West Somerset Council is committed to preventing and detecting Benefit Fraud within the district and takes a proactive approach to combating this problem.
Nationally, millions of pounds are stolen this way every year from the public purse and this directly affects the amount of Council Tax paid by West Somerset’s residents, as well as reducing the amount available to those who genuinely need the assistance.
The dedicated Fraud Team investigates all allegations of fraud whether received from anonymous calls, The Department for Work and Pensions, or other outside agencies. Where a fraud is detected the amount of benefit overpaid will be recovered and where appropriate the Authority will prosecute the fraudster or impose financial penalties.
During the last financial year our dedicated fraud team issued numerous cautions and prosecutions, as well as stopping £16,091 of benefit being fraudulently claimed, and identifying £14,265 of fraudulent overpayments.
You can help your Council by reporting anyone you suspect of committing Housing and/or Council Tax Benefit Fraud, please complete the online Report Benefit Fraud Form.
or Telephone the 24 hour FRAUD HOTLINE: 01984 635236
or by letter to: Benefits Fraud Team, West Somerset House, Killick Way, Williton, Taunton, Somerset TA4 4QA
or email the Fraud Team: firstname.lastname@example.org
All information will be treated with the strictest of confidence and can be given anonymously.
Any other types of Benefit Fraud can be reported online to the Department for Works and Pensions website.
What information do we need?
To enable us to investigate all allegations successfully we need as much information as possible.
Name, Address and description of the person you believe are committing the fraud, or anyone who is connected with it, including their relationship.
Name, description, place of work, hours for any undeclared work by claimant, partners, or other persons living in a property.
Details of vehicles used, including licence plate number if possible.
Details of undeclared income, savings, banks, building society accounts, property etc.
Address of any undeclared property.
Where a person is suspected of not living at the property – Where do they live?
Does anyone else live there?