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Your benefit decision has been changed - Universal Credit

This advice applies to England

If you're already getting Universal Credit (UC) the DWP may change the decision on your claim.

This page tells you more about the different circumstances when the decision may change and how you can challenge a decision you don't agree with.

You've been sanctioned

Your benefit can be reduced or stopped because you've been sanctioned. If you are sanctioned, you might want to challenge the decision. For example, if you had good reason for failing to comply with a work-related requirement or the decision maker got the facts wrong.

You were awarded benefit in advance

If you are awarded UC on an advance claim and it is later decided that you did not meet the conditions for getting UC, the decision can be revised.

You now have limited capability for work

If a decision maker decides to treat you as having limited capability for work, they can change the decision by supersession. For example, you can be treated as having limited capability because work would be a substantial risk to your health. A supersession decision changes the decision from the date the decision maker first takes action to change the decision.

If you pass the work capability assessment and are found to be of limited capability for work, the decision maker will change the decision by supersession to award you an additional element.

There is new medical evidence about your capability for work

The decision maker can change the decision on your UC claim by supersession if they receive medical evidence from a healthcare professional or approved person. The decision can only be changed if the decision maker decides that the new evidence shows you no longer have limited capability for work or that you now have limited capability for work.

A supersession decision changes the decision from the date the decision to change is made.

You can't appeal against the decision

You may be told this a decision that you can't appeal against. For example, you can't appeal against a decision to suspend payment of your benefit if the DWP are looking at your claim to see if you're entitled to it.

If you can't appeal, you may still be able to ask for a revision of the decision.

You're awarded another benefit

You, or a member of your family may be awarded another benefit, known as the qualifying benefit or a higher rate of another benefit. This may mean you're now entitled to another element of UC. The decision can be revised to include the extra element. You must have claimed the other benefit at around the same time or before you claimed UC and it should have been awarded by the date you make your UC claim.

For example, if your child is awarded DLA you will be entitled to a disabled child element. Your UC claim can be revised to include the extra element as long as the DLA award includes the first day of your UC claim.

You've committed a benefit offence

Your benefit may have been reduced because you have been convicted of a benefit offence. This decision can be revised if the conviction is quashed or set aside by a Court. You will be backdated any money you're owed from the date of the original decision.

If you agreed to pay a penalty instead of being prosecuted and you later withdraw this agreement, the decision maker will have to repay you all benefit that has been taken to pay the penalty. The decision maker will then decide whether to prosecute you for a benefit offence.

You're affected by the Benefit cap

If DWP has wrongly applied the benefit cap to you, and reduced your benefit when they should not have done the decision can be revised. For example, the DWP may not have realised you were exempt from the cap. If the decision is revised, any money you're owed can be backdated to the date when the original decision was made.

Your benefit changes because of a Rent Officer decision

A decision about housing costs for rent can be revised, where the Rent Officer makes a decision increasing the amount of rent you can be paid through UC. If the decision is revised, any money you're owed can be backdated to the date the original decision was made.

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