DLA Delay

Right I gathered my courage and rang the DLA helpline. Now they recieved my application on 6 Nov 2009.  They wrote to acknowledge it on 17 Nov.  Then they wrote on 29 Dec to apologise for not having given me a decision and I haven’t heard from them since.

So I was on hold for a good 15-20 minutes waiting to speak to someone due to high volume of calls. This in itself might be a clue.

When a lady finally answered she was kind of quiet on my phone and mumbled something which, flustered, I assumed was asking for my reference number as that’s what it says you’ll need to state on the letter.  But no, she said in a rather patronising and fed up sort of tone “The … LAST name … of the customer … you … are …calling about”.

Well once she’s asked me lots of security type questions and had my records up she thawed a little.

She can’t tell me why I haven’t heard anything since the end of December or why there’s been a delay because “that’s with the Decision Makers”.  But she could tell me that in the last few days they’ve requested a GP’s report.  This has me a bit gobsmacked because last time I applied they requested that within a week.  This time it’s taken 3 months. Yikes.

So in a way it’s bad news because it’s going to take a while longer yet to get a decision.  But in another way it’s good news because it’s not like they had already turned me down and my letter got lost in the post (paranoid!).

Hope my doc still has her copy of my application after 3 months. But she’ll most likely ring me if not because she’s nice like that.

Sounds to me like DWP have a massive backlog. Or my application got buried on someone’s desk.  I don’t know what that means in terms of how long I’ll have to wait now but at I know it’s still grinding it’s way through the system (like a glacier).  Well at least I’m used to waiting and moving slowly eh?


7 Responses to “DLA Delay”

  1. 1 Jozephine February 20, 2010 at 10:20 am

    I wonder if the delay is due to the change from Incapacity Benefit to the new one (forgotten what it’s called)? Perhaps they’ve borrowed the DLA staff to help deal with it.

    It’s not good is it?

    And, like you, I get frustrated with staff who you would think are trained to work with disabled people but are just darned ignorant and rude.

    Sending happy thoughts.

    • 2 rachelcreative February 22, 2010 at 9:58 am

      Could be couldn’t it? I wonder if we’ll ever know.

      It always amazes me that someone working on a helpline for people with disabilites (of all kinds) who may need special help can be so poor at communicating with people. I guess there are reasons why that happens.

  2. 3 ashysheela February 20, 2010 at 10:40 am

    the whole system is not set up to work for us… seems wierd that they don’t start the process before the award runs out, to give continuity. Do people who have motability cars have to give them back while they wait for a new decision? Seems very inconvenient… it took nearly a year for me to eventually get the cash, though that is because i had to go to tribunal. Nice lump sum but not exactly providing cash to those in need, when they need it, is it? anyway, sorry, mini rant!

    I am sure your doc will do her best for you, as long as she has not been too swayed by the recent visit and says something positive :/

    Hope it comes through for you soon, and you can forget about it again for a while.

    • 4 rachelcreative February 22, 2010 at 9:56 am

      Well they sent the form six months before it was due to end. But the danger is if you reapply too early and then decline you you lose your award from that moment. So I waited until 6 weeks before it was due to end but I wasn’t well and it slowed Growler down on completing the form as there was so much happening. So they didn’t get the new form until after my current award had stopped.

      But even if I’d applied a month before it ended sounds like I’d still have had a delay. Sigh.

      I thought about the danger of my doc seeing an improvement but she knows that I’m still struggling. I hope she doesn’t over egg that because a week later I feel rotten 😦 I’ve had a crappy few days in fact.

      Fingers crossed everything will be ok.

  3. 5 Dominique February 20, 2010 at 5:28 pm

    When I read what you are going through, my stomach just gets all bunched up in knots. God I pray that in America we do not implement Governmental insurance.

    It may take a long time to get approved here for disability, but once we do at least we have decent healthcare.

    This system in the UK/Europe just seems to be quite challenging to say the least.

    I really hope that when the news comes, it is good news, and you will get the help you need.

    • 6 rachelcreative February 22, 2010 at 10:01 am

      Well it’s not a perfect system here but I feel fortunate to have the social care and health service that we do in the UK. I just wish that attempts to tighten up against fraudulent claims didn’t make it so tough for those who genuinely need the help.

      Thanks I hope its good news too!

  4. 7 ashysheela February 22, 2010 at 10:04 am

    Hmm, i am sure your doc has more nous than most and it will be fine. Six months before the end is a bit early (and risky), you are right.

    Really hope you feel less crappy again soon – even when you expect a crash it can be a shock and doesn’t make it any less traumatic… i feel grumpy for you!

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