How to Report a Benefit Fraud

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Federal and state agencies such as the Social Security Administration, Medicaid and state social services or human services departments provide assistance or benefits to those who qualify based on income and other factors. If you suspect that a beneficiary has committed fraud and is receiving benefits unduly, you can report this crime to the managing agency. Suspected Social Security or Medicare fraud needs to be reported to a federal agency; suspicions about food stamp fraud, for example, needs to be reported to the state where the fraud was committed.

Step 1

Report medicare fraud by contacting the Office of the Inspector General. The office will want information pertaining to the suspected fraud claim, such as the name and provider number of the physician or medical company, as well as details of the suspected fraudulent billing. For example, If your Medicare statement shows a charge that you believe is fraudulent, highlight the questionable item and dollar amount on a copy of your statement. Be sure to clearly identify your name and Medicare account number and the reason you believe that Medicare shouldn't have paid for that item.

Send, fax or call the Office of the Inspector General with this information at:

Office of the Inspector General HHS TIPS Hotline P.O. Box 23489 Washington, DC 20026

Phone number: 1-866-417-2078 Fax number: 1-800-223-2164

Make sure to include a copy of your Medicare statement, by mail or fax, if this involves a fraudulent charge on your account.

Step 2

Report food stamp (SNAP benefits) or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) fraud. These claims should be filed directly with the state's social/human services department. Make sure to include information about the fraudulent incident(s) as well as the perpetrator's name, address and social security number. If a business was involved in the fraud, make sure to include information about the business and its address.

Contact the fraud division of the Department of Social/Human Services for the state in question. For example, in Louisiana you would call or email the Fraud Recovery Section of the Department of Social Services at 225-219-1663 or

In Louisiana, you can also download their Fraud Complaint Form and mail it in:

Fraud and Recovery Section P.O. Box 91147 Baton Rouge, LA 70821-9147

Most states have a hotline, a mailing address, and even an online form that you can submit.


Step 3

Report Social Security compensation fraud to the Social Security Administration (SSA). Fraudulent activities include receiving benefits for a child not under the beneficiary's care, working while receiving Social Security benefits, failing to notify SSA of a beneficiary's death and continuing to receive their benefits, residing overseas while collecting Supplemental Security Income and hiding marriage or financial assets from SSA. To report the fraud you must inform the SSA who committed the fraud and exactly what they did, any victims of the fraud, when the fraud took place, and any other details pertaining to the case. You can complete the Fraud Reporting Form online (see Resources).

You may also mail in this information to:

Social Security Fraud Hotline P.O. Box 17768 Baltimore, Maryland 21235

Or call or fax your information:

Phone number: 1-800-269-0271 Fax number: 410-597-0118

You can select to remain anonymous or to keep your name confidential.



About the Author

Si Kingston has been an online content contributor since 2004, with work appearing on websites such as MadeMan. She is a professional screenwriter and young-adult novelist and was awarded the Marion-Hood Boesworth Award for Young Fiction in 2008. Kingston holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Mills College.