Your client may appeal a refusal of aid, or appeal against any other decision made in respect of a grant of aid (for example, to require a particular contribution, to take a statutory charge, to refuse an extension of aid, etc).
There is no set form of appeal, but it needs to be in writing. You or your client may write a letter to us giving reasons why you consider the decision to be wrong or harsh, and sending any further information you think relevant. Please send the appeal within 14 days of the decision.
Please note that if your client needs help to appeal and you are unable to assist, the client can submit an appeal with the help of any friend or support person of their choice. We often receive appeals written by counsellors, friends, or family members. The Commission itself will also help clients appeal if they wish this, and will provide the services of an interpreter free of charge if needed for this purpose. To arrange this, refer the client to our client relations officer.
Appeals are dealt with at fortnightly meetings of the Commission for this purpose. This means that, unless your appeal letter persuades the assigning officer to change their earlier decision, there is a waiting period of 3 to 4 weeks to resolve most appeals. This may sometimes mean that a court appointment may need to be adjourned. If the matter is urgent for any reason, please make this clear in the appeal materials.
All written materials submitted are considered, and you and your client will receive a letter advising of the Commissioners' decision. If for special reasons you believe that your client needs to be heard in person, you or they may make this request in writing with the appeal letter, and the Commissioners will consider it; however, normally, appellants do not appear in person.
There is no second or further right of appeal from the Commissioners' decision. If new, relevant material arises which was not previously available and which justifies a review, the case may be presented again for Commissioners' further consideration. Otherwise, complaints may be directed to the client relations officer, or to the State Ombudsman or the client's Member of Parliament, as appropriate.