Croydon Council has been told to pay £500 to a blind man who claimed changes to council tax rules were discriminatory.

Dr Yusuf Osman was sent a bill of hundreds of pounds after new measures were put in place, when he had previously been exempt.

Changes to the scheme saw Croydon apply a Minimum Income Floor (MIF) to those who were exempt under Universal Credit regulations.

It is only applied to those required to be in or looking for full-time work.

It assumes self-employed people have a weekly income of £332.50 (minus tax and national insurance) but some groups of people are realistically unable to achieve this level of income, the 44-year-old said.

After Dr Osman brought his case, Croydon Council agreed to once again exempt him from council tax. 

On Wednesday (March 22), a judicial review of his case was heard by the High court in London.

The council has now changed the scheme again for 2023 to exempt disabled people from rules but Dr Osman fears others including carers, students, pensioners and foster parents could still be negatively impacted.

Dr Osman said: "My fight over the past year has had a positive impact.

"At least 58 people other than me have had their council tax decisions changed and most importantly the council did change the scheme for disabled self-employed people like me.”

He said that councils other than Croydon could be using the same practice, adding: “Governments whether national or local cannot be allowed to treat any citizen in the way that Croydon has treated me over the last year.”

Dr Osman was represented by Leigh Day solicitor Kate Egerton, who said the result has “thoroughly vindicated” her client.

She added: “However, although the council has altered its Council Tax Reduction Scheme to address the discriminatory impact for self-employed people who have disabilities, it has still failed to address the disadvantage it has created for other groups of people who would be exempted from the Minimum Income Floor under Universal Credit regulations.

"These include carers and people with young children.

“Yusuf’s claim wasn’t able to challenge Croydon Borough Council on behalf of these categories of people, but the way is open for someone who is still affected to bring a judicial review challenge against the council.”

Croydon Council was contacted for comment.