National Statistics

Fraud and error in the benefit system: financial year 2017 to 2018 preliminary estimates

Preliminary estimates of fraud and error levels in the benefit system in Great Britain in the financial year 2017 to 2018.

Documents

Fraud and error in the benefit system: financial year 2017 to 2018 preliminary estimates

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Tables: Fraud and error in the benefit system: financial year 2017 to 2018 preliminary estimates

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Background information: Fraud and error in the benefit system statistics

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Details

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is seeking views on proposed changes to the fraud and error in the benefit system statistics – send your responses by 16 September 2018.

This report provides preliminary estimates of fraud and error levels in the benefit system in Great Britain for the financial year 2017 to 2018.

The main points from the report are:

  • 2.1% of total benefit expenditure was overpaid due to fraud and error (up from 2.0% in 2016 to 2017)
  • the estimated value of overpayments is £3.8 billion (a rise from the 2016 to 2017 estimated value of £3.6 billion)
  • the net government loss, after recoveries, is £2.7 billion, or 1.5% of benefit expenditure
  • 1.0% of total benefit expenditure (or £1.7 billion) was underpaid due to fraud and error

Send any comments or questions about the fraud and error estimates to: caxtonhouse.femaenquiries@dwp.gsi.gov.uk.

Interactive information and charts

Use DWP’s online tool to explore the fraud and error statistics.

You can also access DWP’s fraud and error statistics using StatXplore.

Published 17 May 2018
Last updated 23 July 2018 + show all updates
  1. Added information about a consultation on proposed changes to the fraud and error in the benefit system statistics - the consultation closes on 16 September 2018.
  2. Published a revised version of the data tables. The following revisions have been made: 1) minor revisions made to the Continuously Reviewed benefits totals (row 30 in tables 3 and 10); and 2) updated the Pension Credit footnotes for ‘Income – other’ and ‘Income – other benefits’ in tables 3, 4, 9 and 10.
  3. First published.