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$46.10-$53.95 hourly / $7,991.00-$9,351.00 monthly / $95,888.00-$112,216.00 yearly


Under direction, as lead worker plans, organizes, and coordinates the field activities of the Welfare Fraud Investigative staff in the Human Services Department ; performs the more difficult, sensitive or responsible investigations; and does other work as required. This is a sworn peace officer position.

Distinguishing Characteristics

This single position class acts as lead worker in the Special Investigative Unit (SIU) in the Human Services Department.  The incumbent provides technical supervision to investigative staff in the field investigating cases of general welfare fraud, earnings clearance and asset match; and assists the Chief Welfare Fraud Investigator with staff training and internal investigations. This class is distinguished from the lower level of Welfare Fraud Investigator I/II in that the latter does not involve ongoing lead work responsibilities. It is distinguished from the next higher level of Chief Welfare Fraud Investigator in that the latter is responsible for managing the Special Investigative Unit by providing administrative and technical supervision to investigative staff as well as other sections of the Human Services Department : Fair Hearings, Quality Control, Day Care Licensing and Foster Care Licensing.

Typical Tasks

As lead worker plans, organizes and coordinates the work of field investigators. Establishes priorities and assigns cases to investigators.  Serves as a team leader on difficult and complex cases.  Trains investigative staff.  May conduct internal investigations.  Keeps abreast of changes in eligibility regulations and procedures.  Keeps Chief Welfare Fraud Investigator informed of the status of field investigations and of unusual cases.  Appears in court as a witness.  Writes reports and correspondence.  May access, input and analyze data using a computer.  Attends meetings and conferences.  Investigates cases of known or suspected violations of the law related to the fraudulent receipt of welfare funds.  Prevents fraud by verifying applicant information and conducting random investigations. Examines assets match and earnings clearance information provided by the State and conducts investigations as appropriate. Examines records, questions suspects, conducts interviews and surveillance.  Determines the most effective way to conduct the required investigations.  May investigate child-stealing cases. Prepares and serves search warrants. Contacts other agencies, business organizations and employers to secure and verify information and evidence. Locates and interviews recipients suspected of fraud and others who may have knowledge of a case, such as relatives, neighbors and landlords. Records content of interviews. Secures and preserves written statements from witnesses and other parties. Analyzes and evaluates statements from witnesses, bank statements and other evidence. Works jointly as required with other agencies to develop evidence.  Prepares evidence for the District Attorney's Office.  Assists in conducting the most complex, difficult and sensitive investigations.  May act as Chief Welfare Fraud Investigator in his/her absence.

Employment Standards


  • Thorough knowledge of interviewing techniques and procedures.
  • Thorough knowledge of the sources of information and the techniques used to locate persons.
  • Thorough knowledge of investigative techniques and procedures.
  • Thorough knowledge of the legal rights of citizens.
  • Working knowledge of report writing techniques.
  • Working knowledge of financial record keeping.
  • Working knowledge of human motivation and behavior.
  • Working knowledge of the legal process involved in the prosecution of welfare fraud, the rule of evidence, laws of arrest and search and seizure.
  • Some knowledge of the regulations governing eligibility and grant determination for public assistance programs.
  • Some knowledge of the laws relating to welfare fraud.
  • Some knowledge of client rights and the Fair Hearing Process.
  • Some knowledge of the principles and practices of supervision and training.
  • Some knowledge of data processing applications.

Ability to:

  • Plan, organize, and coordinate field operations of subordinate staff.
  • Interpret, understand and apply complex regulations and provisions of the laws dealing with welfare fraud and eligibility for public assistance programs.
  • Conduct complex and sensitive internal investigations.
  • Obtain information and evidence by observation, record examination and interview.
  • Perform fieldwork, which includes a substantial amount of traveling to various sites to conduct investigations. Analyze and evaluate the statements of witnesses and suspected violators.
  • Interpret, understand and apply provisions of the welfare laws.
  • Perform a variety of active duties involving strenuous physical activity such as pursuing and restraining suspects.
  • Review investigative reports, statements and complaints to determine appropriate action.
  • Analyze situations accurately and adopt an effective course of action.
  • Establish and maintain effective working relationships with the public, departmental staff and law enforcement agencies.
  • Negotiate agreements and payments of monies due.
  • Communicate clearly and logically in oral and written form and make effective presentations.
  • Prepare clear and concise written and oral reports.
  • Deliver in-house and on-the-job training.
  • Learn to access, input and analyze data using a computer.

Training and Experience

Any combination of training and experience, which would provide the required knowledge and abilities, is qualifying. A typical way to obtain these knowledge and abilities would be:

Equivalent to one year as a Welfare Fraud Investigator II in Santa Cruz County;


Two years of criminal investigative experience which would demonstrate application or possession of the above knowledge and abilities.


Successful completion of a course certified by POST (P.C. 830.31 requirements). Must meet minimum employment standards defined by Section 1031 of the Government Code.

Possession of a valid California class C driver license.


Benefit Status: 41
EEOC Job Category: 03
Occupational Grouping: 62
Worker's Comp Code: 0285
Analyst: CE

CLASS: RH6; EST: 1/1/1994; REV: 2/1/2008;