Welfare of Animals: appeal to a tribunal

How to challenge a decision to take away your licence to sell animals as pets, provide boarding for cats or dogs, hire out horses, breed dogs and keep or train animals for exhibition.

What you can appeal against

Taking away your licence

The council can refuse to give you a new licence, or they can refuse to renew your licence.

They can also take away an existing licence or change the conditions attached to it.

The tribunal

Your appeal will be dealt with by a tribunal in the General Regulatory Chamber.

The tribunal is independent of Government, and will consider both sides before it reaches a decision. The tribunal can decide to overturn, alter or confirm the council’s decision.

Time limits for appealing

You have 28 days to appeal after the notice is sent to you.

If you miss the time limit, you can ask for more time to appeal. The tribunal will decide if it can still take your case.

The decision may come into force at the end of the 28 days allowed for your appeal. If you want to delay this, write to the tribunal and explain why you want the decision to be ‘stayed’ and put on hold.

How to appeal

Use the notice of appeal form and guidance notes.

Clearly say why you want to appeal against the decision.

Include the decision notice and any supporting documents.

Send the form to or:

General Regulatory Chamber
HM Courts & Tribunals Service
PO Box 9300
Telephone: 0300 123 4504

Tribunal staff can explain how the process works, but they can’t give you legal advice.

What happens next

The tribunal will write to you about the next steps.

Find out more about General Regulatory Chamber hearings and decisions.

Legislation and rules

You have the right to appeal to the tribunal under the Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018.

You can find detailed rules on how your appeal will be handled in the General Regulatory Chamber procedure rules.

The other animal welfare rights of appeal are listed in the rules and rights of appeal leaflet.

Published 8 January 2019
Last updated 26 August 2020 + show all updates
  1. Link to appeal form and rights of appeal leaflet added.

  2. First published.