PIP How to Apply

Applying for Personal Independence Payment (PIP) in the UK involves several steps, from the initial phone call to potentially undergoing an assessment. Here is a detailed guide to help you navigate the process smoothly, with illustrative examples where necessary:

Step 1: Initial Preparation

Before initiating the application process, gather necessary information including:

  • Your contact details
  • National Insurance number
  • Bank or building society account number and sort code
  • Information about your doctor or healthcare professional
  • Details of any medication you are taking
  • Information about how your condition affects you daily

Example: Julia, a potential applicant, makes a list of her medications, notes down the names and contact details of her physiotherapist and general practitioner, and reflects on the daily activities she struggles with due to her condition.

Step 2: Starting Your Claim

The first official step in the application process is to contact the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). You can do this by calling them. Here are the necessary contact details as of my last update in 2021 (please verify with the official website for the most recent information):

  • Telephone: 0800 917 2222
  • Textphone: 0800 917 7777
  • NGT text relay (if you cannot hear or speak on the phone): 18001 then 0800 917 2222
  • Video relay service for British Sign Language (BSL) users - Check you can use the service.

Example: Julia calls the above number and initiates her PIP claim. She provides her personal details and answers questions about her condition.

Step 3: Completing the 'How your disability affects you' Form

After the initial call, you may be sent a form called 'How your disability affects you' (PIP2). You will need to fill this form with detailed information about how your health condition or disability affects your daily life, both on good and bad days, and over a range of activities.

Example: Julia receives the PIP2 form and starts filling it out. She makes sure to detail how her mobility issues affect various aspects of her daily life, including her inability to walk long distances and her struggles with preparing meals. She also attaches medical reports as supporting documents.

Step 4: Gather Supporting Evidence

It's crucial to gather and submit supporting evidence along with your form. This evidence can include:

  • Medical reports
  • Prescriptions
  • Care plans
  • Statements from professionals who know about your condition, like a social worker or occupational therapist

Example: Julia contacts her healthcare providers and requests copies of her latest medical reports. She also asks her physiotherapist to provide a statement explaining her current mobility limitations.

Step 5: Face-to-Face Consultation

Once the form and supporting documents are submitted, you might be invited for a face-to-face consultation with a healthcare professional. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, assessments might also be conducted over the phone or through a video call.

Example: Julia receives a letter with a date for her face-to-face consultation. She prepares by listing down specific incidents where her disability has affected her daily activities, to share with the assessor.

Step 6: Decision

After your assessment, the DWP will make a decision about your claim based on the results of the assessment and the details in your application. You will receive a letter that tells you the amount you'll get and explains the decision.

Example: A few weeks after her assessment, Julia receives a letter from the DWP explaining that she qualifies for the enhanced rate for both the daily living and mobility components of PIP. The letter outlines how they arrived at this decision based on her assessment and the evidence she provided.

Step 7: Appeals (if Necessary)

If you disagree with the decision, you have the right to challenge it by asking for a mandatory reconsideration within one month of the date you received the decision.

Example: In case Julia disagreed with the decision, she could compile additional evidence and write a detailed letter explaining why she believes the decision should be reconsidered, initiating the appeals process.


Applying for PIP in the UK can be a detailed process, necessitating careful preparation and a clear articulation of how your condition affects your daily life. Using examples and providing supporting evidence can strengthen your case and increase your chances of a successful application. It is always beneficial to consult with a professional or charitable organisation for assistance if you find the process daunting.

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