There may be occasions when you think we have not made the right decision about your claim. This page tells you about what you can do if this happens.
If you think a decision is wrong, you must get in touch with us within one month of the date on your notification letter, otherwise we may not be able to consider any dispute.
Select the statement which best matches your situation for advice on what to do next:
I do not understand why you have made this decision
If you do not understand why we have made a particular decision you should ask us for a statement of reasons.
We will respond to you explaining our reasons for the decision and what information we used to make the decision.
If you still do not agree with the decision after receiving a statement of reasons you will have one further month to dispute it.
I have more information I want you to consider
If you understand why we have made a decision but you do not think it is right and you want us to consider some new or alternative information, you should write to ask us for a reconsideration.
When requesting a reconsideration you should tell us what part of the decision you think is wrong and provide any information and/or evidence you want us to take into consideration.
If the original decision can be changed, we will do so and send you a new decision. If we cannot change the decision, we will write to tell you why. If you still disagree you have one month to appeal in writing, from the date of our letter.
I have given you all my evidence and I do not agree with your decision
If we have looked at all of the evidence you want to provide and you do not agree with the decision you may submit an appeal.
Usually you would only make an appeal after you have given us the opportunity to make a decision based on all the relevant information you have.
Any appeal must made to us in writing and should clearly detail which part of the decision you think is wrong and why.
We will acknowledge your appeal and will prepare your case to be heard by an independent tribunal based in Sutton.
You will be asked if you want to attend but you do not have to, because a decision can be made based on the paperwork provided. If you decide to go, your travel expenses will be paid by the Tribunals Service.
Council Tax Support
Unlike Housing Benefit, if you want to appeal your Council Tax Support decision you must appeal directly to the Valuation Tribunal.
The Valuation Tribunal will not accept your appeal unless you have first asked us to look again at the decision.
For more information or to submit an appeal please go to https://www.valuationtribunal.gov.uk/.
I want to dispute your decision but I am not the claimant
A decision can be disputed by:
- The benefit claimant and their partner
- A person appointed to act for the claimant.
If you are a landlord or agent and we pay you Housing Benefit for one of your tenants, you can dispute a decision if it is about:
- Whether or not we will pay Housing Benefit to you
- Whether to recover an overpayment from you.
It has been over a month since the decision was made
Sometimes the time limit for disputing a decision may be extended. The extension must be requested in writing, providing the reasons for the delay.
If you have not been able to find the information you need or if you need further advice, contact us.