If you disagree with a decision the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has made about your benefits, you can challenge the decision and appeal to a tribunal.
To appeal a decision of the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) you must first ask for a mandatory reconsideration’ and receive a ‘mandatory reconsideration notice’ from the DWP before you can appeal to the Tribunal. (There is circumstances were this is not the case and you can go straight to appeal this will need to checked please contact us to see if this would be the case).
Once you have your form, you have to appeal straight to the tribunal service. This is called ‘direct lodgement’. The DWP will not send your appeal to the tribunal. Before you start your appeal please contact BBMH to see if they can support you and advise you on the timescales and process that appealing a decision entails.
Preparing an appeal
To make a direct lodgement you have to send the tribunal:
- One copy of your Mandatory Reconsideration Notice
- A letter or appeal form requesting an appeal (this can also now be done online).
We recommend that you send the form rather than a letter. This will make sure you send the tribunal service the information it needs for the appeal. The form either on paper or online will ask if you want to have a paper or oral hearing. A paper hearing means that the tribunal will look at your case without you being there. An oral hearing means you have to go to a tribunal. You are more likely to be successful if you have an oral hearing.
You have 1 month to submit your appeal from the date on the Mandatory Reconsideration Notice.
If you miss the 1-month time limit because of special circumstances, you can ask the tribunal to accept your appeal late. For example, if you or your partner were seriously ill at the time, you may ask the tribunal to accept a late appeal. You must try to ask for this within 13 months of the original decision.
Always try to get evidence for your appeal. You can send evidence with your appeal form, but don’t worry if you can’t get the evidence in time. You can send it after you’ve sent the form. Please check with BBMH as to what is the best evidence to send in.