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Think I’ve committed benefit fraud

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Rob91
Rob91 Community member Posts: 6 Listener
hi guys, so I started claiming esa about 3 years ago and was put in the support group at that time I was living at home, I moved out about 2 years ago to a different borough and didn’t update my address with the dwp, only reason I didn’t do that was because I thought if I get any letters my mum would just tell me as she still lives at the address I originally claimed at, also since I moved I started to claim house in benefit, for some reason today it hit me that I should update the dwp about my new address and just from what I’ve read I think I’ve committed benefit fraud, I’m going to phone dwp today to explain the situation.
how badly have I messed up here? Am I going to get in serious trouble? So scared I can’t sleep

Comments

  • calcotti
    calcotti Community member Posts: 10,010 Disability Gamechanger
    edited August 2022
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    You haven’t committed fraud. Your ESA entitlement is not affected by where you live. You can ask them to send correspondence via your mum’s address if that is what you preference.

    You say that you are getting Housing Benefit. To be clear, are you getting Housing Benefit or UC?
    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.
  • Rob91
    Rob91 Community member Posts: 6 Listener
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    Hi, I just double checked a letter and it is housing benefit that I get also when I googled “ esa address changed “ there was a lot of posts of people saying that once they moved to a different borough that the esa they claimed was changed to uc.
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 57,016 Disability Gamechanger
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    That only applies to those that need to make a new claim for housing benefit. Are you living in temporary or supported housing? If you don't then i don't understand how you made a claim for housing benefit 2 years ago.
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • calcotti
    calcotti Community member Posts: 10,010 Disability Gamechanger
    edited August 2022
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    Rob91 said:..there was a lot of posts of people saying that once they moved to a different borough that the esa they claimed was changed to uc.
    That's completely incorrect. If you needed to claim UC then your income based ESA would stop but as you were able to claim HB you needed to claim UC. As poppy says, we assume you were in temporary or supported accommodation which is why you were able to claim HB.
    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.
  • Rob91
    Rob91 Community member Posts: 6 Listener
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    Hi, I just double checked and my claim for housing Benefit started just over 3 years ago, I’m also not living in supported or temporary housing, is this bad? Have I done something  wrong? Or maybe I’m not fully understanding the letter I have, I’m reading a letter from the council that says the calculation for my housing benefit is and lists the amount I get, the 2 thing I receive on that letter are “ the weekly Benefit award “ and “ weekly gross rent/ council tax” everything else on the letter is £0
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 57,016 Disability Gamechanger
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    If your ESA included the severe disability premium at the time you moved into your house and it was between 16 January 2019 and 27 January 2021 then you wouldn't have been able to claim Universal Credit. It would have had to be housing benefit.
    If you claimed the SDP when you moved into the house, it's a little odd why you didn't change address at the time, although it makes no difference to your ESA claim, as advised by calcotti.
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • calcotti
    calcotti Community member Posts: 10,010 Disability Gamechanger
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    Rob91 said:.. Have I done something  wrong? 
    If you applied for HB and an award was made you haven't done anything wrong.
    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.
  • Rob91
    Rob91 Community member Posts: 6 Listener
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    Ok, I dont fully understand all of this stuff tbh, do I need to phone anyone like dwp or housing benefit to discuss any of this stuff or is it all ok and should I phone dwp to tell them my change of address or is it ok for letters to keep going to my mums house? 
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 57,016 Disability Gamechanger
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    Rob91 said:
    Ok, I dont fully understand all of this stuff tbh, do I need to phone anyone like dwp or housing benefit to discuss any of this stuff
    No you don't.
    Rob91 said:
    should I phone dwp to tell them my change of address or is it ok for letters to keep going to my mums house? 
    You can but it's not needed. As calcotti has advised, it doesn't matter that letters are sent to your mum's address.

    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • Rob91
    Rob91 Community member Posts: 6 Listener
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    Ok, so just to wrap up and so I fully understand everything ( going to repeat my self here) I started claiming esa ( I’m in the support group) at my mums house about 4 years ago  and I then moved ( about 200 miles away) , about 3 years ago, I havnt informed dwp about me moving and I’ve now been claiming house in benefit for a flat ( not temporary housing or supported housing ) I live alone.
    does that all sound ok and above board 
  • Biblioklept
    Biblioklept Community member Posts: 4,949 Disability Gamechanger
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    That all sounds okay and above board and you've not committed fraud BUT I would update ESA with your correct address now. Even if you still request they send post to your mum's house <3
  • Rob91
    Rob91 Community member Posts: 6 Listener
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    I’ve phoned them now and told them my new address but they also wanted my doctors address, is that normal? Why would they want that? My next assessment isn’t until next year, would they bring my assessment forward as I’ve changed address
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 57,016 Disability Gamechanger
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    That will be because you've moved house so they're asking for the address of your GP, perfectly normal. No, changing address will not prompt another review. Besides, reviews are currently suspended because of the huge backlogs of those currently waiting for their first WCA.
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • Jo_2022
    Jo_2022 Community Volunteer Host Posts: 297 Pioneering
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    Hi @Rob91:) I hope you have found the above comments and advise helpful. 

    I agree with everybody, it does not seem you have done anything wrong. Although to be on the safe side, it might be a good idea to inform the DWP about the change of address.

    Welcome to the online community! 

    Community Volunteer Host with a passion for human rights.


    Please note: if I use the online community outside of its hours of administration, I am doing so in a personal capacity only.

  • Alex_Alumni
    Alex_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,561 Disability Gamechanger
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    Hello and welcome @Rob91 as our members have said, you don't need to worry, you've not committed fraud. I hope we've been able to reassure you. 

    If you have any other questions, let us know :)

    Alex
    Online Community Coordinator
    Scope

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