Challenge a benefit decision (mandatory reconsideration)

1. Eligibility

If you disagree with a decision about benefits, tax credits or child maintenance you can ask for the decision to be looked at again - this is called ‘mandatory reconsideration’.

You can do this if any of the following apply:

  • you think the office dealing with your claim has made an error or missed important evidence
  • you disagree with the reasons for the decision
  • you want to have the decision looked at again

Some decisions can’t be reconsidered - it’ll say on your original decision letter.

You need to ask for mandatory reconsideration (by letter or phone) within 1 month of the date of the decision.

Benefits this applies to

You can ask for mandatory reconsideration for benefits including:

  • Attendance Allowance
  • Bereavement Allowance
  • Carer’s Allowance
  • child maintenance (sometimes known as ‘child support’)
  • Compensation Recovery Scheme (including NHS recovery claims)
  • Diffuse Mesotheliomia Payment Scheme
  • Disability Living Allowance
  • Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • Funeral Payments
  • Income Support
  • Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit
  • Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
  • Maternity Allowance
  • Pension Credit
  • Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
  • Sure Start Maternity Grant
  • Universal Credit
  • Vaccine Damage Payment
  • Winter Fuel Payment

There’s a different process for Child Benefit, Guardian’s Allowance, tax credits and Housing Benefit.