What to do if a benefit claim has been unsuccessful

If your claim for a Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) benefit has been unsuccessful, you may be able to challenge this decision. This is called a mandatory reconsideration.

The first step is to request a mandatory reconsideration within one month of the decision (or longer with good reason).

You can do this by:

  1. downloading a mandatory reconsideration request form from the DWP website
  2. phoning the DWP contact number on your decision letter
  3. writing a letter to DWP. The address will be shown on your decision letter
  4. updating your online journal If you are claiming Universal Credit

You will need to provide basic details about why you think the decision is wrong. The DWP will then review your claim again.

If the DWP do not change their decision you can then appeal to an independent tribunal who will assess your claim independently.

You can appeal using an SSCS1 form which you should send, with a copy of your mandatory reconsideration decision, to HM Courts and Tribunals Service, Glasgow Tribunals Centre, 20 York Street, Glasgow, G2 8GT.

Again this should be submitted within one month of the mandatory reconsideration decision (or longer with good reason).

If you are struggling, a Welfare Rights Officer can offer assistance with both mandatory reconsiderations and appeals, including representation at tribunal, where appropriate.