Bedroom tax loophole could exempt 40,000 wrongly identified as liable

Benefit tales

Housing benefit experts condemn ‘shambles’ as it emerges that DWP oversight could mean some actually profit from blunder

Thousands of people have been wrongly identified as liable for the bedroom tax, including some who now face eviction or have been forced to move to a smaller property, as a result of an error by Department of Work and Pensions.

Housing experts believe as many as 40,000 people could be affected by the mistake. The DWP says it believes only a “small number” of tenants are affected, which it estimates number 5,000.

All could be eligible for refunds worth on average at least £640 per claimant and millions in aggregate.

The error affects working age tenants in social housing who have occupied the same home continuously since 1996. An oversight by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) when drafting the legislation means that the housing benefit regulations dating from 1996…

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