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Atos medical

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Anyone in the UK on invalidity benefit who has failed the Atos medical and had their benefit rescinded.
Has anyone managed to successfully appeal and if so how long did it take?


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Hey Terry,

I know of several people who have failed (I think with specifically mental health problems you are almost expected to fail) but who have had their benefits reinstated either on the first or second appeal, but the process took many months (not helpful if you are desperate for the money).

I don't know much about it though, but I would involve your CAB and any other charity in your area you can and then work with the one who seems most effective. I think, from the people I know, they got copies of the report made about them from the medical and often it was inaccurate. They bank on people not appealing because it saves money, so definitely appeal.

If this is you going through this, I'm sorry you're faced with it :( I hope you manage to get it sorted soon. If it's someone you know, I hope they manage to get it sorted soon too.


You might want to consider contacting Atos and getting information about the person who did the assessment - i.e. were they an expert in their field - did they have a mental health qualification or just a general nurse qualification. In my experience general nurses do not have the same level of knowledge as a psychiatric nurse / mental health nurse and I believe at recruitment for these diasbility assessors, they do not specify a mental health qualification. You wouldn't get a psychiatrist to assess an appendicitis, so why is it ok for a general nurse to assess outside of their speciality.


See the forum at abcofesa for much info and personal feedback from those who have gone through the process. Apparently success rates on appeal are high which is one of the reasons why ATOS is attracting condemnation from disability groups, doctors and MPs.
I know someone who just got ESA without even having to go through the assessment on mental health grounds. Just try and send as much supporting evidence with your your claim form as possible ie psychiatrists letters and reports.

I haven't been called upon to claim yet as I am still on Incapacity but not really looking forward to it!!


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We're in the middle of the appeal, can you believe this; the assessment was done by a nurse and not even a psychiatric nurse! :mad:


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Flippingheck Terry. You could actually report her to the NMC for not being competent to do that assessment.
Flippingheck Terry. You could actually report her to the NMC for not being competent to do that assessment.
Actually, no. the GMC has nothing to do with ATOS or the DWP or these medical assessments. They are not diagnosing, or advising, or treating. They are "assessing the effect of the disability on the person's day-to-day life"
- badly
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It is my intent to write a thorough guide on this issue and how I manage to get clients into the support group on mental health grounds with out an ATOS medical even occurring. But I am unwell right now mainly because I have lost clients to this odious system and stress has broke my mind again. If you really can't wait then I suggest this site. http://www.benefitsandwork.co.uk/ However you have to pay £20 for access for a year. But it has the most up to date guides that many professionals even use. With step by step guidance and clarification of each question the appeals process and the tribunal. It is certainly better than taking out a payday loan or wrestling with rent arrears. If you don't get it right the first time, the system is entirely stacked against you in a manner that would make Kafka have a heart attack.

If you are in a state of Nil income go look up Short Term Benefit Advances. They are the new Crisis loan. But you are not told about anything useful as the DWP operates on a policy of not volunteering advice unless directly asked. Since most don't know what to ask the likelihood of getting useful advice is slim. Here is another useful site with advice that is pretty current.


Lastly to any one who wants to espouse uninformed views born of Daily Mail bigotry in regards to welfare, read this and keep your judgmentalism to your self.


Terry the jury is out on how long it takes, there is such a backlog of appeals and further cuts to the Jobcentre itself who can barely process the volumes they have now. A year has started to become the norm. Hopefully the above links prove helpful in your fight.

Butterfly you are actually not correct, even though the Atos is said to be a medical it is not. On paper it is actually a disability assessment. This is why Midwives can justify their conclusion as they have had in house training from ATOS to be a disability analyst. They are meant to have Mental Health Champions, but in my years of doing this I have never encountered one. They use Lima software which comes from American insurance companies and was successfully sued against in America for operating disability denial factories. This is why you read stories about a person with Parkinson's disease being found fit for work and having to be retested even though parkinson's is a degenerative illness. The GMC/NMC is pretty toothless and the various laws that exist right now are some what prohibitive of attempting a negligence suit. Any complaint you make may simply be construed as 'vexatious' as you are simply angry at denial of income.

It is all rather grim.
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Oops, that would have been my fault - sorry for digging up an old thread, I never do look at dates. But ATOS are as shite now as they ever were, and Adam's advice is sound.

And, it is shocking how they get away with it. There was a case of a mental health medical, resulting in a claim being refused, which lasted not 10 minutes and was conducted by a physiotherapist. This one was overturned on appeal - but that requires a claimant to be able to face going through the appeals process, putting together a cogent submission, and presenting themselves to a tribunal panel.... All of which costs time, stress, worry, anguish and money. All of which could be saved if they just sorted out the flaming system...

Which doesn't mean just kicking everyone off it - Mr Duncan Smith.
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