Consultation outcome

Decision making and mandatory reconsideration: SSAC consultation

This consultation has concluded

Detail of outcome

The committee published SSAC Occasional Paper 18: Decision making and mandatory reconsideration on 21 July 2016. The paper takes into account the feedback we received to this consultation.

Original consultation


This consultation seeks evidence to inform a SSAC project on decision making and mandatory reconsideration before appeals in DWP and HMRC.

This consultation ran from

Consultation description

The Social Security Advisory Committee has decided to review decision making and mandatory reconsideration in the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC). The review is part of the committee’s independent work programme and will focus on mandatory reconsideration before appeal.

The committee invites written submissions from any organisation or individual in Great Britain or Northern Ireland with evidence relating to these issues.

We would be grateful for evidence on decision making across the benefit system. In particular, we would welcome evidence about decision making in Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) and tax credit cases.

We are seeking responses on the following:

  1. How well does the appeals process currently function? Does mandatory reconsideration facilitate, encourage or discourage appropriate redress for claimants?

  2. Is new evidence gathered in a way which is suitable for the claimant by DWP and HMRC? Could this be improved and, if so, how?

  3. What are claimants’ experiences of claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) while waiting for their mandatory reconsideration notice when appealing an ESA fit for work decision?

  4. Are there ways in which DWP and HMRC could make better use of evidence in making decisions on entitlement for benefits and tax credits? If so, how?

  5. Could more effective communication with claimants and their advisers improve the quality of decision making? What aspects of claimant communications should the government prioritise?

  6. Do you have any other general views about the quality of decision making and the role of mandatory reconsideration?

Published 23 February 2016
Last updated 21 July 2016 + show all updates
  1. Added a link to 'SSAC Occasional Paper 18: Decision making and mandatory reconsideration'. The paper takes into account the feedback we received to the consultation.
  2. First published.