An unmarried mother has won a Supreme Court battle to access widowed parent’s allowance for her bereaved children.
Siobhan McLaughlin, 46, was refused the benefit after her partner John Adams died from cancer in January 2014 because the couple, who had four children and were together for 23 years, were not married or in a civil partnership.
But, by a majority of four justices to one, the Supreme Court ruled on Thursday that the current law on the allowance is “incompatible” with Human Rights legislation.
Giving the lead judgment, the court’s President Lady Hale said: “The allowance exists because of the responsibilities of the deceased and the survivor towards their children.
“Those responsibilities are the same whether or not they are married to or in a civil partnership with one another.
“The purpose of the allowance is to diminish the financial loss caused to families with children by the death of a parent.
“That loss is the same whether or not the parents are married or in a civil partnership with one another.”
However, Lady Hale said not every case where an unmarried parent is denied the allowance after the death of their partner will be unlawful.
The court also said it is up to the Government to decide whether or how to change the law.
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Source: Breaking News