If you are thinking about appealing these local authority decisions...
- refusal to carry out an EHC needs assessment;
- refusal to issue an EHC plan;
- the final EHC plan or amended plan;
- decision not to amend an EHC plan;
- decision to cease to maintain an EHC plan
...you must firstly consider mediation.
Mediation is an entirely optional disagreement resolution process delivered by a third party, in Suffolk this is Anglia Care Trust.
The first step would be to contact Anglia Care Trust on 01473 618675, to discuss whether you would like to use mediation and they will talk you through next steps. If you decide it's not for you, they will issue you with a certificate so that you can lodge an appeal (within two months of the original decision letter from the local authority, or one month from the date of mediation whichever is the later).
If you go ahead with mediation, Anglia Care Trust will make arrangements for you to meet with the local authority (or commissioner where disagreement is solely with health needs or provision). A mediator will attend and take notes of the discussion including any agreed actions.
Ahead of the meeting it would be helpful to prepare any questions you have and take along any new evidence you would like to share with the local authority. Also think about any questions you have around why the local authority reached its decision, and your concerns about this decision.
It might be helpful to read our leaflets below...