East Devon District Council

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Policy Council Tax and Housing Benefit Fraud and Compliance Strategy

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4. Housing Benefit Administrative Penalties

SFIS investigate Housing Benefit fraud and following an investigation and where there is sufficient evidence to prosecute they may, as an alternative to prosecution, offer an administrative penalty which is an additional 50% on top of the overpayment up to a maximum of £5,000.

In cases where an administrative penalty is going to be offered SFIS will contact the Council with details of the investigation and it will be the Council’s decision to agree that an administrative penalty be imposed.

The decision will be made by the Service Lead for Revenues and Benefits, each case will be considered individually looking at the evidential test and public interest tests in all cases.

Where a penalty is agreed SFIS will administer the administrative penalty to the customer and notify the Council of the outcome. The Council will then raise an invoice for the customer.