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Government-Wide Improper Payment Targets

(Updated Annually Based on Agencies' Targets)

2012 Payment
Accuracy Rate


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    • “Improper payments” are payments made by the government to the wrong person, in the wrong amount, or for the wrong reason. Although not all improper payments are fraud, and not all improper payments represent a loss to the government...more

    • An improper payment can happen for a number of reasons. Knowing the causes of program error is essential. By understanding the causes of improper payments, agencies can better implement policies and procedures to reduce…more


    Toolbox Need more information on improper payments? We have a list of useful improper payment resources—including agency specific data, laws, and implementing guidance—that are often requested by agencies and the public.


    Success Stories

    bulls eye target

    • The Administration has announced that the government-wide error rate has decreased to 4.35 percent in fiscal year (FY) 2012, having steadily declined from its high-water mark of 5.42 percent in FY 2009. more

    • The Administration has launched a tool to help guard against wasteful and improper payments that squander taxpayer dollars. The new Do Not Pay tool will help Federal agencies avoid payment errors.more