Austin Macauley 06 November 2015

DWP reports £350m fall in benefit overpayments

DWP reports £350m fall in benefit overpayments image

Latest figures show benefit overpayments as a result of fraud and error have fallen by £350m over the last year.

The Department for Work and Pensions DWP) and local authorities recovered a record £930m last year, an increase of 9% over the previous year.

Data from the DWP shows there is currently £1.3bn of benefit fraud, claimant error account for £1.1bn and official errors total £700m.

Benefit fraud and error fell to 1.8% of overall welfare spending in 2014/15, compared to 2.1% in 2010/11.

Work and pensions secretary, Iain Duncan Smith, said: ‘Benefit fraud is a serious crime and is taking money away from those in genuine need. That is why our investigators are vigilant in targeting criminals and bringing them to justice.

‘Our vital reforms are fixing the welfare system and figures show fraud and error in the benefits system has fallen to a record low.

'We are also continuing to recover more money than ever before, and Universal Credit will further reduce fraud and error.’

Time for a council tax precept to fund CCTV image

Time for a council tax precept to fund CCTV

The crisis in funding for CCTV systems is not being addressed by the government or the police and is leading to the curtailment of this vital service in local authorities across the country. How can we ensure that communities that want this service continue to receive it, asks Tom Reeve.
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