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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 70012
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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If i have been left money in a will but have been claiming

Customer Question

if i have been left money in a will but have been claiming benefits (correctly i might add) are the dwp likely to know?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Hi.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
How much have you been left?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
£43500
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
what do you think?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Which benefits do you receive?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
pension credit
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
and hosing benefit
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
hosing=housing
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you.
Pension credit is a means tested benefit and so you are the QC to declare any large sum of money in excess of £6000.
Whether or not the DWP is likely to find out the duty is still yours to inform them. If you do not and they do find out then you probably would be prosecuted the benefit fraud.
Also, if that were to happen, they would reclaim the overpayments so nothing is gained.
Sorry if that is bad news but I can only give you truthful information.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Jo
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
i do understand that bit, and i knwo you can't encorage me to do something I shouldn't and wouldn't expect that which is why i was wanting to know whether they are likely to know i.e. is there is something in the system that flags it up so they are bound to know
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Yes, they could find out. We don't really know all of their reporting sources. It is only really automatic if the money comes from another government departments but this could be discovered. There are lots of anonymous reporting sources and it is easy for them to do a search of accounts.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
if a £8000 pension lump sum (i.e. cashing in a very old small pension that acumulated this amount over a long period of time) was taken would this be automatically be reported/flagged to the dwp because it was a pension amount?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
yes, that probably would be automated because of the source.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
thats quite helpful and fits in with what has happened i did get the 8k (from abbey life) and put it in an old account ,the bank immediately took it to satisfy an old credit card debt as they had taken over the credit card company (barclays/egg) so i never had the money (so to speak). the other amount (43k) i have had for some while 9 months but have never spent as its all i have (forever as far as i can see)...however i did get called in by the dwp over the 8k (they had a letter from abbey life) and supplied them with details, that was five weeks ago but i haven't heard anymore. I would in fact like to just sign off while i have the other money in the hope that everything goes away. I don't know when is the best time to sign off as i don't know if i am still being investigated and i don't want to draw attention to myself...any hints on how to handle things?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Well, you can only declare this income.
There are no other options. It is something they are entiled to know about.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
yes i will do because i will have to give a reason for signing off....but when is strategically the best time?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
You should really have done it when you received the money but it is too late now. At least this stage, all you can really do is do it as soon as possible and just apologise for not having done it sooner. They may well accept that you needed to take advice.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
fair enough ....in your experience would i normally be written to once an investigation is finished?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
re the 8k, they told me that as the money had not been spent and had only been in the account for a few days before being taken that i may or may not have a small prorata deduction a decsion that would have to be made
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
The £8k is not the end of the world. That would have made only a minor difference.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
yes but the point i am really asking you is in your experience are they likely you write and tell me they have finished with that matter
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
......... 'they likely you write'....... = 'they likely to write'
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Sorry?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
the 8k they called me in about, are they likely to write to me and tell me that they have finished with the matter (one/way or the other)?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Not usually. Sometimes they will tell people the outcome but quite often it just gradually disappears.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 70012
Experience: Over 5 years in practice
Jo C. and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
oh ok, thanks for your help and advice..have a good christmas
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
No problem and all the best.
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