Social Security Benefits: Overpayments

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered at on 21 November 2023.

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Photo of Rob Roberts Rob Roberts Independent, Delyn

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people have an outstanding overpayment of benefits as of 15 November 2023; what the value of those overpayments is; and how many of those cases are the result of an error by his Department.

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

The number of people with outstanding benefit overpayments recoverable by DWP and the total value of those debts as at 16 November 2023 is set out below:

Volume of Customers


Outstanding Debt Value


*The data provided has been extracted from internal DWP management information and has therefore not been subject to the same quality assurance checks applied to our published official statistics.

As all overpayments of certain welfare benefits are recoverable in law, irrespective of how they occurred, there is no requirement to categorise departmental error in all cases and we cannot therefore provide this information.

Our latest full estimates on fraud and error can be found at Fraud and error in the benefit system Financial Year Ending (FYE) 2023 - GOV.UK (

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