Households who receive Personal Independence Payments (PIP) have been warned their payments could be stopped if they do not notify authorities about key changes to their circumstances.

Claimants on PIP have been told they must inform the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) of the changes, including going abroad, or risk having their payments stopped.

Government officials have revealed new advice to claimants, making them aware of what changes they must tell the DWP about.

Failing to alert the DWP of key changes could lead to PIP claimants losing their benefit entitlement and having their payments either paused of stopped altogether.

Included in the changes that must be reported is leaving the country, or planning to leave the country, for more than four weeks at a time.

Even if you are leaving for an extended holiday rather than a permanent move, it is a change you must alert the DWP of.

These are some of the key changes you should alert the DWP of:

  • Your personal details change - for example your name, address or doctor
  • The help you need or your condition changes
  • Your condition has worsened and you are not expected to live more than 12 months
  • You go into hospital or a care home
  • You go abroad
  • You're imprisoned or held in detention
  • Your immigration status has changed, if you are not a British citizen

Citizen’s Advice said that if you are not sure whether or not you need to report a change to the DWP, it is worth telling them anyway.

The Government’s 2023/24 PIP handbook explains: “The PIP decision letter gives details of how and when the claimant needs to tell DWP about any changes in their circumstances.

“We need to know if the claimant’s condition, the amount of help they need or their circumstances change. This is because it may change how much PIP they can get.

“It is important the claimant tells DWP straight away about any changes in their life that could affect their benefit.

“Based on these changes their benefit may go up, go down, stay the same or it may stop. If the claimant is overpaid, they will normally have to repay the money.

“Failure to tell DWP about any of these changes may result in prosecution.”

You can report changes to the DWP by calling the PIP helpline free of charge on 0800 121 4433. The helpline operates from Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm.