Tenancy Fraud

West Lancashire Borough Council is committed to dealing with tenancy fraud and we are working hard to prevent and detect tenancy fraud within our housing stock.

Download our Tenancy Fraud Policy (PDF 118kb)

What is Tenancy Fraud?

  • Obtaining housing by deception – where a person gets a home by giving false information on their housing application.
  • Key selling – where a resident is paid to pass on their keys in return for a one-off payment.
  • Unlawful subletting – where a tenant rents out their home without the knowledge or permission of the landlord.
  • Unlawful assignment - fraudulently applying for a property through an assignment or exchange.
  • Unauthorised or fraudulent succession - misrepresenting circumstances to meet the legal criteria in place to succeed to a tenancy previously held by another family member.
  • Right To Buy fraud – falsely claiming the Right to Buy and associated discounts as a result of misrepresenting who lives in the property or tenancy history.
  • Using the tenancy to fraudulently claim Housing Benefit or Universal Credit.

What are we doing to tackle tenancy fraud?

We will deal with and tackle fraudulent applications, unlawful subletting and tenancy misuse promptly and effectively, to ensure all its housing stock is used by those who need it.

The Council is prepared to take legal action such as ending a tenancy or taking criminal action where there is sufficient evidence of tenancy fraud. 

To identify fraud we will carry out tenancy checks to ensure that the correct people are living in our properties.  We will work with partner agencies to detect and combat fraud.

How do I report tenancy fraud?

If you think someone is committing tenancy fraud such as subletting their Council home or living elsewhere, please report this to us in confidence by sending an email to the Tenancy Fraud Team with as much information as you can provide. 

Any information you give us will be treated in the strictest confidence and your identity will be protected.  You can report the suspected fraud anonymously but please give us as much information as possible to help us with our investigations.

To report benefit fraud please click on the following link - https://www.westlancs.gov.uk/bills-benefits/benefits/benefit-fraud.aspx