What is the First Tier Tribunal?
If you appeal against a benefit or tax credit decision a First Tier Tribunal will deal with your appeal.
This guide goes through the process of what happens after your appeal is received.
To find out how to appeal see Challenging benefit and tax credit decisions.
Applies to: England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
Tribunals are independent and completely separate from the benefit or tax credit office that made the decision you are appealing against.
They provide local hearings for benefit and tax credit appeals, they are more informal and have less complicated procedures than courts and are completely free to use.
Tribunal hearings are usually overseen by a panel comprising a Tribunal judge and Tribunal members. Tribunal judges are legally-qualified; Tribunal members are not legally-qualified but are trained volunteers.
The Tribunal is run by HM Courts and Tribunals Service (link opens in a new window) or The Appeals Service (Northern Ireland).link opens in a new window.