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  • FIRST POST
    • jaywii94
    • By jaywii94 14th Feb 18, 5:07 PM
    • 8Posts
    • 1Thanks
    jaywii94
    Unintentional benefit fraud
    • #1
    • 14th Feb 18, 5:07 PM
    Unintentional benefit fraud 14th Feb 18 at 5:07 PM
    Hi Guys, Going to make a long story very short.
    My mum is unable to work due to illness gets ESA and also has been receiving Housing benefit and Council tax reduction.
    We have just received a bill for £7000 which is for Benefit overpayment.
    After seeing someone today at the council it is clear that the reason being is she failed to send wages slips of for my brother, however she has also never provided wage slips for me.

    My mum (bless her) is not the smartest woman and genuinely had no idea she had to submit our information as she thought the claim was for her personally rather than the whole house. So she has committed fraud completely unintentionally just through lack of knowledge. The reason they found it about my brother is they randomly asked for his wages slips (she submitted straight away)but have never asked for anyone else's apart from my mums (she shows them ESA).
    I think the fact she did send wages when proves her innocence as she wouldn't provide if she was trying to hide it.

    So for 4 years she has basically only submitted that she gets ESA and never submitted wages for me or my brother( only this once when they asked) meaning shes mad a massive mistake unintentionally.

    My question is what do we do?

    My mums trembling and crying as she has no clue what to do/expect

    Surely they cant keep overpaying for years and then just ask for a massive sum at one point?

    Surely if its unintentional there is a way to sort it?

    Also the bill is so high and my mums on ESA how is she expected to repay?

    Any help would be amazing.

    Thanks James
Page 1
    • marliepanda
    • By marliepanda 14th Feb 18, 5:09 PM
    • 5,219 Posts
    • 10,700 Thanks
    marliepanda
    • #2
    • 14th Feb 18, 5:09 PM
    • #2
    • 14th Feb 18, 5:09 PM
    Hi Guys, Going to make a long story very short.
    My mum is unable to work due to illness gets ESA and also has been receiving Housing benefit and Council tax reduction.
    We have just received a bill for £7000 which is for Benefit overpayment.
    After seeing someone today at the council it is clear that the reason being is she failed to send wages slips of for my brother, however she has also never provided wage slips for me.

    My mum (bless her) is not the smartest woman and genuinely had no idea she had to submit our information as she thought the claim was for her personally rather than the whole house. So she has committed fraud completely unintentionally just through lack of knowledge. The reason they found it about my brother is they randomly asked for his wages slips (she submitted straight away)but have never asked for anyone else's apart from my mums (she shows them ESA).
    I think the fact she did send wages when proves her innocence as she wouldn't provide if she was trying to hide it.

    So for 4 years she has basically only submitted that she gets ESA and never submitted wages for me or my brother( only this once when they asked) meaning shes mad a massive mistake unintentionally.

    My question is what do we do?

    My mums trembling and crying as she has no clue what to do/expect

    Surely they cant keep overpaying for years and then just ask for a massive sum at one point?

    Surely if its unintentional there is a way to sort it?

    Also the bill is so high and my mums on ESA how is she expected to repay?

    Any help would be amazing.

    Thanks James
    Originally posted by jaywii94
    Her benefits will be reduced in order to recoup the overpayment. The amount will depend on a few things and they will calculate that.

    She MAY receive a fine for non disclosure.
    • tessiesmummy
    • By tessiesmummy 14th Feb 18, 5:14 PM
    • 81 Posts
    • 63 Thanks
    tessiesmummy
    • #3
    • 14th Feb 18, 5:14 PM
    • #3
    • 14th Feb 18, 5:14 PM
    If you and your brother work then you are expected to keep her and as you should have been payomg the rent the last 4 years you'll have to contribute towards the repayment.

    Of course itll just be in your mums name but you and your brother are the reason shes lost the money.
    forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5789716 Debt Free Wannabe
    • jaywii94
    • By jaywii94 14th Feb 18, 5:14 PM
    • 8 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    jaywii94
    • #4
    • 14th Feb 18, 5:14 PM
    • #4
    • 14th Feb 18, 5:14 PM
    No there saying if we cant pay £7000 theyll take £11 per week, the problem is that is not including and changes due to my wages... as she has never submitted mine.
    • Comms69
    • By Comms69 14th Feb 18, 5:15 PM
    • 2,422 Posts
    • 2,323 Thanks
    Comms69
    • #5
    • 14th Feb 18, 5:15 PM
    • #5
    • 14th Feb 18, 5:15 PM
    Hi Guys, Going to make a long story very short.
    My mum is unable to work due to illness gets ESA and also has been receiving Housing benefit and Council tax reduction.
    We have just received a bill for £7000 which is for Benefit overpayment.
    After seeing someone today at the council it is clear that the reason being is she failed to send wages slips of for my brother, however she has also never provided wage slips for me.

    My mum (bless her) is not the smartest woman and genuinely had no idea she had to submit our information as she thought the claim was for her personally rather than the whole house. So she has committed fraud completely unintentionally just through lack of knowledge. The reason they found it about my brother is they randomly asked for his wages slips (she submitted straight away)but have never asked for anyone else's apart from my mums (she shows them ESA).
    I think the fact she did send wages when proves her innocence as she wouldn't provide if she was trying to hide it.

    So for 4 years she has basically only submitted that she gets ESA and never submitted wages for me or my brother( only this once when they asked) meaning shes mad a massive mistake unintentionally.

    My question is what do we do?

    My mums trembling and crying as she has no clue what to do/expect

    Surely they cant keep overpaying for years and then just ask for a massive sum at one point?

    Surely if its unintentional there is a way to sort it?

    Also the bill is so high and my mums on ESA how is she expected to repay?

    Any help would be amazing.

    Thanks James
    Originally posted by jaywii94
    She's not going to prison. But she has committed an offence, so I would expect a court date.


    I would expect to have the overpayment deducted from future benefits (and you and your brother to make up the different for her - just my moral POV)


    I would also expect a criminal record
    • pmlindyloo
    • By pmlindyloo 14th Feb 18, 5:24 PM
    • 11,137 Posts
    • 13,052 Thanks
    pmlindyloo
    • #6
    • 14th Feb 18, 5:24 PM
    • #6
    • 14th Feb 18, 5:24 PM
    I presume this is a housing benefit/council tax overpayment?

    Is your mum on DLA or PIP? If she is on mid care DLA or standard living PIP then there should have been no non dependent deduction made.

    As regards the overpayment the non dependent deductions which she failed to declare were due to you and your brother working. So, is there anyway you could help out with this overpayment?

    If you cannot help out and agree a repayment plan then they will, as already said, deduct a fixed amount from her ESA.

    It might also help. in view of this, for you and your brother to 'up' your contribution to the household.

    Obviously you have no actual liability to do so since this isn't your debt, but would be a nice gesture if circumstances allow.
    • jaywii94
    • By jaywii94 14th Feb 18, 5:26 PM
    • 8 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    jaywii94
    • #7
    • 14th Feb 18, 5:26 PM
    • #7
    • 14th Feb 18, 5:26 PM
    Ofcouse we will help im just worried about criminal record / prison for a mistake!!!

    Whats best to do
    • NeilCr
    • By NeilCr 14th Feb 18, 5:39 PM
    • 1,268 Posts
    • 1,556 Thanks
    NeilCr
    • #8
    • 14th Feb 18, 5:39 PM
    • #8
    • 14th Feb 18, 5:39 PM
    Ofcouse we will help im just worried about criminal record / prison for a mistake!!!

    Whats best to do
    Originally posted by jaywii94
    One of the first things to do is to tell them about your wages, I would say. (if you have not already)

    And that would have been better done at the time she sent in your brothers information

    The best advice now is for you guys to be open about everything
    Last edited by NeilCr; 14-02-2018 at 5:43 PM.
    • WhenIam64
    • By WhenIam64 14th Feb 18, 5:44 PM
    • 27 Posts
    • 12 Thanks
    WhenIam64
    • #9
    • 14th Feb 18, 5:44 PM
    • #9
    • 14th Feb 18, 5:44 PM
    Ofcouse we will help im just worried about criminal record / prison for a mistake!!!
    Fraud has a high level of proof and saying you're mum will have a criminal record is "enthusiastic" and perhaps in breach of MSE's rules.

    Fraud whether admitted or not is a subjective issue, unless proven in court, and the way the DWP deals with it is to make a higher level of reduction in benefits than they would from other overpayments.

    It may be that the family have to step up to the plate, as they say, and compensate your mum for the reduction she can expect.
    • jaywii94
    • By jaywii94 14th Feb 18, 5:51 PM
    • 8 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    jaywii94
    Yeah i think we will do the only reason she didnt send mine is again she didn't realise she had 2 just thought for some reason they wanted his
    • NeilCr
    • By NeilCr 14th Feb 18, 5:54 PM
    • 1,268 Posts
    • 1,556 Thanks
    NeilCr
    Yeah i think we will do the only reason she didnt send mine is again she didn't realise she had 2 just thought for some reason they wanted his
    Originally posted by jaywii94
    Please do not think you will. Tell them.

    I would be prepared for them to ask her why she did not do it at the time she sent in the wage slips for your brother.
    Last edited by NeilCr; 14-02-2018 at 6:57 PM. Reason: Sense
    • jaywii94
    • By jaywii94 14th Feb 18, 6:12 PM
    • 8 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    jaywii94
    Because they only specificly asked for his,,, until then we wasnt aware we needed to provide
    • TELLIT01
    • By TELLIT01 14th Feb 18, 6:34 PM
    • 4,592 Posts
    • 4,850 Thanks
    TELLIT01
    There is no need for anybody to panic over this, but there is a need to ensure that all information which should have been provided previously is provided now. Contact the council immediately to let them know that you also live at home, at least then they can't pick up on that and come to the not unnatural assumption that there was an attempt to hide additional information.
    The money will have to be repaid, but as you mother is on benefits there are restrictions on how much they can take per week.
    • BorisThomson
    • By BorisThomson 14th Feb 18, 6:36 PM
    • 1,038 Posts
    • 2,059 Thanks
    BorisThomson
    When making her application she'll have been asked if anyone else lived in the same house as her? Did she answer this correctly, have you moved back in since?
    • jaywii94
    • By jaywii94 14th Feb 18, 6:37 PM
    • 8 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    jaywii94
    This is why my mum doesnt understand as they are aware we live there but have never asked for our wage slips which is why i think she didnt think she needed to inform them,
    but yeah we will inform then.
    • _shel
    • By _shel 14th Feb 18, 6:37 PM
    • 1,144 Posts
    • 1,930 Thanks
    _shel
    Because they only specificly asked for his,,, until then we wasnt aware we needed to provide
    Originally posted by jaywii94
    She not we, she had to provide the information not you.

    She should read what she fills in and signs. As the application forms require details of other household members and letters sent to her would have contained reminders to update them with information about changes.

    All the same now you know she should do it ASAP.
    Thanks to everyone who posts competitions
    • tessiesmummy
    • By tessiesmummy 14th Feb 18, 6:58 PM
    • 81 Posts
    • 63 Thanks
    tessiesmummy
    how old are you and your brother? did she make the claims when you were school/ college age and that's how you've slipped through the net?
    forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5789716 Debt Free Wannabe
    • jaywii94
    • By jaywii94 14th Feb 18, 7:16 PM
    • 8 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    jaywii94
    yes my little bro was in college for 2 years of the payment and i was on JSA which is why i think its been missed
    • JackJones456
    • By JackJones456 14th Feb 18, 7:30 PM
    • 14 Posts
    • 5 Thanks
    JackJones456
    With regards to your mum's Council Tax Benefit, does she get a 25% discount, if so, somewhere it has been declared that she lives alone.
    • tessiesmummy
    • By tessiesmummy 14th Feb 18, 7:53 PM
    • 81 Posts
    • 63 Thanks
    tessiesmummy
    yeah sounds like she started the claim genuinely then and for whatever reason hasnt told them of a change in circumstances. That should go in her favour. It's not like she's hidden the 2 of you intentionally.
    forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5789716 Debt Free Wannabe
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