Benefit Fraud Investigators use databases
Benefit fraud takes many forms from failure to disclose a few pounds earned whilst in receipt of income based benefits such as Income Support, Housing Benefit or Council Tax to claimants who have tens of thousands of pounds sitting in deposit accounts in their name.
Our earlier blog discussed the way the DWP and other prosecuting authorities decide how to deal with each case.
We often get asked, “How on earth did they find out?”. The days when your business was your business are long gone. We live in a surveillance society where the State has access to huge databases that they can cross-reference to individual claimants. We had a recent spate of cases where the DWP had cross-referenced interest payments on deposit accounts to individual claimants. They had access to the amount of interest paid and from that could deduce the accounts where they believed substantial amounts, in excess of the capital limits, were held.
The first the claimant knew about it was an invitation to an interview under caution.
Early advice prior to interview is essential. The claimant needs to know the evidence before being advised on how to respond. We will always advise prior to interview, Legal Aid may be available and if not the fees are economical.
Often there will be time to prepare your appeal and if you want to know more about the sort of cases we have “done and won”, have a look at our recent cases section.