Test for `tourist' benefits dropped
Tuesday 01 June 1999
The "habitual residence" test, introduced by the last Tory government, will no longer be applied, in response to the ruling that it was incompatible with the principle of freedom of movement in the European Union.
Under the test, any British subject who spent more than a year abroad was ineligible for social security benefits even if they had built up contributions over many years.
It was brought in by Peter Lilley, a former social security secretary, in an attempt to end so-called "benefit tourism" whereby European nationals would allegedly flock to the UK to take up welfare payments. However, the test caught out many British nationals, particularly black and Asian families, returning from temporary residence abroad.
The phasing out of the test follows the successful challenge in the European Court of Justice by Robin Swadding, one of the estimated 100,000 people left destitute by the changes. Mr Swadding was considered to be ineligible for benefits after working for 15 years in France.
The Department of Social Security has decided that the ruling, made in February, leaves no option but to issue new advice to benefit offices.
An estimated 75 per cent of cases will now be waved through unhindered.
The Government has not formally publicised the new advice, but it has calculated that the change will cost about pounds 10m a year. DSS benefits officers have been told that from the date of the ruling any claimant who "returns to resume previous residence" is automatically deemed habitually resident.
The party's potential nominations read like a high school race for student body president
- 1 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 2 The awkward moment Sarah Palin raised $25,000 for Hillary Clinton's election campaign
- 3 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 4 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
- 5 Baldness could soon be treated using stem cells, scientists hope
Woman falls to her death as she celebrates marriage proposal at the edge of Ibiza cliff
Mia Khalifa: Pornhub star claims Drake sent her 'cringeworthy' naked photos on Instagram
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
The awkward moment Sarah Palin raised $25,000 for Hillary Clinton's election campaign
Ball pool for adults opens in London
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A skilled .NET developer with e...
£25000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This IT support company are cur...
£30000 - £35000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager - Marke...
£33000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An External Relations Executive is requi...