§ Mr. Flynn
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how many social security appeal tribunal sessions were held in each month of 1996 for which information is available; and to what extent changes in the number of sessions were affected by the financial situation of the Independent Tribunal Service. 152W
§ Mr. Roger Evans
The information is set out in the table:
Month Number of sessions January 2,200 February 2,294 March 2,437 April 2,781 May 3,125 June 3,100 July 3,779 August 3,594 September 3,589 October 3,649 November 3,349 December 1— 1 Not yet available.
The running of sessions is a matter for the president of the Independent Tribunal Service (ITS), Judge Bassingthwaighte. However, the ITS has informed me that sessional activity is determined, and regularly reviewed, in the light of a number of factors including caseload, expected and actual intake of new appeals, the readiness of cases to proceed to hearing, the need to clear appeals expeditiously and value for money considerations.