Written answers

Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Department of Social Protection

Invalidity Pension Appeals

Photo of Patrick NultyPatrick Nulty (Dublin West, Independent)
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241. To ask the Minister for Social Protection when a person (details supplied) in Dublin 15 will have their appeal for invalidity pension heard; if an oral hearing will be granted; the reason for the delay; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [11724/14]

Photo of Joan BurtonJoan Burton (Minister, Department of Social Protection; Dublin West, Labour)
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The Social Welfare Appeals Office has advised me that an appeal by the person concerned was registered in that office on 28 February 2014. It is a statutory requirement of the appeals process that the relevant Departmental papers and comments by the Deciding Officer on the grounds of appeal be sought. When these papers have been received from the Department, the appeal in question will be referred to an Appeals Officer who will consider whether the appeal can be determined by means of a summary decision based on the documentary evidence presented or, whether an oral hearing is required. The Appeals Officer will be advised that the person concerned has requested an oral hearing.

The Social Welfare Appeals Office functions independently of the Minister for Social Protection and of the Department and is responsible for determining appeals against decisions on social welfare entitlements.

Photo of Patrick NultyPatrick Nulty (Dublin West, Independent)
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242. To ask the Minister for Social Protection if a person (details supplied) in Dublin 15 will be granted an oral hearing for their invalidity pension appeal; the reason for the delay; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [11725/14]

Photo of Joan BurtonJoan Burton (Minister, Department of Social Protection; Dublin West, Labour)
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I am advised by the Social Welfare Appeals Office that an Appeals Officer having fully considered all the available evidence disallowed the appeal of the person concerned by way of a summary decision. Under Social Welfare legislation, the decision of the Appeals Officer is final and conclusive and may only be reviewed by the Appeals Officer in the light of new evidence or new facts.

Following the submission of further evidence, the file has been requested to be returned to the Social Welfare Appeals Office. On receipt of this file, the Appeals Officer will review the case. The person concerned will be contacted when the review of her appeal has been finalised. Your request for an oral hearing will be communicated to the Appeals Officer. The Social Welfare Appeals Office functions independently of the Minister for Social Protection and of the Department and is responsible for determining appeals against decisions on social welfare entitlements.

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