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Written on 17 July 2007
The use of ‘duplicate’ official documents to obtain loans is rife, according to an investigation by the Times.
Using services provided by two websites, reporter Mark Bridge was able to obtain a false bank statement, utility bill and payslip, and a P60 that indicated more than twice his true income.
The investigation follows an earlier warning by the Institute of Payroll Professionals (IPP) that fake documents were enabling people to secure huge mortgages and loans that they may never be able to repay.
“It is fraud,” one criminal lawyer told the Times. “Even if you don’t go to prison, you’ll have enormous credit problems.”
Maurice Cheng, CEO of the IPP said: “To provide a payslip to someone where you have no proof of their earnings has to be deemed fraud.”
Speaking to the Times he added: “What amuses me is that the P60s are called 100 per cent genuine. The paper may be genuine, but nothing else is. There is no legitimate reason for them. If you lose your P60, you simply ask your employer for another. The most it costs is about £12.”