Injured Fire-Fighters Overpaid

Potential fraud of over a quarter of a million pounds has been uncovered by auditors for the Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service.

Auditors have discovered seven fire fighters who retired early because of injury have been claiming thousands  too much in benefits.

The cases showed up when financial data from local government was matched with central government departments.

Of these cases six were indentified as potential frauds by the National Fraud Initiative,  which is run by the Audit Commission. 

Every injury pensioner is legally obliged to tell the pension provider  when government benefits change so that they're not over-paid.

Of Devon and Somerset's 187 injury pensioners 105 were paid correctly, 26 were underpaid and have received arrears and fifty were overpaid, with six being paid sums of over £10,000 too much.  They'll have to pay the money back but will be given up to 20 years to do so.

The seventh potential fraud case relates to an injury which medical evidence now suggests was not work-related.

To hear from the Devon and Somerset Fire and rescue Service Treasurer, Kevin Woodward CLICK HERE

Systems are now in place to avoid future over-payments.