Of clients I see, I'd say a little less than half of rental requests include figures by clients that aren't current. A lot are upfront about how far behind they are, some are perhaps hopeful they're not as behind as they actually are, and a few use deceit openly. Maybe clients who use deception think we'll write out a check before verifying the information and then they'll just have to take care of the rest of the backrent somewhere else (though I seriously doubt agencies pay without verification of at least a five day letter notice). Maybe it's a foot in the door technique (small request to be followed by a larger request)? Client thinks: If my case manager believes I'm behind by just $200 to then discover I'm behind by $500 he'll think "well, it's not that much more. We can pay that!" and skip over to write the check?
Difficult situations develop when, say, I'm working with a client who's in the process of getting evicted and she shares her side of what happened, her provider disagrees, and I strongly believe my client. What happens in this case? The easy answer is that each case is unique and complicated in its own charming way. Some cases may need to be assessed more closely. Usually I get the impression each side is a bit biased in her take. Many times it comes down to working with the client and providers into figuring out the next step. What options does the client have? Sometimes it's easier to make sense of that than mediate a disagreement of what went down.