Face-to-face assessment FAQs
You may have questions about the face-to-face assessment process. Here are a selection of some commonly asked questions and answers to help you. Simply click on a question to see the answer.
We are currently only carrying out face-to-face assessments at our assessment centres. This is so we can ensure assessments are carried out in a Covid-19 controlled environment.
If you have any concerns about travelling to the assessment centre, please contact us straightaway. This is so we can discuss what support may be available.
You may find it helpful to visit the Safer Travel Guidance for Passengers. This contains lots of information on how to stay safe when travelling on public transport, such as wearing a face covering, regularly sanitising your hands, and maintaining social distancing.
If you, or anybody within your household, is experiencing one or more of the symptoms for Covid-19, you must not attend your face-to-face assessment. Please contact us as soon as possible so that we can rearrange your appointment. This will not affect your PIP claim.
We have put a range of measures in place so that face-to-face assessments can take place as safely as possible.
To reduce the risk of anyone spreading or getting COVID-19, you must:
- not arrive more than 10 minutes early
- use the hand sanitisers provided
- follow any signs and instructions displayed within the assessment centre, for instance there may be one-way systems in place
There will be additional cleaning of high touch areas and assessment rooms.
Face coverings must be worn at all times by staff and visitors to the assessment centre.
You, and anyone who comes with you to your assessment, must wear a suitable face covering. By face covering, we mean something which safely covers the nose and mouth. You can find government guidance here:
If you do not already have a face covering, a disposable face mask can be provided when you arrive at the assessment centre. Assessment centre staff will also be required to wear a face covering at all times.
Please contact us straightaway if you, or anyone attending with you, have a reason for not wearing a suitable face covering.
Our health professionals will be tested for Covid-19 in line with public health advice. This means that they are instructed to stay at home and get tested if they are displaying symptoms, have been in close contact with a confirmed case, or have been told by NHS Contact Tracing services to isolate.
Unlike other appointments with health professionals, our health professionals do not provide treatment or hands-on care, so they will be able to social distance throughout the assessment.
To reduce the amount of time you will have to wait, we would strongly encourage you not to arrive more than 10 minutes before your appointment start time.
If possible, please come to your assessment alone. If you need to have someone with you for support, you can bring one adult.
Please do not bring children with you. If you cannot make childcare arrangements, please contact us as soon as possible so that we can discuss the best way to carry out your assessment.
We will refund your and your companion's travel expenses if you travel to the appointment by public transport, or pay for your mileage and parking if you drive there. Please fill in the claim form you received with your appointment letter and return it to us with all tickets and receipts for the public transport or parking. Use the envelope provided in your appointment letter – it does not need a stamp.
If you need to travel to your assessment by private taxi, it is important for this request to be made in advance. All requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis and in line with the current Covid guidance.
Your assessment will be carried out by one of our health professionals. All our health professional are fully qualified and registered nurses, occupational therapists, physiotherapists or paramedics.
Yes, the health professional will have seen your ‘How your disability affects you’ form and any supporting information you sent in as part of your claim.
Our health professionals come from a variety of backgrounds and are specially trained in carrying out functional assessments. They are there to assess how your health condition or disability affects you and they have knowledge of a wide range of health conditions and disabilities.
If you have additional evidence that you have not already submitted, please bring this with you and tell the health professional. They will ask you to send it to the DWP after your assessment.
You can have your assessment audio recorded. If you would like to do this, please contact us as soon as possible before your assessment so that we can arrange this for you.
After your appointment, you will receive a link to your recording by text message or email, and a separate text message with a one-time password. The password will expire after 24 hours and can only be used once to access and download your recording. This is to protect you and the information you provided at your appointment.
If you would like a CD copy of the recording, please let the health professional know. We will also keep a copy of the recording.
After your assessment, if you have any difficulties accessing your recording, or need a CD copy, please contact us.
The recording will not be used by DWP to make a decision on your benefit claim. However, the recording may be used to assist with complaint resolution and/or any appeal proceedings.