Victim of Beverley Allitt must pay back £23,500 in benefits, says review

Kayley Asher with her father Alan.

Kayley Asher with her father Alan.

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Beverley Allitt victim Kayley Asher has been told she must pay back £23,500 in benefits following a Government 
review.

Kayley, 25, who was permanently injured by the Grantham nurse in 1991, had her ESA benefits stopped in December after the Department of Work and Pensions ruled she had too many savings.

Kayley has been told to pay back the money because she has more than £16,000 in savings. She was paid compensation of £11,500 and later a disability benefit of £120 per week. Interest on her savings has taken her over the limit.

Kayley’s father Alan, of Canberra Crescent, Grantham, says they are aware of the DWP’s decision although a letter has not yet arrived. He says they were led to believe they would be able to appeal the decision, but he has since been told that is not the case.

Mr Asher said he had sought advice from the Citizens Advice Bureau and it has said it may bring in a legal team. Mr Asher said: “Whatever argument they are putting forward, it’s absolutely ridiculous. We are all stressing out. We do not intend to pay back the money. We shall fight them all the way.”

Mr Asher says Kayley’s original benefits application was filled in for her by an advisor while she attended Grantham College. He said Kayley had never been able to work and never will because of her disability.

A spokeswoman for the DWP said: “It is essential that claimants declare their income and savings accurately. This is to ensure that support is targeted at the people that need it most. We are working closely with the family to discuss recovering the debt.”