Claiming PIP for Asperger (A guide)

asperger pip

This post is about claiming PIP for Asperger.

We are discussing the two main components of a PIP assessment and give our recommendations on how to fill the PIP form. 

Claiming PIP for Asperger (A guide)

Can PIP be claimed for Asperger? 

Many adults with Asperger have great difficulties in their day-to-day, therefore they are eligible to claim Personal Independence Payments (PIP). 

But claiming PIP for Asperger can be challenging, as the PIP assessment may not recognize the hidden difficulties of autistic people. 

Asperger’s Syndrome

Asperger’s syndrome is a type of autistic disorder that generally affects communication and socialization.

Those who have Asperger’s Syndrome typically view and interact with the world around them differently than others, which can cause a great deal of difficulty in relating to other people.

The distinguishing traits of Asperger’s are:

  • a singular focus on a very limited range of topics (often only one topic)
  • a disability to focus on other tasks, activities, or instructions.

This often leads to repetitive behaviors, difficulty understanding humor or any other non-direct form of communication.

Another common trait of Asperger’s in difficulty empathizing with others.

Because Asperger’s does not typically cause language delays, it is often seen as a mild type of autistic spectrum disorder.

However, for those who deal with the condition, it can have a significant impact on daily living.

Adults with Asperger’s Syndrome commonly experience depression and other mental illness, as well as a sense of alienation. 

Claiming PIP for Asperger

PIP awards are designed to give claimants greater independence through financial control.

But for individuals with Asperger, the application process can be extremely demanding. 

Autistic Disorders are not well understood, and some of the questions in the application form are tricky.

PIP for Asperger’s Syndrome is an unfair process. If a person can turn on a microwave, this doesn’t mean that he or she has cooking skills.

People tend to overestimate their own abilities and can’t see themselves as others can. 

How to claim PIP for Asperger

PIP has two areas where people can be eligible for a payment. These are ‘Daily Living’ and ‘Mobility’.

For each component, there is a list of statements known as descriptors. Each descriptor is worth a certain number of points.

Your overall point score determines whether you are entitled to the Mobility and/or Daily Living components. The score also determines which rate you will receive.

The telephone number to call to start a new claim is 0800 917 2222. They take some details (such as name/address/GP/National Insurance Number/Bank Details) and then send you a form to complete.

When you receive the form, you get a generic guide with prompts. You need to think about how things are when they are at the most difficult.

Obviously you mustn’t lie, but stating that you can manage a task when it is a challenge at times won’t get you any support.

Claiming PIP for Asperger (A guide)

Daily Living activities

  1. Preparing food

Think about preparing fresh food from scratch.

Think about things like knowing how to get started on the task, your ability to organize yourself and get all the ingredients and utensils you need. 

Are you able to tell whether food is cooked? Also, think about your ability to chop and use of hot pans. Are you aware of safety issues?

Do you need someone to guide, supervise or check up on you? Do you forget when to eat? 

  1. Monitoring your health condition

Can you remember to take any medication? Are you able to manage your time and remember any appointments?

Do you need someone to remind you to attend appointments?

  1. Washing and Bathing

Are you aware when you need to wash, or do you wash as part of your routine?

Do you need someone to guide, supervise or remind you that you need to wash? 

  1. Managing toilet needs

Describe any issues you may have with managing your toilet needs. Does somebody have to remind you to use the toilet? 

Women should include any issues with managing their menstrual cycle

  1. Dressing and Undressing

Do you dress appropriately for the weather? Do you feel the cold? Are you ok wearing a coat or clothes with buttons?

Do you recognize when your clothes are dirty and need changing?

  1. Communicating Verbally

Think about how a person talks to you and how much you understand from what they are saying.

What happens if they give you too much information in one go?

How do you manage when somebody speaks really fast, loud, or about something you are unfamiliar with?

What is your reaction to technical language, idioms or jargon? Do you often miss what other people are trying to communicate? 

Think about when you talk to others. Do you often get a negative reaction when you are communicating with others and are you aware why?

Do you get anxious communicating with others? Is it emotionally/mentally draining or stressful?

Do you avoid communicating with certain people due to these difficulties? Do you need extra time to process what people are saying?

  1. Reading and Understanding Signs, Symbols and Words

Unfortunately, people often score 0 at this question, as the assessor simply asks them if they can read and they say yes.

Think about when you receive an important email or letter, and any support you might need to understand what it means and what you have to do.

Think about how it is when you have a lot of information to understand and picking up on important pieces of information. 

Is understanding written information stressful? Do you tend to avoid activities where you have to deal with written communication?

Are you dependent on someone to support you?

  1. Engaging with others face to face

Do you experience anxiety when mixing with people? People with autism can dislike mixing with others, particularly strangers.

Do you avoid situations because of possibly having to interact with other people?

Do you need strategies such as headphones to avoid possible interactions? 

How are you with crowds and confined social spaces, such as cinemas and buses?

Do you make/change arrangements around whether you will need to mix with others?

  1. Making budgeting decisions

Do you see something you like and immediately buy it? Can you manage your bills?

Can you understand the value of money and how to budget it? Do you know how to keep your money safe?

Mobility activities

  1. Planning and following journeys

Are you able to use public transport or do you walk everywhere? Do you need any support from others to go out or use transport?

Think about unfamiliar places and planning your journey to go somewhere new.

A lot of people struggle to go somewhere new due to anxiety, so planning an unfamiliar journey can be overwhelming. 

 Do you struggle with noise, lots of people, the possibility of being bumped into or knocked?

Some people manage this by only traveling at certain times of the day.

  1. Moving Around

This part is if you have difficulties with physical mobility.

Claiming PIP for Asperger (A guide)

Don’t rush to fill out the form, take your time and read each question carefully.

Ask for help from a friend or a family member, as they see you and the way your condition affects you from a different perspective.

When you are done, sign the form and send it to the address written on the envelope from the DWP. 

The decision about your entitlement is made by a decision-maker at the Department for Work and Pensions.

In about 12 weeks since the date of the application, you will receive a formal letter with an answer.

If you disagree with the decision, you have the right to ask them to reconsider it. 

Conclusions

Claiming and winning PIP for Asperger can be challenging, but possible. When talking about autism in adults, appearances can be deceptive and the application process hard, emotionally speaking.

Anyone claiming PIP for Asperger should consider asking for help from healthcare workers that have experience with both this disorder and PIP claims. 

Please feel free to comment on the content or ask any questions in the comments section below.

FAQ about PIP for Asperger

Does Aspergers qualify for disability?

Asperger is recognized by the Social Security Administration (SSA) as a possible disability and may be able to qualify you for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits.

What benefits can I claim with Aspergers?

The benefits that you can claim with Aspergers include Universal Credit, ESA, PIP, letter templates, Carer’s Allowance, benefit appeals, and community care.

Can autistic adults claim PIP?

Some autistic adults can receive benefits or PIP (Personal Independence Payments) to support them.

The assessments for PIP may not recognize the hidden difficulties of autistic people.

Can you claim benefits for autism?

Benefits are awarded based on mobility and daily care needs, not based on a diagnosis.

So having a diagnosis of an autism spectrum disorder will not automatically lead to an award. 

What is Asperger syndrome in simple terms?

Asperger syndrome is a form of autism spectrum disorder.

It affects the way in which a person understands, talks and acts with other people.

A person who has Asperger syndrome may not fit in well with other people and may be unable to act like everyone else in different social situations.

Is autism a medical condition?

Autism is a developmental disorder characterized by difficulties with social interaction and communication, and by restricted and repetitive behavior.

Recommendations

  1. Uniquely Human: A Different Way of Seeing Autism
  2. Living Life with Autism: The World Through My Eyes
  3. The Asperkid’s (Secret) Book of Social Rules: The Handbook of Not-So-Obvious Social Guidelines for Tweens and Teens With Asperger Syndrome 
  4. The Autistic Brain
  5. Look Me in the Eye: My Life with Asperger’s 

Resources

  1. PIP Guide By The Asperger Service
  2. Claiming ESA and PIP diagnosed with Aspergers – Autism community
  3. Personal Independence Payment – National autistic society

Claiming PIP for Asperger (A guide)

Juanita Agboola

Juanita Agboola is the editor in chief of HFNE and an expert in mental health online. She has been writing about online behavior, mental health and psychology issues since 2012. All Guides are reviewed by our editorial team which constitutes various clinical psychologists, PhD and PsyD colleagues.