Disabled people to challenge Government’s ‘bedroom tax’ at Supreme Court

Five disabled people in the UK are to challenge the Supreme Court against the Government’s ‘bedroom tax’, arguing that the tax discriminates against vulnerable people.

The five cases at the centre of the proceedings each involve Britons who have thus far lost their cases at both the high court and the court of appeal.

One appellant, James Daly, from Stoke, has a severely disabled 13-year-old son, of whom Mr Daly shares the care with his ex-partner.

Mr Daly lives a two-bedroom, ground floor flat which has level access throughout – but is now deemed to be ‘over-occupying’ his property by one bedroom – the bedroom used by his son.

Mr Daly, who is currently in full time employment, said that he “knows that if he were to be unemployed again he would be refused full housing benefit again if the current scheme remains in place”.

Another appellant, Charlotte Carmichael, has spina bifida and lives with her husband in a two-bedroom housing association flat in Manchester.

Due to her condition, Ms Carmichael has to sleep in a fixed position in a hospital bed with an electronic pressure mattress. There is not enough space for a second bed so her husband has no choice but to sleep in a separate bedroom.

Along with many others, the couple had their housing benefit reduced by 14% when the new regulations were introduced.

Ms Carmichael’s defence, said: “My clients are looking to the supreme court to recognise and bring to an end the awful hardship they, and many other disabled people nationally, have been subjected to since the introduction of the bedroom tax.”

Court proceedings for Ms Carmichael and Mr Daly will begin later today.

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Nigel is the Managing Partner and Head of Litigation and Dispute Resolution in the London office of Mackrell Turner Garrett.