Gareth Davies, the head of the National Audit Office, has reported on the 2019-20 accounts of the Department for Work and Pensions. He has qualified his audit opinion because of the material level of fraud and error in benefit expenditure.

Department for Work and Pensions annual report and accounts 2019-20

Audit certificate and report (pages 180 to 195)

“I am concerned that fraud and error in benefit payments have risen again. Fraud and error have a real cost, both for those who face deductions from their income due to overpayments and because it reduces the public funds available for other purposes.   “As the Department takes on a set of unprecedented challenges arising from COVID-19 it is more important than ever that my qualification is not seen as business as usual and the Department responds in a cost-effective way to minimise risks of fraud and error.”

Gareth Davies, the head of the NAO

Press release

View press release (30 Jun 2020)

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