Municipalities break the law dealing with applications for social security benefits
Summary of Report of the Norwegian Board of Health Supervision 4/2011
In 2010, social security benefits in the social services dealt with by Nav was an area for Countrywide supervision. This is the first time this area has been investigated. In this report, we summarize the findings from supervision, which was carried out by the offices of the county governors in 50 municipalities and urban districts. We present an overview of what was investigated and what we found. Finally, we present our assessments and recommendations.
The offices of the county governors found that several municipalities do not fulfil their management tasks in a way that ensures that services are provided in accordance with statutory requirements. Breaches of the legislation were identified in 45 out of 50 municipalities. The municipalities do not always ensure that applications are received correctly. Assessment of the applicants’ situation is often inadequate, and individual assessments of the need for social security benefits are not always made. In several municipalities, staff are not given adequate training, routines are inadequate, and the quality of the service is not monitored. This can result in an unacceptable risk for applicants not receiving the social security benefits they have the right to receive.
The Norwegian Board of Health Supervision recommends that all municipalities make an assessment of the way in which applications for social security benefits are dealt with, and whether there is a risk of deficiencies in the service.