*** Public Assistance programs provide many needed services to thousands of families and individuals in Gallia County. ***
Fraud occurs when a recipient knowingly and willingly provides false or misleading information about their circumstances. Fraud also occurs when a recipient intentionally fails to report changes in circumstances in a timely manner in order to receive benefits for which they are not eligible.
Most program rules require that changes in circumstances be reported to the caseworker with in 10 calendar days.
Unfortunately, like so many worthwhile programs, there are instances of abuse in which some improperly use the system. Investigative staff with Job & Family Services has the primary responsibility to investigate those Public Assistance cases where fraud is suspected. Investigations are conducted to ensure that Public Assistance benefits are received by only those individuals who are eligible and that they receive the correct amount.
Taxpayer complaints and allegations of fraud are investigated using all available resources. This includes conducting field investigations, visiting the homes of those suspected of fraud, as well as contacting collateral sources - family, neighbors, employers, etc. Information concerning Welfare Fraud comes from a wide range of sources: concerned citizens, agency customers, employees and other administrative areas including computer match data. The important point is that when welfare fraud occurs, everyone loses. If you suspect that someone is committing fraud, call the Special Investigations Unit. All calls are confidential and you don't have to leave your name.
In cases where fraud is not found, but monies are owed back, clients are given the opportunity to make voluntary repayments. If payments are not made, the overpayment may be referred to the Federal and State Tax Refund Offset Program or to the local court system for Civil Collections. Cases, in which fraud is found, are sent to the Prosecutors Office for Criminal Prosecution. Some cases may also be sent to the court system in Columbus, in order for Federal charges to be filed. Restitution is required in all Criminal Cases, along with disqualifications from Public Assistance programs being imposed, some of which are for the individuals lifetime.
The Special Investigations Unit conducts investigations in all agency programs, including: Public Assistance, Medical and Food Stamp Assistance, Child Support, Day Care, Adult Protective, Work Program and PRC. In addition, they perform Quality Control Review Investigations.
HELP STOP WELFARE FRAUD!
Call the Special Investigations Unit at 740-446-3222