Underlying entitlement or beneficial change

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    We have a fraud case. Claimant was working PT in a job. We then find that she had a second job and included this income in the assessment, generating a substanital overpayment.

    Claimant then advises in the IUC that when she started the second job, she reduced the hours of the first one, so her income hadn’t really changed much overall.

    We are discussing how to treat the claim. Should we reduce the overpayment by reducing the earnings from the first job…even though she failed to notify us and therefore beneficial change comes into play, or leave both incomes and go with the gross overpayment.

    I’m not comfortable with leaving it Gross – as these were not the true circumstances…but I’m being nagged!



    Don’t know if you are coming at it from an assessing angle or a fraud angle, but you have to apply underlying entitlement. This seems to me to be a case where you should, as more HB / CTB would have been paid if we had known the correct details at the time.
    You don’t have a choice but to apply UE.
    So if it is a member of your fraud team saying you should send out the details of the gross overpayment, not only do I, in my (very) humble opinion think they are wrong, remember that they can only make recommendations, not tell a decision maker what decision to make.:wink: 8)
    If they are still nagging you, remind them that applying UE is not a payment of Hb / CTB, just a reduction of the overpayment – if they don’t think that should be the case, they can always take it up with the Secretary of State. 😯


    Thanks for that..in fairness to my fraud team they are with me on this one and have challenged the assessment decison not to award UE infavour of the beneficial change rule..

    Thanks for your help


    Kevin D

    I agree with Jon.

    HBR 104 is unequivocal – u/e must be applied on the basis of the “real” circs at the time.



    Can I through another query in..?

    What happens if your customer is self-employed; you process a change in say child/working tax credit that creates an overpayment. Claim is currently based on a previous financial years accounts as the norm.

    Would you use the current years accounts and apply U/E using those (if S/E income has reduced), or leave in the S/E figures as they are?

    Customer has not informed us of a decrease in S/E income prior to the o/p being calculated


    Trevor Kenward

    Can I resurrect J Underwood’s last post.
    Yes youve guessed it ,this is the exact situatiion I am now dealing with

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