Discretion and Law in the British and Irish Social Welfare Systems

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Title: Discretion and Law in the British and Irish Social Welfare Systems
Authors: Thornton, Liam
Permanent link: http://hdl.handle.net/10197/4651
Date: Mar-2005
Abstract: The debate on whether a welfare system imposes either a rule based or discretionary system, while appearing a simple academic study at first, is one of enormous significance for the many hundreds of thousands of people who rely on social welfare payments each week to maintain subsistence. Imagine the decision of whether a person could eat, cloth herself or pay the rent being held by one individual. Imagine further, a person who does not reach the required legislative requirements for a given welfare payment, suffering insurmountable hardship because of this legislative provision. Both these examples are at the extremes of the discretion versus law debate; however it serves to remind us that one, without the other, may have potential disastrous consequences for an individual. This paper shall outline the arguments for and against both systems, and give examples of how relying on either law or discretion independently has resulted in perplexing results.
Type of material: Journal Article
Publisher: Cork Online Law Review at University College Cork
Keywords: Discretion;Ireland;United Kingdom;Social security law;Welfare law
Language: en
Status of Item: Not peer reviewed
Appears in Collections:Law Research Collection

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