Working the examination: Where to consider information
Most examinations will open with a letter requesting information in advance of a meeting. Your initial consideration of the information will therefore usually take place in your office. In some cases you may have asked the claimant(s) to have the information ready for you to consider at a meeting. And in most cases, having considered the information initially provided, you will want to obtain further information from the claimant(s) at the meeting.
You should judge in each case what information can best be considered in your office, and what is best dealt with face to face. Sometimes the decision will be obvious, e.g. involved explanations of a couple’s history of living together and separating, are best expressed and understood face to face. A lengthy schedule with pages and pages of figures, however, may need a less pressured consideration.
If you obtain information at a meeting, you should make every effort to evaluate it there and then if possible. You should not take information from a meeting away for consideration unless there are good reasons for doing so, as this will only prolong your examination.