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Scottish Welfare Fund Review Process

If you are unhappy with the decision about your application for a Crisis grant or Community Care grant through the Scottish Welfare Fund.

If you are unhappy with the decision on your application, please write to us and we will confirm what we based our decision on. You can also write to ask us to review the decision. You can ask for a review without querying your award first.

First Tier Review process

The review process is split in to two stages. The first stage is a First Tier Review. If you would like to request a First Tier Review, you must do this within 4 weeks (20 working days) of the date of your original decision letter.

Please write to:

West Lothian Council
Scottish Welfare Fund
Civic Centre
Howden Road South
Livingston
West Lothian
EH54 6FF

Your First Tier Review request should contain the following information:

  • the date and reference number from your letter
  • the reasons why you do not think the right decision was made on the application. For example, this might be because you do not think we took all the relevant information into account, because you do not agree with the award that has been made or because you don't agree that you are not eligible for the Scottish Welfare Fund.
  • information which you did not give us when you filled in your application but which you think might make a difference to our decision
  • information on any changes to your circumstances since the application, which might make a difference to our decision.
  • you should sign your letter or if someone is making a request for you, you must sign the letter giving your agreement for the review to proceed.

For Crisis Grants, we aim to let you know the result of your review within two working days of the date that you asked for it.

For Community Care Grant, we aim to let you know the result of your review within fifteen working days of the date that you asked for it.

Second Tier Review 

If you are unhappy with the Council's decision, you have the right to ask the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman (SPSO) for an independent review.  The SPSO are not part of the Council

You should ask the SPSO for an independent review within one month of receiving our decision. In some circumstances you may be able to ask for a review after this.  You should contact the SPSO for advice.

You can ask the SPSO for an independent review over the phone or in writing. If you prefer, they will send you a form in the post, or you can print it off their website or fill it in online. 

How to contact the SPSO:

  • By phone on 0800 014 7299. Calls are free to this number, even from mobiles.
  • Write to this address: FREEPOST SPSO. You don't need to use a stamp.
  • Website: SPSO website.

The SPSO can give you information in other languages or formats (such as large print, SMS, audio or Braille). In some cases, the SPSO may be able to meet you in person.