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Such decisions are not subject to the Social Welfare Appeals provisions because it is a Ministerial discretion.A dissatisfied claimant may however request the decision to be reviewed, and the review should be carried out by an officer of higher rank than the person who made the decision. Previous claim or enquiry prior to legislative change If a legislative change gives entitlement on a previously refused claim, or where a previous enquiry elicited the information that there was then no entitlement, the earlier claim or enquiry may be accepted in lieu of a repeat claim from the date of implementation of the legislative change.The main regulatory provisions with regard to claims are Legislation contained in Chapter 1 of Part 7 of the Social Welfare (Consolidated Claims, Payments and Control) Regulations (S. Previously - SI 55 of 1998, SI 159 of 2000 and SI 160 of 2000.Note: See also references to claims and late claims within separate guidelines dealing with the individual schemes.In addition to making a formal claim, the person is also required to provide all relevant information and to furnish any relevant documents which are requested to substantiate the claim.He or she may also be interviewed at home or be required to attend at a local office of the Department for interview.Examples of situations where entitlement can usually be proven: For instance, a late claim for Carer's Allowance would require clear and convincing evidence regarding means, that full-time care and attention was necessary and that the claimant was providing that full-time care and attention. A claim to Child Benefit may be accepted as a claim for a Child Dependant Increase or an Guardian's Payment (Contributory) or Guardian's Payment (Non-Contributory) , provided no doubt exists as to entitlement to the payment for the period in question and a reasonable explanation is given for the delay in claiming.The reason given for the claim not being made at the right time would also be examined in this context (see comments at B above). In the case of Guardian's payment (contributory) and Guardian's payment (non-contributory), a previous claim for the orphan as a qualified child on another social welfare payment may be accepted where the scheme conditions are fully satisfied. Previous contact with the Department Where it is established that an earlier interview with the person should have brought to notice the fact that entitlement to a personal rate payment (or Increase for Qualified Adult, Child Dependant Increase, Living Alone Allowance, etc.) existed, because the necessary information was then made available, and the Department did not act on it, the claim may be deemed to have been made at the time of that interview.

In all such cases, the Officer must be satisfied that all other conditions governing the particular scheme were fulfilled.This standardises the State Pension age at 66 years for all applicants.The officer should also consider the reason for the delay in claiming.Similarly, if the change in legislation results in an increase in the existing rate of payment, the existing claim will be accepted as constituting a claim for an increase.Factors to be considered in this context: In general it is usually easier to establish entitlement in the case of contributory and long-term schemes than in the case of non-contributory and short-term schemes. A claim for a related Social Welfare Payment Where a late claim is made by a person who is in receipt of a related Social Welfare Benefit/Allowance, the claim in payment may be accepted as a claim for the later social welfare payment.

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