Centrelink and Medicare offices at Dalby.
Centrelink and Medicare offices at Dalby. Sophie Volker

Welfare cheats pocket billions in undeserved payments

Welfare scammers and fraudsters have reportedly been paid $2.84 billion in funds they weren't entitled to through fraud or error last year.

Just over 700 people have reportedly been prosecuted as a result but less than half of the money has been repaid.

The Department of Human Services has said it is still pursuing more repayments but it is likely most of the funds will be returned through deductions to ongoing payments.

Families were overpaid the most at $1.2 billion in family tax benefits and more than $700 million in unemployment benefits and rent assistance.

Human Services Minister Michael Keenan told The Daily Telegraph the Turnbull government was "committed to cracking down on welfare fraud more than ever before".

Minister for Justice Michael Keenan said the government is cracking down on welfare fraud. Picture: Mick Tsikas/AAP
Minister for Justice Michael Keenan said the government is cracking down on welfare fraud. Picture: Mick Tsikas/AAP

Service team helps people live life as they want

Service team helps people live life as they want

Helping people live life to the fullest

Sam, Noah hit six with state cricket selection

Sam, Noah hit six with state cricket selection

The duo have been selected for the under 15 team

Room Motels picks up gong for Gatton franchise

Room Motels picks up gong for Gatton franchise

The first award for the new hotel