More detail is set out in regulation 18 of the Regulations. Regulation 18(1) provides that:
“… a person shall be expected to have to take more than two steps in any week unless taking one or two steps is all that is reasonable for that person to do in that week.”
Mr Commissioner Williams held at para 10 & 14 of CJSA/1814/2007 (case law)
“That is illustrated by this appeal. C was required by his Agreement to take 6 steps each week and several other steps from time to time. That is clearly more steps than the regulation requires of him to meet the test of “actively seeking work”. And it is more steps than the Agreement asked him to record. On the facts, the secretary of state’s representative now accepts that C took four steps in the week and that those four steps met the test in section 7(1).”
“Further, there is nothing in the Act or the Regulations requiring that a claimant must comply with everything in the Agreement. The reverse is the case. Theagreement must comply with the law. To be valid, a jobseeker’s agreement must comply “with the prescribed regulations in force”: section 9(1) of the Act. The pattern of the legislation is that a jobseeker’s agreement must comply with the test of actively seeking work in sections 1(2)(c) and 7 of the Act and regulation 18 of the Regulations and not the other way round.”
The Outcome of this case – Success!
Using this piece of case law the appeal was allowed, because the judge determined John (the appellant) was actively seeking work as per section 7 of the Jobseeker’ Act 1995 and he took significantly more than 2 steps to in order to have the best prospects of seeking work (Reg. 18 JSA Regs 1996)!
Though of course all of this is deliberately vague; use of the word 'reasonable' allows the DWP to get away with it, and they will (and are). Even a minor blip (relatively speaking) that wins on appeal is enough to send someone spiralling into destitution.