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Personal Capability Assessments

Volume 406: debated on Monday 9 June 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many appeals against decisions made at personal capability assessments were (a) heard and (b) decided in the appellant's favour in (i) 2002 and (ii) each month of 2003; what proportion of the total appeals heard were successful in (A) 2002 and (B) each month in 2003, broken down by benefit; what the average length of time between lodging an appeal against a personal capability assessment decision and having that appeal heard was in (1) 2002 and (2) each month of 2003; and if he will make a statement. [114469]

This is a matter for Christina Townsend, Chief Executive of the Appeals Service. She will write to the hon. Member.

Letter from Christina Townsend to Paul Holmes dated 6 June 2003:

The Secretary of State has asked me to respond to your question regarding personal capability assessments in 2002 and 2003.

We do not have all the information on personal capability assessments you have requested. However, I have arranged for a set of tables to be placed in the library. The tables set out the number of personal capability assessment cases cleared and those appeals found in favour of the appellant for all benefits. The final table shows the average time taken to clear appeals from the date lodged at the first tier agency to the date, it is cleared at a hearing. I should perhaps point out that the Appeals Service is responsible for the appealonly from the date it is received from the first tier agency until cleared at a hearing, where the average waiting time for all appeals in 2002–2003 was 12.5 weeks.

I hope this reply is helpful.