Social care fraud is not a type of crime which may immediately spring to mind when the word ‘fraud’ is mentioned. Adult Social Care has been identified as one of the 3 greatest fraud risk areas nationally, according to the CIPFA 2017-18 Annual Fraud Tracker. It also estimates the national cost of social care fraud in the last financial year as £6.7 million. Investigations across North Yorkshire by Veritau (the council’s Counter Fraud Team) reveal the average value of all social care fraud cases that they have investigated to be £27,437; with some individual cases involving losses of over £100,000.

You may find through interactions with customers that you become aware of something that may constitute a social care fraud or safeguarding concern for their wellbeing.

There are a number of types of social care fraud:

Financial Abuse

This involves a service user having money stolen or misappropriated, often by someone who holds Power of Attorney for them and/or has access to their money. The funds are then no longer available to pay for their care, so the council has to step in to cover the cost. In a recent case the daughter and son-in-law of an elderly woman who had £160,000 stolen were each jailed for 2 years.

Direct payment

Direct Payments are given to those in need of care to manage themselves and allow independence in the process. Investigations have identified where Direct Payments have been abused by the intended recipient, their family or DP Agent. A case investigated by Veritau saw the son of the service user steal thousands of pounds of a Direct Payment to gamble and buy a Rolex watch.

Undeclared capital

If someone has more than £23,250 in savings, they are not entitled to local authority funding for their care. Sometimes people are able to conceal their capital and hide additional money from assessors to obtain funding where they are not entitled.

Deprivation of capital

Deprivation of capital is where someone knows they will need care and chooses to ‘gift’ their money to family members, friends, or anyone else. This depletes their funds in order to receive publically funded care, contrary to the rules of the Care Act.


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If you have any suspicions of any nature when dealing with customers, don’t hesitate to contact Veritau by emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or calling 0800 9179 247.



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