Attendance Allowance

Work and Pensions written question – answered on 7th November 2001.

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Photo of Christopher Chope Christopher Chope Shadow Spokesperson (Treasury)

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the average time was between receipt of requests to re-examine claims for attendance allowance and their examination, in each of the last four years.

Photo of Maria Eagle Maria Eagle The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

This is a matter for Alexis Cleveland, chief executive of the Benefits Agency. She will write to the hon. Member.

Letter from Alexis Cleveland to Mr. Christopher Chope, dated November 2001

The Secretary of State for Work and Pensions has asked me to respond to your recent Parliamentary Question asking what the average time was between receipt of requests to re-examine claims for Attendance Allowance and their examination in each of the last four years.

The actual average clearance times for Attendance Allowance (AA) reviews between April 1997 and September 2001 are shown in the attached table. Please note that under the Decision Making and Appeals (DMA) procedures introduced in October 99, the review process changed in some respects and was henceforth termed reconsiderations. Reconsiderations occur when a claimant asks for a claim to be looked at again within one month of the previous decision.

The DMA procedures introduced in 1999 led to temporary backlogs of work, and taken with a growing caseload for disability benefits, the average time taken to reconsider claims increased very significantly. These backlogs were tackled as a priority and the average clearance time for reconsiderations is now significantly lower.

I hope this is helpful.

Date Average days taken
Reviews (AA) April 1997-March 1998
April 1997 43.20
May 1997 44.72
June 1997 53.69
July 1997 53.17
August 1997 52.57
September 1997 52.17
October 1997 50.40
November 1997 47.99
December 1997 45.34
January 1998 48.41
February 1998 42.30
March 1998 38.48
Reviews (AA) April 1998-March 1999
April 1998 39.10
May 1998 38.04
June 1998 38.90
July 1998 40.58
August 1998 42.06
September 1998 43.54
October 1998 43.54
November 1998 43.24
December 1998 44.38
January 1999 46.05
February 1999 54.39
March 1999 44.13
Reviews (AA) April 1999-March 2000
April 1999 44.34
May 1999 46.07
June 1999 51.14
July 1999 54.73
August 1999 54.61
September 1999 52.57
October 1999 53.98
November 1999 67.75
December 1999 75.17
January 2000 90.78
February 2000 105.59
March 2000 129.80
Reconsiderations (AA) October 1999-March 2000
April 1999
May 1999
June 1999
July 1999
August 1999
September 1999
October 1999 24
November 1999 28
December 1999 36
January 2000 52
February 2000 62
March 2000 65
Reconsiderations (AA) April 2000-March 2001
April 2000 63
May 2000 60.2
June 2000 54.4
July 2000 50.9
August 2000 47.5
September 2000 51.8
October 2000 46.1
November 2000 44.9
December 2000 42.2
January 2001 44.4
February 2001 40.5
March 2001 35.6
Reconsiderations (AA) April 2001-September 2001
April 2001 36
May 2001 33.9
June 2001 35.3
July 2001 36.1
August 2001 36.1
September 2001 38.5

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