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Fraud Investigations - What is Benefit or Tax Credit fraud?

Find out more about Fraud Investigations.

What is Benefit or Tax Credit fraud?

Benefit or Tax Credit fraud is an offence which may be committed by either making:

a) False representation for claiming benefits or tax credits

  • This means that you give information or evidence which you know to be false, or

  • Fail to notify a change in your circumstances which you know affects your benefit or tax credit, or

  • Cause or allow another person to fail to notify a change which you know affects their benefit or tax credit.

or

b) Dishonest representation for claiming benefits or tax credits

  • This means that you knew that you were acting dishonestly when you gave incorrect information or evidence, or failed to report a change.

Special rules allow for investigation and prosecution where you are suspected of benefit or tax credit fraud. They apply to any benefit or tax credit that you receive from:

*The Department for Work and Pensions (link opens in a new window)  (which pays most benefits through either Jobcentre Plus or Pension Service or Disability and Carers Service)

*HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) (link opens in a new window)

*Local authorities/councils (link opens in a new window)

It is very important that you seek advice before responding to an allegation of fraud. You can use our Find an Adviser tool to find a local advice service.

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