Fuck The Courts, We Are The Law Says DWP In Bedroom Tax Diktat

Iain-Duncan-Smith-workfareIn yet another astonishing outburst from the DWP, tin-pot dictator Iain Duncan Smith is treating the laws of the land with utter contempt and demanding that local authorities ignore a recent Bedroom Tax court decision.

Earlier in the month a first-tier benefit tribunal judgement ruled that a room of less than 70 square feet should not be considered a bedroom for the purpose of the Bedroom Tax.  This important judgement against Fife Council led the local authority to call the bedroom tax ‘unworkable’ and demand it should be scrapped.

This ruling was immediately seized upon by campaigners who rightly demanded that their own local councils introduce Bedroom Tax  policies in line with the ruling.

Yet not for the first time, the DWP have decided they are above the law and have this week sent out an ‘Urgent Bulletin’ to Housing Benefit staff (PDF) across the UK ordering them to ignore the court ruling.  According to the DWP, the only definition of whether a room is a bedroom is the one set out by the landlord of the property, and consideration must be given as to whether the room is large enough to contain a single bed.

Whilst the ruling in Fife did not set a legal precedent, according to The Scotsman lawyers have said it will “have repercussions for other cases across the UK, making it more likely that other appeals would find in claimants’ favour.”

The DWP claim they are seeking permission to appeal the decision, although as the SPeye blog makes clear, they don’t even seem to know even the most basic facts of the case.

This is unlikely to trouble Ministers at the DWP however where ignorance is bliss and the law of the land is a minor inconvenience to be dodged, bent or re-written at will.

So it is likely that another Bedroom Tax court ruling, as reported by The Guardian yesterday, will also be shrugged off.  Surinder Lall, who is blind  brought a case against Westminster Council and was able to convince the court that a room used to store equipment needed to help him manage his disability was not, and had never been, a bedroom.

Westminster Council had argued that this man’s landlord had classified the room as a bedroom and this led to the decision to cut his housing benefits. This is the same argument used by the DWP in their panicky diktat to Housing Benefit staff earlier in the week.  It is also an argument that appears to have been completely ignored by the judge in the case who said in a terse one page judgement (PDF)“The term ‘bedroom’ is nowhere defined.  I apply the ordinary English meaning.  The room in question cannot be so described.  The appeal succeeds.”

The DWP have said they are considering appealing this ruling as well.  In the meantime however the judge has ordered that Westminster Council should revise Mr Lall’s entitlement to Housing Benefit in line with the Tribunal’s decision.

Whilst Iain Duncan Smith is likely to continue playing fast and loose with the courts to dodge the consequences of his bungled reforms, claimants everywhere who face the Bedroom Tax should still consider whether they are able to appeal.  At the very least it will slow the bastards down.

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56 responses to “Fuck The Courts, We Are The Law Says DWP In Bedroom Tax Diktat

  1. Iain Duncan Smith is a CUNT!!

    Fuck this Nazi bastard!!

  2. Leggy Mountbatten

    When government’s consider themselves above the law God help us all. Even for IDS, Freud, and Hoban this lowers the bar further in respect to how low this unbelievable scumbuckets will stoop. Incredible. I never thought I would ever see the day when any British government behaved like this.

    • I wonder what you do about the DWP I just won three cases against them
      and S murrays department has effectively said fuck the judge, what new
      dimention have we entered, complete lawlessness. How do you appeal
      against a decision where the government department refuses to comply
      with the law.

  3. Why are the liberals not pulling out of this coalition and forcing a general election, either they think it’s ok to flout the law or they are in someones pocket.

    • Well the grass roots membership (which I assume also includes standing members of parliament) at conference voted “no” to the bedroom tax… just a shame their leadership and those same standing members didn’t have the balls to say no in the original parliamentary debates and votes.

      Guess the spineless yellow bellied gits have realised that they are toast at the next elections because they cozied up to the cuntservatives and are now trying to distance themselves from stupid unworkable and punitive policies such as the bedroom tax.

      Well fuck em!

    • They’re not pulling out of government because the fuckers are drunk on power, that’s why. If they pull out and force an election, I don’t think anyone will vote for them. They’ve given their supporters the Judas kiss by breaking every pre-election promise they made.

    • I think the liberals are in the pocket of the conservatives they have to be for
      the coalition to work, we are in a very dangerous area now where, police
      and government departments refuse to comply with judges, very dangerous
      water indeed, it’s really in leagl terms sedition, and treason of statute law
      and legal ruilings, sort of think you find in North Korea.

  4. Iain Duncan-Smith (that name still sounds like a horrendous sti) should remember he is a servant of ALL the people, not the scuzzy lapdog of the 1%. His fellow members of this hellish triumvirate, Hoban and Freud, seem to be intent on wrecking this country’s proud (relatively recent) social foundation of protecting the poor and helpless.
    Could their tie in with UNUM insurance “heroes” be clouding their judgement?
    They’re not even scabs, they are just greedy, selfish, conscionless, money-grubbing bastards.

  5. The sooner we are rid of them the better. Picking on the blind is a pretty low thing to do.

  6. Wont be long for us in Scotland as Im led to believe it will be scrapped after the referendum and independence succeeds.

  7. Pingback: Fuck The Courts, We Are The Law Says DWP In Bed...

  8. so he is incitieng councels to break the law time he was prosecuted i think.

  9. Pingback: Fuck The Courts, We Are The Law Says DWP In Bed...

  10. Pingback: The Astounding Arrogance Of #IDS! #bedroomtax from @JohnnyVoid | Mentally Wealthy

  11. Another yella bellied lot the labour councillors and council workers if they follow these policies.
    Did anyone see nick the dick ferrari on tv spouting that the unemployed should work for their benefits with Polly toynbee conceding that at least under the John major government they at least got some money on top of their benefits.
    The unemployed don’t want some money, they want the going rate for the job they do which should be more than the minimum wage at present which was set to low to survive without benefit top ups.

  12. There are many possible grounds for an ‘out of time’ appeal but one that many tenants could use is if they were misled by their LA into thinking they had no right to appeal or that an appeal was pointless. Many tenants were told that an appeal was a waste of time as the policy is handed down from central Government and nothing could be changed, thus effectively blocking tenants’ legal rights. As Joe Halewood has reported there have been instances where councils have even told tenants they had no right of appeal whatsoever. So, if this has happened to anyone, even if you were told over the phone by the LA that an appeal is a waste of time, this is grounds itself for an appeal. They are legally obliged to go through any telephone conversations where this has happened. My guess is that thousands of tenants were misled into thinking they had no appeal rights against the bedroom tax. Time for all those tenants to put in appeals and demand their rights.

  13. I think the reaction of IDS et al are a good thing actually because to use a legal term :-), it shows “beyond reasonable doubt” what despicable individuals they are (not that we didn’t know that already)

  14. How much money is being wasted on these disgusting appeals?

    This is a complete abuse of power.

  15. something survived...

    That picture is kind of unfair… to STALIN. At least under Stalin the poor could have a job and a home.
    IDS and his mates are kicking people out of their homes and onto the street, stopping people getting jobs/homes, and putting people into nonjobs. (not that I’m supporting Stalin you understand!)
    If on benefits you can lose your housing benefit if you get a job or if they sanction another benefit. So you will lose your home. Britain is broken but it was Dave/Tony/Gordon and their mates ‘what broke it’.

  16. they are also stepping up sanctions because of the cait reilly case as they are concerned they will have to payout back dated benefits and claim if they do so it will cost more leading to benefit cuts and reductions…its plainly obvious they have fucked the economy and will use any excuse to avoid blame and therefore go out of their way to blame all unemployed and disabled..

  17. THEY’VE GOT TO GO!!! WHY AREN’T WE PROTESTING MORE IN THE STREETS??

    • Because we are following rules and regulations that tie us to a computer job searching or workfare for fear of sanction instead of using civil disobedience in large numbers, because let’s face it the only people that are exercising civil disobedience is this government that is flouting the laws and then changing them to suit themselves, how are they getting them through parliament?

      • @guy fawkes well i posted all that stuff from their impact assessment on back to work scheme where they were shitting themselves about payouts over wrong information about WCA and workfare..claiming that if they do backpay they would have to cut benefits..

        • Chewie

          Those who went on workfare should have been paid by the company they were working for, not by the DWP as a work for benefit type scheme.
          Those that were sanctioned because they refused to do workfare had their benefits stopped by the DWP so if the courts said this was illegal then the dwp should refund the benefits stolen off them – in other words there would be no extra cost to the government whether on or off workfare.

          • @guy fawkes well if you read the DWP back to work impact assessment extracts i posted they make a big thing about what would happen if the did payout..they said the bill would so high the would have to reduce or cut benefits..

            • chewie
              £12bln +/yr in benefits goes unclaimed in any case, so their argument is a bit disingenuous for that, and many other reasons..
              shut down the sanction and conditionality machine problem solved, and save billions in admin, and energy, as well…it is all done to pretend that work is out there and if it wasn’t but for the stubbornness of the benefits entitled, they would see this to..people are desperate for well paid work…when well paid work is available unemployment always falls..

              • @donkey just been reading this stuff about eric pickles.

                “But nothing could stop Pickles and his group as proposal after proposal were approved in the stifling heat of the council chamber.

                £5.8 million was cut from the budget, chiefly in Education. Up went council rents, the first of 2 such increases within 6 months.

                Up went charges for leisure centres, theatre hire, car parks, school meals, home helps, meals on wheels, elderly luncheon clubs and cemeteries.

                Staff cuts were announced amongst repairs and maintenance workers, caretakers, teachers, creche and nursery workers, social workers and council officers. Job vacancies would remain unfilled and budgets slashed in most departments. The councils’ Old Peoples Homes would be sold off and Benefit Advice Centres closed.

                For the largely poor inhabitants of the inner city it was a terrifying package and it was only the start. Within 6 months the council’s budget would have been cut by £13 million.

                Eric Pickles’ 5 year plan was to cut over £50 million from the budget, to cut the council workforce by a third through job cuts and service privatisation, and to completely restructure the authority. The council would simply became a “holding” company which would meet 2 or 3 times a year in order to sign contracts with private companies who would provide whatever services remained.”

                http://www.1in12.com/publications/library/pickles/chap1.htm

            • a chritmas carol, pickles should play scrooge, a disenfranchmiser of services to the working classes..can you just post the link please…

              • @donkey i normally do just post links, but they can easily missed and ppl wouldnt know what it was, it also saves the reader from going to link trying to remember much of it then come back and comment of which other readers may have no idea what the comment refers to. hence the method i often use and yes i too often use smartphones to read these blogs maybe i am lucky to have one with a bigger screen and text is quite clear..

            • chewie
              i am an old diabetic, these skinny narrow long posts hurt my eyes, the info you posted was in the link anyway..links are easier for me to read, coz the info is spread out over a full page…

    • Fixed length parliament of 5 years…mind it would be great if this could be challenged and scrapped. Oh no!, we haven’t got a written constitution, so only parliament can dissolve itself. Don’t see that happening given the relish among the cons for “austerity” post 2015.

  18. This evil bastard is worthless shit

  19. If Labour gets in, it would serve the Tories right if Labour did lots of retroactive anti Tory laws, as they started it.

  20. cant believe that there are people around us who want this bloody silly “BEDROOM TAX” its causing pain and worry to all those tenants who have lived in their homes and I say “HOMES” because the government only ever refer to “COUNCIL HOUSES” do they not think we are allowed to have a “HOME”

  21. Why the fuck can’t we be invaded & the invading army shoot these rancid tory bastards & their slavering limpdem lapdogs? After we’ve done this often enough in the last 10 years or so in the name of “regime change” so when’s our turn to be freed from our tinpot dictatorship?

  22. socialawareness2013

    Reblogged this on Social Awareness.

  23. i think the scottish judgement says, ‘the house does not have 2 bedrooms, it has 1 bedroom’ so….. the new housing benefit is correct and it is the rent that will have to change?

  24. In the Housing Act 1985 (Part 10, section 326) living rooms can also deemed to be suitable as a bedroom and if a landlord has ‘living room/bedroom’ as part of an original description.then.for ‘bedroom tax’ purposes there is nothing stopping IDS tightening the noose still more- particularly for singletons and couples.

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