What is the relevant legislation for Social Security Fraud?

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The relevant legislation which allows the prosecution to occur is the Social Security (Administration) Act 1999 – ss 216 and 217. I have attached them below for you to read. Usually, the time limit for the recovery of a civil debt is 6 years.

SOCIAL SECURITY (ADMINISTRATION) ACT 1999 – SECT 216
Payment obtained through fraud etc.

(1) A person contravenes this subsection if:

(a) the person obtains:

(i) payment of a social security payment under the social security law; or

(ii) payment of an instalment of a social security payment under the social security law; and

(b) the person does so:

(i) by means of impersonation; or

(ii) by means of a fraudulent device.

(2) For the purposes of an offence against section 217 that relates to subsection (1) of this section, strict liability applies to the following elements of the offence:

(a) the element that a payment is a social security payment under the social security law;

(b) the element that an instalment is an instalment of a social security payment under the social security law.

(3) A person contravenes this subsection if:

(a) the person makes a statement; and

(b) the statement is false or misleading; and

(c) the person is reckless as to whether the statement is false or misleading; and

(d) as a result the person obtains:

(i) payment of a social security payment under the social security law; or

(ii) payment of an instalment of a social security payment under the social security law.

(4) For the purposes of an offence against section 217 that relates to subsection (3) of this section, strict liability applies to the following elements of the offence:

(a) the element that a payment is a social security payment under the social security law;

(b) the element that an instalment is an instalment of a social security payment under the social security law.

SOCIAL SECURITY (ADMINISTRATION) ACT 1999 – SECT 217

Penalty for contravention of Division 2

A person who contravenes a provision of Division 2 is guilty of an offence punishable on conviction by imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months.

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