Gypsies living on a privately rented site challenge shortfall in Housing Benefit as discriminatory

Friday 11 May 2012

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In R (on the application of Knowles) v (1) The Valuation Office Agency (2) Lancaster City Council and (3) Secretary Of State For Work And Pensions[2012] EWHC 1161 (Admin) - the High Court accepted that the way in which the Housing Benefit scheme operates in relation to members of the gypsy community occupying private caravan sites, in failing to make special allowance for the extra costs of managing those sites, was discriminatory under Article 14 ECHR but permission was nevertheless refused on the grounds that any discrimination was justified. An appeal has been lodged with the Court of Appeal.

The Claimants were represented by Desmond Rutledge instructed by Keoghs and Nicholls, Lindsell & Harris Solicitors (Helen Dent).

Desmond is part of Garden Court Chambers Welfare BenefitsTeam.

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