7 Aug 2018

Mother wrongly claimed £21k in benefits

A mother claimed £21,000 in housing benefit and tax credits after “forgetting” to tell the Department of Work and Pensions she lived with her husband.

Ashley Louise Staveley, 28, told officials she was a single parent so she could fraudulently claim the cash.

But the shopworker and barmaid was living with her husband in Hartlepool and failed to notify the authorities, reports Teeside Live.

The probation service told the court there were “a lot of emotional issues” which led to her forgetting to mention she was not living alone.

Forgetting? Oh please

Staveley admitted fraudulently receiving benefits which amounted to a total of more than £20,900.

A probation officer told the court: “She has been in a relationship for the past six years and during that period it’s been mainly on and off.”

He added that she was separated from her husband during her two pregnancies and had to have tests for cervical cancer – which came back clear.

Magistrates heard this “impacted her careless thinking” and that she was “just getting by financially”.

She was given a 12-month community order with 100 hours of unpaid work and must pay £85 court costs as well as an £85 victim surcharge.


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