Defence for Benefit Fraud

Updated on Wednesday 27th July 2016

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Benefit fraud is an extremely specialized part of the law, which deals with persons receiving benefits which they are not entitled to. In these austere times, the government engages in a lot of scrutiny when it comes to its expenses. We are therefore faced with numerous allegations in regards to this matter. Benefit fraud is considered a criminal offence in the UK and is different from benefit overpayment, that can occur due to other causes. 

Examples of benefit fraud in UK

Here are some examples of benefit fraud in the UK:

•    Intentionally failing to let the benefit office (the Department for Work and Pensions) know about one’s real financial situation at the time the benefit was claimed;
•    Intentionally failing to let the Department for Work and Pensions know about one’s real famsily circumstances, like if someone is claiming benefits as a single parent, but is living together with someone;
•    Utilizing false identity or fake documents to claim benefits;
•    Intentionally not letting the benefit office know about a change of circumstances which can affect one’s entitlement to benefits. Our criminal lawyers in London can provide more details on this matter.

Defence for benefit fraud offences in the UK

In benefit fraud cases, the prosecution has to demonstrate further than “reasonable doubt” that an individual has the intention of getting a government benefit being aware that he or she did not have the right to do so.

Defence for benefit fraud can be built around the claim that the individual in charge did not know that he or she was not entitled to that particular benefit, that his or her statements to the benefit office were factual and he or she genuinely believed he or she had the right to receive the benefit. 

Every case is unique and just because the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) claims you have received a benefit you now do not have the right to get, it does not imply that you have committed a felony. 

A defence solicitor in London can assist you, if you are faced with a benefit fraud allegation and prove that you were not acting fraudulently, you were telling the truth and you were relying on the DWP to estimate the benefits you received. This way we can build your defence and avoid sentencing. Please contact us if you need legal assistance regarding defence for benefit fraud.


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