Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Questions (172)

Colm Keaveney

Question:

172. Deputy Colm Keaveney asked the Minister for Social Protection the reasons for the disparity in the decision of the appeals officer to disallow an appeal in respect of a person (details supplied), while the appeal of another person, whose circumstances were similar to that of the first person, was upheld; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [10446/13]

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Written answers (Question to Social)

I am advised by the Social Welfare Appeals Office that an Appeals Officer, having fully considered all the evidence, including that adduced at the oral hearing, disallowed the appeal of the person concerned (Constituent A)

Under Social Welfare legislation, the decision of the Appeals Officer is final and conclusive and may only be reviewed by the Appeals Officer in the light of new evidence or new facts.

Following the submission of additional evidence the Deputy Chief Appeals Officer agreed to review both cases of the constituents concerned, both of which followed oral hearings. The Deputy Chief Appeals Officer noted that in the case of constituent B, far more substantial level of evidence was presented which was not available to the Appeals Officer’s in constituent A’ case.

I am advised by the Social Welfare Appeals Office that the Deputy Chief Appeals Officer having fully considered all the new evidence adduced in the in the case of constituent A as to the nature and de facto nature of the contact, revised the decision and allowed the appeal of constituent A by way of summary decision. The person concerned was notified of the Appeals Officer decision on 19th December 2012

The Social Welfare Appeals Office functions independently of the Minister for Social Protection and of the Department and is responsible for determining appeals against decisions on social welfare entitlements.