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Housing Benefit overpayment due to capital held in a fixed term Maturity Bond

 

Gareth Morgan
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hbinfopeter - 10 January 2017 06:49 PM

The facts seem to be that the claimant had over 16K in capital which she did not declare

But that is the question - is it capital?  I tend to think not.

     
hbinfopeter
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Happy to agree to disagree….from an independent point of view and after having done a lot of tribunal hearings (too many!) right across the UK (as I am sure many of those on Rightsnet have).

I am minded of the recent decision CH/1815/2016 by Judge Jacobs where he said about property:  “I have read the commentary on regulation 51 in CPAG’s Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction Legislation (28th edition 2015/2016). It is, I think, rather too pessimistic about the possibility of placing a value on a part share when the joint owner does not wish to sell. Since the decisions cited, the Commissioners and subsequently the Judges of the Upper Tribunal have, through their experience of cases, become aware of markets that exist for investors in such shares”.

I think that comment rejects a lot of previous caselaw built up over many years. Similarly, in my view a guaranteed cash bond held for a limited period could easily be borrowed against….. either by an overdraft facility or commercial arrangement with someone like Metro Bank. My main point though is that the funds were apparently not declared. As such, it is at least arguable that an offence has occurred and in my experience pushing the LA very hard on what I think are some dubious issues (others on here do not agree) may likely get backs up and make the LA refer the case. Here a Tribunal rejection could be very dangerous for the claimant. There are cases to fight. I was trying to suggest that a softly approach and accepting the revised overpayment might well be a more appropriate decision…..but after 34 years in HB I really don’t mind anyone disagreeing with me!

     
ClairemHodgson
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hbinfopeter - 11 January 2017 09:12 PM

Similarly, in my view a guaranteed cash bond held for a limited period could easily be borrowed against….. either by an overdraft facility or commercial arrangement with someone like Metro Bank.

as i understood the original post, the relevant bond had a term that it could not be borrowed against.  Any lender would want to see the bond and its contractual terms, and if that is what it said, it would not lend against it as it would not provide security for its loan.