Carer challenges council over income decision that could leave his family homeless

County council was not entitled in law to include the carer’s allowance as part of the family’s income, court told

Abdirahim Daley, a father of six children, disputes Westmeath County Council’s decision that he does not qualify for social housing supports. Photograph: Alan Betson

Abdirahim Daley, a father of six children, disputes Westmeath County Council’s decision that he does not qualify for social housing supports. Photograph: Alan Betson

 

A carer has taken a High Court challenge over a decision by Westmeath Co Council which he fears could render his family homeless.

Abdirahim Daley, a father of six children, disputes the council’s decision he does not qualify for social housing supports on grounds their net income exceeds the maximum threshold set down for his household.

Mr Daley, who lives with his wife and children in rented accommodation at Willow Park Avenue, Athlone, claims the council’s decision is flawed and should be set aside.

He and his wife are unemployed and receive job seekers’ and rent supplement allowances. Mr Daley also receives a carer’s allowance in respect of one of his children.

Last May, the owner of their rented house said he was considering putting the property up for sale, resulting in their tenancy coming to an end.

In a search for new accommodation, Mr Daley applied to the council for social housing allowances but was refused on grounds the household’s net income of €30,200 exceeded the level set for two adults and six children of €28,750.

The refusal also had the effect of removing him from a social housing list.

Carer’s allowance

The social housing support household means policy regulations of 2011 expressly exclude carer’s allowance from consideration when it comes to assessing a person’s housing needs, he said.

In his proceedings against the council, Mr Daley wants orders quashing the determination of October 19th, 2017, in relation to the assessment of his means and requiring the council to reconsider his application for social housing allowances. On Monday, Mr Justice Seamus Noonan granted his ex parte application (one side only represented) for permission to bring the action and adjourned the matter to March.