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Accurate and honest declarations

Published on 22 January 2020

The purpose of this guide

Many public services and business processes require applicants to complete a form stating relevant information that may determine the outcome. The design of the application form can influence whether a person chooses to make a true statement of their circumstances or a potentially fraudulent, false statement. By better understanding the principles of counter fraud design we can reduce the incidence of fraud.

This guide outlines the principles that should be considered when designing application forms and processes, including the content and placement of declarations. Examples are provided that can be adopted by the form designer to reduce the incidence of fraud. An overview of electronic signatures is included at Appendix 3 - Electronic signatures.

It is not intended that this guidance be wholly applied to contract declarations. Designers should refer to, or seek, separate advice on specific legal principles relating to contracts.

This guide can be referred to by those involved in creating and reviewing business processes as a source of best practice in countering fraud through design.