Welfare, CalWORKs, SSI, Child Support, IHSS all run on tax dollars and any money that is misspent or stolen from these programs leaves fewer resources for those who really need the help.
Examples of fraud:
A father claims that he needs cash aid, food stamps and medical coverage for himself and his children – but – the children live at another address with another adult such as a grandparent, mother, or friend. Sometimes the mother has a Felony Drug Conviction and can not qualify for public assistance so the father opens the case even though he does not live with the children. He allows the mother to use his portion of the cash aid and food stamps because with her criminal history she will not be able to find work to pay for these items herself. The fraud is that funds are being given to someone who does not qualify for them.
A mother who has used all five years of CalWORKs eligibility for herself moves to a homeless shelter. The worker at the shelter tells her that she must participate in GAIN in order to be in their housing program. The shelter employee instructs the mother to walk into GAIN and claim that after she left CalWORKS she suffered five years of Domestic Violence and needs another five years of cash aid. Even though this adult has never had an incident of Domestic Violence, she completes the forms at CalWORKs and GAIN requesting time back and it is granted. The fraud is that this person has no real qualification of continued cash assistance but will receive it anyway.
A family applies for public assistance. They drive to the DPSS office in a new BMW and report living in a large home in an affluent neighborhood. The parents are asking for cash aid, food stamps, Medi-Cal and at the children’s school they are requesting the free lunch program. The family does not have any reported income on their taxes or to social security and is granted full benefits. The fraud is that the family has a business out of the country and is receiving income in a foreign bank account or in a domestic bank account registered to a business and not to a family member.
A couple of Senior Citizens live together. He is a citizen and she is not. Due to his work history and frail health he qualifies for Social Security and the IHSS program. Because she is not a citizen, she can not be paid to be his care giver. Instead, they have a family member assigned as the care giver and complete the time cards. When the paychecks are issued, the family member cashed the check and gives the cash to the wife as her income. The fraud is that we are paying someone to be a caregiver who is not doing the work and the public funds are being given to someone not qualified to recieve them.
A doctor sends out people into a homeless shelter or low income neighborhood who offer free rides for a free medical check up and possibly a cash incentive such as $20 per person. The medical office completes intake forms with the “patients” and they are sent home. The doctor’s office then bills Medi-Cal or Social Security for the visit, an exam and occasionally for treatment or medication. The fraud is payment for services that are not rendered.
A Social Services worker issues funds for clothing or transportation to a client and changes the address in the system to that of themselves or a friend. When the issuance comes as a check, they have it cashed and keep the money. The fraud is that funds are never given to the actual client for any real services or needs.
How to report fraud: (800) 349-9970
the following is from the Los Angeles District Attorney’s web page: http://da.co.la.ca.us/wf/resource.htm
CENTRAL FRAUD REPORTING
12000 Hawthorne Blvd.
Hawthorne, CA. 90250
To report any fraud against Los Angeles County,
including welfare fraud.
WELFARE FRAUD PREVENTION & INVESTIGATIONS
12000 Hawthorne Blvd.
Hawthorne, CA. 90250
Investigates allegations of potential welfare fraud in the following
programs: CalWORKs (formerly known as AFDC), Food Stamps,
General Relief, In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS), and the
(800) 87 FRAUD (873-7283)
(800) 78 CRIME (782-7463)
P.O. Box 1296
Rancho Cucamonga, CA 91729-1296
To report any criminal activity or fraud.
DISTRICT ATTORNEY’S OFFICE
RECIPIENT WELFARE FRAUD UNIT
5300 Harbor Street
Commerce, CA 90040
Investigators will review major cases to see if suspects
are operating a business or own luxury vehicles.
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
Food Stamp Violations
21660 E. Copley Drive
Diamond Bar, CA 91765
Investigates the illegal purchase of food stamps.
Recipient Fraud: (800) 822-6222
Provider Fraud: (800) 722-0432
To report MediCal and DentiCal fraud.
WIC Program Integrity Unit
Vendor Fraud: (916) 928-8603 Tom Winder, Manager
Participant Fraud: (916) 928-8606 Emilito Smith, Manager
To report either vendor or participant fraud in the WIC program,
a program that issues food vouchers for the specific purpose of providing
nutrition to pregnant women, new mothers, infants and young children.
Child Support Services Department
Office of Ombudsperson
5770 S. Eastern Avenue
Commerce, California 90040
Handles child support issues.