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Legal, pensions and money

DWP Proposing To Scrutinize Bank Accounts?

(235 Posts)
Margs Sat 02-Dec-23 09:55:56

The Daily Record and Liverpool Echo, amongst other sources, very recently noted that the DWP will attempt to obtain powers to delve into the bank accounts of UC claimants, on the premise of cracking down on benefit fraud.
And now, as rumours would have it, State Pension recipients may come under the same regime of scrutiny.
Why?
The State Pension is so far below the average weekly wage that it's almost an insult. Certainly for women.
And I can just about imagine the DWP mandating that the supermarkets hand over data on a customers spending whenever they use a loyalty card.......just to make sure that we're not fecklessly "living it up" on too generous pensions.
Ha!

Nannan2 Sat 02-Dec-23 12:26:26

They already do but on the sneak- i once had a tribunal meeting about 8-9 yrs ago about my sons DLA(He was still a child then, at school) at the meeting i was totally grilled about our spending and one of them asked me about a holiday we had taken year before-(first in years) he then revealed where we had been and hotel where we had stayed night before travel(an upmarket one but i got it free as a voucher stay) but he was implying we had squandered our benefits on 'living it up' is the impression i got- and also that they dont approve of disabled people taking holidays!! This was all information id never revealed so the details can only have been obtained by DWP snooping either my emails or bank or both! - at end of tribunal they turned my sons claim down for no good reason i could see other than that they did not want us to have the means to "go living it up" on 'their' money again! I waited till son was 16 and applied for him PIP instead.He got it.

Chocolatelovinggran Sat 02-Dec-23 12:33:08

Nannan2 that's seriously unpleasant, isn't it? Maybe the holiday was the gift of a relative or friend, or maybe you won it in a raffle. Surely this isn't anyone's business and should not have any effect on your child's entitlement to benefits.

welbeck Sat 02-Dec-23 12:50:40

maybe there was extra scrutiny where the person spending is not the claimant, eg a child, or person lacking capacity.
it does sound wrong, unfair and intrusive.
but there are cases of financial abuse, not just fraud against DWP, but neglecting to use the money for the claimant's benefit.

Germanshepherdsmum Sat 02-Dec-23 13:04:18

cc

Realistically anybody claiming additional benefits has to produce their bank statements to show that they do not have other sources of income.

Some people have more than one bank account for this reason. I knew one such (now deceased). She produced statements from the account into which her pension and benefits were paid, from which she paid for the basics, and which gave a very distorted impression of her means.

MaizieD Sat 02-Dec-23 13:04:44

Ilovecheese

paddyann54

Meantime Michelle Mone and her billionaire husband recipients of 200 MILLION for a company they hadn't started ...to supply PPE that was useless are still at large with no sign of any legal action against them or the government .Its a very strange UK where the poor are ALWAYS guilty and the rich are allowed to "make mistakes" with no comeback
What a bloody mess !

Yes.

I understand that they are now under investigation by the National Crime Agency.

There you go..

www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-67547261

MaizieD Sat 02-Dec-23 13:06:19

Dickens

DaisyAnneReturns

Collecting information about where claimants are spending money

I do have concerns about that one. If a claimant is legitimately claiming a benefit and not incurring any debt the while - it seems like an infringement of their privacy.

Trained DWP investigators having arrest powers

Oh. What could possibly go wrong with that one ?!

Very worried about handing powers of arrest to anyone other than the police.

DaisyAnneReturns Sat 02-Dec-23 13:07:19

Theexwife

I thought the DWP already did that if there was a suspicion of benefit fraud.

I know of two people receiving DLA and working full time, claiming to be disabled does not always mean that you are.

It irritates me when people claim they are unable to work yet spend all day on social media, there are many jobs that involve just doing that for companies.

Claiming to be disabled does not know ghat those who know them will know whst thst disability is, Theexwife. Let's hope it isn't anyone like you or Urmstongran doing assessments as you already appear to have made up you minds without any facts.

Dickens Sat 02-Dec-23 13:56:54

Margs

The Daily Record and Liverpool Echo, amongst other sources, very recently noted that the DWP will attempt to obtain powers to delve into the bank accounts of UC claimants, on the premise of cracking down on benefit fraud.
And now, as rumours would have it, State Pension recipients may come under the same regime of scrutiny.
Why?
The State Pension is so far below the average weekly wage that it's almost an insult. Certainly for women.
And I can just about imagine the DWP mandating that the supermarkets hand over data on a customers spending whenever they use a loyalty card.......just to make sure that we're not fecklessly "living it up" on too generous pensions.
Ha!

And I can just about imagine the DWP mandating that the supermarkets hand over data on a customers spending whenever they use a loyalty card.......just to make sure that we're not fecklessly "living it up" on too generous pensions.

If you get a State Pension and are not in receipt of any benefits - no-one is going to be checking your spending habits.

Though frequently referred to as a "benefit", the state pension is an entitlement - irrespective of your wealth. No government would propose any plan to look at pensioners' bank accounts purely on the basis of them being pensioners.

I have no respect for this government - but that is just pure fear-mongering!

FlexibleFriend Sat 02-Dec-23 14:04:41

I am disabled and claim benefits. I don't work but could if I was able to. Work doesn't affect personal independence payment (PIP) in so far as PIP is not means-tested and you can be paid PIP whether you are working full-time, part-time or not at all. So, you could work as a merchant banker earning millions and still be eligible for PIP.

vampirequeen Sat 02-Dec-23 14:35:08

crazyH

What ???? We should be able to spend our SP on whatever we choose. - I wish they’ll delve into the physical abilities of those receiving DLA /AA.

That's very unfair. It's hard enough to be on disability benefits without being deemed to be some sort of scammer. DWP doesn't make it easy to claim disability benefits. We have to jump through hoops that many of us are simply too ill to deal with. There are a lot more people who should be on PIP who gave up the fight because the DWP drag it out and make it too difficult. Imagine being very ill/disabled and having someone who has no medical training tell you that all your evidence from doctors and hospitals means nothing.

crazyH Sat 02-Dec-23 15:19:22

Vampirequeen - yes , “unfair” being the operative word. My poor friend, who couldn’t walk 10 steps before getting breathless, had her application
declined and my other friend who travels the world with her “disability” receives DLA etc. She has private pensions too. The former has now sadly passed away.
Regardless, I also think these benefits should be means tested .

HousePlantQueen Sat 02-Dec-23 16:44:05

I would be interested to see the source of your allegations, Urmstongran. By the way, there is no such thing as "sick pay", and many people in receipt of PIP are working.

Doodledog Sat 02-Dec-23 17:18:41

What has someone's private pension got to do with receipt of DLA?

I suffer from breathlessness, and have every sympathy with your late friend - she should certainly have qualified for disability payments if she couldn't walk ten steps - but I see no reason for disability benefits to be means-tested, particularly based on a pension that someone has paid into for years.

People really seem to resent private pensions, but they are not free, and shouldn't disadvantage those who may have gone without in order to pay for them.

I think there are two issues here. One is the injustice that denied your friend the payments she should have had, and the other that there is a chance (impossible to know without knowing the detail) that your other friend was playing the system. Neither case would make means-testing ok though.

Georgesgran Sat 02-Dec-23 17:27:09

DD2 is disabled, following a stroke and claims DLA. For some reason she only ever had the ‘getting around’ part and from being 17 has given it up for a Motability car, without which she couldn’t work/get to work.
I’d like to think that very wealthy people who later find themselves disabled don’t claim benefit - especially those who are able to retain their well paid jobs.
When DH was diagnosed as terminally ill, he chose not to claim anything, although towards the end, I did consider a Blue Badge for him, but it was during Covid, so didn’t bother.
Having had a claim and appeal for Carer’s Allowance for DD2 rejected, I chose not to go down that route again.

Happygirl79 Sat 02-Dec-23 19:20:18

This is so typical of this Conservative government. They will try to pit people against one another so that they are not looking at them. Look there! Not here!
Don't fall for it.

Germanshepherdsmum Sat 02-Dec-23 19:37:48

Are you happy for your tax to pay for a fraudster’s lifestyle?

DaisyAnneReturns Sat 02-Dec-23 19:43:59

First, if you actually read the articles flagged there is no mention of the State Pension.

Second, when it comes to nonsense about people getting more than they should on benefits, I really think you have to decide what sort of a person you are.

Benefits will never be an exact science so you have to decide whether you tolerated the tiny amount of fraud that we have currently in order to ensure those who need the help get it, or whether you tighten the system so much that people die or live in penury while you still have a small percentage of bad characters determined to deceive.

Or you don't have human beings.

Urmstongran Sat 02-Dec-23 19:44:46

Well said GSM.

Katie59 Sat 02-Dec-23 20:40:25

The Government Agencies including the police already have the power to access any electronic media, including bank details. At the push of a button they can scan the bank accounts of all claimants they have been doing it for businesses for a long time.
Because so many transactions are online these days its easy now

DaisyAnneReturns Sat 02-Dec-23 20:53:47

Populist followers will always react with their emotions not their brain Urmstongran. That's why we get questions like "Are you happy for your tax to pay for a fraudster’s lifestyle?".

That's pure emotion considering the miniscule amount of benefit fraud by comparison, for example, to tax avoidance and evasion. I wonder which, drawn back into the Treasury, would make a difference to schools, the NHS and the cost of living?

But not for you, my friend. The Tories give you a group to be angry about and they point you at that group saying "hate these people, think of them all as bad and we will make it all better". And just where has that got the person who judges the world by the populists faux information and votes with their emotions? Has it made the country better off or even happier? No?

That's okay. They will soon find another group for people to hate; to absorb your emotions so you cannot aim it at the real culprits - the populists who have had power over this country for 13 years.

rafichagran Sat 02-Dec-23 20:55:31

I don't want to see anyone penalised for being on PIP or DLA, however not everyone is honest and it is nieve to think that. However before bank accounts are scrutinised, the fraud officers must have evidence, and a very good case to think someone is dishonestly claiming these.

Dickens Sat 02-Dec-23 21:03:20

Surely it shouldn't be beyond the realms of possibility to devise and institute a system which can detect fraud without punishing genuine claimants?

Kamiso Sat 02-Dec-23 21:35:56

crazyH

What ???? We should be able to spend our SP on whatever we choose. - I wish they’ll delve into the physical abilities of those receiving DLA /AA.

They did that!

Paying the totally unqualified “inspectors” £2,000 for every disabled person they dumped. It went a bit quiet as a number died within days of being declared fit and well despite years of ill health.

Deedaa Sat 02-Dec-23 21:56:02

When DH was having his assessment for DLA the office was on the second floor, with no lift. one man, who was obviously very unwell, nearly collapsed climbing the stairs. I sometimes think they do it on purpose to sort put the ones who do need help. My cousin who has MS was made to crawl up some stairs to prove that she couldn't walk.

My MiL had her secret bank account reported by HMCR. She was very incensed when the council made her pay back all the money she had had in benefits. She couldn't understand that the benefits were intended for people who hadn't got thousands stashed away.

Georgesgran Sat 02-Dec-23 22:22:01

Perhaps I’ve got the wrong end of the stick, but Having read through the thread again, is ex-dancer suggesting that disabled people shouldn’t be working at all, but just sitting at home with their DLA/PIP? What’s wrong with working and claiming? Is it not the same as others claiming working tax credits or pension credit. It’s a long time since DD received her DLA, but the Surgery/Hospital must've claimed it on her behalf - I can’t really remember filling any forms in.
DD2 may not be able to walk, but she can use her hands and her voice, is in receipt of DLA and works. Behind a desk, or in her car all you see is an absolutely stunning young lady - someone actually challenged her on using a disabled parking bay to which DD said ‘see that wheelchair in the back, it’s not a f**king fashion accessory!’
I expect we all know someone who claims ‘something’ to which they’re not entitled (hate that word - it’s half the problem) either by being mis-advised or else downright fraudulently.
Unfortunately, checks are necessary to try and weed them out, but it’s often the most deserving who are misjudged.