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1.5.4 Prevention and detection of overpayments
126.96.36.199 — To ensure that incorrect payments are minimised, DVA emphasises preventative measures for all dealings with clients by ensuring a framework of procedures, controls and systems. These include:
- undertaking identity checks
- issuing appropriate claim forms to clients, and alerting clients to their obligations and existing detection methods
- verifying critical facts that clients supply
- selectively applying risk-based procedures to ensure resources go to those cases where perceived risk of incorrect payment is greatest
- requiring clients to provide their Tax File Numbers as a condition for receipt of payment
- payments are paid directly into client accounts to reduce the occurrence of fraudulent negotiation of cheques and false claims for duplicate cheques; and
- promoting voluntary compliance by making clients aware of the risks and penalties involved in attempting to fraudulently claim payments.
188.8.131.52 — DVA also has controls in place to detect incorrect payments as soon as possible and correct them promptly. These controls include:
- review programs
DVA undertakes periodical reviews to ensure that pensioners receive their correct entitlements. These reviews are designed to target identified risk groups.
- data matching
Involves comparing client details, including some case Tax File Numbers with records from other Federal and State bodies, to identify declared income and asset changes. All matching programs are monitored by the Privacy Commissioner who ensures that they are in accordance with the Data-matching Program (Assistance and Tax) Act 1990 and Guidelines.
- responding to denunciations
Investigating information provided by members of the public alleging the client is receiving a benefit that they are not entitled to or is providing false or misleading information to the Department.