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DLA - mobility claim

(16 Posts)
ToffeeWhirl Wed 17-Jun-15 17:38:06

I am just wading through my DLA renewal form and have come up short at the mobility bit. Last time, I was awarded low-rate mobility because my son (whose primary diagnosis is HFA) was housebound by his anxiety. Thanks to the work of his therapist, he is now able to leave the house, but only for short distances and only with preparation and support. He can now walk to the local park, which I have worked out is over 200 metres away (it's roughly 482 metres if I google it).

The form asks if he can walk over 200 metres, so does this mean that if I state the maximum distance he has just started to walk (occasionally), he will lose the DLA mobility bit? Seems unfair to him when he is frequently unable to leave the house at all because of anxiety attacks (which I have noted on the form).

Indantherene Wed 17-Jun-15 17:41:06

There are 2 bits to mobility. One asks if he is physically capable of walking, and this is the section that asks about distance. The other bit asks if he needs supervision to keep him safe. That is the bit you fill in for a child with HFA.

I get lrm for my 8 yo and my 26 yo, both with ADHD/anxiety.

bitbap18 Wed 17-Jun-15 20:15:42

I've always been told to think of the worst day and and base answers on that. No two days are the same, and just because he can, doesn't mean to say he will.

bedelia Wed 17-Jun-15 20:23:19

Toffee you don't have to tick the boxes on those sections. You could leave them all blank and write beside them something along the lines of "regularly and unpredictably refuses to walk" if that is what happens.

Check out the Cerebra DLA guide (in particular, the mobility appendix near the end) which should help you work out how best to explain DS's mobility problems.

ToffeeWhirl Wed 17-Jun-15 23:03:54

Thanks for your help everyone. I will leave the boxes blank and just add Cerebra's suggested line about refusing to walk (which sums up DS1 perfectly). I panicked when I realised that the local park was over 200 metres away and thought that would somehow invalidate my claim, but now realise I don't have to mention that anyway, as the key point is that he is unpredictable and if he is having an anxiety attack he won't go outside the door, let alone to the local park.

bitbap - "just because he can, doesn't mean to say he will." grin I like this - so true!

AndNowItsSeven Sat 20-Jun-15 23:44:33

The distance criteria relates only to high rate mob, not low.

ToffeeWhirl Sun 21-Jun-15 00:14:56

Ah, that's very helpful to know, AndNow. I won't fret about it anymore. Thanks.

AndNowItsSeven Sun 21-Jun-15 09:10:39

Good, from what you have written your ds is still entitled to LRM. If he "needs supervision to walk an unfamiliar route" for example he will qualify.

ToffeeWhirl Sun 21-Jun-15 10:36:51

Well, he just wouldn't walk an unfamiliar route on his own at all, so yes, he does need supervision in those circumstances. I've taken a break from the form for a couple of days, but will start again on it today. Can't believe how many pages of letters and reports I will have to submit with it too - I don't think they'll fit in the envelope!

AndNowItsSeven Sun 21-Jun-15 19:13:41

Exactly so you will be fine, renewals are usually a lot quicker than first claims. One of my dd's was recent awarded till she was 16 , it's such a relief to not have to fill in pages and pages again.

AndNowItsSeven Sun 21-Jun-15 19:14:36

Btw I meant my post to sound supportive not condescending. smile

NoHaudinMaWheest Sun 21-Jun-15 20:14:44

Toffee a bit late but your ds definitely still qualifies. My ds still does. He manages to go to school and 1 or 2 other familiar places on his own but at a recent uni open day he wouldn't leave my side. He wouldn't even let me rest my wonky legs by sitting out of a long queue while he kept the place even though I was only a couple of yards away.
Good luck with the form. It might be quicker, easier to get the renewal but I found filling it in depressing as I was re-examining everything which had just become normal.

ToffeeWhirl Sun 21-Jun-15 20:43:50

Don't worry, your post sounded very supportive and not in the least condescending, AndNow. smile

Thanks for the support, NoHaudin. Ds1 has just started attending a special school, but he has to be driven there and collected by his Dad and me. He will travel to my Mum's, which is a two-hour drive away, but, again, has to be driven by Dad and usually won't leave the house once he's there. He only goes there because it's familiar and, at his most ill, couldn't even go there.

He managed to go to our nearest Asda yesterday because we needed to buy him some cheap PE kit for his new school (I can't work because of his needs, so we have to buy everything cheap). In a burst of newfound confidence, he agreed to come with us, but could only manage five or ten minutes in there and then had to sit in the car with his Dad, waiting for us. He refused to go out at all for the rest of the weekend because his anxiety was so bad.

Mind you, Asda is pretty stressful for anyone!

Good to hear your DS is attending university open days now, even if he won't leave your side at the moment. Isn't it amazing that he is even considering university after all you've been through?

Yes, it is depressing filling in the form. Am doing it over several days and rewarding myself with a glass of wine or two afterwards.

WellTidy Mon 22-Jun-15 09:40:12

Justw anted to add my support to you on filling in the form. We have just finished our first application for DLA for our 3yo DS (no dx as yet, but IMHO cealrly ASD, severe speech and language delay/verbal dyspraxia on top). Its taken three nights. No idea if we will be successful, but its been hard filling in the form. not just because of its length and the amount of questions. But in realising just how severely affected by ASD our DS is when you think about iit all.

ToffeeWhirl Mon 22-Jun-15 13:59:30

Thanks, Well. I have set aside more time this afternoon to have another bash at the form.

The hardest thing about it is not actually all the information and report writing: it's seeing in black and white how much your child struggles. I'm more used to it now (DS is 15) and DH and I have developed a black humour to cope with it, but sometimes I'm still caught out. I think it's even harder during your child's early years, when you are just coming to terms with it yourself (and often don't know what you are up against).

thanks for you, WellTidy.

WellTidy Mon 22-Jun-15 14:51:55

Thanks Toffee. flowers for you too. I hope you don't have to fill in the form any more times than this time!

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