Bungling Atos officials ordered a disabled man to attend a medical assessment to prove his entitlement for disability benefit – two months after he had DIED.
Stuart Mullins, 53, had made a claim for Disability Living Allowance (DLA) due to reduced mobility and used a walking stick and wheelchair.
Stuart’s distraught widow, Julia, 54, lashed out against Atos after receiving a letter just days before Christmas, ordering Stuart to an assessment centre in Newport on 20 January 2015, the Daily Mirror reports.
Mrs Mullins told the Daily Mirror: “It was disgusting, absolutely disgusting. I was so upset and it was really upsetting at the time as you are already missing someone at Christmas.”
Stuart passed away on 15 October at his family home in Somerton, Newport, just months after being diagnosed with cancer.
Mrs Mullins said: “He was a lovely, wonderful man. He made so many people happy and he is sorely missed.”
Julia registered her husbands passing through the Tell Us Once service on October 15, which promises to notify all government departments about a person’s death.
Atos apologised for the blunder, insisting they had not been asked by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to withdraw Stuart’s claim.
A spokeswoman said: “We are sorry for any distress this has caused. Unfortunately, unless we are asked by the Department to withdraw a case from our system, we will automatically send out a letter.”
A spokesperson for the DWP said the department’s “thoughts are with the family of Mr Mullins”.
They added: “We are sincerely sorry for the mistake that was made and understand the distress that this has caused.”