Reply To: VTS URGENT -Change to evidence disclosure process with effect from 1 April 2024

nick dearnley

Steadman – yes, I am, but it means there are not so many surprises if it comes back on appeal, as I already know the case. Overall I change around 45% on reconsideration, but that’s usually for new information or just a simple mistake. I try to review independently and give a comprehensive explanation if I can’t change it. About 10% come back on appeal, but we get around 80% of those confirmed at tribunal, so I think our balance is fairly good.

It’s inevitable that we end up checking our own work at some point – but having reconsiderations done outside the assessment team keeps them out of the performance targeting for those staff and allows more time for a thorough review. From a clmt’s point of view it shows at least a bit of independence in the review process, which may or may not contribute to the lower rate of return going to appeal.

With council tax appeals, it’s the first I see of it, and it has been difficult to understand the legislative basis of some of the decision-making. That’s as much down to my lack of experience as anything else though (20+ years in HB, 20-ish months in CT); but I think if I dealt with all the CT disputes I’d have a better handle on it – I may need to be careful what I wish for!