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Forum Home  →  Discussion  →  Decision making and appeals  →  Thread

DWP make challenging a decision a three stage process!

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Dan_Manville
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Mental health & welfare rights service - Wolverhampton City Council

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Cheers but it was before the days of NCN and I’m sure it was a DLA decision that held that where there’s been no reconsideration a Tribunal could revise an earlier decision rather than supersede it. R(DLA) 1/06 looks at supersession grounds.

nevip
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Welfare rights adviser - Sefton Council, Liverpool

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Do you mean R(IB)2/04?

BSM
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Southampton Citizens Advice Bureau

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And http://www.osscsc.gov.uk/aspx/view.aspx?id=1798 (CSIS/73/2005) looks as if it might be helpful too. Perhaps?

Dan_Manville
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nevip - 20 August 2014 04:42 PM

Do you mean R(IB)2/04?

I’m sure it was a DLA. case but have been meaning to have a look at R(IB ) 2/04.

Not in work ‘til next Tuesday now though :)

Peter Turville
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The DWP did contact us last Friday following my initial post. Call from Hyde BC person who had clearly been asked to call by somebody ‘higher up’ as the caller was not familier with the bones of my post.

After detailed explanation and referrence to the specific sections of SSA the caller agreed to take the issue away and get back to me explaining the legal basis for the decision issued in response to the MR application.

As of today (1 week later) no further contact or expalantion.

In the meantime client reports a positive MR decision now made (decision notice awaited to confirm!).

Its clearly worth pasting a case and requesting DWP to call back! In the future it may be the most effective way to contact the appropriate person dealing with a case within DWP given the problems with the contact centres.

hkrishna
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See the attached that was provided by the DWP at a meeting I was at - it might explain their confusion. On the basis of this document (which I didn’t have in front of me at the time) I and others at the same meeting were repeatedly told that you have to have a review first and only then at second request does it go to MR. After pointing out to them later that the document shows that the ‘review’ (just after point 3) and MR (the decision following review process at point 6) are one and the same thing, they admitted they’d got it wrong.

[ Edited: 25 Aug 2014 at 04:08 pm by hkrishna ]

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Dan_Manville
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We’ll have to see what happens to my appeal now… The weak link is the client. No doubt it will bounce straight back as there’s no piece of paper with “MRN” written on it; I’ve got a fortnight to send it back then. Client hasn’t been the most communicative so it might fall between the gaps although it’s worth a lorra lorra money to them.

Jon (CHDCA)
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Attached is a DWP guidance document we recently received, which includes:

If the customer declines this [verbal explanation] or the notepad states they have already had a verbal explanation, they should be offered a written statement of reasons.

Once the customer has had either a verbal or written explanation only then can a Mandatory Reconsideration be offered.

Incidentally, it also says:

Customers who have claimed JSA in the interim will remain on JSA unless they ask to be switched over to ESA. Do not ask the customer if they want ESA reinstating.

Why not?

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Ken Butler
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Hi Craven CAB,

You might not be able to say how you got hold of it but could you say where this guidance is from?

Its not headed, signed or dated.

For example, do you know if its guidance issued internally to decision makers or is it locally produced guidance?

Thanks,

Ken

Jon (CHDCA)
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It’s from a DWP partnership manager last week, who emails out minutes and documents re JCP / Customer Representative Group meetings, which I think cover Yorkshire/Hull. I don’t attend the meetings myself, but we are on the email list. I don’t have much context, sorry, the minutes of the last meeting don’t seem to refer to it.

The email had the standard ‘This document is strictly confidential and is intended only for use by the addressee’ signature, but given the content, I feel justified in posting this attachment here.

- Jon Wilkinson

DaphneH
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Neil Bateman has sent it into operational stakeholders and I will be attending the meeting next week and following it up - shall see what they say…

Peter Turville
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DaphneH - 17 September 2014 08:13 AM

Neil Bateman has sent it into operational stakeholders and I will be attending the meeting next week and following it up - shall see what they say…

I have just attended a local stakeholders meeting which was attended by the (regional?) operations manager with responsibility for JCP MRs & appeals. The emphasis was very much on giving the claimant an opportunity to receive an explanation of the possible/actual decision and to provide further information and evidence to ‘help get it right first time’ and only to advise of a right to MR if the claimant is still dissatisfied / unable to provide additional evidence.

It was also maintained that the majority of MRs (inc. against WCA decisions) are completed within 14 (working) days - although it was not clear when counting of the 14 days begins (receipt at Wolverhampton or at the appropriate ‘Disputes Resolutions Team’).

Incidently we have still not received any explanation for DWP following my original post.

nevip
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If DWP managers really believe that that is what is occurring on the ground then they are living in cloud cuckoo land.  That might be the policy (although the more sceptical might take issue with that) but that’s not how it’s being implemented.  Stories of front line staff telling claimants that they can’t ask for a review until they’ve had ‘an explanation’ are proof of that.  And where does front line staff get that guff from?  In guidance, either explicit or misleading (some might say deliberately so).  And where does the guidance come from? Why, from management of course.  What a shambles.

 

Dan_Manville
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Email from Nawra worth sharing here I reckon.

The Low Commission is interested in capturing advice sector experience of DWP decision-making, reconsideration and appeals.  They would like you to complete a survey if you work in any of the following roles:

• welfare rights adviser
• project funded benefits adviser
• advice session supervisor
• generalist adviser
• social welfare lawyer
• money adviser dealing with benefit problems
• MP’s caseworker
• CAB social policy co-ordinator
• CAB or Advice Centre Manager.

The survey can be completed at https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/DX2NG7S

The comments boxes are nice and large so opportunity for a good rant!

Paul_Treloar_CPAG
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Advice and Rights Team, Child Poverty Action Group

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DaphneH - 17 September 2014 08:13 AM

Neil Bateman has sent it into operational stakeholders and I will be attending the meeting next week and following it up - shall see what they say…

Any news Daphne?