The UK Rules
'Follow the Regulations'

Appeal to Social Security Tribunal

Find out how to make an appeal and dispute a benefit decision by appealing to the independent First-Tier Tribunal (Social Security and Child Support).

APPEAL TO THE TRIBUNAL: When you formulate an appeal to the First-Tier Social Security and Child Support Tribunal (SSCS) you will find there are several different methods and criteria to make your plea.

Find information and help for appealing about disagreements or decisions which are related to your benefits entitlement.

There is extra information about tribunal hearings, how to claim travel expenses, and making your next move if you lose your appeal.

First-tier Tribunals (Social Security and Child Support) are responsible for handling appeals against all decisions relating to the common disputes and decisions about Child Benefit, child maintenance (child support), the Diffuse Mesotheliomia Payment Scheme, Employment Support Allowance, and Income Support.

Appeal a Social Security Decision after May 23rd 2016


New Information iconUpdate: Appealing a Benefits Decision...

There is a change to the system of appealing against a decision regarding your social security benefits. You must now ask the office to explain the reason for their decision. Decisions notified on or after the 23rd of May 2016 now require you to ask the office to reconsider it - 'Mandatory Reconsideration'. An appeal can be made against the decision to an independent tribunal following this procedure if you remain unsatisfied with the result.

These are the key changes to the appeals process for decisions which were notified on or after May 23rd 2016.

The request for mandatory reconsideration should be registered within one calendar month of the decision date when you are appealing about benefit entitlements, child maintenance, or tax credits - as a rule.

Asking for Mandatory Reconsideration may not be required if you are appealing about a Housing Benefit decision.

Note: Failing to ask for mandatory reconsideration within the specified time limit can affect the success of your appeal. Generally, Tribunal appeals must be made within one month of the mandatory reconsideration decision date.

Compensation Recovery Appeal

You must also ask the Compensation Recovery Scheme (CRS) to reconsider their decision before you can make an appeal about their services. Complete the appeal form 'NOA1(CR)' for recovery of compensation benefits after the Mandatory Reconsideration stage.

Alternatively, appeal in writing to The Appeals Service if you do not want to use the form. Make sure to include the important information stated in the section marked 'What needs to be included with the appeal form'.

Appealing Health Service Charge

Ask the Compensation Recovery Scheme to review their decision if you think the recovery of health service charges decision is wrong (or some important facts have been overlooked). Nevertheless, it is not mandatory to ask for a review before starting an appeal about health service charges.

The Compensation Recovery Scheme will treat your appeal as a review request if you make an appeal before a review has been completed. Use the NOA1(HSC) appeal form directed to The Appeals Service if you are unsatisfied with the original or reviewed decision.

Appeal a Social Security Decision Notified Before 23rd May 2016

Benefit Decisions

For all benefit cases, information and instructions how to appeal a social security decision which was notified before the 23rd of May 2016, should be written on the decision letter. The leaflet is available from your local Social Security Office. You must fill in the section titled 'If you think our decision is wrong' and send it to your benefits office.

Child Maintenance Decision

Contact the Child Maintenance Service if you believe your child maintenance decision is wrong. They can also help if you think some additional evidence or important facts has been overlooked.

Housing Benefit Decisions

Tenants will find their Housing Benefit decision dealt with by the Northern Ireland Housing Executive (NIHE). The Land and Property Services (LPS) deal with your case if you are a homeowner. Contact the relevant department if you think the decision given to you is wrong.

HM Revenue and Customs Decisions

HMRC are solely responsible for dealing with decisions regarding Child Benefit, Tax Credits, and the Guardian's Allowance. You can only appeal against a decision made by HM Revenue and Customs after you have asked them to reconsider their decision. This process is called a Mandatory Reconsideration. Send your appeal directly to The Appeals Service to question a decision made by Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs

Social Security and Child Support Tribunal Help Centers

You can get further help about making appeals to the Social Security and Child Support Tribunal from your local Citizens Advice center. They will help you to use the correct forms and they may assist you at the hearing. If you prefer, you are allowed to be represented at the hearing by a lawyer or a family member. You can even ask a friend to make the appeal on your behalf.

Note: Remember to ask that particular office or department for Mandatory Reconsideration before you appeal.

Appeal Against a Benefits Decision; UK Rules Updated 2017