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Moving from DLA to PIP

This advice applies to Wales

PIP (Personal Independence Payment) is the benefit that’s gradually replacing DLA (Disability Living Allowance) for people aged 16 or older.

If you were born before 9 April 1948, you can't move to PIP - you can keep getting and renewing your DLA.

For everyone else aged 16 and over, at some point you’ll need to claim PIP instead of DLA - even if you have a ‘lifetime’ or ‘indefinite’ award for DLA. The DWP expect this to happen in the next few years.

If you’ve reached State Pension age and your DLA ended more than a year ago, you can’t claim DLA or PIP. You’ll have to claim Attendance Allowance instead - check if you can claim Attendance Allowance.

Check when you have to move to PIP

Your DLA will end when the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) send you a letter asking you to claim PIP instead.

The DWP will automatically send you a letter when any of the following happen:

  • you reach the end of the fixed period of your DLA award
  • you turn 16 - unless you're terminally ill
  • you report a change in your ability to do everyday tasks or get around - or the DWP finds out about a change

Even if none of these happen, at some point the DWP will send a letter to everyone aged 16 or over who was born on or after 9 April 1948. The DWP expect this to happen in the next few years.

Claiming PIP before you have to

If you’re aged 16 or over, you can choose to apply for PIP even if the DWP hasn’t sent you a letter yet - this will end your DLA.

You could end up losing money if you claim before you have to. Get help from an adviser if you’re thinking of making a claim before you’re asked to by the DWP.

Check how to move from DLA to PIP

If the DWP send you a letter asking you to claim PIP, you should start your claim within 4 weeks. Call the PIP enquiry line if you need more time. The DWP might give you an extension and continue to pay your DLA.

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) enquiry line

Telephone: 0800 121 4433
Textphone: 0800 121 4493

Relay UK - if you can't hear or speak on the phone, you can type what you want to say: 18001 then 0800 121 4433

You can use Relay UK with an app or a textphone. There’s no extra charge to use it. Find out how to use Relay UK on the Relay UK website.

Video relay - if you use British Sign Language (BSL). 

You can find out how to use video relay on YouTube.

Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm

Calls are free from mobiles and landlines.

If you don’t claim PIP within 4 weeks of the letter, the DWP will pause your DLA claim and stop your payments. If you claim PIP in the 4 weeks after your DLA was paused, the DWP will pay you the DLA you would have got if they didn’t pause it. If it’s been more than 4 weeks since your DLA was paused, you can still claim PIP but you won’t be paid the DLA you would have got.

Check how to claim PIP.

If the DWP decide you can get PIP

You’ll get one more DLA payment after the DWP confirm you can get PIP. Your first PIP payment will be 4 weeks after your final DLA payment.

If you’re terminally ill, the DWP will usually process your application more quickly. You’ll get your first PIP payment the Tuesday after either the DWP confirm you can get PIP or your final DLA payment date - whichever comes first.

If the DWP decide you can’t get PIP

Many people on DLA will qualify for PIP but it isn’t guaranteed. If the DWP say you can’t get PIP, your DLA will stop - but you can challenge the decision. Check how to challenge a PIP decision.

If you have a Motability vehicle

Your mobility will be reassessed when you move to PIP. You’ll only qualify for the Motability Scheme if you’re given the higher rate for mobility (known as the ‘enhanced rate’).

This rate is harder to get on PIP, which means you might not be able to keep your vehicle.

If you don’t get the enhanced rate, you’ll have to return your vehicle.

If you’re asked to return your Motability vehicle

You should return your vehicle within 8 weeks of your DLA payments stopping - or 26 weeks if you joined Motability before 2014.

You might be entitled to a one-off payment from Motability when you return your vehicle, depending on its condition and when you joined Motability. If you joined Motability before 2014 and you keep your car for 26 instead of 8 weeks, you’ll get a smaller payment.

You can find out how much you’ll get when you return your vehicle on the Motability website.

If you got a lower rate of PIP than you expected, you can challenge the decision about the amount of PIP you’ll get. You need to do this within 1 month of the date on your decision letter.

Get help from an adviser before you ask the DWP to reconsider because there’s a small chance you’ll lose what you’ve been given.

You’ll still need to return your vehicle within the deadline while you’re waiting for a decision.

You can find out more about returning your vehicle on the Motability website.

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