A HUSBAND and wife claimed nearly £7,000 in benefits after failing to declare one of them had secured work, a court was told.

Alisha Dolan, 24 and James Dolan, 25, both of Garden Road, Rhosddu, Wrexham, both admitted failing to notify change of circumstances affecting their rights to social security benefts.

Prosecutor James Neary told Wrexham Magistrates Court that Alisha Dolan had been in receipt of housing benefit from September 2014, but she carried on claiming when her husband was in work between February and July of 2016. The overpayment amounted to £2,021.

Her husband had claimed Employment Support Allowance (ESA) from September 2014, but secured work with a recruitment firm.

“When he was interviewed about his failure to notify he said he
wasn’t quite sure how his job would work out and he wanted the money from the ESA as a sort of security,” said Mr Neary.

Laura Preston-Hayes, defending, told the court the couple had endured difficult times. One of their two children had required regular visits for treatment at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool, while James Dolan’s father had passed away after fighting leukaemia.

”He went to work on a temporary basis for the agency because of the care he was providing for his father,” she added. “They are both very ashamed and deeply regret that they didn’t notify the authorities.”

The court was told the couple had repaid all the money they had claimed fraudulently.

Magistrates imposed a 12-month conditional discharge on Alisha Dixon and ordered her to pay a £20 victim surcharge and courts costs of £40.

James Dolan was given a 24-month conditional discharge and told to pay a £30 victim surcharge and £40 court costs.