Challenging a universal credit decision


How to challenge a decision

When you can ask for a review

Ask for a review if you think a decision about your universal credit claim is wrong. This is called a 'mandatory reconsideration'.

This could be because you were:

  • paid the wrong amount
  • sanctioned when you shouldn’t have been
  • refused universal credit when you should be allowed to claim

You need to ask for a review within 1 month of the decision date.

If a decision letter doesn't have a date, use the date it was added to your universal credit journal.

If you miss the deadline

You can still ask for a review within 13 months of the decision date if you have a good reason for missing the 1-month deadline.

This could be because you were:

  • in hospital
  • told the wrong information by your work coach
  • out of the country
  • in need of an interpreter to understand letters

You’ll need to explain the reason when you ask for a review. You may be asked to provide evidence.

You can challenge a decision to refuse a late review at an independent tribunal.

How to ask for a review

You can ask for a review by:

  • writing a message in your universal credit journal
  • calling the number on the decision letter
  • completing a CRMR1 form and returning it to the address on the decision letter
  • writing a letter to ask for a review and sending it to the address on the decision letter

If you ask for a review online or by phone, it is usually a good idea to follow it up with a request in writing.

You should also provide your work coach at the Jobcentre with a copy of your review request.

If your universal credit journal has been closed because it was decided that you were ineligible to claim, your only option may be to write to: Freepost DWP Universal Credit Full Service

What to include

When you ask for a review you need to include:

  • your name, address and contact details
  • your National Insurance number
  • the date of the decision
  • the reasons why you disagree with the decision

Provide additional evidence such as wage slips, bills or your tenancy agreement to back up why you think the decision is wrong.

What happens next

You should be told that your request for a review has been received.

The person who reassesses your claim will not be the same person who made the original decision. They may contact you to ask for more information if they need it. You should provide this to them as soon as you can.

When they have considered your claim, they will send you a mandatory reconsideration notice. This will tell you their new decision and why they made it.

If you’re happy with the decision, you don’t have to do anything else.

If you disagree with the decision

You can challenge the decision at an independent tribunal.

The tribunal will listen to your arguments, look at the evidence provided and tell you their decision.


Last updated 13 Dec 2018 | © Shelter

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