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Help understanding benefit fraud

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Hi, i'm new here, so please bear with me.

I probably haven't put this post in the right thread, benefit fraud, so will look there if its moved. I just can't seem to see how to start the thread in there. So, as per u tube I have stuffed it here.

 

Its been almost two years since I was called into dwp office (not under caution). They said they had a flagging system in place that tells them when someone has more savings than supposed to. I believed the amount was £16,000, as my mother had mentioned this. how did their flagging system not tell me at £6,000?

 

So anyway, I have severe crohns disease with medical (liquid feed pump) tube through abdomen into stomach as its very bad and I've had a lot of intestine removed. I have this going for 20 hours per day and I can't move around with the pump as it weighs 5kg. I've had crohns since childhood and am now 50 years. I also have arthritis of many joints, and also mental health problems. I suffer extreme fatigue and muscle weakness due to copious amounts of loo visits and also vomiting.

 

Anyway, I live in rural areas and the hospital is a 100 mile round journey, but i'm pretty much housebound. I receive full DLA and ESA and live on my own. I saved £20,000 for a campervan with loo to allow me at least to get to appointments as I cannot go on public transport due to my condition. So I confessed this to DWP lady, and she phoned me up the next week and said adjudicator said I could use the money to go and buy one. Well, due to my health this took 4 1/2 months to do. problem is I just can't get out the house and stay out. its physically impossible. I mean I would love too but....

 

They did however stop all my benefits and Council demanded money back immediately, so there went quite a bit of my savings. I had to live on the money and pay rent/council tax in the mean time. Actually it was my mental health support worker who phoned me up and said there looks to be a suitable one just a mile away. Naturally I went to see it and bought it as it was suitable, if a bit old! so having bought it I could sign back on.

 

Now, I did appeal against the overpayment, because it says you can. My 'appeal' went to Glasgow twice. took 16 months! in the end dwp workers who refuse to communicate anything on the case gave me glasgows number. I phoned them and they only deal in Scottish cases. i'm in Cornwall. I was very upset. obviously my physical and mental health had suffered badly enough. It doesn't help to be sensitive does it? wish I could be an uncaring WTF attitude person, but i'm not.

 

So I wrote a strong letter to dwp and complained at the way they were handling this. I had sent a lot of evidence in as to why I saved and of course thought it necessary to save for something suitable to my disability. I simply cannot squat in a country lane anymore. my joints won't allow this, I can be on a loo for up to an hour at a time, its illegal to pee and poo in public, also its probably indecent exposure too. But moreover, i'm vulnerable. Its scarey being in that state in public. Also due to the physical joint issues with muscle weakness and the medical stuff attached I just can't change my clothes in an ordinary car if I've thrown up, the feed has leaked all over me, or I need to change my clothes because of an ooopsie. I'm afraid they do happen.

 

I hate to bang on about this, but actually by not allowing me to save all my money for a disability aid, and earners can save what they like for their needs, I feel breaches my human rights. I listed my human rights, like not allowing others to see my body when I don't want them to, private life, humiliating and degrading experience, but they don't want to understand that. They still demand every penny back.

 

However, one other point I am contesting is that I received a letter from the debt management team that states that 'in some cases you may not have to repay it, for instance you thought you could have it and spent it'. yes, I spent it because they told me I could. This I got verified by a lady at CAB. I didn't want to misunderstand the phonecall about the adjudicator, so didn't touch my money at all, expecting them to have frozen my account, until I had got it verified by someone else. I am more than capable of misunderstanding what is being said, or written, etc due to mental health issues and strong painkillers and fatigue.

 

I had a tribunal in Plymouth, which I so tried to get too, but unfortunately was experiencing a very bad day, one which I would not normally have gone out the house in case i'm a danger to others on the road. So I phoned and explained and they postponed it. Later another appointment was made, but that was cancelled because dwp had not complied with evidence required by the judge. so now i'm waiting all over again. stress! stress! stress!

 

So, I would like your opinion on the letter that states I may not have to give it back. is this legally binding or are they allowed to discriminate as to who gives money back and who doesn't? Do you think I will end up in court, i'm so worried, what if I go to jail? really crucifying my mind over this. it has exacerbated my health believe me. I feel like suing the sods at dwp!

,

I wish I knew people to communicate on this subject but I really don't know many, and they don't want my worries on top of theirs too. I also wish i'd found this forum a couple of years back.

 

just to add to my worries I now have another form from atos who didn't need to see me last year, and dwp had written to my doc cos its in my medical records so they do know my actual health. I know I get 15 points on both physical and mental aspects. is it a yearly form to fill in or what?

 

Now I just need to worry that I've written too much for you to want to bother with, but if you have, i'd just like to thank you.

 

luv

Diane

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Hello and Welcome sick1,

 

I have moved this thread to the appropriate Forum, please continue to post here regarding this issue.

 

Regards.

 

Scott.


 
 

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Hi all,

Just thought I would let you know that I have lost my appeals at court against the overpayment. Strangely enough, I received a letter from debt management telling me that a judge cannot overturn a DWP decision on overpayment. So my case was postponed for 8 months only to discover judge could do nothing, what a waste of time, and how detrimental to my health. So I have to pay back £10.80 per week, but I don't know whether the case is over entirely. Is there any way I can find this out, as it's been crucifying me physically and mentally. I almost wish I could take the local council and DWP to court for exacerbating my health issues. They never respond to letters, and if I phone them they can't answer.

 

 

I read on this forum recently that some people have had DWP, Local Council and police turn up at their door and arrest them for benefit fraud. I'm still terrified of this happening, what can I do? I don't know whether I'm still under investigation or not. Could a solicitor find out for me? I so need a conclusion to this after 2 years, 8 months, and I still haven't heard from ATOS either. that's been 8 months as well.

 

 

Oh the stress.

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To be honest, nothing about your OP suggests that you were ever being investigated for criminal fraud. It sounds more like a Compliance interview triggered an overpayment case, which has now been decided in a civil Tribunal and unfortunately not in your favour. You can appeal this to the Upper Tier Tribunal, but only if the first tribunal made an error in law. That would be difficult to show and if you did decide to go down this route, you would certainly want specialist help from a solicitor or Welfare Rights adviser.

 

If you feel your case has been mishandled by the DWP (ie that there has been maladministration) you can start by making a formal complaint to them. Probably wouldn't hurt to have a word with your MP.

 

One thing puzzles me, though, and that's Debt Management telling you that a judge can't overturn an overpayment decision. A civil tribunal certainly can do this. Perhaps they mean that acquittal in a criminal court doesn't automatically make the overpayment go away, which is true but I don't see the relevance in your case.


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Thank you, Antone, for your response. Yes, I must say I could see no point at all in DWP allowing me to take the case to tribunal and then receiving a bog standard letter which stated that the judge cannot overturn a decision on overpayment. So, I didn't bother turning up at the tribunal as it's a 100 mile round trip, and if I stood no chance why would I even go. I did ask DWP about this letter but I never received a reply at all. They are very good at not replying.

 

 

To be honest, I don't know what happens next. I have seen on threads here that the police can come and arrest you at any time. I can't believe what some people have been through by their own issues on this site. I think I would have a heart attack, and I certainly can't be lured out of bed fast, it's physically impossible for me.

 

 

The problem is now, I just don't know whether it is a closed case. I still worry like mad, probably as I have no one around to make me think of anything else. Perhaps I can have a chat with an MP as you suggest. He may carry some clout and actually get some kind of response from DWP/LA.

 

 

but thanks for responding. It does help that this site exists.

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