Housing Benefit/Council Tax Reduction Once a decision has been made for your Housing Benefit entitlement, we will send you a decision notification which shows the information we have used to work out your entitlement. You must check this letter carefully. You can ask us to look again at your claim to revise a decision or appeal against the decision, within one calendar month of the date on the decision notice. If you ask for a written statement of reasons within this month then the time it takes to send the statement to you will be added on. If the decision is revised, then you will have a further calendar month to appeal against the new decision if you are still unhappy. If you wish someone else to make a request on your behalf please provide signed, written authority for this, stating their name and address. If you disagree with anything on the letter or the decision made about your Benefit, you have various options as follows: Explanation - ask for an explanation of the decision. You can do this in writing / email or by telephone. Statement of reasons on the decision. This can help you with your decision to request a reconsideration. This request must be in writing or by email and signed by you, the request must be made within one calendar month of the date on the decision notice, detailing the decision your request is for. A detailed explanation will be sent to you on how the decision was made and what information was used. Reconsideration - ask us to look at the decision again, and it must be made within one calendar month of the date on the decision notice. This request must be in writing or by email and signed by you. Detailing what it is you disagree with and why and you should provide any evidence or documents to support it. To ensure all the information is provided please complete the Reconsideration Form. Once the reconsideration has been looked it you will be sent a letter to advise of the outcome. If you still disagree you can then make an Appeal Appeal - If you are still not happy with the decision you can make an Appeal against it to an independent tribunal. The appeal must be in writing and must state the decision you are appealing against, why you are appealing, include further supporting documents or evidence and it must be signed by yourself. To ensure all the information is provided please complete the Appeal Form. Email the appropriate form to Benefits@Milton-keynes.gov.uk or post to us at Benefits Service, PO Box 5327, Civic Offices, 1 Saxon Gate East, Central Milton Keynes, MK9 3EJ. Housing Benefit Appeals are sent by the Local Authority Benefit Office to The Tribunal Service who will arrange for your Appeal to be heard by an independent Tribunal. There is no charge for this service. HM Courts and Tribunals Service is separate from the Local Authority and its purpose is to ensure that decisions made by the Local Authority comply with the Housing Benefit Regulations 2006. Out of Time Appeals Although appeals against Housing Benefit decisions should be made within one calendar month of the date of the decision in dispute, Local Authorities may accept late appeals lodged up to a maximum period of 13 months from the date of a decision in dispute however, the appeal must also contain the reasons why there has been a delay in the appeal being submitted and the reasons given should be more compelling the greater the delay. The Local Authority may allow the appeal to proceed or may pass the appeal to HM Courts and Tribunals Service as a late appeal. The Tribunals Service will then decide whether the appeal may proceed. Any appeal received by the Local Authority outside of the absolute time limit of 13 months will be passed to HM Courts and Tribunals Service as a late appeal. Council Tax Reduction Appeals against Council Tax Reduction decisions are dealt with by the Valuation Tribunal Service. If after this time the Council rejects your appeal or fails to act on the issue to your satisfaction, you can appeal to the Valuation Tribunal. You should include a copy of the Local Authority’s decision notice with your appeal form. Please note that you must still keep making your payments. The appeal form and further information can be found on the Valuation Tribunal Website at www.valuationtribunal.gov.uk Telephone: 0303 445 8100 Email: email@example.com Please note, the Valuation Tribunal cannot deal with an appeal about any of the following issues: The local Council Tax Reduction Scheme provisions as set by the Council Any discretion applied to recover an overpayment of Council Tax Reduction Who to recover an overpayment of Council Tax Reduction from Suspending or restoring Council Tax Reduction The amount of a Discretionary Council Tax Reduction You may, at any time, write to the Council to ask them to review your entitlement to Council Tax Reduction or the amount of any reduction.