The TANF program provides monthly assistance to needy families with children up to 18 years old. TANF fraud occurs when a payee does not report changes, claims to be a single parent when the child’s other parent lives at home, submits payment for a child who doesn’t live in the house, submits a claim for a fictitious child, or collects benefits from more than one state.
How is Fraud Perpetrated by the Organized Crime Groups (our fictional group)
Here’s the good news: this type of fraud isn’t usually perpetrated by organized criminal groups – at least the Humbug Group hasn’t figured it out yet.
How is fraud perpetuated by the Deceit family
When money got tight at home with her son going off to college, Donna wanted to find another source of income. Donna reported to the government that she had just had a third child, and that nobody in her family is working (by pretending that her husband got laid off). By committing to the lie, Donna began earning her family an extra monthly payment from the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program.
How the government can prevent it
Dolus employees will soon cross-check TANF applications against the comprehensive public records database. To ensure consistency and accuracy amongst the information provided on the application, Dolus employees will run this information against birth records, census records, marriage records and tax records to make sure the individual a) has a child residing with them; b) is not married or living with anyone else; and c) does not have a higher-paying salary than reported.