46-215. Welfare fraud; program disqualification; classification

A. A person commits welfare fraud if the person knowingly obtains by means of a false statement or representation, by impersonation or by other fraudulent device any of the following:

1. Assistance or service to which the person is not entitled.

2. Assistance or service greater than that to which the person is entitled.

3. Payment of any forfeited installment grant, or aids or abets in buying or in any way disposing of the property of a recipient of assistance or service without the consent of the department.

B. The department shall adopt rules to establish procedures for administrative disqualification and referral for prosecution of persons who commit welfare fraud.

C. A person is disqualified from program participation pursuant to subsection D if the person commits one or more of the following:

1. Signs a waiver of an administrative disqualification hearing.

2. After an administrative disqualification hearing, is found to have committed an intentional program violation consisting of any misrepresentation or other act that violates a law or rule governing the program.

3. Is convicted of any crime or petty offense against any assistance program defined in this chapter.

D. A person who commits an intentional program violation is disqualified from program participation for twelve months for the first violation, twenty-four months for the second violation and permanently for three or more violations.

E. The department shall not include the needs of the disqualified person in the assistance unit but shall count the income and resources of the disqualified person as being available to the unit.

F. A person who commits welfare fraud pursuant to subsection A is guilty of a class 6 felony.