Independent Appeal Panel

The Independent Appeal Panel reviews applications when: 

  • the independent service provider (DACB) is not able to accept an application as there is not enough evidence in support of it
  • an application is affected by an 'adverse issue'.

The panel have to review an application before any decision, including rejections or non-payments. The panel’s decision is final.

We will notify you if your application has been referred to the panel and why. We will then ask you to send any other material supporting the application within 56 days so the panel can consider it.

If the panel does not need more information, it may be able to review an application within 30 working days of getting it. If the panel needs more information, the appeal decision may take longer.

Applications affected by adverse issues

An adverse issue is where it would be unlawful or inappropriate for us to make a payment, such as an applicant having links to a terrorist organisation or being involved in terrorism, organised crime, sexual crimes, murder or manslaughter. You will be able to comment on any adverse issue, or any other issues, in writing or through a face-to-face meeting before the panel makes a decision.

Past criminal activity does not by itself stop an applicant from applying or receiving a payment.

What happens after the panel receives your application

After applying to the Support Payment Scheme, we will email you within two months (60 days) to tell you if the independent solicitors are able to accept your application.

If the independent solicitors are not able to accept your application, you will be told the reasons why. Once the panel has your application, this is what happens next.

  1. We will give you information about your appeal panel and we will ask you to share more information or material to support your application.
  2. If you don't want to share more information, you should tell the panel within two weeks (10 working days) of the request.
  3. If you do wish to share more information, you must do this within eight weeks (56 working days) of the request. You can share information by:
    • meeting with your panel to talk with them in person or by video call
    • written statement sent by email or post
    • recording a video statement or voice recording
    You may also choose to share other materials such as letters or photographs.
  4. The panel will look at your original application and supporting information within four weeks (28 days) of getting them. Sometimes panel members have questions. The panel administrator will ask you these in the communication format you have requested. You can share the information they have asked for through any of the ways listed in point 2.
  5. The panel will meet to discuss your application and the information and materials you provided and make a decision on whether you are eligible to receive the Support Payment.
  6. You will receive the decision from the panel and a report explaining their reasons. It will arrive within two weeks (10 working days) of their meeting.

Who is on the Independent Appeal Panel

We openly advertised for, shortlisted and evaluated panel members and chairs based on their experience and knowledge. From the shortlist, We selected a pool of eight independent members and three independent chairs.

Each panel is made up of one chair and two members. Each panel member will take turns to sit on a panel based on when they're available. 

The chairs and members experience with:

  • being in care themselves or are children of care-experienced adults
  • social work including adult mental health, children’s social care and care management for adult drug and alcohol misuse
  • law including family law, child protection, adult social care, and tribunals
  • panel membership for financial awards related to historic child abuse claims, elected members’ conduct, central government and health appeals, school exclusion appeals and admission reviews, fostering, complaints and disciplinaries, and regulatory bodies
  • volunteer work including fostering decisions, school governance, food banks, and support during the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse.

When you receive an email about your panel, it will include the names and biographies of the chair and members who will make a decision on your application.

For appeals under the scheme, all three panel members will decide. The council, including the council Leader, has no influence or control over the decisions the panel makes.


Contact the Independent Appeal Panel by email on:

If you need support

We understand that hearing your application has been referred to the Independent Appeals Panel could be stressful. There is professional support available for you, including on the day you meet your panel if you choose this option.

You may also work with an assistant to provide emotional support, encouragement and support during the process. If you choose to meet with your panel, your assistant can attend with you.

Find out about the emotional and practical support you can get.