Benefits reviews and reassessments

The government announced on 23 March 2020 that reviews and reassessments for disability benefits are suspended for the next 3 months.

This temporary measure, effective from Tuesday 24 March, is being taken to reassure vulnerable people about the continuity of their benefits during the coronavirus outbreak and to ensure the Department’s resources are focused on enabling access to financial support for new claimants. This follows on from a previous announcement to suspend all face-to-face assessments in order to safeguard potentially vulnerable claimants.

What this means for you

  • there will be no new reviews or reassessments across all benefits for three months – this includes Universal Credit (UC), Employment and Support Allowance (ESA), Personal Independence Payment (PIP), Disability Living Allowance, Attendance Allowance and the Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit.
  • face-to-face assessments for all sickness and disability benefits have been suspended for the next 3 months including for any new claims.
  • PIP claimants, if an assessment has already taken place this will continue to be processed. If an assessment has been scheduled, claimants will be contacted by the assessment provider to discuss how this will be taken forward.
  • ESA and UC claimants whose cases have been referred to the provider will be contacted to take this forward.

Additional information

About the suspension of reviews and assessments:

  • the suspension will be kept under regular review and extended if necessary.
  • if people experience a change in their needs they are still encouraged to contact the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) to ensure they are receiving the correct level of support.
  • where awards are due to expire, DWP will be extending end-dates so that claimants continue to receive financial support at their current rate during this period.

On Thursday 19 March it was also announced people receiving benefits do not have to attend jobcentre appointments for at least 3 months. People will continue to receive their benefits as normal, but all requirements to attend the jobcentre appointments in person are suspended.

If you have any further questions you can contact the Local Link service. The Tower Hamlets Community Advice Network website also lists a range of other organisations who can provide support.

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