Wealden District Council migrated all its housing benefit fraud investigations to the DWP in November 2014. The Council had the foresight to retain its two investigators, who were given the remit to determine what areas of council’s business their specialist skills could assist with.
The team have been very successful in new areas, including the housing department by recovering properties, assessing right to buy applications and prosecutions for tenancy fraud, whilst continuing to investigate CTRS and NNDR offences.
In April 2015, the team joined the Audit Team within Business Services. As a result of its success, the team has expanded to a Senior Investigator, 2 Investigators, Administrator and an Apprentice. In the past 3 years, they have identified and help recover £1,366,279.24 including 30 houses from a population of 149,000 and a housing stock of 4,000. They work with neighbouring councils and partners to continue preventing and detecting fraud.