DWP trying to hinder people from using their 13 months to make a MR

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DWP trying to hinder people from using their 13 months to make a MR

Post by Jara on Mon Sep 11, 2017 9:52 pm

DWP is seemingly actively trying to hinder people from using their 13 months to make a MR. One day before my friend received her original decision a DWP person called her. They insisted on her starting the MR straight away and her giving them a verbal statement over the phone.

She told them she was going to send in a letter. The DWP woman started then asking about attendance for my friends SBWA and trying to lure my friend to become defensive.. and then give a badly thought out MR over the phone. Luckily that didn't work.

My friend was then given one week to send in that letter. She didn't even have the original decision in her hand at that time.

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Re: DWP trying to hinder people from using their 13 months to make a MR

Post by Admin on Tue Sep 12, 2017 12:40 am

jara ive split the topic from the thread you posted within as deemed important enough to seperate it

ive never heard of dwp actively ringing up people to ask them to start there mandatory reconsideration over the phone there and then

any mandatory reconsideration letter should be thought out before any letter has been sent off to them

on the other note people have 3 months or longer to start the reconsideration the longer part due to circumstances and not what was advised down the phone

this sounds like a way to make people make mistakes on there form and also the time scale is way out so in reference deviantly
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Re: DWP trying to hinder people from using their 13 months to make a MR

Post by Caker on Tue Sep 12, 2017 8:13 am

This is clearly a new tactic being used. I agree with Admin' that it appears calculated to panic claimants to submit the MR in a hurry in the hope that they will make a mistake that makes it easier for DWP to reject the MR.

Well done to your friend, Jara, for not falling for this trick.
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Re: DWP trying to hinder people from using their 13 months to make a MR

Post by Absolut on Tue Sep 12, 2017 11:45 am

Jara wrote:One day before my friend received her original decision a DWP person called her. They insisted on her starting the MR straight away and her giving them a verbal statement over the phone.

The MR is a process in which a claimant can disagree with a sanction decision made by a DM. The time in which to ask for a MR is 1 month. If the DWP upholds the decision (does not accept the claimant's good reason) then the claimant has a set amount of time to submit an appeal to a first tier tribunal. I think it's the FtT you are referring to isn't it, particularly since you've written "13 months"?

When you say "they insisted on her starting the MR" do you actually mean they insisted she give her "good reason" over the phone and not submit anything in writing or had she already given her good reason and it had been rejected?

Has there been a miscommunication and your friend was told to start an appeal to a tribunal straight away and that she confirm that she was going to do so? If so, then the DWP employee did nothing wrong.

It needs to be made clear in this thread whether the OP means an MR "good reason" or an appeal to a tribunal. I suspect the OP is referring to the latter. In that case what statement was being asked to be made? Was it a simple "Yes, I'm going to appeal"? I can't imagine anyone stating verbally to a DWP employee what they are going to write to a judge.


Last edited by Absolut on Tue Sep 12, 2017 11:47 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : spelling)
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Re: DWP trying to hinder people from using their 13 months to make a MR

Post by helping_hand on Tue Sep 12, 2017 11:54 am

Benefit claimants now have 13 months to submit a mandatory reconsideration:

The Upper Tribunal unanimously held the Secretary of State’s position unlawful as it would make the Secretary of State ‘gatekeeper to the independent tribunal system’. It held the correct position is to give the claimant 13 months from the original decision to make a mandatory reconsideration request, in R (CJ) and SG v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions [2017] UKUT 0324 (AAC).

http://respectfulbenefits.forumotion.com/t507-uk-judges-rule-dwp-wrong-to-deny-appeals-over-refused-benefits

https://www.newlawjournal.co.uk/content/upper-tribunal-rules-dwp-acted-unlawfully


Time limits for appealing

CAB wrote:You must appeal within one month of the date on the letter or email telling you the outcome of the reconsideration. It is important to appeal in time otherwise you might lose the chance to challenge the decision.

If you miss the deadline, HMCTS can still accept your appeal up to 13 months after the decision was sent if you can give good reasons why it’s late. However the DWP can object to the reasons you give. If this happens, a judge will decide if the appeal can be accepted.

https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/benefits-introduction/problems-with-benefits-and-tax-credits/challenging-a-benefit-decision/challenging-a-dwp-benefit-decision-on-or-after-28-october-2013/appealing-against-a-benefit-decision/appealing-against-a-dwp-benefit-decision/
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Re: DWP trying to hinder people from using their 13 months to make a MR

Post by Absolut on Tue Sep 12, 2017 12:04 pm

Ah thank you HH. So both are called a mandatory reconsideration? The one within 1 month that the DWP turn down and the subsequent one to a tribunal?
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Re: DWP trying to hinder people from using their 13 months to make a MR

Post by helping_hand on Tue Sep 12, 2017 12:54 pm

Absolut wrote:Ah thank you HH. So both are called a mandatory reconsideration? The one within 1 month that the DWP turn down and the subsequent one to a tribunal?

Benefit Sanctions

Claimant receives a notification that a doubt has been raised.

The DM decides to apply a sanction and a notification is issued informing the person they can request a mandatory reconsideration and that they have 1 month to do so (now 13 months).  Prior to the UT decision the DM could refuse an extension outside the 1 month time limit.  

If the MR does not change the original decision and a Mandatory Reconsider Notice is issued. The Appellant is then notified s/he has 1 month to Appeal (see above for further info.).

It is a similar process for WCA/PIP etc.

In the past the claimant could appeal (within 13 months) an adverse decision straightaway and DWP had the opportunity to revise its decision upon receipt of the Tribunal papers.

Hope this makes sense?


Last edited by helping_hand on Wed Sep 13, 2017 9:31 am; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : clarification)
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Re: DWP trying to hinder people from using their 13 months to make a MR

Post by Jara on Tue Sep 12, 2017 4:39 pm

Absolut wrote:
Jara wrote:One day before my friend received her original decision a DWP person called her. They insisted on her starting the MR straight away and her giving them a verbal statement over the phone.

The MR is a process in which a claimant can disagree with a sanction decision made by a DM. The time in which to ask for a MR is 1 month. If the DWP upholds the decision (does not accept the claimant's good reason) then the claimant has a set amount of time to submit an appeal to a first tier tribunal. I think it's the FtT you are referring to isn't it, particularly since you've written "13 months"?

When you say "they insisted on her starting the MR" do you actually mean they insisted she give her "good reason" over the phone and not submit anything in writing or had she already given her good reason and it had been rejected?

Has there been a miscommunication and your friend was told to start an appeal to a tribunal straight away and that she confirm that she was going to do so? If so, then the DWP employee did nothing wrong.

It needs to be made clear in this thread whether the OP means an MR "good reason" or an appeal to a tribunal. I suspect the OP is referring to the latter. In that case what statement was being asked to be made? Was it a simple "Yes, I'm going to appeal"? I can't imagine anyone stating verbally to a DWP employee what they are going to write to a judge.

There were no talk about a tribunal. The DWP person mentioned she wanted my friend's statement over the phone for a "mandatory reconsideration". My friend said she was going to send in a letter but the DWP continued asking questions about attendance (and other things) to build up a mandatory reconsideration. It was questions like "Why didn't you attend the SBWA?" and such. My friend had trouble (but still managed to) to ignore these questions. She felt she was being put into a corner and it stressed her out. Any answer she would have given would have been poor and the DWP made my friend feel like she had done something wrong.

It's reasonable to assume DWP have done this before and is still doing it to people to get some easy mandatory reconsiderations to turn down. My friend is now getting DWP to remove her phone number (and email) from their records.

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Re: DWP trying to hinder people from using their 13 months to make a MR

Post by Absolut on Wed Sep 13, 2017 10:48 am

Jara wrote:It was questions like "Why didn't you attend the SBWA?" and such. My friend had trouble (but still managed to) to ignore these questions. She felt she was being put into a corner and it stressed her out. Any answer she would have given would have been poor and the DWP made my friend feel like she had done something wrong.

Ah right, I get you. When I was sanctioned I had to ring up to find out why (although I actually already knew why) and I got a right snotty bitch who took it upon herself to question me in a similar manner. I didn't take kindly to an admin worker hundreds of miles away taking it upon herself to sit in judgment on me, nor did I appreciate her telling me that my going to a job interview wasn't a good enough reason to miss a work programme appointment (er, hello?). I told her I would write to a DM, which I did - a 4 page letter that was cc'd to the WP provider's boss outlining why sanctioning a claimant who was making the effort to get a job was barking mad  What a Face and why a WP provider who tried to blackmail me into telling her the name of the employer instead of asking nicely, like a normal person, wasn't acceptable. The sanction was immediately over-turned Wink

My friend is now getting DWP to remove her phone number (and email) from their records.

I don't blame her, particularly bearing in mind that the DWP are in the wrong on this issue and no sanction should have been enacted.


Last edited by Absolut on Wed Sep 13, 2017 10:50 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : sp)
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Re: DWP trying to hinder people from using their 13 months to make a MR

Post by Caker on Thu Sep 14, 2017 3:31 pm

.....joining the topic late Embarassed .....

Jara wrote:My friend was then given one week to send in that letter. She didn't even have the original decision in her hand at that time.

I believed that you needed to have the decision in writing before submitting an MR
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