Challenge a benefit decision (mandatory reconsideration)

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 cannot be reconsidered - it’ll say on your original decision letter.

You need to ask for mandatory reconsideration within one 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
  • Carer’s Credit
  • 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 Expenses Payment
  • Income Support
  • Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit
  • Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
  • Maternity Allowance
  • Pension Credit
  • Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
  • Sure Start Maternity Grant
  • Universal Credit (including advance payments)
  • Winter Fuel Payment
  1. Step 1 Check if you're eligible

  2. Step 2 Create an account and make a claim

    You need an online account to claim Universal Credit.

    1. Set up an account and make a claim

    You must submit your claim within 28 days of creating your account.

    If you live with your partner, they will also need to set up an account. You'll be given a code to link the accounts together.

  3. and Find out how your claim is assessed

    You'll need to have an interview with Jobcentre Plus. You'll be told how to arrange this after you submit your claim. It will be within 10 working days.

    If you have a disability or health condition you may need a work capability assessment. You'll be told if you need one after you claim.

    1. What to do if you have a health condition or disability
  4. Step 3 Attend your interview

  5. Step 4 Apply for an advance on your first payment

    If you need help with bills or other costs while you wait for your first payment, you can apply to get an advance.

    1. Get an advance on your first Universal Credit payment
    2. Check if you can get any other financial support
  6. Step 5 Get your first payment

    You’ll get your first payment 5 weeks after you claim. Your account will be updated to tell you how much it will be.

    1. You are currently viewing: What to do if you disagree with the decision
  7. Step 6 Follow your agreement and report any change of circumstances

    You must keep to the Claimant Commitment you agreed at your interview. If you do not, your payments could stop.

    You must also update your account if your circumstances change to get the right payment.

    1. How to report a change in circumstances
    2. What to do if your payments are stopped