Bedroom tax error could see residents refunded

First published in News

A 'Bedroom tax' legislation error could see some local residents receiving a refund, according to a local MP.

Carmarthenshire MP Jonathan Edwards is urging those affected by UK government's changes to housing benefit - commonly known as the 'bedroom tax' - to contact the county council if they have resided in their property since before 1996 as they may be exempt from the payment and eligible for a full refund of what they've paid so far.

An oversight was reportedly made by the government when drawing up the legislation. Plaid Cymru MP Jonathan Edwards said the mistake could see some residents taken out of the bedroom tax category altogether.

A freedom of information request from Plaid Cymru in August revealed that the number of people applying for help with their housing costs had soared since the introduction of the ‘bedroom tax’.

Applications for the discretionary housing payment in Carmarthenshire soared from 327 in the whole of 2012-13, to 534 in April and May 2013 – an increase of 63%.

Mr Edwards said: "I will be making urgent enquiries to the Secretary of State and requesting a full statement on what this error means for the thousands of people who have been forced to pay this unfair cost.

"In the meantime I would urge any resident that has occupied their home since before 1996 to contact the county council and enquire as to whether they are indeed entitled to a refund."

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