There is a visible rise in the number of couples filing for divorce in a scheme to receive social security payments, a Turkish daily reported.
According to Vatan daily, married women, seeking to obtain pensions Turkey grants to daughters of deceased pensioners if the daughter is unmarried, are increasingly applying for divorce. The Social Security Institution (SGK), the government body that oversees pensions, often detects the divorces for the sake of pensions still living after divorce due to a barrage of tip-offs from relatives of the deceased who seek the pensions for themselves, such as other daughters and the wife of the late pensioner. Statistics show that more than 80 percent of the tips were from the relatives alarmed over the prospect of losing their share in the pensions. The daily reported SGK received more than 5,000 tips last year regarding the issue.
Average pension paid to the daughters who lost their pension father varies between TL 700 ($251.73) and TL 1,200 per month, but drops to TL 400 if there are more recipients. SGK reportedly set up a team of investigators who pay random visits to the fraudulent divorcees and if they find out the husband is still living with the wife on more than three occasions, they suspend the payment and file a criminal complaint for fraud.