A colleague of mine has drawn my attention to this: it is being proposed that claimants appealing decisions by the Department of Work and Pensions might be charged to bring these appeals.
Almost two years ago, benefit advice and representation was removed from bring eligible for legal aid. It has been suggested that this was to try to reduce the numbers appealing decisions.
Then the mandatory reconsideration level was brought in as an additional level to try to reduce the numbers of appeals, but still the number of people appealing benefit decisions has not dropped enough and, tellingly, 58% of appeals are upheld.
Now it is being suggested that there will be a charge to bring an appeal – a charge that claimants would have to pay. How will they pay for this when they are appealing decisions that have meant they have no money?
It will keep the number…
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