Reviews, appeals, reconsiderations
In some situations you can seek review of a decision, or appeal a decision. In some situations a decision may be reconsidered.
When a decision may be reviewed
A decision may be reviewed if it was about one of the following:
- whether service is qualifying service
- whether an illness or injury is linked to qualifying service
- whether you qualify for an entitlement or service
- what level of impairment applies.
You must apply for the review within 6 months of being told of the original decision. We'll only accept a later application if we find you had exceptional reasons for delay.
How to seek a review
Application Form (Review of Decision) [PDF, 302 KB] sets out the information we'll need from you.
If the decision reviewed relates to whether service is qualifying service, the review will be by a panel made up of:
- Veterans’ Affairs review officer
- Royal NZ Returned & Services' Association (external link) representative.
Other types of review are carried out by a Veterans’ Affairs review officer.
When a decision may be appealed
You can appeal the outcome of a review, but must do so within 6 months of being told of it.
How to appeal
Application form (Appeal against Review Decision) [PDF, 397 KB] sets out the information we'll need from you.
Your appeal will be decided by the Veterans’ Entitlements Appeal Board. This is:
- independent of Veterans’ Affairs
- made up of at least one lawyer and two medical practitioners (one nominated by the RNZRSA).
You may attend the appeal hearing:
- in person – we’ll meet reasonable and necessary costs of your travel, within New Zealand
- remotely – for example, by video conference or phone.
If the Appeal Board agrees, you can be represented at the hearing. But we can’t cover any costs for this.
When a decision can be reconsidered
You may be able to have a decision reconsidered if:
- review and appeal were unsuccessful or the period for review/appeal has ended; and
- a principle relevant to the decision has changed.
That change must be to one of the following:
- our list of qualifying operational service [PDF, 230 KB]
- our lists of conclusively presumed conditions
- our statements of principles.
Sometimes we can reconsider a decision without being asked (for example, if we think we made an error).
If you apply for reconsideration, we’ll look at whether there are grounds for it. On that basis we’ll either:
- grant reconsideration
- decline reconsideration.
If we grant reconsideration, a staff member not involved in the original decision will reconsider it.
If we decline reconsideration, you can’t appeal the decline or have it reviewed.
- Factsheet (Reviews, Appeals, Reconsiderations) [PDF, 291 KB]: summary for printing
- Standards of service (Code of Rights): your rights to standards of service from us, and what to do if you're not getting them
- Complaints: your rights if you disagree with our assessment of your needs, and which services you’re getting or not getting
- Veterans' Entitlements Appeals Board: statutory body determining appeals against review decisions.
- Veterans' Support Act (external link) : section 205 (reconsiderations); 214–227 (reviews); 228–239 (appeals)