To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether letters of support from Members of Parliament (a) are considered for and (b) have an effect on decisions on a claimant's (i) mandatory reconsideration and (ii) tribunal appeal for (A) employment support allowance and (B) personal independence payment.
15 May 2018
At mandatory reconsideration all evidence that had been considered at the initial decision stage is reviewed and, crucially, the claimant is prompted to provide any further evidence that the initial decision maker had not considered. If a claimant remains dissatisfied with the decision on their claim following mandatory reconsideration and proceeds to appeal, all previously submitted evidence will be reviewed, as will any evidence that is subsequently submitted and passed on to the Department.
It is important to note that decisions on benefit entitlement are made in accordance with the relevant legislative provisions and the decision maker’s consideration of the available evidence. A letter of support from a Member of Parliament would be considered on its own merits alongside any other available evidence.