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Forum Home  →  Discussion  →  Disability benefits  →  Thread

some things in life are really difficult to understand

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bristol_1
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WRAMAS Bristol City Council

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Re: post #1 and the DWP’s letter - surely it’s not beyond the capability of the DWP to scan and save an electronic copy of the Response at the point it’s created, even if they go on to destroy the physical paper bundle??

John Birks
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Welfare Rights and Debt Advice - Stockport Council

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TBH I think it’s BS to attempt to save on printing etc and save work/costs.

I have a standard response letter for this now. Sadly this typically means I get two bundles blowing the theory on waste/cost.

I’ve noticed the rep bundles on some seem to be sent out about a week after the appellants despite being on the SSCS1. No hard figures or analysis just a casual observation.

Mike Hughes
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Senior welfare rights officer - Salford City Council Welfare Rights Service

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John Birks - 18 August 2017 08:31 AM

I’ve noticed the rep bundles on some seem to be sent out about a week after the appellants despite being on the SSCS1. No hard figures or analysis just a casual observation.

I think this is something to do with the ashes of their quality checking system. They seem to have dismantled certain dedicated teams in an attempt to strip out any remaining competence and demoralise all concerned. I’ve had a few cases where it was explained to me that an inexperienced clerk had sent out the initial bundles and assumed they didn’t send to reps. Senior manager or (as I understand it) a more experienced clerk does some kind of check of listings and pops the missing bundles in the post.

One could almost sense the eye rolling during the phone conversation.

John Birks
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Welfare Rights and Debt Advice - Stockport Council

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Mike Hughes - 18 August 2017 08:47 AM
John Birks - 18 August 2017 08:31 AM

I’ve noticed the rep bundles on some seem to be sent out about a week after the appellants despite being on the SSCS1. No hard figures or analysis just a casual observation.

I think this is something to do with the ashes of their quality checking system. They seem to have dismantled certain dedicated teams in an attempt to strip out any remaining competence and demoralise all concerned. I’ve had a few cases where it was explained to me that an inexperienced clerk had sent out the initial bundles and assumed they didn’t send to reps. Senior manager or (as I understand it) a more experienced clerk does some kind of check of listings and pops the missing bundles in the post.

One could almost sense the eye rolling during the phone conversation.

That being the case it sort of supports the BS excuse theory that the letters are a strategy to prevent printing bundles that are actually available.

Mike Hughes
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Senior welfare rights officer - Salford City Council Welfare Rights Service

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I am inclined to agree.

ROBBO
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Welfare rights team - Stockport Advice

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An appeal hearing yesterday, and the PO makes reference to some medical evidence at page 13.

Page 13 does not look medical evidence to anyone else at the hearing.  ‘What are you talking about?’ or words to that effect from the judge. 

PO points out he’s got (probably) all the papers, but they aren’t numbered like ours.  Just a random assemblage of all the stuff the appeals officer might have thought to include at the time.  If you can hang on a minute, I’ll describe what else is on the page and maybe you can find it.

....I don’t want you to get the impression it’s just a question of the number of words… um… I mean, getting them in the right order is just as important. Old Peter Hall used to say to me, ‘They’re all there Eddie, now we’ve got to get them in the right order.’

BC Welfare Rights
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The Brunswick Centre, Kirklees & Calderdale

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Just wanted to check if the situation described in the attachment on my original post is still the same, does anyone know?

I have picked up an appeal with a hearing in a couple of weeks and a client who has either lost or never received the bundle. I asked HMCTS to provide me with a copy and it has just replied saying ask DWP for it.

Elliot Kent
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Situation hasn’t changed. It’s DWP’s job to create and circulate the initial response but they don’t keep a copy in the sense of a single paginated bundle. They just have the individual component documents stored electronically. If you miss the boat because you aren’t registered as rep when the bundle is sent out initially, you can ask them to “re-create” it. HMCTS obviously do have a master copy of the bundle but they are always loathe to post it out to people.

HMCTS will send you a copy if you push it. I suspect it may be helpful to point out that the hearing will almost certainly need to be adjourned if you client no longer has the papers and you haven’t even seen them.

BC Welfare Rights
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Thanks Elliot. Yeh, I sent them a copy of that attachment with a polite ask to reconsider on pain of an adjournment request if not. They are happy enough to ask me for a copy of a bundle when they’ve mislaid it themselves!

Dan Manville
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Greater Manchester Law Centre

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HMCTS are loathe to dig a file out of storage and provide a copy of the response, however if the outdoor clerk’s got it it’s much more straightforward for them to run off a copy and post it on.

Call or webchat to TS “is the file with the clerk? If so can they send on a copy” works for me.