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Rossendale dad’s fury over grant loophole
A ROSSENDALE dad-of-two has blasted a ‘ridiculous’ loophole that is denying him a grant to help his severely disabled 10-year-old son.
Care worker Ian Dobbs shares custody of his eldest child Kyle, who suffers from cerebral palsy, epilepsy and autism, with his ex-wife.
Despite Kyle being identified as a priority case for a Disabled Facilities grant by his occupational therapist, Ian has been told he cannot claim the cash as his ex-wife holds Kyle’s child benefit book.
Mr Dobbs, of Fernhill Crescent, Stacksteads, said he was ‘sick to the back teeth’ of being passed from pillar to post by Rossendale and the county councils.
He has already spent £20,000 of his own money levelling land in his back garden.
Now he needs a further £6,000 to £10,000 to make the area completely secure for Kyle, who often has to use a wheelchair.
Ian sees Kyle, who attends Tor View Community Special School, and his brother Harry, six, every other week.
He said: “I was told that only the person who holds the child benefit book can claim the grant, but Kyle spends exactly the same amount of time at my house as he does at his mother’s.
“It’s my child that matters, not who has the benefit book. He suffers.”
Lancashire County Council declined to comment on individual cases, but said such grants had to be ratified by Rossendale Council.
A Rossendale Council spokesperson said: “The Mandatory Disabled Facilities Grant can only be applied to Kyle’s main residence. Where there is a joint custody agreement in place, this is determined by the property where the child benefit is paid into, as stated within the 1996 Home Repair Assistance Regulations.”
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