Reporting Public Assistance Fraud
You should report public assistance fraud in Arizona any time you suspect someone is abusing his or her benefits. If you are seeking an answer to the question, “How can I report public assistance fraud?” fortunately, Arizona makes it easy to report these types of incidents. Arizona does not offer a public assistance fraud reward program, but concerned citizens know that by reporting fraud, the real reward is the satisfaction in knowing that your tax dollars are not going toward paying for public assistance benefits to someone who does not really need them. If you suspect someone is taking advantage of Arizona public assistance and committing fraud against the state of Arizona, there are multiple options for reporting these types of allegations, all of which are convenient. Learn more about public assistance fraud reports, including penalties for public assistance fraud incidents, in the sections outlined below.
Public Assistance Fraud Reports in Arizona
If you are interested in submitting a report for public assistance fraud in Arizona, you may submit an anonymous report, if you wish. Keep in mind, though, that if you are a recipient of the Arizona cash assistance program, you could face AZ penalties for public assistance fraud if you refuse to cooperate with fraud investigations. Doing so puts you at risk of losing your own benefits. This is a result of a law passed in 2017 that requires anyone receiving cash assistance benefits to cooperate in the investigation of benefit fraud. The application for Arizona cash benefits notifies applicants of this law, and by applying for cash assistance, they accept responsibility.
If you do choose to leave your name and phone number when you report public assistance fraud in Arizona, investigators have a better chance of proving the allegations and impeding the offender. A detective’s job is further simplified if the accuser is available to answer any questions that may remain. If you are wondering, “How do I report public assistance fraud in AZ?” it is important to review the state-specific facts. Download our comprehensive guide for more information on fraud related to public assistance.
Why should you report public assistance fraud in Arizona?
If you are aware of someone committing Arizona public assistance fraud and are unsure whether you should spend the time to report the crime, there are many reasons why reporting this type of fraud is important. If you do not report public assistance fraud and someone else does, the investigation may reveal that you knew about the fraud and did not report it. Depending on the circumstances and severity of deceit, you could be implicated in the crime. If so, you could face AZ penalties for public assistance fraud. You may want to ask yourself if protecting someone or not reporting fraudulent activity for other reasons is worth your own freedom. When deciding whether to report welfare assistance fraud, consider the cost to you, personally. If you have a job and pay taxes, you are essentially paying for this crime. Your tax dollars fund public assistance like Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) cash assistance, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP), unemployment insurance and other forms of welfare subsidies. When Arizona residents receive benefits that they do not deserve, it is at the expense of taxpayers. When you report SNAP fraud, you are protecting your tax dollars. In any case, you should always report public assistance fraud, as it is a serious crime and classified as a Class 6 felony in Arizona.
How to Report Public Assistance Fraud in Arizona Online
To report public assistance fraud in Arizona online, a convenient form is available on the Arizona Department of Economic Security (DES) website. The public assistance report form is available to concerned citizens who have knowledge of fraud committed against the public assistance departments below:
Nutrition – SNAP fraud, TEFAP, etc.
Cash assistance – TANF
When you report public assistance fraud in AZ and benefits abuse, be prepared to answer specific questions regarding the extent of your knowledge, including personal information about the person whom you are reporting. Provide as many details as you can on your welfare fraud report to assist with the investigation of your allegations, providing insight into how you became aware of the fraudulent activity and the information you are providing.
Reporting Fraud Over the Phone in Arizona
If you prefer to make your report for public assistance fraud over the phone, a hotline is available for use. Below you will find the toll-free and local hotline numbers for reporting public assistance fraud over the phone. Download our free guide to review more information about public assistance fraud reports by phone.
Report Arizona SNAP Fraud to the USDA
Concerned citizens can report Arizona SNAP fraud to the Food and Nutrition Service division of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) via the Office of the Inspector General, in addition to reporting to the Arizona DES. These departments offer telephone and online options to report food stamp fraud. Note that the USDA keeps the source of all fraudulent SNAP allegations confidential.
Additional Ways to Report Welfare Fraud in Arizona
To report welfare fraud in Arizona against medical benefits, use the medical fraud report form. To report unemployment insurance fraud in AZ against someone you believe is misrepresenting the truth to obtain or increase his or her unemployment insurance benefits, the DES requires that you fill out a separate fraud report form. Lying about income hardships to obtain unemployment benefits is illegal. To learn more about reporting unemployment insurance fraud and other forms of welfare fraud to the Arizona DES, download our comprehensive guide.
What Kind of Assistance Does the Arizona Family Assistance Services Department Offer?
The state of Arizona can assist eligible families with services such as food assistance or temporary cash assistance. To assess your eligibility, you must fill out an application and provide the required documents. To learn all of the details needed to prepare for this application process, download our comprehensive guide today.
Who Is Eligible To Benefit From the Arizona Family Assistance Services?
Eligible low-income families or individuals in Arizona can benefit from programs offered by the Family Assistance Services Department. Temporary financial assistance or Nutrition Assistance services are available to those who qualify upon filing an application. To find out if your family is eligible for these benefits, download our guide now.