Case details

R (on the application of C) (Appellant) v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (Respondent)

Reporting restrictions

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Case ID: UKSC 2016/0062

Case summary


Whether the respondent's policies in respect of the retention and processing of historic gender data are compatible with the appellant’s rights under arts.3, 8 and 14 ECHR and ss.13, 19 and 26 of the Equality Act 2010.


The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) retains details of the identity (including former gender information and name if such exists) of all of its customers for the purposes of fraud prevention and pension calculation. Further, the DWP operates a policy of enhanced security in respect of certain customer records, including transgender customers where disclosure of their records could be likely to result in, for example, substantial distress and/or physical harm. The appellant is a transgender woman who transitioned from male to female in 2003. She obtained a Gender Recognition Certificate in March 2006, and this was notified to the DWP. She is in receipt of Jobseeker’s Allowance and attends fortnightly appointments at her local job centre. It is the appellant’s position that her transgender status has become known to Job Centre staff and other customers and this has caused the appellant distress and humiliation. It has also on occasion resulted in delays in the payment of her Jobseeker's Allowance.

Judgment appealed

[2016] EWCA Civ 47





Secretary of State for Work and Pensions


The Equality Network



Lady Hale, Lord Kerr, Lord Wilson, Lord Carnwath, Lord Hughes

Hearing start date

10 Jul 2017

Hearing finish date

11 Jul 2017

Watch hearing
10 Jul 2017 Morning session Afternoon session
11 Jul 2017 Morning session