Britons with Covid can claim PIP payment of £608 a month through DWP – are you eligible?

Therese Coffey outlines the benefits of Pension Credit scheme

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PIP is a payment given by the DWP to assist people with some of the extra costs which come along with having a long term physical or mental health condition or disability.

How much someone gets from PIP depends on how their condition affects them on a daily basis, not on the condition itself.

To start receiving PIP payments, claimants have to be assessed by a health professional who will determine the level of financial support they are entitled to.

According to the latest DWP figures, there are over 2.7million people across the UK claiming PIP for either a long-term illness, disability or mental health condition.

As part of these statistics, around 20 claimants from England and Wales are now receiving PIP to assist with costs resulting from long-Covid symptoms.

This has been a recent change from the Government to address the growing number of people affected by long-term consequences from the pandemic.

The number of claimants receiving PIP due to long-Covid is expected to rise and be reflected in the DWP’s next publication of benefits figures.

These claimants could be eligible for anywhere between £23.70 and £152.15 every week in financial support from PIP.

As PIP is paid every four weeks, this would come to regular payments of between £94.80 and £608.60 each month.

In response to a parliamentary question, DWP Minister Justin Tomlinson MP outlined how PIP is given to claimants with long-Covid.

Mr Tomlinson said: “In the application process for Personal Independence Payment, a claimant’s main disabling condition is only recorded centrally on departmental computer systems at assessment.

“Disabilities are not recorded centrally at the point of application. The department does not therefore hold data on the number of applicants to PIP with particular conditions.

“Only those who have a disability assessment determination decision will have a main disabling condition recorded for them.

“This disabling condition has been available to record for PIP assessments following a computer system change in March 2021.

“Due to the nature of the qualifying period for PIP claims, these cases will all be ‘long Covid’ or ‘post-Covid syndrome’ cases rather than initial Covid-19 infections.”

Currently, 14 claimants from England are awarded PIP to deal with Covid symptoms, while 6 other claimants get it in Wales.

Those who have never applied for PIP may be eligible for payments if they have been affected by long-Covid, or if the pandemic has made their existing long-term condition even worse.

Due to the nature of Covid compared to other conditions, future claimants do not need to have a formal diagnosis of long-Covid in order to claim.

According to the PIP Assessment guidelines, which is given to DWP assessors, the nature of testing is a factor in why long-Covid is assessed differently.

It states: “Claimants do not have to have had a positive test result to be diagnosed with the syndrome; we have to remember that testing has not always been easily available”

As of today, PIP is made up of two separate parts: a daily living component and a mobility component.

For the daily living component, the weekly rate given to PIP claimants is either £60 or £89.60.

For the mobility component, the weekly rate of PIP is either £23.70 or £62.55 depending on how someone’s condition affects them.

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