Accepted reasons for backdating job seekers allowance

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How do I raise an appeal against a decision made by the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) in relation to my benefits?

If they decide not to change the decision, or to change only part of it, they will phone you to explain.

These decisions have to be accepted by the Jobcentre Plus, and you will not get any backdated benefit just because you did not know that you could make a claim, or you put off doing so.

If your reasons for a late claim are accepted, your Jobseekers’ Allowance may be backdated by a maximum of three months, depending on the reason you failed to claim earlier, and provided you met the entitlement conditions throughout the period of backdating. If you know, or believe, that you have been overpaid benefits, or if your circumstances change, you have a duty to tell the provider of your benefits (generally the Jobcentre Plus).

You can make an individual claim or a joint claim with your partner, or spouse.

They will usually be able to offer free advice and support, and help to answer any questions you have.To qualify for JSA, you (and your partner) must usually work less than 24 hours a week and must have £16,000 or less in savings. You do not need to provide a reason for making your claim later than you could have done.By contrast, if you want to claim backdated Jobseekers’ Allowance, you have to have particular reasons such as having language difficulties, or having been given wrong advice which made you think you weren’t entitled to any money.Finally, if you are still unhappy with the decision, you can appeal to the Social Security and Child Support Tribunal, by completing Form SSCS1 which is available to download from You should send the completed form together with one copy of your “mandatory decision notice” to the address on the form. As stated above, you need to ask for permission to appeal by firstly asking for a mandatory reconsideration.

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