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  • FIRST POST
    • LindaR1965
    • By LindaR1965 3rd Sep 17, 12:25 PM
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    LindaR1965
    Benefit fraud?
    • #1
    • 3rd Sep 17, 12:25 PM
    Benefit fraud? 3rd Sep 17 at 12:25 PM
    First time posted so hope this is in the right place. If not I apologise.

    My 20 year old daughter is in receipt of pip and esa. She has ms. She received a letter from dwp to go in for an interview regarding her benefits. We assumed it was just the usual, you still have ms, no cure found yet, you're just the same or worse. She went herself as it was no big deal. Turns out they wanted to ask questions regarding her committing benefit fraud. She opened an isa and her and her boyfriend have been putting money in it for a holiday. It's sitting at £4000. She has a saving account with 28p in it. Her current account has a couple of hundred. Do they have a right to access her accounts without her knowledge? About 2 years ago before she was in receipt of esa I put £28,000 in her account. This was part of an inheritance she received 13 years previously. She has no idea of this inheritance. She bought a brand new car, paid for driving lessons, insurance for car, went on holiday, bought clothes, make up etc, crashed car so bought another. Money was soon gone. She had a further £40,000 in a bond. When she applied for esa and pip on the phone they asked about any money she had, she said she had none as she did not know about it. I was there so luckily I took phone and explained about the bonds. The advisor told me it was ok as they would not affect her benefits. (Hopefully they still have a recording of this). Now 2 years later they are investigating her. The letter had nothing on it about an investigation or that it would be under caution. I have contacted a solicitor, we meet them in Tues. I am so very worried they find her guilty. It was an honest mistake. She has the money to pay them back. Will they send her to prison because of the amount involved. She thinks it's about £18,000. Could be more. She can't do community service due to her ms. I am worried sick. The stress of this could trigger a relapse for her as she's terrified. Anyone any advice or been through anything similar?
Page 4
    • Diary
    • By Diary 4th Sep 17, 8:21 AM
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    Diary
    For me personally something doesn't quite ad up here. The daughter was diagnosed at 16 and was apparently bed bound. You then gave her 28 k to spend as much and as quickly as possible including, incredulously for someone who is bed bound, a couple of cars to drive.

    You imply you didnt know you daughter would claim benefits, so what did you think your daughter was going to live on if not benefits?
    Did you think she would work? If so what changed few months later when she was no longer bed bound to prompt her to claim Esa rather than jsa?

    Your daughter needs to come clean about everthing to the DWP as soon as possible. Although you might feel responsible this is not your problem and she needs to at least show willing to sort this out.
    • LindaR1965
    • By LindaR1965 4th Sep 17, 8:50 AM
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    LindaR1965
    Are you seriously going to state that neither you nor she knew that this had to be declared? It didn't occur to either of you that she could support herself financially?

    As stated a couple of times, I did declare this money. Was told it did not count. Reading a couple of posts on here it would seem the reason it did not count was because it was in trust and she could not access it.

    As others have stated, come totally clean with the DWP, pay back the overpayment and (hopefully hefty) fine then you and your daughter will need to plan sensibly for her future with what is left. Quite apart from anything else, letting her waste £28k was insanity

    As I have stated several times the plan is to "come clean" and pay back any over payment. Why "hopefully hefty" fine? An honest mistake was made, once again did not conceal money, told about money was told it did not count . No concealment, no lie, no hiding, no intentionally making herself poor to claim benefits. She did not waste £28,000, she has a ball spending it.

    For me personally something doesn't quite ad up here. The daughter was diagnosed at 16 and was apparently bed bound. You then gave her 28 k to spend as much and as quickly as possible including, incredulously for someone who is bed bound, a couple of cars to drive.

    She has relapsing remitting ms. This means she has periods where she has a relapse (become very ill, bed bound, lots of different symptoms) and periods of when she is relatively well. As stated earlier she HAD been bed bound was feeling better and wanted to learn to drive. What doesn't add up? She had been bed bound and then wasn't?


    You imply you didnt know you daughter would claim benefits, so what did you think your daughter was going to live on if not benefits?
    Did you think she would work? If so what changed few months later when she was no longer bed bound to prompt her to claim Esa rather than jsa?

    Yes I did think she would work once she had recovered from her relapse. A lot of people with ms do work. The meds she was on at the time did not work and she had another relapse a few months later.
    • preciousillusions
    • By preciousillusions 4th Sep 17, 2:30 PM
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    preciousillusions
    I think though that when you are claiming both PIP and ESA on account of disability (whether contributions or income based on paper) it might be easy for the OP or her daughter, or anyone, to become confused by what is means tested and what isn't? Especially if placed in the ESA support group. Because in your mind you know you are just getting benefits for being ill and the whole way they regard whatever you are getting can become mixed up.

    Just my initial thought on the whole 'this must be pre-meditated' type accusations here. Rules aside, the OP's daughter is not working because she can't, not because she does not want to, and someone in employment would not have their wages cut if they had an inheritance.
    Last edited by preciousillusions; 04-09-2017 at 2:40 PM.
    • teddysmum
    • By teddysmum 4th Sep 17, 2:56 PM
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    teddysmum
    Because in your mind you know you are just getting benefits for being ill and the whole way they regard whatever you are getting can become mixed up.

    someone in employment would not have their wages cut if they had an inheritance.
    Originally posted by preciousillusions


    You are not getting benefits because you are ill. They are to partly replace lost income ,so you can live. DLA and PIP are based on being ill, but not compensation for suffering. They are to help with increased cost caused by the ailment.


    RE second partial paragraph: Someone working would have earned the money so had full rights to it, but benefits are paid for by other people's labour ,so recipients have to meet certain criteria to claim them; one condition, for means tested benefits being that you have insufficient income to live on.
    • preciousillusions
    • By preciousillusions 4th Sep 17, 3:23 PM
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    preciousillusions
    Yes but in the OP's daughters situation being out of work is entirely down to being long term disabled, so it can be easy to conflate the PIP and ESA into just getting benefits for being ill, do you see what I mean? I know PIP is down to additional care needs, which obviously stem from being disabled.

    & as I said, it's not her fault she cannot work. Personally I believe in helping those in society that are less privileged that myself. You never know when you might find yourself in the same kind of situation.
    Last edited by preciousillusions; 04-09-2017 at 3:27 PM.
    • Lioness Twinkletoes
    • By Lioness Twinkletoes 5th Sep 17, 6:21 AM
    • 1,087 Posts
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    Lioness Twinkletoes
    ...as I said, it's not her fault she cannot work. Personally I believe in helping those in society that are less privileged that myself. You never know when you might find yourself in the same kind of situation.
    Originally posted by preciousillusions
    As do I - and I believe those who are ill/disabled deserve enough benefits to provide a comfortable standard of living. Not, however, when they have the means to support themselves. More than enough, in fact, to support themselves.

    The reason I hope the fine is hefty is because, despite the OP's protestations of innocence, the fact remains that the OP's daughter claimed a lot of money they weren't entitled to - they signed all the declarations and would merrily have carried on claiming if they'd not got caught.

    Ignorance of the law is no defence.
    • LindaR1965
    • By LindaR1965 5th Sep 17, 2:01 PM
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    LindaR1965
    Lioness Twinkletoes

    My daughter was not merrily claiming benefits, she was claiming benefits that we thought she was entitled to. We did not hide the money, we told them about it but unfortunately I did not realise that simply changing the name on the account from mine to hers made a difference. It was the same money, in the same account. I made a mistake. We will pay the money back happily as we don't want to take something that is not due. I find your comments unnecessarily harsh and judgmental. Save your judgement and your harshness for someone who deserves it, not someone who has made a mistake and is going to rectify it.
    • LindaR1965
    • By LindaR1965 5th Sep 17, 2:12 PM
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    LindaR1965
    Had we wished to keep this money while my daughter was claiming all I had to do was not transfer the money to her account. Keep it in my name and it would have sat there not affecting her claim. But as it never entered my head that it would affect her I changed names on the account. And before you jump on that with your judgement had I known it would affect her claim I would have still changed it to her name but made sure it was put on the form when she applied.
    • tomtom256
    • By tomtom256 5th Sep 17, 7:33 PM
    • 887 Posts
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    tomtom256
    Lioness Twinkletoes

    My daughter was not merrily claiming benefits, she was claiming benefits that we thought she was entitled to. We did not hide the money, we told them about it but unfortunately I did not realise that simply changing the name on the account from mine to hers made a difference. It was the same money, in the same account. I made a mistake. We will pay the money back happily as we don't want to take something that is not due. I find your comments unnecessarily harsh and judgmental. Save your judgement and your harshness for someone who deserves it, not someone who has made a mistake and is going to rectify it.
    Originally posted by LindaR1965
    If you told them about the money they wouldn't need to speak to your daughter and it would have already been taken into account!
    • LindaR1965
    • By LindaR1965 5th Sep 17, 8:52 PM
    • 20 Posts
    • 6 Thanks
    LindaR1965
    I did tell them about the money when she first applied. I have said that many many times. I don't understand why you can't get your head round that!
    • TELLIT01
    • By TELLIT01 5th Sep 17, 9:13 PM
    • 4,128 Posts
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    TELLIT01
    I did tell them about the money when she first applied. I have said that many many times. I don't understand why you can't get your head round that!
    Originally posted by LindaR1965
    I for one am not claiming there was any intent to deceive, but the simple reality is that there was a change of circumstances - the money moved from being in a Trust to being available to your daughter and in her account. That change should have been reported to DWP and wasn't. The amount of money involved would have caused any entitlement to income related benefits to cease immediately. It is that area which is being investigated, quite properly.
    The ESA1 form does state that ANY change of circumstances has to be reported and it is the responsibility of the person claiming benefit, in this case your daughter, to ensure that is done. She signed the documents to state that she understood all the requirements.
    I'm not judging, simply stating how things will be viewed by DWP.
    • hign10pines
    • By hign10pines 6th Sep 17, 9:05 AM
    • 356 Posts
    • 358 Thanks
    hign10pines
    First time posted so hope this is in the right place. If not I apologise.

    My 20 year old daughter is in receipt of pip and esa. She has ms. She received a letter from dwp to go in for an interview regarding her benefits. We assumed it was just the usual, you still have ms, no cure found yet, you're just the same or worse. She went herself as it was no big deal. Turns out they wanted to ask questions regarding her committing benefit fraud. She opened an isa and her and her boyfriend have been putting money in it for a holiday. It's sitting at £4000. She has a saving account with 28p in it. Her current account has a couple of hundred. Do they have a right to access her accounts without her knowledge? About 2 years ago before she was in receipt of esa I put £28,000 in her account. This was part of an inheritance she received 13 years previously. She has no idea of this inheritance. She bought a brand new car, paid for driving lessons, insurance for car, went on holiday, bought clothes, make up etc, crashed car so bought another. Money was soon gone. She had a further £40,000 in a bond. When she applied for esa and pip on the phone they asked about any money she had, she said she had none as she did not know about it. I was there so luckily I took phone and explained about the bonds. The advisor told me it was ok as they would not affect her benefits. (Hopefully they still have a recording of this). Now 2 years later they are investigating her. The letter had nothing on it about an investigation or that it would be under caution. I have contacted a solicitor, we meet them in Tues. I am so very worried they find her guilty. It was an honest mistake. She has the money to pay them back. Will they send her to prison because of the amount involved. She thinks it's about £18,000. Could be more. She can't do community service due to her ms. I am worried sick. The stress of this could trigger a relapse for her as she's terrified. Anyone any advice or been through anything similar?
    Originally posted by LindaR1965
    Her dad died and then 4 months later his mum died. She had not changed her will so the money that was due to her dad got put in trust with myself and my sister as trustees. This was held till she reached 18. At the time she claimed. She had no idea of this money. It was held in trust till she reached age of sense, which was 18. She had no access to them. When she reached 18, I released £28,000 to her to do with what she wanted. Mad money we called it. She had been diagnosed with a progressive incurable illness and had been almost bed bound for 6 months so I wanted her to spend spend spend to help her feel better. Maybe not the best advice but you had to be there to appreciate the devastation she was feeling at diagnosis. So after that my sister and I released the remaining funds into her name. These funds are kept to help look after her in the future by either a down payment on a property or adaptations to a property should she need it. We did not give this money any thought or conceal it as after initial conversation I never thought to mention it again. I can't even say I thought it was ok to not mention because of being told it did not count as the money just did not enter my head again.
    Originally posted by LindaR1965
    Which is it?

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    • hign10pines
    • By hign10pines 6th Sep 17, 9:10 AM
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    hign10pines
    I filled out forms as she had numbness in hands and couldn't hold a pen. Her fine motor skills were not good. She also suffers confusion and brain fog which gets worse when under stress. Filling out these forms was very stressful.
    Originally posted by LindaR1965
    Is she even allowed to drive?

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    • powerful_Rogue
    • By powerful_Rogue 6th Sep 17, 10:57 AM
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    powerful_Rogue
    Is she even allowed to drive?
    Originally posted by hign10pines
    crashed car so bought another.
    Originally posted by LindaR1965
    I did find the car part a bit worrying.
    • Diary
    • By Diary 6th Sep 17, 11:22 AM
    • 573 Posts
    • 751 Thanks
    Diary
    I did find the car part a bit worrying.
    Originally posted by powerful_Rogue
    DVLA have probably also been kept in the dark.
    • powerful_Rogue
    • By powerful_Rogue 6th Sep 17, 1:01 PM
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    powerful_Rogue
    DVLA have probably also been kept in the dark.
    Originally posted by Diary
    You'd like to think not, but never know.

    • TELLIT01
    • By TELLIT01 6th Sep 17, 2:21 PM
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    TELLIT01
    MS does not automatically preclude a person from driving. Neither should it be automatically assumed that DVLA hasn't been informed.

    This is from the MS Society Website. " One of the first questions many people have when they’re diagnosed with MS is: “Will I still be able to drive?” The good news is that most people with MS continue to drive as normal."
    • teddysmum
    • By teddysmum 6th Sep 17, 2:50 PM
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    teddysmum
    I have known two people with MS and both were able to drive.


    One was a college lecturer, whose disease I never saw any signs of. She had a blue badge and one day someone chatting on the stairs went down to help her carry items upstairs. (If I hadn't know, I'd have assumed that she had no ailment).


    The other lady, I met at dog training, where she handled a very large excitable dog and showed no signs of a disability, but she said her main problem was losing her sight for a while, then being 'normal' for a long time before it happened again.
    • haras_nosirrah
    • By haras_nosirrah 6th Sep 17, 3:31 PM
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    haras_nosirrah
    I have known two people with MS and both were able to drive.

    The other lady, I met at dog training, where she handled a very large excitable dog and showed no signs of a disability, but she said her main problem was losing her sight for a while, then being 'normal' for a long time before it happened again.
    Originally posted by teddysmum
    Kind of hope I wouldn't be anywhere near her if her sight suddenly goes while she is driving!
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    • LindaR1965
    • By LindaR1965 7th Sep 17, 2:29 PM
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    LindaR1965
    Diary
    DVLA have probably also been kept in the dark.

    Why would you assume that?
    Quite a few on here very quick to judge. Yes DVLA know she has ms. She is allowed to drive. Don't judge others by your own standards

    Powerful_rogue

    You find the fact she crashed her car a bit worrying? Is that because no one in the history of the world has never crashed unless they have an illness?

    High10pines

    Why would she not be allowed to drive? Her symptoms come and go. During her periods when she is well, should she be confined to the house, using public transport, getting lifts?

    Some people on here have been kind and offered support, a lot have not and been very judgemental and ignorant. Before posting ignorant comments please at least research what your posting as you just show yourselves to be mean spirited and unkind.

    For that reason I am out.

    I hope those who were unkind and judgemental never have to reach out for support and advice and find themselves on the receiving end of someone like minded to themselves.

    Thank you to those who understood I was panicking and scared and therefore was blurting information that at times seemed confusing but was never dishonest. To the rest of you ... Well let's hope karma is real.
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