The Tribunals Service is struggling to recruit and train an extra 700 panel members after being hit by a flood of personal independence payment (PIP) appeals, the President of the Service revealed in his latest annual report last week. The result is longer waiting times for claimants to have their appeals heard.
According to judge John Aitken “The rapid rise in appeal numbers has outstripped our ability to recruit and train sufficient numbers of panel members to keep pace.”
Social security hearings reached their height in 2012-13, when there were 507,000 appeals. However, the introduction of the mandatory reconsideration before appeal system brought these numbers crashing down to 112,000 in 2014-15.
But the mass reassessment of working age claimants for PIP has clearly had a huge effect on appeal numbers. In the year to the end of March 2016 they had gone up…
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