No prosecution after overpayment of carer’s allowance
Sonn Macmillan Walker were approached by a client who had been asked to attend her local job centre for an interview under caution in respect of an overpayment of carer's allowance.
Our client was deeply upset and shocked that she had been accused of this offence, particularly as she was caring for a severely autistic child and had been entitled to carer’s allowance for a number of years.
In advance of her interview we took detailed instructions from her about her circumstances in order to best represent her interests.
We attended the interview with our client and we advised her throughout. It was clear that she had been overpaid and the overpayment figure exceeded £8,000. This is well outside the figure that might ordinarily lead to a civil penalty being applied as an alternative to prosecution. Initially a prosecution appeared to be the most likely outcome but we provided the investigators with documentation and representations about the difficulties our client had. Upon consideration of this information and on further discussion with the investigators, a prosecution was avoided and a civil penalty applied. Our client maintained her good character and avoided further stress of going to court and risking conviction.
Chris Stevens was the solicitor instructed.