In this edition of the e-bulletin, we provide a brief update on the habitual residence test and the benefit cap, and consider in detail three further topics which emerged over the past month.
18 December 2020
Two EU nationals, a severely disabled man and his carer, have won a landmark Court of Appeal case against the DWP which establishes their right to support from universal credit. The judgment means that EU nationals with pre-settled status cannot be treated differently to UK citizens in relation to access to means-tested benefits.
17 November 2020
Part 1 set out our approach at CPAG to access to justice in the social security field, namely ensuring: access to information, access to advice and assistance, and access to mechanisms for challenging unlawful decisions. Continuing with the last of these steps, the normal route for challenging a social security decision is by appealing it to a tribunal. Sometimes though, the appeal route is not available or, while available in principle, is not effective. In those situations, the route of legal challenge is judicial review.
17 November 2020
The ‘rule of law’ and ‘access to justice’ are concepts that are seen as fundamental to the proper functioning of a healthy, democratic society. The rule of law becomes perilously fragile if ordinary people are unable to hold public bodies to account.
In this edition of the e-bulletin, we look at the top three topics that have been recorded in the Early Warning System (EWS) throughout October 2020. Although issues that relate to the COVID-19 pandemic and the government measures taken in response to it still feature in the Early Warning System, we are now seeing a resurgence of long-standing concerns about the universal credit system.
16 November 2020
New universal credit regulations come in to force today. This follows our successful legal case concerning people paid monthly getting two wages in one UC assessment period.
16 November 2020
The Independent Review of Administrative Law (IRAL) panel recently invited the submission of evidence on how well or effectively judicial review balances the legitimate interest in citizens being able to challenge the lawfulness of executive action with the role of the executive in carrying on the business of government, both locally and centrally.
Our response emphasises the important role of judicial review in ensuring good governance and that decisions which affect some of the most vulnerable members of society are made in compliance with basic standards of good administrative decision making.
25th March 2021 to 26th March 2021
Social security law and tax credit law can change from day to day and advisers need to keep abreast of developments to advise their clients correctly. Arranged under topic headings...
EK v SSWP CDLA/2019/2018 and TS v SSWP CDLA/2208/2018
These cases challenge the legality of the revised past presence test (PPT), which requires a child to have been in the UK for 104 of the past 156 weeks before being eligible to claim disability living allowance (DLA) (referred to as the ‘2 year PPT’).
The appellants argue that the 2 year PPT is unlawful as a result of non-compliance by the SSWP with the Public Sector Equality Duty (PSED) and the discriminatory effect of the 2 year PPT is in breach of their human rights.
The cases were heard together before UTJ Ward at a two-day Upper Tribunal hearing on 3 - 4 June 2020 and judgment, dated 12 October 2020 and sent to the parties on 17 November 2020, found in favour of the appellants on human rights grounds.
MH v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (SC944/19/01408)
CPAG represented the appellant in a challenge to the universal credit (UC) rules that prevent certain 19 year olds who are in full-time, non-advanced education from being included in their parents’ UC claim, while they are also prevented from claiming UC in their own right, on the basis that the provisions are discriminatory and irrational. The appeal was heard by the First-tier Tribunal on 24th November 2020 and was dismissed.