The rules for lodging an appeal against a Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction scheme decision are different. Housing Benefit appeals are considered by a Social Security and Child Support Tribunal and Council Tax Reduction appeals are considered by the Valuation Tribunal Service.
We aim to make the right decision when working out your entitlements. However, if you have received a decision you think is wrong you must contact us. We want to make sure we resolve any dispute you have as quickly and as easily as possible.
If you think a Housing Benefit decision we have made is wrong, you can:
Ask us to explain it - we can do this over the phone, by email, in person or in writing if you need us to
Ask us to look at it again - this is known as a ‘Revision’. You need to tell us, in writing, which decision you disagree with and why, asking us to look at this again. If the decision is wrong, we will change it
Appeal to an independent tribunal - If you still disagree with the decision we have made, you can appeal in writing. This appeal will be considered by an independent tribunal, made up of people who are not part of the Council or Department of Social Security.
Appeals and requests for a revision should be received within one calendar month of our decision. The Tribunal may not be able to accept your appeal if it is received more than one month after the date on the decision letter.
They can only usually accept a late appeal if there are special circumstances that caused the delay. An explanation of these should be made when submitting an appeal.
Council Tax Reduction
If you are unhappy with a decision we have made about your entitlement to Council Tax Reduction, you should write to us telling us and on what grounds you think our decision is wrong. Tell us clearly why you think our decision is wrong. If we have used incorrect information please tell us what the correct information is and provide supporting documents that can confirm this.
We will review our decision and write to you telling you what the outcome is. If we change the amount that you are entitled to you will also get a revised council tax bill. We will aim to deal with your concerns within 1 month, but if it is complex it may take up to 2 months.
If you are still unhappy with our decision you can appeal to the Valuation Tribunal when you get our letter telling you the outcome of our review.
If you have not heard from us after 2 months of writing to us about you claim, you can appeal to the Valuation Tribunal. Before you do this, please contact us so we can check the progress of the review.
Information about how to appeal to the Valuation Tribunal Service can be found at its website www.valuationtribunal.gov.uk