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housing benefit investigation


fraujaeger
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I have today received a letter from my local council stating that they have reason to conduct an investigation into a claim for housing benefit and council tax support and have been given a date and time to attend an interview regarding any capital or savings I may have and which I have not declared.

Although I have no savings or capital I am still worried and would like to know whether this is just a standard letter that is sent out

I look forward to your replies. i am an oap and this kind of thing worries me.

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Right - in that case it's not a standard letter. It means that they are investigating you for suspected fraud. My first suggestion would be to speak to a solicitor experienced in benefit matters. You can ask for the interview to be delayed while you arrange this.

 

One big advantage of having a lawyer is that the HB department may well disclose to him or her, in advance of the interview, the specific reason why they are concerned about your claim.

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I cannot afford a solicitor to attend but my main reason for concern is that I have no capital or savings and worry that someone has written to them suggesting that I have. How can I get legal help please

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Have a word with your local Age Concern office - They may be able to recommend a solicitor that can provide free (or low cost) advice.

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I just cannot imagine why this has happened because I only have my state pension so they surely have nothing on me but thank you for your advice; I will contact my local age concern and see what happens

thank you for your advice

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hi mr p

I have just taken your advice and contacted my local age concern office and spoke to a very helpful lady who has basically told me not to worry about it and to take along bank statements to prove I only have my state pension paid into it. I have no other bank accounts or investments so they have nothing to investigate and she has recently been through the same with another client and they made a mistake.

It still concerns me that they can send this type of communication out and worry elderly people

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It still concerns me that they can send this type of communication out and worry elderly people

 

It's not just elderly people that get worried by these letters... I'm getting a few snotty letters from my local council, but I try not to let them get me down.

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Hi

I was wondering if someone has seen a friend stay over and reported it. Also I sometimes stay away for a few nights at a friend's house; could this possibly be the reason for an investigation

Thank you for any advice

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Hi

I was wondering if someone has seen a friend stay over and reported it. Also I sometimes stay away for a few nights at a friend's house; could this possibly be the reason for an investigation

Thank you for any advice

 

Well, that might possibly, perhaps, trigger an investigation but you said the letter referred to savings and capital.

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It's hard to say for sure. But while they may or may not tell you specifically what it is that concerns them in advance of the interview, they shouldn't say anything that's deliberately misleading. So if they thought you were living with a partner, they shouldn't write to you and say it's about your savings.

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I do not live with my partner but he does stay over sometimes for the weekend but I mostly stay with him for the weekend. I have stayed over for 4-5 days before; does this affect my housing benefit.

I have tried to research whether it affects my benefit if I stay away but all it has shown is if anyone stays with you which I believe cannot be more than 3 days. My partner has his own house and does not claim any benefits being retired after having worked all his life.

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Hello there.

 

As we say fairly often, it's not about the number of nights you spend together and the 3 days seem to be a bit of a myth.

 

What they normally look for I believe, is what financial links you have and whether your friend has correspondence coming to your house, for instance.

 

HB

Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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hi

My friend has no correspondence coming to my house nor me either to his house so everything ok on that front;

I may be worrying about nothing but this letter has really spooked me and I am thinking of anything they can get me on. I have no savings or capital, I do not live with anyone, in fact I am as clean as a whistle but I am still worrying.

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well; I have been racking my brains and the only thing I can think of is that I opened a Halifax account 3 and half years ago and never used it and tore up everything but I have never had a statement and also I opened a post office account for my working tax credits which finished when I retired and there is nothing in it and I have not used it for over 2 years. Do you think they have picked up on this.

When I signed a declaration I forgot about the Halifax account but think I declared the post office account when I told them about my working tax credit I have no evidence of these accounts now because I have since thrown these out.

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