MORE than £100,000 will be recovered from people who received benefits, care or parking permits in error.

A total of 4,716 data matches were initially received by Blackburn with Darwen Council from the Cabinet Office in February as part of the 2018/19 National Fraud Initiative exercise (NFI 2018/19).

An initial sift of these matches is currently taking place to ensure that follow up action is taken where appropriate.

To date, 479 matches have been processed and a further 176 investigations are ongoing.

A total of 59 errors have been found to date resulting in savings of £109,380 and arrangements are already in place to recover this money from the individuals concerned.

A further 636 matches were received in August as a result of comparisons made with HMRC data. These are currently being reviewed by staff within the Revenues & Benefits section.

Head of audit and assurance, Colin Ferguson, said: "The council received additional reports from the Cabinet Office in February, March and August 2019, which included 9,005 council tax single person discount data matches for further review.

"The reports were generated after council tax records were matched with various data sets including the electoral register and HMRC records.

"The matches indicate that entitlement to single person’s discount is incorrect and further enquiries need to be made.

"The reports have been forwarded to the revenues section for follow up and further action.

"Audit & Assurance is continuing to liaise with the police regarding two separate cases of suspected overpayments in respect of social care clients who are in receipt of direct payments for their care provision.

"The most recent case involves the identification of a £20,000 overpayment.

"It was established that this client’s circumstances had changed, which were not notified to the council, and direct payments had been falsely claimed for over a year.

"Payments have been suspended and recovery will be sought from the client."

The report will be discussed at a meeting of the council's audit and governance committee on Tuesday.