THE GOVERNMENT BODY that provides expenses support to low income people, including the Jobcentre, has had its accounts qualified for the eighth year running.
The National Audit Office has qualified the social fund White Paper Account for material errors in providing budgeting loans, crisis loans and community care grants and in funeral expense payments, with an estimated £114m in overpayments.
The main causes of irregularity in the fund’s accounts come from the JobCentre Plus’ “inability to provide the documentation needed to support cases selected for audit, and a failure to comply with regulations when making awards”.
Comptroller and auditor general Amyas Morse said that JobCentre Plus had made “good progress” but problems still existed that were material.
“Jobcentre Plus should continue work to address my concerns and I will continue to monitor progress,” stated Morse.
Jobcentre Plus believes that the continued high instance of error is due to the ongoing reorganisation of its process centre network, and that the inability to locate all documentation results from the large amounts of paperwork that have been moved between its offices during the year.
For the first time, the NAO has also qualified its opinion on cold weather payments due to errors, to the tune of £21.5m: a 5% error compared to none a year earlier.
Morse has removed his audit qualification for Sure Start maternity grants.
HMRC breaches client confidentiality; and partner profits fall at EY. These stories and more discussed in Friday Afternoon Live
"The whole idea of HMRC officials supplying confidential information about individuals to the media on a non-attributable basis is, or should be, a matter of serious concern," say Supreme Court judges
Changes to the tax system is urged to support the growth of entrepreneurs, found a report from the Grant Thornton UK, the Institute of Directors, and the Prelude Group
If businesses do not take cyber security seriously in their business planning regulators may do it for them, the ICAEW has warned