Costa Blanca Woman Collected Her Dead Brothers Pension For 24 Years

An elderly woman with a purse

The pensioner received two years in prison. Credit: Alexa/Pixabay

AN 83-year-old resident of Gandia has been sent to prison after collecting her dead brother’s pension for 24 years.

The woman, a native of Córdoba, but a resident of the Costa Blanca town, had taken over the care and custody of her brother.

He had an orphan’s pension recognised by social security, which in 1996 amounted to €675.90. This amount increased annually, reaching the figure of €726.70 in 2020.

From 1996 to 2020 his pension was deposited into a bank account whose owner was the aforementioned sister.

When her brother died on May 1, 1996, his sister, with the illicit intention of keeping his pension, hid his death from social security and the bank.

In this way, she managed to ensure that from May 1996 to March 2020, they continued to pay her the monthly amount of his pension, reported Onda Naranja Cope on Friday, August 11.

The total amount deposited by social security in the defendant’s account amounted to €174,776, with the defendant spending the pension on everyday living expenses.

Social security managed to claw back €38,970 from the defendants bank account, but the rest had been spent.

On the other hand, the bank did not comply with its obligation to verify the pension holder was still alive, and therefore did not notify social security of his death. Spanish banks must inform the INSS (social security) annually.

On February 26, 2020, the defendant filed a letter with social security announcing the death of her brother, which occurred 24 years earlier.

The notice determined the cessation of payment of the pension, and made it easier to take the appropriate steps to clarify the facts.

The woman fully recognised what she had done and the Court of Valencia sentenced her to two years in prison and a seven-month fine (a daily fee of €4) for fraud.

In addition, she must pay the legal costs and compensate social security with €135,805.

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Written by

Jo Pugh

Jo Pugh is a journalist based in the Costa Blanca North. Originally from London, she has been involved in journalism and photography for 20 years. She has lived in Spain for 12 years, and is a dedicated and passionate writer.