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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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Question on behalf of a friend with no computer: Income support

Resolved Question:

Question on behalf of a friend with no computer: Income support benefits ceased in October 2013 and since then they have not received a single penny. There was an appeal against the decision several months ago when the Court of Appeal stated they were entitled to benefits and referred to the new ESA.
Monies have been withheld for almost a year, they are in poor health, unable to work and in early sixties. The situation is that they have no income to live on which has brought them the point of starvation and feeling suicidal.
In accordance with Human Rights Act “ there is an obligation on the state to prevent destitution and neglect by providing relief to persons who may otherwise starve to death”. What course of action can they take.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 2 years ago.
Alex Watts : Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help with this,
Alex Watts : Are you saying a court has decided they are entitled to benefit but still have not been paid? What is the reason given please?
Customer:

The court decision stated that they are entitled to benefit but payments will now have to come under the new ESA benefit not income support as a result of Government policy to wrap all benefits under one heading. I understand that the company, ATOS Healthcare, that is handling these type of changes is behind schedule and are withdrawing from their contract . I am not sure if this action is why benefits have not been received. Having spoken to ATOS generally they stated that they do not make the decisions they only consider the health aspects. It is the DWP who are the decision makers which is partly based on medical issues. My friend wrote to ATOS on 29 July 2014 but no answer to date. The process appears to be going round in circles and getting no where. A letter was written to the local MP but he is currenly on holiday and the response from his secretary said contact Citizens Advice. Actions/ decisions appear to be going round in circles and my friend is suffering.

Alex Watts :

Have you sought a Judicial Review of their decision?

Customer:

No. How do they go about that ?

Alex Watts :

You need to see a Solicitor for this.

Alex Watts :

A Judicial Review or JR is where a High Court Judge considers the actions of a government department and sees whether they are legal and reasonable.

Alex Watts :

A Judge can agree with the decision or remit it back for further considetation.

Alex Watts :

You may get legal aid for this depending on your circumstances.

Alex Watts :

To find a local Solicitor who may be able to help please go to:

Alex Watts :

http://solicitors.lawsociety.org.uk/

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything else for you about this today please?

Customer:

My friend had asked if there are any other methods of approach such as appealing to the Courts of Human Rights or through the Omnibus process.

Alex Watts :

Sadly not, if there has been an appeal, it must now go to Judicial Review

Alex Watts :

Does that clarify the position?

Customer:

Yes. Thank you for the clarification and notification of the process that now needs to be follwed.

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