FOI Request - Benefit Fraudsters

Request 101000147828

a) How many Benefit Fraudsters have you identified in the last 5 years.

b) Of those individuals how many were prosecuted?

c) What is the total outstanding ‘debt’ to the council resulting from benefit fraud ?

d) Of those prosecuted how much money have you recovered?  

e) How much of the ‘debt’ has the council written off?

Response 21-05-2013

a) For the period 01/04/08 - 31/03/13 overpayments were identified in 410 cases investigated, and sanctions applied to 163 of these cases.

b) 58 cases were reported to the PF for consideration of proceedings between 01/04/08 - 31/03/13, of which 23 resulted in successful proceedings. Proceedings are ongoing in 9 cases.

c) The outstanding debt resulting from benefit fraud amounts to £101,274.88. This figure does not include debt resulting from benefit fraud by Council Tenants before 01/04/10 as this debt was passed to Housing for recovery action. Housing did not differentiate debt by type. In addition this figure does not include debt resulting from Council Tax Benefit fraud. This debt is returned to Council Tax accounts to be recovered with ongoing Council Tax liability.

d) Records of debts recovered are only available from 01/04/10 in relation to Housing Benefit overpayments and penalties as a result of benefit fraud (for reasons detailed in c) above) and amount to £67572.12. This figure includes all debt due to benefit fraud, including but not specific to cases prosecuted.

e) Records of debts written-off are only available from 01/04/10 in relation to Housing Benefit overpayments and penalties as a result of benefit fraud (for reasons detailed in c) above) and amount to £680.51.

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