Benefits appeals

What to do if you think there is a mistake with your benefits.

If you believe there has been a mistake with your benefit please do contact us immediately.
These enquiries are not part of any appeals process and do not extend the time limits that apply to your appeal options.  If you are still not happy with your benefit award, you can follow the appeals process outlined below.

Appeals process

Request a written explanation

You must write to us within one calendar month of the date on the decision letter to ask for more information on how your benefit was worked out.
If you ask for a written explanation, it will extend the time allowed to take up other appeal options by the number of days it takes us to reply.

Ask for your case to be reconsidered

You must put this request in writing and state why you do not agree with the benefit award. This must be done within one calendar month of the date on the original decision letter or within the written explanation letter extended deadline.
If you are out of time to ask for a reconsideration, we will only review the decision if there is a good reason for the delay.

Our response

We aim to deal with your request within 10 working days and will write to you to tell you the outcome.
If your benefit is changed in your favour, you will get a new benefit decision letter and the appeals process starts again.
If your benefit is unchanged or is not in your favour you can appeal to the Independent Tribunal.

Independent tribunal

Please request your appeal in writing within one calendar month of the date on the original decision letter or the outcome of your case being reconsidered.

You must:

  • include the decision you disagree with and give your reasons
  • sign the letter and include your name and address in it.

Next steps

At this point we must reconsider your claim. If we change our decision we will write to you with our decision and will not forward your appeal to the Tribunals Service.
If we do not change our decision, we will gather the evidence and forward your appeal to the Tribunals Service.
Once the Tribunals Service receive the appeal, they will decide whether to hold a hearing and advise you of the hearing date, which is usually at least 36 weeks after your appeal is lodged.
In exceptional cases a late appeal can be made, in writing, explaining the reason for the delay, but never more than 13 months after the original decision. The Tribunals Service decides whether to accept the appeal or not.
You will usually be given the chairperson's decision at the end of the tribunal and the decision will be sent to you by post.

If you still disagree, you will be told whether you have any further right of appeal. Details of this will be in the decision letter.

Help and advice

Free independent advice is available from your Citizens Advice Bureau Surrey Heath (external website). You can call their advice line on  01276 417900.

Contact the Revenues and Benefits team

Revenues and Benefits team
Surrey Heath House
Knoll Road
GU15 3HD
United Kingdom