Single Person Discount Fraud

Helping councils save millions through preventing and
detecting single person discount (SPD) fraud.

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Experian has helped over 200 local authorities save over £70 million by implementing straightforward, compliant and proven data matching checks on SPD claims.

This figure represents real cash back to local tax payers and front line council services.

We estimate that there are potential savings of at least £100 million¹ each year. Many councils already conduct frequent, successful programmes however Experian estimates an additional £50 million could still be saved by authorities yet to adopt proven methods – and within months of commencing a programme. Typical savings from programmes could amount to more than 4 or 5 per cent of all SPD claims.

In 2009², the Audit Commission estimated the size of single person discount fraud as £90 million. It also stated that this could be prevented by local authorities through the use of proven data matching and sharing techniques. Now, two years on, Councils yet to act on the Audit Commission’s recommendations will have failed to recover potential savings in the region of £150 million.

We provide best practice guidelines for councils, advice on compliance, provision of tried and tested template letters to residents, help with public communications and media handling.
A phased three letter approach is recommended as being both effective and proportionate.

The initial wave of letters in a campaign often yields most results, as many people not entitled to the discount, whose circumstances may have recently changed, will willingly renounce their claim.

Many only need reminding which is why our phased approach to resident communications enables council fraud investigators to eliminate soft fraud and error first before proceeding to identify, prioritise and engage with fraudsters who continue to make false claims.

Case Study - Liverpool City Council

Liverpool City CouncilFraud initiative returns more than £1.5 million to public purse, winning praise from Audit Commission. FIND OUT MORE


1 Audit Commission, Protecting The Public Purse, November 2011

2 Audit Commission, Protecting The Public Purse, September 2009

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