||All England Reporter
|| All ER (D) 168 (Aug)
|| EWHC 2222 (Admin)
||Queen's Bench Division, Administrative Court (Leeds)
Mr Justice Hickinbottom
||Stephen Cragg (instructed by Ben Hoare Bell) for the claimant.
||Paul Spencer (instructed by Head of Legal Governance and Commercial Services, North Tyneside Council) for the authority.
||1 August 2012
Social security - Services for sick and disabled persons - Assessment of needs of sick and disabled persons - Claimant having Downs Syndrome and a moderate learning difficulty and living with parents - Claimant becoming 18 years of age - Claimant's needs being assessed by defendant local authority for adult community care needs - Authority refusing to allow any disregard for housing costs - Claimant challenging authority's policy of never considering giving allowance to community care service users who lived with parent or parents where parents not entitled to housing benefit - Whether authority required at least to consider making allowance - Whether authority's policy irrational - National Health and Community Care Act 1990, - Health and Social Care Act 2001, s 57.
Social security Services for sick and disabled persons. The Administrative Court held that a local authority was entitled to assume that, ordinarily, no specific allowance or disregard needed to be made in relation to housing costs for community care service users who lived with parents, other close relatives or other informal carers, where the user had no legal obligation to a third party to pay mortgage, rent or council tax. An element of basic rate Employment and Support Allowance covered household expenditure, and there is a sufficient element within that rate for relevant 'housing costs'. It further held that the defendant local authority's policy regarding disabled service users who lived with their parents or other informal carers was legally flawed, in that it distinguished between users who lived with carers who were on housing benefit and those who lived with carers who were not.
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