Fraud Investigations - Will I lose my benefit or tax credit?

The DWP applies strict rules to stop fraud. If you have been accused of fraud, check what you need to do next.

Will I lose my benefit or tax credit?

You may lose your benefit or tax credit if:

  • you are convicted of an offence, or 

  • you agree to pay a penalty as an alternative to prosecution, or        

  • you accept a formal caution instead of being prosecuted.

This is known as a benefit sanction. Your sanctionable benefit is either not paid or paid at a reduced rate during the sanction period.

The sanction period is four weeks if you pay a penalty as an alternative to prosecution, but may be increased to 13 or 26 weeks for repeated offences or to three years in cases of serious fraud.


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