Spanish mum fears she could be made homeless in benefits row

Diana Gonzalez-Ibanez, from Easington Colliery,  who has had her benefits cancelled despite a judge ruling in November last year that she is a resident of this country.
Diana Gonzalez-Ibanez, from Easington Colliery, who has had her benefits cancelled despite a judge ruling in November last year that she is a resident of this country.
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A MUM who has lived in the UK for 10 years fears she could be made homeless with her three children in a row over residency.

Diana Gonzalez Ibanez moved here from Spain a decade ago and has since started a family.

But the 29-year-old says she and her three children, aged three, five and seven, could be forced on to the street from their home in Easington Colliery after Jobcentre Plus cut off all her benefits.

She received a letter saying she was no longer classed as a resident in the UK, but last year she won a court case saying she was.

She said: “I’m really scared right now and I haven’t done anything to be treated like this. I have all the paperwork from the judge and I have been here for 10 years.

“They have cut off all my benefits, which means the only money we have coming in is the money I get for my three children.

“They should not to do this to me because I’m a resident here and that is what the judge said last year.

“The rent has not been paid for a few months now and the landlord is on the phone nearly every day asking for it.

“I have all the paperwork from the court case and I have the letter from the judge saying I am a resident.

“I’ve never done anything wrong and never had any problems but somewhere someone has decided I am not a resident here.

“I was sent my new NHS certificate just two weeks ago, so if I’m a resident for that I have to be for everything else.”

Her case has now been taken up by Easington MP Grahame Morris in a bid to find out why her benefits were stopped.

He said: “I can understand Ms Gonzalez Ibanez’s sense of injustice and frustration, given that her UK residency has already been established. Urgent representations have been made on her behalf to Jobcentre Plus.

“Whilst I fully understand the need to protect the public purse, the process is unduly bureaucratic and is causing unnecessary distress and financial hardship to my constituent and her three children.”

Jobcentre Plus confirmed they had received the representations from Mr Morris but have not commented further.

Twitter: @tomwhite7