Sharon Pantellerisco, a single mum from Southport has been successful in challenging the Department for Work and Pensions over universal credit rules in the High Court this week.

Receiving payment from her employer four-weekly rather than monthly reduced her universal credit by up to £463 per month.

Ms Pantellerisco is the sole carer of her three dependent children who all live with her and is employed for 16 hours a week on the national living wage but, because she was paid on a four-week basis, this resulted in her falling short of the income threshold to avoid a benefit cap.

The determined mum took her case to the High Court with the support the charities, Compassion Acts and Child Poverty Action Group.

Upon receiving a ruling in her favour, the High Court said the DWP’s method when calculating earnings in this case had been “irrational and unlawful.”

The DWP said it was considering the judgment, claiming the ruling “affects a very small number of claimants”.

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