Case details

R (on the application of DA and others) (AP) (Appellants) v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (Respondent)

Case ID: UKSC 2018/0061

Case summary


Whether the application of the revised benefit cap, introduced by section 8 of the Welfare Reform and Work Act 2016, to lone parents with children under two years old (i) unlawfully discriminates against the parents and/or the children, contrary to article 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights, read with article 8 and/or Article 2 of the First Protocol and in breach of the United Kingdom’s international obligations under article 3 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child; and/or (ii) is irrational.


The appellants are three lone parents and two of their children who are under two years old (the first appellant was pregnant when the proceedings were issued and now has a child under one). The adult appellants are in receipt of benefits and, as they are not working, are subject to the revised benefit cap. The appellants issued proceedings for judicial review, claiming that the application of the cap to lone parents with at least one child under two was unlawful. It was argued that such households were in a different position from others affected by the cap, and should therefore have been exempted from it in the relevant Regulations, because of the particular difficulty for the parent in finding work compatible with his or her childcare responsibilities. The claim succeeded in the High Court but the respondent’s appeal was allowed by the Court of Appeal.

Judgment appealed

[2018] EWCA Civ 504



DA and others


Secretary of State for Work and Pensions



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

Hearing start date

17 Jul 2018

Hearing finish date

19 Jul 2018

Watch hearing
17 Jul 2018 Afternoon session
18 Jul 2018 Morning session Afternoon session
19 Jul 2018 Morning session Afternoon session