A lot of parents with care are claiming child benefit when their kids don’t live with them

December 25, 2012

judge agreed benefit fraud had taken place and that the PWC was not the PWC but was powerless to do anything other than make the liability order even thought they were living with me in the qualifying period ,statements of fact from three witnesses were not disputed by the CSA ,they were only interested in getting their order and picking my pocket.

Even the kids went and made statements about where they were living and when and we provided school attendance records.

The state is using this section 33 to railroad orders through regardless of whether anyone actually owed the money .I was allowed to cross examine a certain Kelly Griffiths from the stockport office ,who admitted they never checked any data and relied solely on DWP info ,they only rang the PWC to check if the liability existed . The PWC had a long history of benefit fraud ,but this was ignored because the child benefit paid between the ages of 16 and 18 amounts to 1250 each per year ,you need fraudulent claims of 4000 + to stimulate recovery activity by the DWP because that is what it costs in legal fees to get it back . Alot of PWC s are claiming child benefit when kids are neither living with them or at school because the DWP will not chase it , so it stay on the system as a legitimate payment even though its not , this info automatically triggers collection activity from the CSA.

There is a domino effect as one department sets another in motion and your the poor bugger at the end of it all being effectively taken to court by the state and being held accountable for the benefit fraud of someone you divorced over 20 years ago . With all your rights to defend yourself being taken away by government statutes .

I felt sorry for the magistrate he was clearly very sympathetic and frustrated by it all , sometimes the law is an arse.

Comments

38 Responses to “A lot of parents with care are claiming child benefit when their kids don’t live with them”

  1. Alice on December 26th, 2012 11:51 am

    Would it not be the case tho, that even if they do not investigate the fraud as it is below the limit they consider viable for recovery they would still change the claim over to the person who does have the children living with them? Proof of a child living in a home could be by way of confirmation of the address they are registered at with schools, colleges, doctors, dentists etc

  2. John on December 27th, 2012 3:11 pm

    Instead of putting ALL of the onus on the NRP to prove anything and everything, beyond reasonable doubt regarding their liability, isn’t it about time the CSA staff got their fingers out of their …..

    The onus and liability should be put on the pwc to prove their real status, financially and otherwise, as they are the ones who are the caise of Benefit fraud, costing the nrp and the taxpayer millions of pounds!

    Time to reverse the criminalsation of nrp’s and start criminalising the PWC for false benefit claims!

  3. Andy on December 29th, 2012 1:14 pm

    Couldn’t agree more John. I’ve asked for the CSA to check my ex as my son doesn’t live with her and hasn’t done for almost 2 years and she is claiming child benefit etc and all they’ve done is ask me for my last 2 wage slips so they can reassess how much they’re going to steal off me to give to her! JOKE

  4. Alice on December 29th, 2012 6:10 pm

    If CSA were to get involved in every case of possible benefit fraud they were made aware of then they would not have time to do the work they are there to do. It gives the same answer to PWC’s reporting that they believe the NRP to be working whilst claiming JSA as it does when an NRP reports that the PWC is claiming Child Benefit when the child is not living with them – the answer is to report benefit fraud. We are there to process child support cases in accordance with the information provided and in accordance with the current legislation. It is the remit of the benefit’s fraud dept to criminalise PWCs and NRPs who are submitting fraudulent claims.

  5. CLIVE on December 29th, 2012 6:43 pm

    fine the solution then is to simply ignore the facts ,but railroad the liability orders through against the wishes of the magistrates who are often dismayed and disgusted by whats going before them but are powerless to stop the section 33 orders . This is not about child welfare its about asset stripping the NRP. Your collecting revenue irrespective of whether its actually owed .Your also placing unreasonable demands on the NRP expecting them to police the financial activities of PWCs they divorced and ceased any day to day involvement with decades previously .

    Its making all NRPs guilty ,then not allowing them to defend themselves by disallowing all evidence apart from the DWP data that remains valid because fraud is either not proven or not worth investigating.

  6. CLIVE on December 29th, 2012 6:46 pm

    the system is massaged so that the NRP is always guilty and all rights to defend themselves are effectively taken away ,and evidence ignored or disregarded

  7. CLIVE on December 29th, 2012 6:54 pm

    the DWP never looks at benefit fraud for amounts of less than £4000 ,because that is what it costs in legal fees , so if you claim child benefit for a 16-18 year old who then gets a job at the end of year 11 its less than 2200 per child ,or per case over the qualifying period ,the DWP knows its fraud but leaves it on the system as a legitimate payment because its not worth trying to get it back . The CSA is told child benefit is claimed and so hounds the NRP for money , the NRP fights because he knows the kid was working and the PWC was pulling a fast one ,but cant win because DWP data is sacred . a liability order is issued ,the NRP pays to end the nightmare . The state via the CSA is therefore an accessory to the fraud of the PWC and is in fact guilty of obtaining money by deception.

  8. Alice on December 29th, 2012 7:20 pm

    Money is collected by the CSA where the evidence shows that the QC continues to meet the criteria stipulated in the legislation. If the PWC is fraudulently claiming CHB and the CHB office do not investigate this due to the case being below their fraud investigation criteria then the CSA have no option but to continue to collect the RM.
    It’s not that the CSA do nothing, if an NRP informs me that the QC is no longer in f/t education or has moved out of the PWCs household and is living elsewhere I will contact the PWC regarding this – it is helpful in these situations if the NRP is able to provide further details which can be presented to the PWC ie ‘QC James is no longer attending ABC High School and has been working for XYZ Cycles for the last 2 months’ or ‘QC Emma moved out from PWCs house in August and went to stay with her Auntie Jane’ … I have had cases where the PWC has immediately confirmed the information to be correct and the QC has been removed from the case effective to when they were no longer a QC. Equally I’ve had cases where the PWC has insisted that the QC still fits the criteria of a QC – in situations where the NRP and PWC are saying different things the agency need to look at ‘best available evidence’ in these scenarios it is down to whether CB is still in payment, if it is the case has to remain open and all we can do is advise the NRP to report fraud and supply as much evidence to the CHB office as they can to back it up.

    I cannot comment on what does or does not meet criteria for CHB fraud investigation, but I do know that I currently have 2 cases in my workload where it is being investigated and in 1 of those cases CHB was only paid for 1 child so on the figures that Clive is quoting I assume that CHB is less than £2200.

  9. CLIVE on December 29th, 2012 7:44 pm

    In other words ,all that the PWC has to do is carry on lying ,and you lot believe them because it suits your purpose. Your not investigating anything ,there is no one on the ground to actually go and check where the kids are living, you dont check school or college attendance ,and you do not cross reference NI numbers and contributions with HMRC. If the kids are working casually in the black economy or doing seasonal work at eg,Alton towers your really stuffed without private investigators to check things out properly and find out if the qualifying children within the periods described are actually in full time work . If the kids moved out why should it be up to the NRP to contact you and inform you of the change ,they may not be aware of it until much later ? Why should the NRP be held responsible for the actions or inactions of the PWC? .Those fraud cases you quoted may well be under investigation but they will not get to court and you will not get a prosecution because what you will recover will not cover the legal costs ,and you will not get costs awarded against the fraudster but a lame order that makes them pay it back at £10 per week .

  10. CLIVE on December 29th, 2012 7:51 pm

    in my own case the PWC was a known benefit fraudster with several years of repeated indiscretions over child benefits single parent benefits invalidity benefits and tax credits ,yet you still took her side over a professional well qualified man with no criminal record or financial problems , other professional witnesses and the statements of the kids themselves and the estate agentent who was renting them the property, the utliity bills grocery bills , dental records ,several third party witnesses ,yet you agreed it all and still went for a section 33 liability order when it was obvious to everyone a gross miscarriage of justice was taking place.

    you madam are a liar I am afraid !!

  11. CLIVE on December 29th, 2012 7:57 pm

    I will say I have not finished with it yet ,I have another appointment with my MP and I am hoping to get the whole thing looked at again with a full judical review ,the aim being to stop people like you doing this again , If I can pursuade the MP with all the evidence that was presented in court ,that injustice was is and has taken place with a review we may yet get a change in the law ,particularly the use and extensive misuse of section 33 liability orders .

  12. CLIVE on December 29th, 2012 8:20 pm

    it was not a lot of money in my case and in the great scheme of things apart from being really annoying it did not adversely affect the quality of my life ,but it could have done . And thats the point

    All it takes for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing ,and the CSA is I believe intrinsically evil ,and is not doing the job it was conceived for.

    There are about 200 000 individuals you need to be chasing ,they live in Spain Greece , France and various other islands in the Med and Atlantic ,working as tradesmen ,poolmen ,gardeners, running bars and restaurants ,its the 45% that never see the kids after 2 years . They are out of reach.

    you ignore them because you cannot get them ,you just concentrate on squeezing those in the UK on your database ,because you have recovery targets to hit .

  13. wilf on December 29th, 2012 8:39 pm

    Clive:- You are correct the CSA do not investigate, they consult the PWC and if child benefit is in payment.
    If child benefit is in payment the case stays open.
    The child benefit agency (HMRC) are responsible for making sure child benefit is paid correctly to the right person.
    Once child benefit ceases payment the case will be closed or the QC removed from the case.
    Benefit fraud is dealt with by the benefits agency which is another separate agency.
    The sole purpose of the CSA is to collect and deliver child maintenance to parents with care. If the care stops then so will the CSA case.

  14. CLIVE on December 29th, 2012 9:44 pm

    but who says when care stops ? the PWC ?

  15. CLIVE on December 29th, 2012 10:36 pm

    and who checks they are not lying?

  16. wilf on December 29th, 2012 11:19 pm

    As previously stated, it is the responsibility of the child benefit agency(HMRC).

  17. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 8:21 am

    then its clear that a lot of civil servants are not doing their jobs properly and allowing this domino sequence of events to repeatedly unfold . I suspect it really just about collection of a revenue stream ,nothing more , whether the numbers are correct and the debt actually exists has become an irrelevant argument . The CSA court presentation officers were merely drones who were simply there to enforce section 33 and collect revenue ,there was no negative feedback control mechanism in place to modify their reaction to events or evidence ,they were simply “vogons” ,with a job ,a single task to complete .

  18. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 8:26 am

    There is another important point here that is ,of all the reported benefit fraud ,and there is a lot ,90% never gets investigated beyond a phone call to the beneficiary to confirm their entitlement . Its like asking a liar if they had lied ???? So it stays in the system as a legitimate payment because unrecovered fraudulently claimed benefits are a massive political turd ,that no one in government wants on the horizon .

  19. chall on December 30th, 2012 9:17 am

    Quote Clive; judge agreed benefit fraud had taken place and that the PWC was not the PWC but was powerless to do anything other than make the liability order even thought they were living with me in the qualifying period.

    Did you notify the CSA your children where living with you and apply for Child Benefit at that time?

    Quote Clive; A lot of PWC s are claiming child benefit when kids are neither living with them or at school because the DWP will not chase it , so it stay on the system as a legitimate payment even though its not.

    Child Benefit rules allow some cases to carry on even if the child goes and lives elsewhere.
    It can be extended for up to 20 weeks if a child is under 18 and leaves education or training that counts for Child Benefit and registers with a qualifying body for work, training or education.
    It can also be paid for up to six months (or longer) if there is a good reason for the break.

    chall

  20. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 9:27 am

    there was no need to apply for child benefit as they were both working and not in full time further or higher education, I had no idea to expect or suppose that she was still claiming CB or its significance , in that situation applying for child benefit would have been fraudulent .They were not qualifying children.

    In effect your saying that because CB can be paid for upto 20 weeks after the child has left home ,its ok for the PWC to continue claiming maintenance for an extra 20 weeks when the child has left ? What do you define as a good reason ,in this case she(PWC) threw them out because they refused to pay her £70 per week board because they were working .

  21. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 9:30 am

    Can I also say that 20 weeks is not 2 years ,neither of these children stayed on at school beyond year 11 (abysmal GCSE results) , they left ASAP to seek full time work at 16 ,and found a variety of part time and full time employments

  22. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 9:34 am

    The PWC in this case ,as in many others had a long history of bogus benefit claiming and working the system ,in fact she was a professional none-contributary worker ,a perennial NEET , an adult who had lived their entire life at the expense of others via the generosity of the benefits system ,there are a lot of them out there.

  23. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 9:35 am

    the state helped her perpetuate her fraudulent life style by allowing her to claim maintenance for two children that were neither residents nor qualifying ,you were an accessory to her deliberate fraud .

  24. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 9:46 am

    the magistrate was very sympathetic and wished me luck with my application for a judicial review ,he clearly felt that this was bad law being used badly ,and commented quite deliberately on all the obvious flaws in the CSA case ,because of section 33 he was powerless to dismiss their application for a liabilty order but was clearly unhappy about it and spent three hours that afternoon consulting over it .

  25. chall on December 30th, 2012 10:14 am

    Clive,

    As the CSA case was obviously never closed, did they continue to communicating with you during the period the children were living with you, regarding regular maintenance payments?

    Was the amount of Liability Order solely in respect of when the children lived with you OR where any other amounts included?

    The link below will take you to the Child Benefit website. You will then be able to establish what they define as good reason.
    http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/childbenefit/keep-up-to-date/when-child-aged-16/leave-education.htm

  26. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 11:10 am

    there was no communication at all until after jan 2011 , the disputed periods were for payments made by the DWP between 2007-2009 , the qualifying periods should have ended in summer 2006 and 2007 ,but the CB claims extended until sept 2009 ,
    both kids were working and living in a house I was renting for them during this period . Everything was explained to them with written documentary proof and witness statements , from reliable witnesses and the children themselves ,but it was all ignored. The original application was for 11.5k this was later reduced to 5.5k at the final hearing, no one could explain where the other 6k came from . They appeared to be giving me credit for some none agency payments made in excess of the required assessments prior to the qualifying periods. They refused to give any credit for holidays ,skiing trips , clothes shopping ,meals out , grocery bills , repair bills to rental property , driving lessons, buying and cars insuring them , MOTs ,computers ,mobile phones , paying off angry drug dealers to avoid physical harm , and all the other ways one has to bail out your average teenager.

  27. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 11:16 am

    there was an overall sense that they knew they were wrong but had taken it so far that they could not drop it without loosing face , after all for that 5.5k they had employed 4 solicitors , 1 in telford , 1 in fenton and 2 in hanley , there were 3 adjournments over 9 months before they finally got their section 33 through. They probably lost money on it taking into account the legal costs and wages of those involved (court presentation officers) x 4 .

  28. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 11:19 am

    prior to 2011 I had been notified of case closures in 2006 and 2007

  29. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 11:34 am

    you are confronted by a bit of a brick wall when dealing with the CSA . you contact birmingham who pass you to dudley who pass you to bolton who refer you to crewe or stockport .
    On was friday evening I was contacted at 6:30 pm pre hearing by someone from leicester who told me that the first hanley hearing was adjourned because a case worker was on leave until 2 days after the hearing . I attended anyway just in case and found that it was not adjourned at all ,it was just a trick to try and stop me attending ,to rail road the section 33 through unopposed.

  30. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 11:35 am

    they also leave you on hold for ages then cut you off

  31. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 11:37 am

    its lower and middle pay grade civil service employees behaving rather mono-synaptically. They function as a team and have collection targets that affect their pay grades ,everything else is largely irrelevant

  32. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 11:44 am

    you do need a particular type of mindset to work in the public sector , I lived with an x -civil servants for 10 years ,there is a ridiculous almost religious belief in procedure and their systems , a misguided faith in the thought that ultimately the state is always right and government knows best . It always reminds me of the catholic church pre 1900 castrating little boys before their voices broke ,because they needed them to sing in church , the ends justifes the means etc.

  33. chall on December 30th, 2012 2:32 pm

    Clive,

    It’s very difficult, from a few messages, to state what may or may not have happened with your case.
    The CSA can and do sometimes make mistakes.

    Did you seek advice from anywhere prior to the LO hearing?

    Are you in receipt of your Data Protection file, with all note pad sections dated and a complete account breakdown?

    If you are planning to take the matter further, it would be advisable to have your DP file at hand, as it should contain all the info the agency hold on you, including letters etc they have sent to you.

    chall

  34. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 2:47 pm

    NACSA were a good source of advice , and I did get all the printouts they were odd ,interesting in places ,they appeared to be accusing me of potentially violent behaviour ,purely on the say so of the PWC ,who as well as being a serial benefit fraudster ,was a pathological liar with a Walter Mitty/Billy Liar personality defect . It also contained all the end of the road signing off letters followed by the insane and inaccurate ravings of the PWC that lead to the tribunal. She made several ridiculous and outrageous claims about my income and lifestyle which included going to and paying for a step daughters wedding in Australia , having a secret chateau in the south of France , several other properties , being a tax and vat fraudster , owning Aston Martin and a ferrari . Opening a new surgery business with 480 thousand pounds I had secretly stashed away in a shoe box under my bed . In fact all of these claims were completely silly . I wish some of them had been true !!!.

    the truth was that since divorcing in 1990 I had slowly built up a modest reasonably successful business in my own profession ,while she remained in the rather disgusting little council house , and scrounged an existence on benefits pretending to have a bad back or cancer .

    Although all the claims were proven to be silly the tribunal proceeded , a bit like continuing to prosecute someone when all the evidence has been rendered unreliable.

  35. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 2:52 pm

    you do question how its possible, after a clean break settlement in 1990 (predating the CSA by several years) for someone to spend the next 20 years using this government agency to continue to meddle in some one elses life .

    I was guaranteed confidentiality over my business accounts for the period 2005-2008 as their disclosure was required ,I found that they had been pulled apart and looked at by several “part-time ” accountants and interested parties on the estate she lived on . It was a grossly unfair invasion of privacy .

  36. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 2:55 pm

    they also went back to 2002 with the figures from 2005-2008 ,which was totally outside the remit of the appeals tribunal who’s durisdiction was for the period of 2007-2009 only .

  37. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 3:00 pm

    the tribunal ignored all the witnesses and refused to hear them , they directed the CSA offical present ( a Mrs Bromley) to make a re assessment and assured me it would be nothing . The tribunal gives you a month to appeal against its findings ,but I did not get written copies of the findings for a further two months ,by which time any appeal was out of time .A month after the tribunal a reassessment had been made and they had already started demanding the 11.5k their own tribunal said I did not owe. It was very confusing

  38. CLIVE on December 30th, 2012 4:00 pm

    we will see what the judical review brings without the burden of section 33 and civil service procedure

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