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Life Certificate/ Proof of Life re UK State Pension

Life Certificate/ Proof of Life re UK State Pension

Old May 2nd 2024, 12:07 pm
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Smile Re: Life Certificate/ Proof of Life re UK State Pension

Originally Posted by Bealinehx
I think that the Life Certificate is sent every two years. I'm waiting until August when I will make a Skype call to DWP. For the life of me (excuse then) why can't the DWP move away from snail mail?
Seems to be every year now! They stopped my wifes pension this month but phone call got it sorted within 10 minutes! got to send POL forms back but not a problem. told me the POL forms were mailed to us on December 13 2023! Told him how the postal systems works here ( or doesn't) and he said that helps explain why he had been getting plenty calls from the Philippines. I'm now going to call up each January to check as they had sent me a POL and my pension due next week would have been stopped.
I cannot fault the attitude and help from the DWP call centre staff, they are so understanding and apologise for the anxiety the stoppage of pensions causes.
I asked about sending notification of POL via email, using the Government Gateway for security but he had no idea why, but said, jokingly, it's an obvious solution but you're dealing with HM Government!
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Old May 2nd 2024, 1:00 pm
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Default Re: Life Certificate/ Proof of Life re UK State Pension

I find interactions with DWP quite bizarre at times. I made a Skype call a couple of weeks ago had a conversation with a gentleman who seem to have a serious issue with breathing. He was unaware that we in the Philippines qualify for the annual increases in pensions. He went on to inform me that no one in the Philippines will receive Proof of Life correspondence this year. Quite frankly I take that with a pinch of salt and will contact DWP again in July.
Is this a symptom of the Work From Home culture?
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Old May 2nd 2024, 1:22 pm
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Default Re: Life Certificate/ Proof of Life re UK State Pension

Originally Posted by Bealinehx
I find interactions with DWP quite bizarre at times. I made a Skype call a couple of weeks ago had a conversation with a gentleman who seem to have a serious issue with breathing. He was unaware that we in the Philippines qualify for the annual increases in pensions. He went on to inform me that no one in the Philippines will receive Proof of Life correspondence this year. Quite frankly I take that with a pinch of salt and will contact DWP again in July.
Is this a symptom of the Work From Home culture?
That is definitely different from my experience. I've called them every year for the last 6/7 years for my POL and the last 2 years for my wifes. Never had anything but politeness and concern. Yesterday, Dan said to my wife he would re-instate the payments and did she know she would have the increase included? So you could be correct re the working from home as probably calls just get sent to the first available agent. My copies of the POL forms were in my email this morning so off to get notarized and then shipped back via DHL. Repeat next year.
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Old May 2nd 2024, 1:26 pm
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Default Re: Life Certificate/ Proof of Life re UK State Pension

Yes quiltman my previous experiences with DWP have always been friendly and helpful.
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Old May 3rd 2024, 10:31 am
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Default Re: Life Certificate/ Proof of Life re UK State Pension

Yes my POL forms arrived on 28th February last. Having been sent early September 2023. I immediately phoned DWP and was answered by a very helpful lady "Amanda," who extended my deadline by a further sixteen weeks. I warned her that there would be a lot of calls from the Philippines. All from people in the same situation I was. I sent the form back by LBC who pass it on to DHL. I had the forms signed by my doctor in Chong Hua.
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Old May 3rd 2024, 8:46 pm
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Default Re: Life Certificate/ Proof of Life re UK State Pension

Originally Posted by tropicofcancer
Yes my POL forms arrived on 28th February last. Having been sent early September 2023. I immediately phoned DWP and was answered by a very helpful lady "Amanda," who extended my deadline by a further sixteen weeks. I warned her that there would be a lot of calls from the Philippines. All from people in the same situation I was. I sent the form back by LBC who pass it on to DHL. I had the forms signed by my doctor in Chong Hua.
Goodness! You actually got your forms, albeit late? My wifes was sent on 13th December so it's not due yet, and mine was apparently sent on the 18th January, so next year for me. We've been here 11years and can only recall getting a POL form once! By co-incidence, one of my private pensions was not paid yesterday so another phone call Tuesday to Telford this time. Why these folks cannot send notification by email then we could print out the form, get it signed and returned all in good time, I'll never know.
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Old Jun 7th 2024, 6:56 am
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Default Re: Life Certificate/ Proof of Life re UK State Pension

Originally Posted by Raffin
In the Tagaytay area Tagaytay post office was closed in 2022 leaving only two small POs in two of its three neighbouring towns,each a good way away. One hidden in the corner of an indoor basketball court.

My plan with the Life Cert is just to wait until the money fails to come then phone up. I have a blank copy of the form.
It happened last month and I got the pension resumed after just over a 2 week delay.

Phoned up to try to find out what my life cert frequency was now.The nice "Amanda" wouldn't be specific. Maybe they like to surprise us ? Or it wasn't stated on what she looks at. She didn't like my suggestion that I just send forms in every year. You'll lose out she said. But maybe it also messes up their processing?
Just wait for it to be stopped, she said.
All well and good....as long as you can stand a 2 to 3 week delay.

Talked also about the signing. I had it done by a bank manager. But I was in there for half an hour. She asked for my ATM card, did come photocopying and even looked into my account. Asked some questions about where I live etc and my pensions. She could see that despite the decent sized pensions the account balance was only moderate. Due to a lot of outgoings. So I didn't get any sales pitch. I think it's likely their instructions to get customer information when anyone, especially an Expat, comes in for anything to be signed. I won't use the bank again for the Life Cert.

Easy if you're "under a doctor". But I'm not at present. Amanda suggested a pharmacist. In a busy Mercury Drug or Watsons? Could be difficult. Could you get it done in a small TGP or Generika? I doubt it. Will just pay a Notary Public next time.
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Old Jun 7th 2024, 9:52 am
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Default Re: Life Certificate/ Proof of Life re UK State Pension

Moving on from my earlier post in May. Like Raffin I had my pension stopped recently which I found strange considering my conversation with a DWP person late April this year. After two conversations with three people my pension was paid two weeks late. Two of the three interactions were positive. The rogue one centred about the collapse of Philpost and I requested all mail to be emailed to all in the Philippines. The response? If we do that we will have to do that to everyone in France. I said that France has a working postal service. The gentleman did email Proof of Life documents which were despatched poste haste. I made a Skype call three days later and lo and behold my pension payment was still on hold the very helpful Scottish lady expressed concern about the postal situation and passed me on to a supervisor. He understood the problem and will brief I suppose his superiors.
I now have a copy of the Proof of Life paperwork and will send it off every year in February.
I urge anyone who talks to DWP to hammer home the problem with Philpost.
Raffin, I get my paperwork notarised for the princely sum of 150 pesos and it takes 5 minutes.
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Old Jun 7th 2024, 11:00 am
  #54  
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Default Re: Life Certificate/ Proof of Life re UK State Pension

B, it must be the case that state postal services will continue deteriorating in first world as well as in third world countries like ours. I read that in the UK the Royal Mail is up for sale. Any company taking it over must keep up certain service standards the government says. But that's what was supposed to happen on the railways and didn't always.
So it can only get worse until the DWP do something 21st C about it.

Not a nice thought to be still messing around with these forms if one gets into advanced old age!

The cost as well. I paid P4,680 for DHL to courier from Tagaytay. Not a regular DHL office but a desk in a Mall. I think franchised. So likely to be more expensive than a regular office. A speedy delivery but In 18 months the cost had gone up by P1,000.

In Manila and around there are plenty of Notary Publics. But in our area there's hundreds of restaurants but basic services like Notary Publics are scarce. Lawyers will do it but you pay a few hundred. If you can find one in!
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Old Jun 7th 2024, 12:43 pm
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Default Re: Life Certificate/ Proof of Life re UK State Pension

That DHL price seems extortionate. The local LBC charges about P2400 then passes on to DHL.
This time I used snail mail (I know Philpost) and it took only 8 days to reach Wolverhampton, so going out seems to work.
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Old Jun 7th 2024, 1:30 pm
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Default Re: Life Certificate/ Proof of Life re UK State Pension

Originally Posted by Bealinehx
That DHL price seems extortionate. The local LBC charges about P2400 then passes on to DHL.
This time I used snail mail (I know Philpost) and it took only 8 days to reach Wolverhampton, so going out seems to work.
I could use LBC here. It is probably cheaper. But you said last time it got lost.
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Old Jun 7th 2024, 2:29 pm
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Default Re: Life Certificate/ Proof of Life re UK State Pension

It wasn't LBC that lost my consignment it was the Philpost equivalent. Now that's irony when the Philpost tracking loses a package normal airmail delivers.
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Old Jun 7th 2024, 4:30 pm
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Default Re: Life Certificate/ Proof of Life re UK State Pension

Re DHL last time I shipped something using the DHL franchise office. A DHL delivery/pick up guy came in to collect items. Got talking to him about prices etc and he and the staff in the office stated the cost was the same.. whether in a DHL office or a franchise type office. AS I only need to use DHL once or twice a year that's good ( if true ).. .as at P4600 plus its most certainly not a cheap way to courier documents. But it gets the job done. LBC couldn't even find London, never mind a London postcode on their computers and that was with the supervisor also checking. DHL found the relevant postcode in nanoseconds. I guess thats what we pay for.
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Old Jun 10th 2024, 7:34 pm
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Default Re: Life Certificate/ Proof of Life re UK State Pension

Been following this thread with interest and thought I would share my recent experience.

Last month I failed to receive my state pension and contacted them the next day whereupon I was informed that the POL letter was sent in September of last year.

They then sent me an email with a POL letter attached to be completed within 4 months. I was then assured that my pension will recommence within 5 working days, which it was.

Got my attorney to complete and sign it with two impressive bonks and stamps. Cost was 1k. Yes lesson learnt for the next time....find a cheaper attorney.

Normally I send back to the UK via LBC which from memory costs 2400, but heard that Philpost were quite efficient with outgoing mail so opted for registered mail. Cost if I remember correctly was 240 PHP. However, I was disturbed to find that they had been holding onto 5 undelivered letters to me for months because they couldn't find the address. Never had that problem before in the 3 years I have been here.

That was on the 16th May. I have been using the tracking system and noted that my letter eventually left the post office on 28 May. Today, I noted that it was eventually sent to the UK on 10 June.

Just glad we have 4 months grace.


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Old Jun 12th 2024, 12:09 pm
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Default Re: Life Certificate/ Proof of Life re UK State Pension

With all of my interactions with DWP Pensions Philpost delivered a letter dated 16 April 2024 much to my surprise. The letter contained a new Proof of Life documentation and informed me that my pension payments had been stopped. The letter also mentioned that they had written to me on 14 December 2023, this of course was not received. All this of this was never mentioned in my unsatisfactory interaction with a gentleman mid April 2024. If this person had a modicum of initiative all my recent communications with DWP would have not been necessary.
If in the future you have the need to talk to anyone in DWP take down their name for future reference. Who knows one of you may have contact with the gentleman I encountered in April.
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