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The DWP’s attempts to make it as difficult as possible to appeal a benefits decision appear to be succeeding, according to the latest tribunal statistics released today. There has been a drop of 92% in employment and support allowance (ESA) appeals and 93% in Jobseekers Allowance (JSA) appeals in April to June 2014 compared to the same period last year.

A new system of mandatory reconsiderations before appeals was introduced by the DWP for ESA and JSA on 28 October 2013.

Claimants who wish to challenge a decision must first ask to have it looked at again before they can then appeal direct to a tribunal. In practice, the DWP are allowing local decision makers to look at the decision again and then the decision is sent on to a different team for a further reconsideration before the claimant can appeal, if they are still unhappy with the decision. Whilst claimants are still bound by strict time limits, the DWP can take as long as they please to carry out reconsiderations.

Some of the reduction in appeal numbers is likely to be due to decisions being changed in favour of the claimant at the reconsideration stage.

However, figures have yet to be published by the DWP to show how many reconsiderations result in a change of decision.

The strong possibility remains, therefore, that many thousands of claimants are being left waiting for months for their reconsideration to take place whilst others fail to successfully lodge an appeal because the system is now so complex.

The full appeal statistics can be downloaded from this link.

Comments  

+1 #5 Paul Richards 2014-09-14 21:42
Hi angela,
I understand where you are coming from with this one.
It is very unfortunate it seems that so many CAB's are totally inundated with cases. This is probably as a direct result of so many people having to take these situations to appeal. So often nowadays claimants do not have any real alternative - they have to do what they can to obtain information and help.
It often doesn't help that so many claimants are not informed by JobCentre+/DWP etc that they can appeal. This is seemingly often held back. And also, if anyone is sanctioned, they are very often not told that they may be able to apply for a 'hardship' payment to help them get by.
+1 #4 angela 2014-09-14 17:02
Yes we should all appeal but when your local CAB centre and the local law center tell you they cant take any more cases because they cant cope where do you go for the help you need before your time limit is up
+1 #3 Blackcat 2014-09-14 11:30
Statistics, very intellectual,ID S seems to like his statistics, he needs a change, could he write a short story using three words which are HARE,HUNTER,FIE LD. That was a very famous and well used test. :-*
+1 #2 Paul Richards 2014-09-13 23:13
Hi JayneL Linney,
Yes, I agree entirely with your views. Are the DWP trying to cover up their misgivings with their 'statistics' - I am strongly convinced that this is actually the case.
Some people will not go ahead with a 'reconsideratio n' because they may feel that they will not 'win' it as such.
But, it is always worth a 'reconsideratio n' as the claimant may well win out in the end - and if they are 'turned down' or have not won out in their 'reconsideratio n' - then they still have the valid option to take it to 'Appeal' via the Citizen's Advice Bureau. They will take all of your relevant (truthful) information (with dates) and act upon it, and I personally would always advise an individual person to do this.
If you DO NOT APPEAL then you will not win in any case.
If you DO APPEAL - there is far more than a reasonable chance that you will definitely win.
#1 JayneL 2014-09-12 13:25
Surely the Question WE need to ask is WHY??

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