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Parliamentary Debates and Questions

S5O-01364: Stewart Stevenson (Banffshire and Buchan Coast)

Scottish National Party

Date lodged: 18 October 2017

To ask the Scottish Government how the re-determination and appeals process in the new Scottish social security system will differ from the current UK system.

Answered by: Jeane Freeman 25 October 2017

Our approach is different in several important, and fundamental, respects.

Our key priority is to treat people with dignity and respect and that in part means getting the decision right first time and quickly correcting any errors if they do occur.

When someone does want to challenge a decision, they will be able to request a “re-determination”. It means that another decision maker in the agency will put aside the original decision and make a new decision, including taking any new evidence into account. This is fundamentally different from the current DWP system which only looks at whether the original decision was right or not.

In addition, unlike the current DWP system, we will publish clear procedures and timescales. If they are not met, the person will be able to escalate their dispute directly to a tribunal.

The Social Security (Scotland) Bill also ensures that short-term assistance can be paid at the previous rate until the re-determination and appeal process is complete.