What's the time limit for FtT to decide on my application to admit my ESA appeal out of time? — Scope | Disability forum
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What's the time limit for FtT to decide on my application to admit my ESA appeal out of time?

AndrewHall Member Posts: 20 Connected
Can someone please advise on the time limit for FtT to decide on my application to admit my ESA appeal out of time? The hearing took place 3 months ago. The waiting game is really making me so anxious.  Thank you.


  • mikehughescq
    mikehughescq Member Posts: 7,455 Disability Gamechanger
    There is no time limit. 

    Was this a phone hearing to determine the one interlocutory decision i.e. just whether another appeal should be admitted? Ordinarily a decision is made on the day and notified the same day or within days by post. However, with an interlocutory things can often go wrong cos it’s just a procedural decision which attracts no right of appeal so they often forget the courtesy of notifying an outcome because a summary decision isn’t necessarily issued even though it perhaps ought to be. 

    Often what happens is that the decision is that the appeal is admitted, and so the clerk cracks on with notifying DWP to trigger the gathering of documents to compile appeal papers but forgets to notify the appellant.

    One of the rare instances where I would recommend ringing HMCTS for clarity as to what took place.
  • AndrewHall
    AndrewHall Member Posts: 20 Connected
    Thank you.
    The hearing was by a telephone where the issue under consideration was whether an ESA appeal should be admitted absolutely out of time. I made full submission on my reasons for lateness on the ground of Human Rights and why the original decision should be set aside under the rule. The DWP even admitted to the possibility they may have withheld material evidence from the initial Tribunal . 
    I have contacted the Tribunal on several occasions and they couldn't tell me why it is taking so long to admit the appeal and rehear the case afresh.
  • mikehughescq
    mikehughescq Member Posts: 7,455 Disability Gamechanger
    Interesting. I’m assuming a salaried judge sitting alone? 

    If so then it can only be because there’s a massive shortage clerks at present (ill-health, retirements and quitters) or that the judge is ill or has a massive backlog. The only other thing I could think of is that advice has been sought re:the HRA element.

    Your post is confusing though. If the appeal was an interloc solely concerned with the admission of a late appeal then why would the other issues arise? 

  • AndrewHall
    AndrewHall Member Posts: 20 Connected
    edited October 4
    Thanks for your insight. 
    I am at a loss as to why they said my appeal is with the Tribunal Manager rather than with the Judge who heard the matter 3 months ago.
  • mikehughescq
    mikehughescq Member Posts: 7,455 Disability Gamechanger
    There is no such thing as a tribunal manager. 
  • AndrewHall
    AndrewHall Member Posts: 20 Connected
    Yes you are right @mikehughescq
    Your guess is as good as mine. I wonder why they are inventing the word "Tribunal Manager'.to cover for their delay in sending the decision.  It is so frustrating. I need my appeal admitted and to be heard, particularly as the DWP has admitted it had the knowledge of material facts before paying benefit, and more so as this is an overpayment case.
  • mikehughescq
    mikehughescq Member Posts: 7,455 Disability Gamechanger
    I doubt they’re covering for anything. People do tend to see conspiracy rather than **** up or coincidence. 

    The reality is that the numbers of clerks have reduced by around 75% in less than the last decade. The number of fee paid judges is being decimated alongside that and then add in a pandemic. Most are working from home because there’s no choice. Many can’t work because they don’t have the kit or in some cases the IT skills (I’m thinking more panel than clerks there). There have been many occasions in the past 19 months when the regional HMCTS office has been staffed by zero to 1 staff member. That 1 person is doing quite literally a bit of everything for an entire region. It is untenable. In those circumstances, to be blunt, the priority had to be people living on zero money rather than people fighting issues which may have equal value to them but cannot possibly be a priority in a pandemic. 


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