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Two win sickness benefit test legal challenge

May 22 2013 at 1:27 PM
Anonymous 

Two win sickness benefit test legal challenge

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-22620894

 

woman with mental health problemThose with mental health problems can struggle to gather the right evidence for the benefit test
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Two people with mental health problems, who claimed the test for sickness benefit would discriminate against them, have won their legal challenge.

A judge ruled the Work Capability Assessment puts people with mental illness, autism and learning difficulties at a substantial disadvantage.

The process is too difficult for many to navigate, a court heard.

The Department for Work and Pensions has said it will appeal the decision.

Work Capability Assessment tests, which measure a person's entitlement to Employment and Support Allowance, were introduced in 2008 and are carried out on behalf of the government.

The law requires the government to make reasonable adjustments to avoid discrimination.

At Wednesday's hearing, the Upper Tribunal - which is equivalent to the High Court - was told people who have conditions that mean they lack insight can struggle to gather the right documents, including doctors reports, needed for a successful claim.

Lawyers for the two, whose identities have been protected, argued that where a claim is from someone with a mental health problem, it should be the government's responsibility to seek additional medical evidence.


 
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The process is too difficult for many to navigate, a court heard.

May 22 2013, 1:28 PM 

The process is too difficult for many to navigate, a court heard.

The Department for Work and Pensions has said it will appeal the decision.

Work Capability Assessment tests, which measure a person's entitlement to Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) by determining whether they are fit for work, were introduced in 2008 and are carried out on behalf of the government.

The law requires the government to make reasonable adjustments to avoid discrimination.

Vulnerable claimants

At Wednesday's hearing, the Upper Tribunal - which is equivalent to the High Court - was told people who have conditions that mean they lack insight can struggle to gather the right documents needed for a successful claim, such as doctors' reports.

The judgment was the result of a judicial review brought by two claimants with mental health problems, whose identities have been protected.


 
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