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Social Security Commissioners (Appeals)

Volume 164: debated on Friday 12 January 1990

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To ask the Attorney-General how many decisions were issued by the social security commissioners relating to each social security benefit, distinguishing between single payments and other supplementary benefits, in each month since January 1988; how many appeals to the commissioners relating to each benefit are outstanding; and in how many of these cases the appeal (a) is not ready for hearing, (b) is awaiting a hearing and (c) has been heard but the commissioner's decision has not been issued.

The information is not readily available in the form requested. However, the number of decisions issued by the commissioners in calendar years 1988 and 1989 for each category of benefit is shown in the tables, although existing statistics do not distinguish between supplementary benefit and single payment appeals.Information on the number of appeals outstanding relating to each category of benefit is not readily available, but the current total of outstanding appeals is 3,331. In 1988, 19 per cent. of appeals, and in 1989 24 per cent. of appeals, were decided after an oral hearing; the balance of

appeals in each year was decided without an oral hearing. Of the total of outstanding appeals

(a) 1,559 are not ready for decision; (b) 1,528 are awaiting a decision; and (c) 244 have been decided and a commissioner's decision has not yet been issued.

Number of Decisions issued by the Social Security Commissioners in 1988


Supplementary Benefit1,198
Family Income Supplement18
Unemployment Benefit176
Sickness Benefit196
Attendance Allowance173
Industrial Injury207
Mobility Allowance221
Child Benefit33
Retirement Pensions45
Statutory Sick Pay8
General Benefits
e.g. widows benefit, guardian allowance65
Income Support

Number of Decisions issued by the Social Security Commissioners in 1989

Supplementary Benefit1,199
Family Income Supplement7
Unemployment Benefit134
Sickness Benefit125
Attendance Allowance205
Industrial Injury205
Mobility Allowance245
Child Benefit34
Retirement Pensions41
Statutory Sick Pay3
General Benefits
e.g. widows benefit, guardian allowance68
Income Support47
Family Credit2

To ask the Attorney-General what is the average cost to public funds of an appeal to the social security commissioners, with or without an oral hearing.

It is estimated that the average cost to public funds is £2,428·29.