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bedroom tax will it hit you/carers ??? - Page 15 - Carers UK Forum

bedroom tax will it hit you/carers ???

All about money
311 posts
Hi everyone

we too have been hit by the bedroom tax - we have 2 bedrroms but that is because my husband has Huntington's Disease and I have M.E. (& have had 2 strokes already).

We have had 3 'Housing Needs' assessments done which not only state that this current house is unsuitable for my husband, can't be adapted and that we need a 3rd bedroom for a live-in carer for when my condition goes into relapse.

Yet the coalition government are ignoring the fact that some people have chronic neurodegenerative conditions & other serious medical conditions & expect us to give up a much needed bedroom where both cared-for person and unpaid carer can get some much needed sleep. Perhaps they think that one of us should sleep on the floor! If I do not get my rest I can't look after my husband & his condition will deteriorate at a much faster pace thereby perhaps needing hospitalisation - where is the good economic value in that?

The government appear to have forgotten and ignored 'quality of life' and 'equality' issues. Instead they are placing more stress and hardship on those of us who actually save them an awful lot of money each year. Yes we may not be paid for it (I only get the underlying qualification to Carers Allowance) and we may not be able to put much money back into the economy but we are going to have less to put back in from April 2013.

We have held onto the hope that one day soon we would find the right 3 bed house where we could move to, settle down till the day we died, have the care and support my husband needs (as do I) but this coalition government has taken that all away from us. Based on the current rent we will have to pay and additional £14.45 per week in rent and the rent is due to rise again in April so it will be even more. Additionally because I was placed on ESA -WRAG (despite giving Atos all the information and consultants report on my condition our disabled couples element for current HB and CTB has been taken away and we currently have to pay £7.22 per week in rent and £2.16 council tax plus £20.80 per month for the prepayment prescription certificate.

These amounts may be 'pocket change' to high earners but to us they are immense. My husband has to have a daily diet of 7,500 caloeries PER DAY to maintain his weight - if he does not then he suffers from dramatic weight loss (he only absorbs half of what he eats & drinks) and we get no help with his diet.

We have DP for 21 hours per week (so that I can get a rest for 3 hours a day which I really do need) and I worked it out that I would need a part-time job that pays around £29,000 per year just to break even. Do you think the government could find me such a job? That is without factoring in the fact that I would not be getting the rest/break I need so that my own condition didn't go into relapse.

Sorry for the moan but the future does not look too bright for us and it is due to a group of people who have no idea of what all of our lives are really like.
We were faced with this at the end of last year - in respect of my 33 year old son. I'm not going to go into chapter & verse, but in a massive joint effort between us, the agency who provides his support worker. his constituency MP and the advice of a Human Rights Lawyer pro-bono, the Local Authority agreed to Discretionary Payments so that he can stay living independently - as recommended by the LA in the first place! Image Someone in the Housing Department told us he should never have been "on the hit list" for over-occupancy in the first place. It was exceedingly stressful, and one hell of a struggle, but I was determined not to see him disadvantaged any more than he already is. If you're prepared for a battle - fight it!
I see someone mentioned they'd lived in their home for 41 years - you may have a 'Regulated Tenancy', though I'm not sure if the following exemption applies only to private renters.
(This is a 'Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit Circular'):

http://www.dwp.gov.uk/docs/a4-2012.pdf

I understand, if you live in 'NON-MAINSTREAM ACCOMMODATION', you are exempt from this 'bedroom tax'. I rent privately so I've only looked at that, you'd have to check if it applies to Social Housing.
This isn't exactly trumpeted on the internet but I have found other references to it (such as the link above) as I was researching this myself. (Google NON-MAINSTREAM ACCOMMODATION for example).
If you scroll down on that link I've posted to page 10, it says]http://england.shelter.org.uk/get_advic ... _tenancies[/url]

'Regulated Tenancies'. "You are likely to be a regulated tenant if:
you moved in before 15 January 1989, and
you pay rent to a private landlord, and
you have control over your home, so that your landlord and other people cannot come in whenever they want to, and
your landlord does not live in the same building as you, and
you do not receive board or other services such as cleaning".

There's also a 'see what Tenancy you have' type page on the Shelter site, too.
I hope to God, with all the good lobbying from the main charities, here included!
They're backing down...
http://www.scoop.it/t/welfare-news-serv ... f43ea7edf3

Marie x
Ian Duncan Smith is now reported to be relooking at the question of the 2nd bedroom for carers where the carer is the partner of the disabled person. But this only seems to be in relation to Social Housing. Surely it's discriminatory if he doesn't use this as an opportunity to redress the injustice of the disabled getting LHA in the private sector being penalised for needing a 2nd bedroom.
In my area the difference in the one bed rate and two bed rate is £75 a month. It's a lot to make up. It's impossible to get a two bed flat/house/bungalow at one bed rates.
DWP took to Twitter to quickly distance and back away from this!
They tweeted
- no plans to change policy!
Guess they 'aint gonna change their mind in a hurry!
Marie x
i don't think they will listen to anything.
they might possibly pay attention if the whole UK went on a nation wide protest , and instead of Scotland and England fighting about Scotland wanting to become independent we stood side x side to show we have all had enough of being screwed over , and that the UK is for everyone . not just for the rich.
I would not be surprised to see some sort of civil unrest this year, once the implications of various benefit changes start hitting home. Maggie Thatcher achieved this with the Poll Tax.
Do you think we would get some civil unrest, more like i would think, most people if there not in social housing are just apathetic, they just don't care, they just think we are all benefit scroungers, what the government as made us into with the help of the right wing media cougt daily mail.
311 posts