How can the unemployed PAY for appeals against refusal of benefit?

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It’s the latest election-losing plan from the Conservative Party.

Leaked documents from the Department for Work and Pensions have revealed plans to charge benefit claimants whose claims have been stopped, if they want to appeal against the decision to an independent judge.

These are people who – by definition – have no money.

How are they supposed to pay?

The answer is, of course, they’re not. This is a plan to push people off of benefit altogether. They’re not expected to find the money to pay for an appeal; they are expected to go away. Then the DWP can enjoy the JSA benefit saving and shortly after – when the claimant loses his or her home, due to failure to keep up rent/mortgage payments, the DWP can enjoy the Housing Benefit saving as well.

What vile pervert could devise a plan that corrupts the benefit system in such a way?

The answer is, of course, the same one who has been corrupting it since he took over in 2010 – Iain Duncan Smith.

No politician in his or her right mind could propose such a move and expect to win an election on it.

Perhaps this is why the document had to be leaked from the DWP.

At least we all know, now.

This is how the Conservative Party reduces benefit claimant figures.

Getting people into jobs has been abandoned – too much like work.

Finding an excuse to push them off-benefit is the new fashion – and fraud or error is the name of the game.

It is worth noting that The Guardian – to which newspaper this information was leaked – has provided figures on the number of benefit refusals currently being overturned.

We know that 0.7 per cent of benefits are currently awarded wrongly, due to fraud or error. According to The Guardian, no less than 58 per cent of benefit refusals that were taken to tribunal have been overturned as erroneous or fraudulent.

That’s 82 times the amount of fraudulent or erroneous claims!

The Conservatives want to hush this up by making it impossible for poor people to appeal against these fraudulent or mistaken decisions.

Don’t give them the chance.

Make a decision that will benefit you.

Deny the Tories your vote on May 7.

Afterword: It has been brought to this writer’s attention that the story on which this article is based is a year old. People are talking about it now, however – probably because someone has shared it without looking at the year of publication (this is easily done). Therefore this article will not be taken down; it seems this is a worthy subject for discussion, as we do not currently know what horrors the Conservatives are planning, should they win the election in May.

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27 thoughts on “How can the unemployed PAY for appeals against refusal of benefit?

  1. M de Mowbray

    London Live TV (Freeview 8) sometimes shows “The New Statesman” with Rik Mayall, and written by Marks and Cran 20 or so years ago. It is satyrical comedy concerning Tory M.P. Alan B’Stard. The comedy, when written, was broad and “OTT”. I watched a few episodes last night and was shocked to see how the exaggerated lies, self-interest, conspiracy and corruption are now exactly comparable with the current regime. It is no longer satire, it is virtually a fly-on-the-wall portrayal of current Tory thinking and behaviour. Horrifying, but great TV! ( I have NO connection New Staesman or London Live ! )

    1. aturtle05

      Did you miss the bit that, in order to stop prisoners voting, the Tories want to ditch the Charter on Human Rights? So Article 6 would be out of the window too!

    2. fathomie

      It is, but that doesn’t mean it has to be free, and depends on what you are appealing against. The govt has been cutting back on both since 2010. Immigration appeals have been drastically curtailed, you have to pay both to approach an Employment Tribunal, and for an appeal (both were free prior to 2010), and of course, legal aid (with, as the select committee pointed out no evidence to support the reasoning behind it) has also been slashed. This is just the latest move in the govts return to feudalism.

      Cloth caps will be mandatory for ‘peasants’ after the election.

  2. Mr.Angry

    Welcome to Stalin’s UK, I expected this to come out, I had given some thought to this and anticipated this beyond-evil move. I was just waiting for it to become another despicable ruling by this notorious shower of pond life.

    The more I thought about it, I said no – they could not possibly do such a thing; reading this had proved the contrary.

    May they rot in hell, each and every one them.

  3. concernedkev

    Denying people their democratic right to justice. Is there no one out there who can make a legal challenge on this? I have come across some legal aid lawyers on twitter complaining about their plight of being thrown off the gravy train. Saying they will not vote Labour even though their own ilk have double crossed them. There had to be some sacrificial goats on the pyre of persecuting the poor. It is hard to feel sympathy for them although I know there are some decent types who work for free. Unfortunately they are as rare as hens’ teeth.
    The only sense that can be made of this scenario is that IDS is in charge of the final solution – either that or he has substantial information on Cameron and Osborne to the point they dare not reign him in. Or it could be both!!!! Giving him his own way is safer.

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      This is a leaked plan; it hasn’t been put into practice yet – and may never happen, if Labour wins the election.

      1. fathomie

        It’s been mooted before, and was released via the Daily Mail. From past (bitter) experience if it’s put out through the Mail, it will be future policy.

      2. Nick

        i can assure you mike it will happen and worse the sick and disabled would end up like myself at 50KG Through the stress of trying to stay alive

        The stress this government has caused me has caused my body to malfunction in a way that stops me eating properly

        Apparently it is well documented that prolonged stress over many years causes severe nausea and a foul taste through prolonged bouts of being sick

        my hospital drugs with regret don’t work so i have to fight each day to stay alive which is difficult as those with long term nausea will tell you

    2. fathomie

      “Access to justice is a core fundamental right and a central concept in the broader field of justice. However, it is a right that faces a number of challenges throughout the EU”

      This is taken from the EU website. It shows how much contempt the govt actually holds the EU in, and how much ‘power’ the EU really doesn’t have over us. Increasingly EU principles such as this one and others, fopr example, ‘Education for life’ are tacitly ignored by the UK, and other right wing govts in Europe. The Germans for example, sadly, are becoming more like us, in that ‘their Thatcher’ as a German friend called Merkel, is dismantling a welfare state that put ours to shame.

      It does surprise me though, that no enterprising lawyer hasn’t taken this issue, the denial of access to justice, through the Courts over Asylum seekers denied the right to appeal and Employment Tribunals being charged for? I suppose it’s the same old problem, lack of funds. Contrary to UKIP and the Tories propaganda, you cannot go ‘straight to the ECHR’, you have to go through our court system first, and then, only once you have been given leave, apply to the ECHR.

      Still, once the election is over, we won’t have to worry about what rights we are being denied, as the Tory or Tory/UKIP coalition govt will do away the such ‘fripperies’ as the peasants having ‘rights’.

      As I say, the Tory’s aren’t returning us to ‘before the war’, unless you mean the war of the roses…

  4. daijohn

    Fraud is a crime – activate the citizen’s arrest. It would cause quite stir if many of the jobcentre ‘advisors’ ended up down the local nick!

  5. Thomas

    Throwing more people wrongly off benefits will lead to more crime of all kinds and in the long term, more riots or worse.

  6. Richard Atkinson

    Leak was twelve months ago. They’re not going to act on this pre-election. Probably waiting to see how 1. charging for Employment tribunals works out: answer it drastically reduces the numbers of applications and the Libdems are objecting 2. how mandatory reconsideration works out: answer it has already drastically reduced the numbers of appeals against benefit decisions. Think this is kite flying designed to disguise the fact that they have already stopped most benefit appeals, in practice, through mandatory reconsideration.

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      You know what? I did not realise that this was a year old. Reason: People are talking about it NOW.
      I’m willing to bet some idiot put it up somewhere without mentioning that it was a year old and everyone did as I did – took it as new.
      Well, I’m going to keep the article up; it’s something we should be discussing in the run-up to an election, especially with the hindsight that you have brought to it.
      What will the Tories want to do after May 7?

  7. tommaz jay

    Picking Smith out of the rotten syncopathic bunch of torys (I deliberately give them a small t as they are not worthy of any salutations) is entirly justified in your articles. This creature is the epitome of every single thing that is wrong within the tory party. I would love to know what was done to him in his formative years that turnd him to hate of his fellow citizens. His opinions and most importantly his lies and continued misrepresentation of statistics is beyond belief and my god he certainly believes every single lie he tells as he has a belief that he is right, his words not mine.

  8. Gazza

    OT:

    Posting as it adds further information on how justice is now implemented under the ConCons Nasty Parties :

    For Employment Tribunals, its £250 to register a case [after a cooling off period that is (Never did find a definitive qouted period so a lot of people will probably miss the end date for registering, meaning less cases which is the point of the cooling off period) – and being forced to contact ACAS to Arbitrate – you know the organisation that only give training to the Employers ie the Managers and never the staff], then yet another 250 to continue onto trial.

    Remember Justice is fair – if you can afford it and ….

    We’re All in it together… Not.

    1. fathomie

      A few things…. first ACAS is there as an independent and impartial advisor on Employment law for both employer and employee’s. Helpline staff. although it varies according to individuals, will not give you ‘biased’ information. Early Conciliation, the new mandatory procedure before approaching a Tribunal is carried out by the same conciliation staff who carried out the old voluntary process. Here however, we have a problem. Conciliation staff are there to prevent claims going to ET, that’s their job, pure and simple. Their single most important performance indicator is that fact. As such they are hardly the right people to be going to before and ET. They are trained, essentially, to persuade you to either settle, or drop the claim altogether. They are also heavily biased towards employers. As a former member of ACAS staff, after listening to how conciliators behave towards employees (borderline rude at times) as opposed to management (matey, unctuous), I would not want an ACAS conciliator on my case. For me, as I know their agenda, it would be a complete waste of tax payers money.

      The time for making a claim to ET is still three months, with the time in conciliation added on to that. You must have a valid certificate from ACAS stating that conciliation has ended before approaching the ET.

      The decision to introduce fee’s was a disgusting act of cynicism by a disgusting govt. I said when this happened employers would dance for joy, as they can now get away with murder. The following article by the Guardian shows just how much damage to justice, and how much employers are getting away with.

      http://www.theguardian.com/money/2014/aug/17/workers-cant-fight-employment-tribunals

      The most cynical act of all, was not excluding unpaid wages/bonuses/minimum wages from fees. This means if an employer, as many do, (oh God, so many) fails to pay you the wages you are entitled to, then you now cannot get that money back. No-one, in their right mind, is going to pay £250 + 250 to get back £550 or less in pay. Even if it’s £600 – 700, people will not have the money upfront to get back what they’ve lost. What the govt have done, is essentially give bad employers licence to exploit…

  9. Ruth

    How do I know what the parties will do to help us. Or is it swings and roundabouts? Do appreciate all the work you do.

  10. Ian

    I know it’s from the Daily Malice but have you seen this?

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2947901/We-stop-dole-two-years-force-jobless-work-says-Labour-s-Rachel-Reeves.html

    Reeves has to go, I’m afraid. This ‘tougher than the Tories’ thing is appalling and has n place in the Labour Party. I was edging towards oting Labour but not now. Even the filthy scum Conservatives haven’t said they’ll stop dole after two years. The thing is, they’s see Labour saying this and if it gets traction the tories will up the ante even further and we could have a benefit bashing arms race.

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      For crying out loud, this “tougher than the Tories” thing is an invention of people who like to twist words – like the hacks at the Daily Fail.
      What are you doing, believing something that was written in that rag?
      Step back, get your perspective, remember that Reeves was only ever talking about being tough on the things that put people on benefits in the first place.
      You need to find out what Labour’s really saying. I think I wrote an article about it so you could try searching VP.

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