After two-year battle disabled autistic woman finally gets £13,000 pay-out

A disabled autistic woman received a £13,000 PIP pay-out after proving that she was unable to work.

Maureen Ringland, who is severely autistic, received the pay-out after a judge ruled that following a two-year battle, she was entitled to full disability benefits.

Maureen, who is a mum of six and grandmother of eleven, stated that her appeal had succeeded because of the determination and love of her husband Alan, as well as the help from her local MP Jess Phillips and their team.

Alan, speaking on behalf of Maureen said that it had been a tough two years with them needing to rely on friends and family to help them financially. The couple almost lost their car because they were struggling. They also came close to having the gas and electricity shut off because they had no money.

As well as an emotional struggle the past two years had been financially crippling because they had to return to the court and keep appealing. For people who are already struggling with their health, the system made things even worse.

Two years ago, when the Disability Living Allowance (DLA) was replaced by the Personal Independence Payment (PIP) Maureen had been entitled to receive support for her disabilities for her entire adult life. This was due to the ongoing challenges she faces. 

However, after her interview with a PIP assessment officer her case was reviewed. Maureen was deemed fit for work and under the PIP assessment she was awarded no points. This meant that Maureen lost all her allowances at the same time. Alan’s carer allowance was also stopped.

The total amount of loss of benefits amounted to £207 per week. This was made up of a daily carers allowance of £83 per week, mobility allowance of £58 per week and Alan’s carer’s allowance of £66 per week.

Alongside health conditions including Reynaud’s Disease and Hyperhidrosis Maureen was also diagnosed with severe autism and generalised anxiety disorder. PIP dismissed medics and psychiatrists reports because Maureen can sometimes appear very capable.

Alan stated that Maureen is a ‘people pleaser’ and wants to make people happy. If someone were to ask her if she could do something, she would most likely say yes because she wanted to please them. One of the questions she was asked was whether she could manage money to which she replied in the affirmative. Because of this she was deemed to be capable of managing a household budget.

Alan realises that Maureen can do quite a lot, but she is not able to do basic things to keep herself safe. Straightforward tasks can cause her real issues.

PIP had messed up, he said, and it has taken the couple two years to reach a point where they recognised her needs.

Maureen has since been told at her court hearing that she is after all entitled to enhanced contributions for her daily care as well as her mobility needs. The court has restored her complete package of disability payments.

The ruling also backdated her claim to the date her benefits were stopped which gives Maureen a pay-out of more than £13,000.

For Alan and Maureen, the ruling is nothing short of sheer relief. Alan says that there are many people with hidden disabilities like Maureen. To look at them, all appears well but they simply cannot cope with everyday tasks and this makes them vulnerable.

The couple’s MP Jess Phillips and her team played a large part in supporting Alan and Maureen. They can now repay people money they owe and get back to a normal life.

Jess Phillips stated that she and her team were thrilled that the couple had finally got justice. The first thing Alan and Maureen did when the payment was processed was to visit the former MP’s constituency and deliver a thank you card along with treats for the team who helped them.


Go Back to Previous Page