Activity 7: Understanding communication

Activity 7 is defined in regulations as -

Understanding communication by: (i) verbal means (such as hearing or lip reading) alone; (ii) non-verbal means (such as reading 16 point print or Braille) alone; or (iii) a combination of sub-paragraphs (i) and (ii), using any aid that is normally, or could reasonably, be used unaided by another person.

Activity 7 considers difficulties in understanding a simple spoken or written message such as the location of a fire escape because of sensory impairment. In each case the descriptor can be satisfied because of hearing or sight problems, so it is only necessary to show you have difficulty or cannot understand a spoken or written message, and not both.


The descriptor relating to Activity 7 is -

Cannot understand a simple message, such as the location of a fire escape, due to sensory impairment.


See also section of the DWP’s Work Capability Assessment handbook: for healthcare professionals.

Case law

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