suspending DLA after a prison sentence – advice needed

Hello all.

My client was released from Prison in 2016. He has severe mental health problems and soon drifted into homelessness. He had quite forgotten that he was getting DLA before he was imprisoned and that it had been suspended. We have managed to get the claim back into payment, but not backdated to 2016.

I realise that disability benefits as a new claim can never be backdated, but where a claim was suspended, is there any rule stating that it can be backdated to when a person was released from prison and would therefore be eligible? By definition of his disability he was not equipped to know he could simply call and get it reinstated.

I would like to at least explore options before just quitting on this, so any ideas or definitive rule that would strike it out would be extremely welcome.

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