Plumber keeps incapacity benefit after tribunal ruling

A MAN who was told he was not entitled to incapacity benefit despite having a grotesquely broken arm has won his appeal against the decision.

As previously reported in the Welwyn Hatfield Times, plumber Torron Eeles fractured his humerus after falling down the stairs at his home in December 2008.

More than 12 months and four cancelled operations later, his limb still hung uselessly by his side, preventing him from carrying out even the simplest of tasks.

Yet incredibly, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) deemed him fit for work and tried to take his �65-a-week incapacity benefit, now known as Employment Support Allowance (ESA), away.

An incredulous Torron appealed and, at a tribunal held in Enfield on Thursday, judge Beatrice Lebow overturned the department’s decision.

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Speaking to the WHT after the brief hearing, the 51-year-old said: “I thought it was a farce.

“It should never have come to this in the first place.

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“It should have been blatantly obvious to anyone who examined me that I was not capable of working.”

Turning to the delay in getting his arm fixed, Torron said it was “disgusting” he had to wait 12 months for surgery on the NHS.

“I wish I’d had the money to go private,” he said.

“You just don’t realise how many things you need opposing hands for.”

Torron, of Dellsome Lane, Welham Green, said his arm was healing slowly and stressed he wanted to get back to work as soon as possible.

But he added: “Because I have been out of work so long, I’ve lost a lot of contacts and had to give a lot of my work away to other people.”

A spokesman for the DWP, which was not represented at last week’s hearing, said: “We are currently looking into the case and are unable to comment at this point.”

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