Benefit fraud arises where claimants seek to recover financial benefits to which they are not entitled.
Sukhdip Randhawa of Kangs Solicitors considers the position generally.
Examples of Benefit Fraud | Kangs Benefit Fraud Advisory Solicitors
The fraud may be committed, for example, by failing to reveal correct details as to the:
- level of savings available, including any owned property
- total amount of household income
- number of occupants in a property
- accurate figure for financial commitments.
The Legislation | Kangs Benefits Law Advisory Solicitors
Social Security Administration Act 1992 distinguishes two types of offences:
This section provides for dishonesty, making a representation to obtain benefits. This can be a dishonest claim from the outset, or dishonestly failing to notify a change in circumstances.
This section Involves making a false representation to obtain benefits. This is an offence whereby a false statement is made to obtain benefits, either from the outset or by failing to notify a change in circumstances.
The Nature Of The Distinction Between The Two Offences
- under Section 111A the Prosecution must prove an element of dishonesty.
- if dishonesty cannot be proved, the Prosecution will endeavour to proceed under S112
Change In Circumstances
The Prosecution must prove that the alleged offender was aware that there was an undisclosed change which would have effected entitlement to benefits and which may include for example:
- commencement of new employment
- co-habiting with another
- the receipt of an unexpected financial payment.
The Consequences Of Committing Benefit Fraud | Kangs Criminal Defence Team
- a S112 offence can only be dealt with the in Magistrates’ Court and upon conviction, the maximum penalty is three months imprisonment.
- a S111A offence is triable either in the Magistrates’ Court or the Crown Court and conviction will result in a maximum sentence of seven years imprisonment.
- Additionally, the Court can make ancillary financial orders under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.
How Can We Help? | Kangs Financial Crime Defence Solicitors
If you require assistance then please do not hesitate to contact our team through one of the following: