care) under “special rules” when I was dx with bone & liver mets in 2003 (my GP signed the DS1500 form), but DWP noticed I hadn’t died by 2009 and “reviewed” my case. In effect, because no one would sign another DS1500 for me, I had to reapply in full - I was granted higher rate mobility & middle rate care (as I didn’t need night-time care) then. Thus far, the plan is to start changing over DLA to PIP in late 2013, so you might be able to renew your DLA if you get reviewed this year. We just don’t know what will happen with the “special rules” element as yet.

Sorry the links aren’t working now - they were earlier today; I’ll try to find some that work now! x

Just had a thought - the BCC moderators might have disabled the links(?) but if not, try this for the summary of draft eligibility criteria: youngspartacus.files.wordpress.com/2012/02/an-unofficial-simplified-summary-of-the-second-draft-pip-regulations-standard-format.pdf

And you can go to the Government’s DWP website to find the full draft criteria: dwp.gov.uk/docs/pip-second-draft-assessment-regulations.pdf

Hope these links work for you! x

Hi Marlif

We haven’t disabled the links, I’ve tried them and they don’t work, sorry.

Jo, Facilitator

It seems Marilf that where you quoted these links earlier on the Living with Secondary breast cancer forum that they do still work.

the link to that is:



Thanks Jo & Dawn. x

Good evening ladies

I was diagnosed with breast cancer and had mx in January this year with one node affected. Having issues with healing due to immune suppresives I have been taking for the last 16 years. Looking to have rads/maybe chemo in a couple of months time when my wound will hopefully has healed. Would I qualify for DLA as I am currently on incapacity benefit. I do need help with lifting etc and am unable to drive.

Kind regards Alanaa

Hi Alanaa

My advice to anyone who might be eligible for DLA is to fill in the application form (either on paper or online via the DirectGov website, which also has information about eligibility, qualifying times and other requrements: direct.gov.uk/en/MoneyTaxAndBenefits/BenefitsTaxCreditsAndOtherSupport/Disabledpeople/DG_10011925).

DLA is a benefit that is available for people who need extra help with home care and mobility, without means-testing (and it isn’t taxed), for people who are in or out of work, and is payable (if approved) from the date of application. So do ask for and complete/submit the application form as soon as possible.

You can get help with this form (it’s about 50 pages and quite detailed) from your local Citizens’ Advice Bureau, welfare benefits advisors or hospital/oncology social services departments, and Macmillan Cancer Support have some benefits advisors as well.

Please remember that you need to provide information about your ability to look after yourself at home and your mobility on YOUR WORST DAYS, to ensure the DWP receive the clearest information about your situation. And please think carefully about who might be best to provide the required corroborating evidence of your needs, e.g. your oncologist, GP, other health worker, etc. It really is a good idea to get some help in filling in the forms!

Marilyn x

Marylin thank you very much for your reply, it is much appreciated.

Kindest regards Alanaa x

My understanding is that ‘Special Rules’ cases will be treated the same as with DLA.


Ann x

alanaa I second all Marilyn has said.I was granted DLA indefinately in 2010 so waiting to see what happens.I work with macmillan and the benefits adviser said that cases like mine won’t be reasssed until next year as I did not claim under the 6 month rule.Anyone who claimed under the 6 month rule will be treated exactly the same as previously,though i do know of people who have been turned down on the 6 month rule,but have then been granted it on appeal; do get help from a benefits adviser,macmillan are very good.

L xx

Hi, I don’t have secondary cancer, still being treated for primary. But I do have RA, Sjogrens syndrome, Bronchiectasis with psudomonas colonies on my lungs and have mobility problems so receive DLA at the highest rate for mobility and care. My OH is my carer. My problem is I am 62 and have retired, so claim state pension. The information I have read about PIP is that only those 65 and over will not be expected to change over. Where does that leave me? Under the rules for PIP, if I am asked to change because I am under 65 (although not of working age because I am a pensioner) I might be considered as more able than I am and not receive the full amount I should be entitled to.


I originally applied for DLA in June 2010. In January this year, I got the renewal forms from them and a letter stating that the forms should be filled in immediately and that no reminders would be sent. As with the original application, one of my palliative care team completed it for me and I received notice three weeks later confirming DLA for the next three years. I have no idea whether PIP will affect me, my advisor thought not. I’m unlikely to need to apply again :-(. It is such a useful benefit and has helped me so much - I get free travel (the whole of London), cheap taxis, two for one entry to cinema and exhibitions. These have helped me greatly, especially as my health has declined, allowing me to enjoy a good social life. I am not eligible for other benefits. I hope that the rules remain the same, especially for secondary patients.