Court told 'bedroom tax' regulations flawed

Martin Westgate QC, appearing for the 10 test cases, told two judges the regulations were flawed as they failed to deal with the needs of the disabled and the amount of space and the number of rooms they realistically needed if they were not to suffer discrimination because of their disabilities.

Each of the claimants has a need, because of disability, to occupy accommodation larger than that which would be allowed to them under the size criteria.

The key point is that benefit must match need for accommodation size where that need has been identified.

– Martin Westgate QC

In a three-day hearing, he is asking the court to rule that the new regulations breach Article 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which protects against discrimination.

He also argues that the Work and Pensions Secretary, has failed to comply with his public equality duty under the 2010 Equality Act and the discriminatory element in the regulations must be quashed.

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'Bedroom tax' legal challenge

The High Court is considering 10 claims being brought against the Government's so-called Bedroom Tax that came into force on 1st April this year.