What is housing and tenancy fraud?
Fraudulently obtaining affordable housing, subletting for personal gain or not occupying a property as your main or principal home uses up valuable resources. These should be available to families in most need.
Types of Social Housing Fraud are:-
- Application fraud – If you have made a false declaration, or submitted fraudulent documents to obtain a council tenancy
- Unlawful subletting – If you are sub-letting the whole or part of your home
- Non-occupation – If you are not occupying your council property as your main, or principal home
- Succession fraud – Unlawful tenancy succession – wrongful succession to a property to a person who does not qualify and has submitted false information
- Right to buy fraud – Where a false application has been submitted
It is a criminal offence to commit the above offences. The prevention of Social Housing Fraud Act 2013 carries a sentence of up to 2 years and a fine of up to £5,000. Also, any profit deemed to have been made from tenancy fraud can be ordered to be repaid to the Council
We also prosecute under the Fraud Act 2006, which carries a maximum sentence of 10 years or unlimited fine or both. On more serious cases, we will look to recover monies under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.
We will also consider recovering monies under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 where a tenant has had financial gains when subletting a property.
There will be occasions when we take civil action to recover a property through the County Courts,
How to report fraud
To report any suspicions of fraud you can do the following;
Phone our fraud hotline on 020-8359-7255
You may remain anonymous if you so wish.