Tuesday, 4 February 2014

Questions (342)

Paudie Coffey

Question:

342. Deputy Paudie Coffey asked the Minister for Social Protection the number of cases of suspected fraud that have been reported to her Department; the amount of payments that have been suspended or ceased; the number of prosecutions as a result of these reports in the years 2010 to 2013, inclusive; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [5374/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Social)

My Department receives reports of possible fraud from members of the public in relation to the operation of its schemes and provides both a dedicated phone number and a facility on the Department’s website for this purpose. All anonymous or confidential reports are examined and, where relevant, are referred to the Departments’ sections and/or to Inspectors for follow-up action. A payment is not suspended or stopped solely on the basis of an anonymous report however the report may “trigger” the instigation of a review of a customer’s entitlement. The following are the number of anonymous reports received in the Department’s Control Division in the period:

-

2011

2012

2013

Total

16,142

28,022

24,720

Detailed statistics on outcomes from these reports are unavailable because anonymous or confidential reports of abuse are used merely to “trigger” or instigate investigations, but are not taken into account when the review of the customer’s payment is being decided.