Schizophrenic wins reprieve

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The Independent Online
A SEVERELY disabled schizophrenic who was facing eviction from his home because of bureaucratic buck- passing, was given a 28-day reprieve at a repossession hearing yesterday.

A county court judge at Staines, Surrey, decided to adjourn the case against Robert Moore to allow the Department of Social Security time to organise the payment of pounds 8,700 arrears owed to the Nationwide Building Society since a red tape bungle arose 18 months ago. Mr Moore, 45, could have been forced to lose his home in Addlestone, Surrey, to live at greater expense in sheltered or residential care, because the various local and national government agencies could not agree who was responsible for him under the Government's care in the community policy.

The DSS had paid the mortgage to cover his accommodation for four years, but then argued it was not liable to pay as his sister, Rosemary, owned the house. A Social Security Commissioner decided last December that the DSS should pay but the department still failed to contribute, pending an appeal.

After an Independent report about his plight earlier this month the DSS decided not to appeal, but it did not pay the arrears in time to stop the repossession hearing.