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Appeals: Incapacity Benefits

Volume 472: debated on Monday 25 February 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice pursuant to the answer of 29 January 2008, Official Report, column 298W, on incapacity benefits appeals, what steps his Department is taking to reduce the number of upheld appeals lodged against an incapacity benefit personal capability assessment. (186220)

The Tribunals Service works with the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), with whom appeals are lodged regarding decisions on incapacity benefit, to improve original decision making on an ongoing basis.

In accordance with S81 of the Social Security Act 1998 the president of the Social Security and Child Support Appeals Tribunal provides an annual report on the standards of decision making by the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions. The Tribunals Service is currently working with DWP officials specifically to improve original decision making and the appeals process for all Jobcentre Plus benefits, including incapacity benefit. This includes reviewing decision making processes and developing standards for submissions made by Jobcentre Plus staff for the tribunal.