Catching Up with Grant Rorters

A record $7.5 million worth of first home grants and fines have been clawed back by the State Government in Victoria. It follows a crackdown, with figures showing a 15 per cent jump in the number of homeowners caught this financial year. Often the 671 cases involved false claims being lodged when the grant was boosted in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis.

“When you’re offering a grant that ranged up to $36,500 there is a temptation for people to do the wrong thing,” said State Revenue Officer Commissioner, Paul Broderick. Under tough laws introduced last year, rorters face a maximum 12-month jail term and a fine of nearly $15,000. The revenue office can also compel them to return the grand and pay an administration fee equal to its value. The most common rorts see first-home buyers using their home as a rental property, or a spouse already having owned a property or received the grant on a previous home loan.