Written answers

Wednesday, 21 September 2022

Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection

Social Welfare Appeals

Photo of Marian HarkinMarian Harkin (Sligo-Leitrim, Independent)
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86. To ask the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the timeline for a decision on a social welfare appeal of a person (details supplied); and if she will make a statement on the matter. [46141/22]

Photo of Heather HumphreysHeather Humphreys (Cavan-Monaghan, Fine Gael)
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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 in relation to social welfare entitlements.

An application for pandemic unemployment payment by the person concerned was disallowed by a Deciding Officer of the Department on 9 April 2021. I am informed by the Social Welfare Appeals Office that, following a check on their systems, there is no trace of an appeal from the person concerned being received in that office.

In the normal course, an appeal against a decision of a deciding officer must be made within 21 days of the decision being notified. Appeals received outside of this time limit may be accepted at the discretion of the Chief Appeals Officer.

In light of the Deputy's question, the Appeals Office has now written to the person concerned seeking their grounds of appeal and an explanation for the failure to submit an appeal within the prescribed timeframe and, on receipt of the response, will determine whether a late appeal can be accepted and will notify the person concerned promptly. Should an appeal be accepted and referred to an Appeals Officer they will determine whether the appeal may be finalised by way of summary decision or if an oral hearing is necessary.

I trust this clarifies the matter for the Deputy.

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