Report benefit fraud
Housing Benefit Fraud is investigated by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) Single Fraud Investigation Service. The Council remains responsible for the investigation of Council Tax discounts, exemptions and reduction. The Council and DWP work closely together and will exchange information.
Report Housing Benefit fraud to the Department for Work and Pensions:
Online at www.gov.uk/report-benefit-fraud
By telephone: National Benefit Fraud Hotline 0800 854 440 (Monday to Friday 8 am to 6 pm)
By Post: NBFH, PO Box 224, Preston, PR1 1GP
Teignbridge District Council has duty under law to administer a benefits service to those who qualify within its area. At the same time there is a responsibility to ensure that payments are only made to those who are actually entitled to them.
To report other types of fraud to the council complete our Report a benefit fraud form or call the Fraud Hotline: 0800 3287290
Types of Housing Benefit/Council Tax Benefit Fraud
- Working and claiming
Usually involves claimants who are in receipt of Housing Benefit/Council Tax Reduction on the basis of entitlement to Job Seekers Allowance/Income Support/Incapacity benefits and are in fact working.
- Non disclosure of property/capital
Where the claimant fails to declare either savings/capital or the ownership of another property/land elsewhere (for which they may be receiving rent).
- Non disclosure of income
Where the claimant fails to declare all of their income knowing the non-declaration will increase their benefit award.
- Non disclosure of a partner (living together as husband and wife)
Where a claimant is fails to declare that they have a partner living with them while claiming benefit based on them being a single person or single parent
- Non-declaration of non-dependants of sub tenants
Where the claimant fails to declare the presence of other adults in the property in order to preserve or increase entitlement to benefit.
- False claims by homeowners
Where the owner of a property falsely claims stating that they are in fact paying rent for the property and inventing a fictitious landlord. In these circumstances false rent books, Tenancy Agreements are provided.
- Failing to declare change of address
Where the claimant fails to declare that he/she has moved but continues to accept payments of Housing Benefit for the address.
- False address fraud
This may occur where the claimant is claiming for an address at which they are not in fact living. These types of offences may occur with the collusion of the landlord or other tenants.
- Landlord fraud
Where a landlord continues to receive benefit paid direct to him/herself for a period after which he/she is aware that the claimant has left the premises. Where the landlord has access to more than one property there is the potential to move tenants around without informing the Local Authority.
There are many ways other ways that Landlords and Managing Agents can defraud the benefit system, particularly in areas where there are a large proportion of Multiple Occupation houses and Seasonal Workers, looking for short-term lets.