Over €75M in social welfare payments reclaimed in fraud investigations

Over €75M In Social Welfare Payments Reclaimed In Fraud Investigations Over €75M In Social Welfare Payments Reclaimed In Fraud Investigations
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The Department of Social Protection reclaimed over €75 million worth of social welfare payments last year, after people received money they were not entitled to.

Over 13,000 investigations were launched into welfare fraud in 2020 and the Department received over 20,700 reports of such fraud last year.

After these allegations were filtered, 13,059 were referred for investigation.

Money was reclaimed from over 87,000 people, amounting to €75.2 million, which included €6.5 million in Pandemic Unemployment Payments (PUP).

Over €12 million in jobseeker's allowance payments were also reclaimed.

These investigations led to 73 people appearing in court last year for social welfare fraud, of which 67 were convicted.

There were 51 people found guilty of fraud relating to jobseekers' allowance, resulting in 32 fines, but none of the cases resulted in a jail sentence.

According to figures published earlier this week, the national unemployment rate for January was 25 per cent, including all workers currently in receipt of the PUP.


The seasonally adjusted traditional unemployment measure, which does not include workers receiving the PUP, was 5.8 per cent last month, showing no change from December 2020.

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