A fraudster claimed £22,000 in housing benefit and council tax overpayments over four years.
Glennda Rhodes, of Glenmere, Vange, admitted 11 offences of knowingly failing to notify her change in circumstances contrary to the Social Security Administration Act 1992 at Basildon Magistrates Court this week.
The 61-year-old admitted failing to declare savings, additional income from a job, her occupational pension and declaring that she was living with a partner.
Magistrates sentenced her to a 12-month community order, including 100 hours of unpaid work.
She was subject to a restraint order on her bank accounts under the Proceeds of Crime Act and a confiscation order was made.
She was also ordered to pay £3,000 costs within six months.
Cllr Stuart Sullivan, cabinet member responsible for resources, said: “This is an alarming case of fraud because of the amount involved and the fact it went on for nearly four years. Basildon Council takes these cases very seriously and will vigorously pursue those who commit these crimes. We will also push for the maximum sentence to act as a deterrent to others.”