Local Authority Investigation Officers Group
Local Authority Investigation Officers Group (LAIOG) is a British organisation involving Local Authority investigators. When it was created, it focused primarily on those involved in the investigation of Housing and Council Tax Benefit fraud. This is no longer the case, with LAIOG members now having a remit that includes all areas of investigation in Local Government.
LAIOG is recognised as a representative group in providing information and statistics to, for example, the UK parliament. The organisation is considered of sufficient importance to be mentioned by name in the fraud prevention policies of many Local Authorities and Department for Work and Pensions newsletters.
Although referred to under Fraud Squad in this encyclopaedia as an investigation unit, this is not strictly the case, although members do liaise during investigations.
There are a number of regional groups and a national 'umbrella' organisation. The official regional groups, that is those represented on the executive committee are :
- Wales (Welsh Benefits Investigation Group) WBIG
- LBFIG (London Boroughs' Fraud Investigators' Group)
Other groups also meet, such as Northern Home Counties.
Around 400 Local Authorities across England, Scotland and Wales are members of LAIOG. Membership is for the authority, rather than individual members.
The organisation is run by a committee of 14 members, although there are currently two vacancies listed. The committee is made up of :
- Vice Chair
- 6 Executive Officers
- Website Officer
- Representatives from the following regions :
- LBFIG (London)
- South West
LAIOG's main functions and activities are:
- provision of access to information relevant to the field of investigations ;
- a communication network, via the website ;
- dissemination of information to members ;
- local and national representation on policy, training and various legislative issues ; and
- a national conference, combined with an AGM.
LAIOG has also been involved in setting up a number of qualifications for investigators, working with ITS Training (UK) Ltd. and Bond Solon.
The regional groups also have AGMs and generally hold training days for members, two or three times a year.