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  • FIRST POST
    happymummy
    Being investigated for fraud!
    • #1
    • 12th Jan 05, 12:51 PM
    Being investigated for fraud! 12th Jan 05 at 12:51 PM
    I'm a single mum, I've been a single mum for a year now , lived with my parents for the first 6 months then got my own place from the council.
    This morning I had a knock at my door, hello I'm from the DWP can I come on so we can have a word about your claim ???

    They had an anonymous tip off that my ex was living with me, they were told in october he'd already been living here for 3-4 months I know who did it too > the thing is though, its totally unfounded, he doesn't live here, yes he visits and sometiems stays for tea but thats because we've kept it amicable for the sake of the children.

    My word is not enough though and they are now about to start more investigations, what I want to know is what will they look at and what are my rights under the the human rights act?

    I cant believe this cow has done this, I know exactly who it is cause she stopped me in the street and had a go at me then went round the school spreading rumours about me, saying that her husband was the father of my kids and stuff (he's not byt he way), I let it lie that time but this time I might not, what action can I take?

    Not what I need right now I can tell you!!

    Thanks, Viv
Page 1
  • chugalug
    • #2
    • 12th Jan 05, 5:15 PM
    Re: Being investigated for fraud!
    • #2
    • 12th Jan 05, 5:15 PM
    First of all dont panic - it is up to the BA to prove that your ex is living with you and not up to you to prove that he isnt. There is plenty of caselaw about this issue esp what constitutes what is known as ltmw (living together as man and wife). If the investigators can provide any evidence you have a right to see this or at least to argue your case. If things go further ie your benefit is suspended, please go to your local CAB. They may have a specialist welfare benefits advisor who can advise you of your rights fully and also advocate/support you should things progress. I personally wouldnt retaliate against the person who has done this as these things tend to escalate but you need to make your own mind up about that. Anyway, best of luck. I'm sure there are others who can give further advice/opinions.
  • sunflower
    • #3
    • 12th Jan 05, 11:37 PM
    Re: Being investigated for fraud!
    • #3
    • 12th Jan 05, 11:37 PM
    totally agree with the above - i dont think you have any need to worry

    i mean - if i dislike someone can i just go and report them for false claiming of benefits/tax credits just to cause them a load of upset?
    cos if thats the case then the whole system is worse than i thought....

    if they do take it seriously (which i doubt they will without any hard evidence and just on heresay) they will prob contact your utility companies to see whose name is on the bills.
    n they may at worst get someone to watch your house for a day to see who comes n goes... but that costs money !?!?!

    lets just hope that at the end of it all - the nasty sad woman gets into trouble for time wasting and false accusations.

    things like this really upset me - how can people be so evil.
    at the end of the day you have kids to support - didnt she think that her devious ways could affect them...

    >
  • happymummy
    • #4
    • 13th Jan 05, 12:11 AM
    Re: Being investigated for fraud!
    • #4
    • 13th Jan 05, 12:11 AM
    Thanks both of you for your replies, I guess I just have to sit and wait to find out whats going to happen, the woman did say they would have to do further investigating though.

    And as for the evil witch who did it, well, lets not even go there, I used to be friends with her and sat quiet while she claimed IS had a job on the side and her bloke living with her too >

    From what the woman said today though, its as if I'm not even allowed to be friends with my ex, and yes if you make an allegation about someone you dislike they have to follow it up.

    Revenge as they say is a dish best served cold, I think I'll mull things over for a while, but I doubt very much if I'll ever do anything about it, I'm just too soft for my own good! : lol

    Take care, Viv
    • Fran
    • By Fran 13th Jan 05, 4:12 AM
    • 10,992 Posts
    • 6,452 Thanks
    Fran
    • #5
    • 13th Jan 05, 4:12 AM
    Re: Being investigated for fraud!
    • #5
    • 13th Jan 05, 4:12 AM
    Hi happymummy,

    I don't like to say it but I think you should worry. Go to your CAB and see if they would be able to represent you if you get investigated for fraud (which is a criminal offence). If you have made the first visit to the CAB (when you might have to wait to be seen), you will be able to see them easier the next time because they will give you an appointment, also they will already know your situation which will save time. They can also negotiate with DSS about this (with your permission) while you are there to see exactly where you stand.

    If he has a seperate address and has not been spending nights there I would say you have nothing to worry about, but you do need to be sure that your claim is ok, so definitely go to CAB as soon as possible. If they can't help they will be able to recommend someone who can in your area.

    To find your local CAB go to Citizens Advice website.
  • Bossyboots
    • #6
    • 13th Jan 05, 9:03 PM
    Re: Being investigated for fraud!
    • #6
    • 13th Jan 05, 9:03 PM
    If nothing has happened about this by now, the chances are nothing will. The criteria of "living" at the house means spending 4 or more nights a week there. If they were that concerned this was happening they will have been watching the house. It will be up to them to produce the evidence of fraud and if that doesn't exist there is nothing to worry about.

    If anything else is said it is important to make the DWP aware that you have a problem with a neighbour and that you believe it is her being malicious.

    Are you sure the callers were from the DWP? My experience is that they usually invite you for an interview in their office but I realise that might be just a local thing and not a nationwide policy.
  • happymummy
    • #7
    • 14th Jan 05, 1:05 AM
    Re: Being investigated for fraud!
    • #7
    • 14th Jan 05, 1:05 AM
    I am pretty sure she was from DWP she showed me her card and had a case full of files, not all about me though! lol

    SHe said she'd known about this since october but had decided to wait until after christmas to come and visit me, she didnt say why though ???

    She also said that he didnt have to be living here for us to be classed as a couple, that people are under some misconception that they are allowed to have a partner staying X number of night and its not true, if people around thought we were a couple thats apparently enough for them, but surely that would just be hearsay.

    She also said we'd apparently been seen shopping in somerfield together, now I dont even shop in somerfield, I asked her if that had been a member of the public that had seen us she said yes, so once again its hearsay, and circumstancial (sp?) and not true! And anyway so what if I was in the shop with him, is there a law against being amicable with exes? :-/

    Not alot I can do about it now, they're gonna investigate me regardless, but under the human rights act just exactly how much investigating are they allowed to do?

    :

    Thanks again, Viv
    • Fran
    • By Fran 14th Jan 05, 2:08 AM
    • 10,992 Posts
    • 6,452 Thanks
    Fran
    • #8
    • 14th Jan 05, 2:08 AM
    Re: Being investigated for fraud!
    • #8
    • 14th Jan 05, 2:08 AM
    happymummy,

    There is info about benefit fraud and investigations on this website Adviceguide - Citizens Advice. I would still urge you to seek advice on this, especially if they have been observing you since October. They may be able to help stop the investigations by negotiation.
  • jellyhead
    • #9
    • 14th Jan 05, 9:50 PM
    Re: Being investigated for fraud!
    • #9
    • 14th Jan 05, 9:50 PM
    shopping together and also sharing meals/takeaways are part of the criteria they use to decide if you are living together with somebody as man and wife (as opposed to lodgers, students sharing a haouse, etc.) but if your ex isn't sleeping at your house then i doubt they can make a case out of it, and they certainly shouldn't be able to.

    good luck, contact citizens advice if you need to, they will be able to help you make an appeal etc. if needs be. if your ex goes elsewhere to sleep at night then there's no chance of anyone watching your house 'catching you in the act' and they really do need more than malicious gossip to make a case. good luck :-)
  • deneka
    Hi there, my friend was investigated two years ago for the same thing. She received a letter asking her to come into the office for an interview. I went along with her & they said that they had reason to believe that a man, possibly her ex was residing with her.
    She explained that her ex, the father of her children, visited regularly to see the kids, but nothing more.

    They too told her that people believe they are allowed to stay a certain number of nights etc, that this is totally untrue and should be declared immediately.

    She had to sign a statement and that was that, they said that they'd be in touch if they needed to.

    She went away and went about her normal everyday life. Nothing was happening with her ex, but I think it put her in a position, where she was frightened to have him around to see the kids etc. I don't think anyone watched her or anything, although I guess it could happen. But as someones already said, that costs money, so unless they are like 99.9% sure you are lying, I don't think they'd bother. They can definately check out household bills and I think they can even look into bank accounts etc, if they have strong reason to believe they need to see them. Although, if you have nothing to hide, I don't think you have anything to worry about.

    Also I don't think they can suspend your money or anything, without hard evidence, afterall that money supports your children, they certainly couldn't risk leaving them without a penny.

    Good luck.
    Treat everyday as your last one on earth! and one day you will be right.
  • bernardh
    This is a bit worrying. I have been seperated for 7 years with divorce almost final. My ex has a new partner and sometimes I stay at her house while she goes away with him (my place too small to have the kids). She gets CTC and WTC. Are we at risk bearing in mind that we never stay there together?
    If it matters,new bloke does stay overnight with her but has his own place elsewhere.
  • my_gorgeous_ellie-belle
    Hmmm....this is something i was discussing with a friend... where do you draw the line then, she dates a guy and he stays over at hers or she stays with him if she doesnt have her 3 yr old daughter say for the weekend, they have been dating for about 6 months but havent commited to moving in together yet.

    I think there should be clearer guidlines as i always believed that if the two are not living in the same house then they are fine but come to think of it maybe not.....
    Mummy of 3 lovely munchkins
  • CIS
    If nothing has happened about this by now, the chances are nothing will. The criteria of "living" at the house means spending 4 or more nights a week there. If they were that concerned this was happening they will have been watching the house. It will be up to them to produce the evidence of fraud and if that doesn't exist there is nothing to worry about.
    The 4 days is incorrect - DWP can look in to even 1 day as living together if other points are met:

    Sexual Relations:
    The DWP guidance on LTAHAW states that you should not be questioned as to whether you have a sexual relationship. However, if you don’t have a sexual relationship you should make this clear in any investigation. If there is a sexual relationship this does not by itself prove LTAHAW but is one signpost among many. A lot depends on what other circumstances exist. If you have had a child to the person concerned and you still have a sexual relationship this is much stronger evidence than if it is a new relationship. At this point let’s put to rest the urban myth that your boyfriend or girlfriend is allowed to stay 3 nights a week. That delusion has resulted in misery for many claimants. LTAHAW can be determined even where the two people concerned never stay together under the same roof but where strong evidence has been obtained from the other signposts.
  • stevieglesga
    My word is not enough though and they are now about to start more investigations, what I want to know is what will they look at and what are my rights under the the human rights act?
    Originally posted by happymummy
    Sorry to hear about your situation. Unfortunately many people commit the very crime you are being accused of with most people condoning it, and as such the DWP are duty bound to investigate. However as long as you both do not have credit or utilities registered at the same address - and why would you- i do not reckon you have to worry. The investigators are highly trained with power of access to most databases and will be able quickly to identify that your case is unfounded. Hope everything works out.

    PS you stated that she was claiming Income Support while working and living with her husband. You could place, as a good citizen an anonymous complaint to the DWP on:

    National Benefit Fraud Hotline 0800 854 440 or through

    Wins so far in 2009: 0.00
    Nov07: 1 packet of Rizla papers, Bourne DVDs, heat patch, bar of chocolate and a Rory Race track.
    Dec07: Box of Trident Gum, 500 from HASSRA
    Jan08: Erm...still waiting . Gave up in March with No wins
  • kelloggs36
    This is a very old thread - over 2 years!!
  • stevieglesga
    This is a very old thread - over 2 years!!
    Originally posted by kelloggs36
    well spotted . i guess it worked out ok.....or she is in jail
    Wins so far in 2009: 0.00
    Nov07: 1 packet of Rizla papers, Bourne DVDs, heat patch, bar of chocolate and a Rory Race track.
    Dec07: Box of Trident Gum, 500 from HASSRA
    Jan08: Erm...still waiting . Gave up in March with No wins
  • my_gorgeous_ellie-belle
    This is a very old thread - over 2 years!!
    Originally posted by kelloggs36



    Haha, sorry that is my fault, i was looking around to see if anyone had posted about this xmas tax credit payment dates and usual had a nosey in the other posts and there was this one and i just had to say smething, lol.

    Sorry all - yep i do wonder too - what happened here?:confused:

    Mummy of 3 lovely munchkins
  • tenminutemailman
    normally turns out fine
    (touch wood) I reckon happymummy'll be OK.
    Anyone who's being investigated by these vampires should remember that most of their work really is 'fishing trips'.
    That's why the letters inviting you to interview are so scary. It's exactly because they want you to be nervous, because 95% of the time they don't know what's up til they are told it in an interview. Pretty sick when most of the people on the recieving end are honest, and are already near the breadline (diffcult to be comfortable on benefits).
    Anyone who's up to something knows already what'll happen, and after meeting the investigators would be damn certain - they'd lay down their evidence and say 'explain that'.

    If anyone finds themselves in the same position, don't worry, stay calm, invite a friend or lawyer to the meeting (you are entitled to either), and learn the rules on your benefit before the interview. If you don't like where the questions are going, don't answer.

    A good few people find out they were doing something they weren't allowed to. Only a few of these turn out to owe the DSS because of it, and no, this isn't the best way to find out. But unless you really are dodgy, they'll get the cash back in a fairly sympathetic way. Deal with them straight, explain your moneys in and moneys out and they shouldn't leave you in the s**t.
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