All 660,000 bedroom tax decisions made by local councils affecting about 1.6 million men women and children are flaky as hell and its time councils stopped lying to bedroom tax tenants as those lies are rapidly beginning to crumble before our eyes.
Yes every single one of them as ALL 660,000 bedroom tax decisions are unsafe and cannot hold. Every single tenant has a right to appeal and huge justification and substantive merit in appealing even if such appeals are ‘out-of-time’ appeals.
Every one of the 660,000 social housing claimant households should appeal, has substantive merit to appeal and I would advise they do precisely that.
Let’s cut to the chase shall we? How many council responses to tenants challenging the bedroom tax decisions have been met with lies by councils such as:
(a) It’s up to the landlord to define what a bedroom is
(b) It’s up to the landlord to say how many bedrooms each property has
(c) We have no discretion in making the bedroom tax decisions
Every council has said this yet lo and behold we see Welwyn Council unilaterally declaring that anything under 50 square feet cannot be a bedroom and now we have Bristol Council seeking to go even further with a call to review the definition of a “bedroom” and re-classify small rooms as “box rooms” or non-bedrooms; and a call to re-classify second rooms on ground floors as non-bedrooms.
Councils have no discretion? It is up to landlords to define? Absolutely twaddle, pure unadulterated bullsh*t!
As I have always maintained, councils are the SOLE decision-makers on what is a bedroom and how many bedrooms a property has and now the proof is coming out by the day.
- Proof that councils knew all along it was their decision;
- Proof that councils knew when they made the decisions and proof know that they knew it was their decision all along.
- Proof that councils have been spineless in making the bedrooms tax decisions;
- Proof that councils simply took the vested interest word of landlords as it was cheaper for councils to do this, and
- Proof that councils have lied to every bedroom tax tenant when they said it is up to the landlord and we have no say or discretion.
We don’t need any further proof that all 660,000 original decisions were a sham and legally unreliable.and that councils have been lying to any tenant who challenges that such decisions were a sham.
It doesn’t make any difference if Bristol and Welwyn councils retract and say we are not defining any room under 50 square feet as a non bedroom – the fact they now it is in their gift or their powers to do is enough to expose the bedroom tax decision making processes they took as a sham.
Unless of course councils can come out with masses of legal opinion which says they had no discretion – which they won’t as they can’t as its untrue
That is why every single bedroom tax affected tenant has substantive merit in appealing the bedroom tax decisions and why they should do so.
1.6 million men women and children in these 660,000 households are adversely affected by sham decisions of public authority’s and this has to be a matter of public interest for lawyers. It can’t be anything else.
- All councils knew they could decide to define a bedroom in terms of its size or any other factor yet they all chose not to do so because it would have cost them too much to do that.
- All councils merely accepted the view of social landlords who have a clear and undeniably vested interest in stating a property has as many bedrooms as possible.
- All councils conveniently ignoring the fact the bedroom tax A4/2012 guidance issued by the DWP did NOT say there is no legal definition of bedroom – it only says the government will not be making a future definition.
- All councils again conveniently ignoring the 1985 Housing Act, the 1998 HSE guidance and the fact these same councils ask independent assessors to make 220,000 or so decisions each year over what is a bedroom and how many each private sector property has!
- All councils knew they were on a sticky wicket and flaky legal ground yet they tried to cover this up by telling tenants they could not appeal, had no right of appeal, sidetracked them with FOI requests, and practised many other dirty tricks to dissuade tenants from their legal right to appeal as it cost the same councils money.
And then to cap it all off they knowingly lied to tenants by saying they have no discretion in the matter and what a bedroom constitutes is up to the landlord!
To call the bedroom tax decisions flaky and a sham from start to finish is to give them false praise! Every single one of these 660,000 bedroom tax decisions needs to be thrown out and all 660,000 social housing HB claimants affected have substantive merit to appeal them on the bases and grounds above and they should appeal.