Full time "live in" carers

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  • #34024
    Joannemma
    Participant

    Hi,
    Not sure if this question has been posted before, but do we include full time carers who live with the claimant in the household for LHA?
    Someone at our LA went on an LHA confrence and has informed us all that John Zebedee says they are included, and so are Foster Children for that matter, and that the DWP are wrong???
    As I understand it neither full time carers or foster children are included in the claimant’s household for LHA.

    Help!!! 😯

    #94930
    peterdelamothe
    Keymaster

    Full-time carer – yes

    Foster children – DWP say not included, nearly everyone else thinks yes on the basis that there is nothing in the legislation that excludes them.

    Oh and a butler would count too ……

    #48712
    Joannemma
    Participant

    So does this mean with regards to foster children, it is down to how each LA interprets the guidance?

    I am just in the process of putting the LHA theory training together for our LA, and I was going to advise NOT to include foster children in the household for LHA, but now I am in two minds??

    What do you suggest?

    #94931
    Mikeb2
    Participant

    [quote:c7b71b4405=”peterdelamothe”]Oh and a butler would count too ……[/quote:c7b71b4405]

    I assume you could offset the wage you pay the butler if you were self employed…

    Are servants mentioned in the regs? 😀

    #94932
    peterdelamothe
    Keymaster

    Its a matter for you. If you decide to follow DWP guidance then you need to be aware that you may be challenged. What legislation will you rely on? John Zeb said in his notes at the HBINFO Conference yesterday that the law was fairly clear on this ..and HBINFO agrees. It is your decision.

    #94933
    Joannemma
    Participant

    Thanks for the advice Peter.
    It seems from reading the LHA posts on HBINFO that the guidance issued by the DWP is not all it is cracked up to be!

    Thanks again.

    #94934
    andyrichards
    Participant

    Living aside the “rights and wrongs”, the LHA Guidance does give a fairly reasoned explanation of why foster children cannot be included, grounded in legislation, whether you agree with it or not. It certainly stands in contrast to some of the off-the-cuff statements in there which appear to have no legislative authority whatsoever.

    I’d be interested to hear what people think is wrong with what is in para 2.14 of the manual.

    #48717
    cbuck
    Participant

    The big problem for me is the way that the guidance tries to link the status of ‘family member’ to the concept of occupation. There is no question that the foster child should be counted as a family member and the claimant given the associated applicable amount.

    The definition of “occupier” only requires occupation of the dwelling as the home. Peter Barker made some interesting observations about where else said foster child may occupy if not the claim address. I remember something about ‘foster jam’ (surely a contender for ‘poster of the month’) but don’t have time to find the quote just now.
    😆

    #94935
    andyrichards
    Participant

    But doesn’t the caselaw link those two very things – I am thinking of the Swale/Marchant case, or is DWP applying the principle too widely?

    #94936
    Anonymous
    Guest

    The application of a principle doesn’t seem very water- tight when the law (Regulation 13D (12)) seems to ignore it so comprehensively.

    The general principle taken by DWP from Swale/Marchant (in that the claimant is not entitled to a room for a foster child, as the requisite room is already subsidised by social services) does make some sense, but until the regs recognise the principle explicitly, I think the legal case for inclusion is stronger.

    I am a little surprised that the DWP are happy to include a subtenant as an “occupier” as this would appear to subsidise a commercial arrangement with public funds.

    As the definition currently stands, foster children, live in carers, butlers, au pairs, and the guy in the cellar with the gimp mask are all in if the LA is satisfied – unless they are a joint tenant who is not a member of the claimant’s household.

    #94937
    andyrichards
    Participant

    Does the gimp in the cellar have to be in a commercial relationship with the claimant, or doesn’t it matter?

    #94938
    cbuck
    Participant

    Doesn’t matter. Give him a room. I’m giving everybody a room from now on. Even considering the postman and maybe the bloke that came to fit the satellite dish…

    #94939
    peterdelamothe
    Keymaster

    I agree … and this entire area will be up for challenge from April.

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