Two sentenced over Council Tax Support fraud

Warrington Magistrates Court Published: Tuesday, 19th June 2018

Warrington Borough Council has successfully prosecuted two people for Council Tax Support fraud.

Clare McKendrick, formerly of Lathom Avenue, Orford, appeared at Warrington Magistrates’ Court on 6th June 2018 and pleaded guilty to two charges of Council Tax Support Fraud and Single Person Discount fraud.

The court heard that Miss McKendrick, who now lives at Gaskell Street, St Helens, failed to notify Warrington Borough Council of a change in her circumstances that she knew would affect her Council Tax Support and Single Person Discount as she was cohabiting with her partner.

Miss McKendrick, aged 39, fraudulently claimed £1,000.87 in Council Tax Support and £300.60 in Single Person Discount.

The court sentenced Miss McKendrick to a 12-month community order with a 60-hour unpaid work requirement, £100 costs and a victim surcharge of £85. She will also have to repay the full amount claimed.

Ann Dorothy Price of Fairfield Street, Howley, also appeared at Warrington Magistrates’ Court on 6th June where she pleaded guilty to two charges.

Miss Price, aged 46, dishonestly failed to disclose her own and her partner’s self-employed earnings which she knew would affect her entitlement to Council Tax Support. She claimed £3,724.58 in fraudulent Council Tax Support which she will have to repay.

The court sentenced Miss Price to a 12-month community order with a 60-hour unpaid work order, an £85 victim surcharge and £100 costs.

Cllr Russ Bowden, executive board member for corporate finance, said: “We are committed to helping vulnerable people in Warrington and Council Tax Support is one of the ways we try to lighten the load for residents who may be struggling financially. To see this system abused is appalling and we are determined to prosecute anyone who defrauds a system designed to help those in genuine need.”