Rather more than we bargained for..
Martin was in the relatively happy position of going into the appeal with 11 points for daily living and 14 for mobility. Our submission explained that there were four areas where we said that additional points should have been scored.
To try to ward off potential thoughts of disturbing the existing award of enhanced rate mobility, I explained why he should have scored more here too.
He was in a recently prescribed wheelchair, largely because of his heart disease, but also suffers with bad gastric problems and paranoid schizophrenia. At the start of the hearing, the judge explained that they had been tempted to quite easily find him 2 additional points and send him on his way with a four year award, but they were mindful of what could happen when that came up for renewal.
The judge recognised me from a previous visit to East London. I guess they don't get many reps travelling from Wales. He said that we had made some powerful points in our submission, and that they wanted to hear more.
During the hearing, Martin began to struggle (there was often vomiting during our calls). We had to get to the toilet quickly.
The judge wanted all our papers out of the room; usually it is just bags (in case you have a recording device in there). On reflection, I should have understood why he wanted everything out. Once out of the toilet, we got word to the tribunal that we were good to resume, but nothing happened, for a long time. So long that I stuck my head into the hearing room, which I am generally loath to do. The judge was at the clerk's table, typing (unusual). He said that they had allowed Martin's appeal, with him scoring 11 million points (his words).
I was asked back in on my own just to pick up the copies of the decision. The said he doubted that he had ever scored anyone 27 points for daily living. Mobility had gone up too from 14 to 22 points. The decision was the most strongly worded I can remember seeing, in support of an indefinite award. The judge really had gone out of his way to be helpful, explaining in the decision that the health professional had gravely underestimated the extent of mental disablement.
Martin was relieved and very pleased.