Helping you appeal benefit decisions
You should appeal benefit decisions you are not happy with. Starting the appeal process is quite easy - it just involves choosing a letter, filling in the blanks and sending it. You can get more support later in the process.
This page tells you how to appeal and lets you print information and letters that you can use.
The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) who pay most benefits, changed the process for appealing in late 2013. You now have to ask for a 'mandatory reconsideration'. If you're not happy with the result of the review you can then appeal. This affects Jobseeker's Allowance, Employment Support Allowance and other benefits.
We've produced a benefits appeals pack, with the main information you need. We will be putting copies of this in Glasgow Libraries, doctors' surgeries, social work offices, and other places you might go. You don't need a copy of the pack to use this page - everything you need is on here.
The rules and addresses for appealing change from time to time, so some papers are not in the printed pack. We suggest you just print the appeal letters from this page as you need them. This means you will always get the newest and best versions.
You can either print the whole pack or use our step by step guide to print what you need at each stage. If you don't have a way to print from this page any Glasgow Library will do this for you free of charge.
Get representation. Glasgow City Council Appeals Team will represent you. They will do this free for anyone living in the city, and you can phone them on 0141 287 8732. If you prefer you can arrange representation through the GAIN helpline 0808 801 1011, or go to your local advice agency.
Below is a step by step guide with links to read and print the letters and information you need at each step.
You can print an Appeal Checklist [93kb] to keep and tick off when you have done each step. This has more detail and space for you to write down dates or other notes.
You can also print off Benefits and Abbreviations list [14kb] used in this pack.
|1.||If you get a letter about a benefit decision from the DWP that you are not happy with - keep a copy of the letter and follow the steps below|
|2.||Ask the DWP for a reconsideration of their decision. Print this letter asking for a Review [14kb], fill in the blanks and send to DWP|
|3.||Wait on a reconsideration letter from the DWP |
This letter will be called a ' Mandatory Reconsideration Notice letter [89kb]'. Keep this letter - you will need it to appeal.
|4.||Appeal - if you are not happy with the decision |
You need to do this in writing within one month of the date on your review decision letter (mandatory reconsideration notice) from the DWP.
Choose the letter from the list below, fill in the blanks and post to the address on the letter, with a copy of the letter they sent you (mandatory reconsideration notice).
Jobseekers Allowance (JSA)
Employment Support Allowance (ESA)
As soon as you put in an appeal for ESA, you can ask the DWP to pay you ESA while you are waiting on your appeal
Disability Living Allowance (DLA) and Personal Independence Payments (PIP)
Get advice before appealing as there is a chance you could lose benefits you are already getting.
Bedroom Tax letter
DWP Overpayment letter
Get representation. Glasgow City Council Appeals Team will represent you. They will do this free for anyone living in the city, and you can phone them on 0141 287 8732. If you prefer you can arrange representation through the GAIN helpline 0808 801 1011, or go to your local advice agency
|5.||Once your appeal is in - claim any other benefits and/or hardship payments |
Read money while you are appealing [21kb]. If you are appealing ESA, use this letter to ask DWP [12kb] to make payments while you are waiting on your appeal.
Collect medical or other evidence - if you need help with this speak to your support worker, advice agency or contact GAIN or the Councils Appeal Team (0141 287 8732).
|6.||The Tribunal Service consider your appeal|
The Tribunal Service is independent from the DWP. They will check your appeal, ask the DWP to explain their decision and arrange for your appeal hearing for you.
If you have not already done this (at step 4) organise your representation as soon as possible.
The Tribunal Service will send you a questionnaire called a Tribunal Enquiry Form. Fill this in to tell them about any changes in your details or address, any dates you are not available to attend a hearing and who your representative is. Return your form to the address on the form.
|7.||You get an invitation to your appeal hearing|
If you can't make that date (for example due to being in hospital) or can't get a representative, you can ask for a new date - contact your representative or GAIN for further advice
|8.||Attend your appeal hearing and receive your decision |
Your representative will speak to you and prepare you for the tribunal and then advise you about the outcome of your tribunal.
The Tribunal will try to issue a decision on the day.
|9.||You have a right to comment or complain about how you and your claim are treated [24kb].|
You can print the papers for the appeals pack here. This includes everything apart from the appeal letters for each benefit - for those just print the ones you need.
Appeal letters for each benefit - Print the letters that apply to you.
More useful links
► GAIN - free advice in Glasgow
► 'What you need to know' - includes postcards and pocket guide
This information is available in alternative formats and languages. Please let us know what you need:
Phone (0141) 287 0411