Discretionary Housing Payments – the trouble with DLA.

Hardy, R (on the application of) v Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council [2015] EWHC 890 Oh, we have been waiting for this one. According to DWP survey evidence, some 75% of Councils take Disability Living Allowance into account as income when deciding on an award of Discretionary Housing Payments. This judicial review concerned Sandwell Council’s policy […]

Bedroom tax and sanctuary schemes

A quick note to record that the judicial review of the bedroom tax regulations as being discriminatory on the basis that a ‘panic room’ equipped for domestic violence victims was classed as a ‘spare bedroom’ failed. The judgment does not appear to be on Bailii, but a DWP bulletin records the case. Unsurprisingly, the fact […]

Shared care isn’t occupation as a home.

A short Upper Tribunal decision has put an end to bedroom tax appeals based on the ‘part-time’ residence of a child of a separated family with shared care. MR v North Tyneside Council and Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (Housing and council tax benefits : other) [2015] UKUT 34 (AAC) The FTT in […]

Hot, hot, hot

Here is an interesting First Tier Tribunal bedroom tax appeal decision from Bexleyheath. [Decision notice]. It is a decision made after the Fife Upper Tribunal decision, but upholds the tenant’s appeal on the basis, in part, that the room is inadequately sized to be a bedroom, as well as being just too damn hot. Thanks […]

Not quite, Minister

Following the Upper Tribunal judgment in SSWP v David Nelson and Fife Council, SSWP v James Nelson and Fife Council [2014] UKUT 0525 (AAC) [our report], the DWP has issued a Circular – HB U6/2014 The thing is that it isn’t quite right, in some quite important ways. Text and comments below. HB Bulletin U6/2013 provided details […]

The elephant in the bedroom

Finally, the long awaited Upper Tribunal decision on room size and the bedroom tax has been released. A copy of the decision can be downloaded here. SSWP v David Nelson and Fife Council, SSWP v James Nelson and Fife Council [2014] UKUT 0525 (AAC) And the upshot? Well, frankly a bit of a mess. The […]

Separated families and bedroom tax

Cotton & Ors, R (on the Application of) v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions & Ors [2014] EWHC 3437 (Admin) This was the Liberty backed judicial review of the bedroom tax regulations on the basis that the regulations amounted to an article 8 breach, or an article 14 breach read with article 8, […]

Christopher Chope MP makes a generous offer

The Justice Select Committee heard oral evidence on housing legal aid after LASPO today, 21 October 2014. Representatives from HLPA, Shelter and Garden Court Chambers gave evidence. The recording is here, if the video below doesn’t work. In the course of questioning, committee member Christopher Chope, MP for Christchurch, makes the intriguing assertion that every […]

Etcetera.

A few bits. There are four new FTT bedroom tax decisions on the FTT page, including one from Manchester where subsidence was classed as a ‘natural catastrophe’ for the purposes of continuity of property for the 1996 exemption. There are two room size and use decisions, and one Article 14 disability decision – although this […]

Bedroom Tax: Upper Tribunal on Article 14

Following my plaintive cry here, I now have copies of the two Upper Tribunal judgments from Scotland referred to by the DWP. And, while the judgments do do something rather more and rather different to the outcomes suggested in the DWP Circular, sadly, what they actually do is worse. The judgments can be downloaded here: […]