Disabled payment delays - unlawful
This case was brought about by a pair, known legally as 'Ms C and Mr W', who said that tardiness of providing personal independence payments (PIPS) meant that the Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith had breached his common law and human rights duties to make payments within a reasonable time.
These payments are the ones that replaced the disability living allowance (DLA) in the Government's shake-up in the area. They're supposed to help disabled adults to keep up with the extra costs caused by disability.
One previous hearing heard that many had been forced to get funds from loan sharks and visit food banks, thanks to the delays in receiving their benefits. Mrs Justice Patterson passed the ruling which said that the delay in both cases was "not only unacceptable, as conceded by the defendant, but was unlawful".
She added that, in the case of Ms C, the delay was 13 months, while Mr W waited for 10 months. In each case, this had called for "expeditious consideration" as both parties suffered significant disabilities: "They were each to be regarded as the most vulnerable people in society," added the judge: "There is a high duty on local authorities to act promptly, consistently and appropriately to recognise social welfare benefits."
"There can be no public interest in delays such as was the case here."