Social Security Benefits: Fraud

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered on 11 May 2023.

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Photo of Chris Stephens Chris Stephens Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Levelling Up)

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many staff in his Department investigate benefit fraud; what recent estimate he has made of the cost of that fraud to the public purse; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Tom Pursglove Tom Pursglove The Minister of State, Department for Work and Pensions

As of the end of April 2023, DWP has 1,111 full time equivalent (FTE) employees involved in investigating benefit fraud. This number does not include our compliance staff, who carry out robust and challenging interviews to ensure benefit claimants receive their correct entitlement.

For the financial year 2022/23, DWP estimated that the monetary value of benefit overpayments due to fraud stood at £6.4bn.

Fraud and error in the benefit system Financial Year Ending (FYE) 2023 - GOV.UK (

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