Fraud

Please note: The Department for Work and Pensions is now responsible for investigating all housing benefit fraud. You can report benefit fraud online here, or call their hotline on 0800 854 440 (textphone 0800 320 0512).

Rochford District Council has its own Housing Benefit Fraud Policy and constantly reviews all aspects of its benefits administration to ensure that entitlement is only awarded for genuine claims that have been properly checked and validated. Claimants entitlement to benefit and the circumstances of their claim will be reviewed regularly.

The Fraud Policy is implemented by:

  • carrying out an on-going programme of residency checks to ensure claimants are living at the property where they are claiming benefit
  • investigating referrals from our benefit assessment team or other bodies where there appears to be irregularities in information provided
  • investigating possible contrived tenancies that have been created to take advantage of the benefits system
  • having a close liaison with other organisations such as The Benefits Agency to detect multiple frauds
  • carrying out an interview under caution where there is a possible fraudulent claim for benefit

How to report a Fraud

If you suspect some-one of benefit fraud you can:

  • Complete this form
  • phone the National Fraud Hotline on 0800 854440

When reporting an allegation of fraud we need:

  • to know the persons name and address
  • a description of their appearance
  • vehicle registration numbers
  • to know the nature of the fraud and how long it has been going on.

When an allegation of fraud is received we make initial checks (sometimes including financial checks) and if we have enough evidence we will arrange an interview under caution.

For more information about interviews under caution and action we can take see the advice leaflets in the related content.

Being found guilty of fraud is a criminal offence and every fraud committed results in a loss from the public purse.