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Yet another debt story

Debt amount: 
$28000
Date debt issued: 
Monday, 4 February 2019
Period debt occurred: 
June 2019
Has your case been referred to a collection agency?: 
Yes
Payment Type: 
Youth Allowance
Appealing Debt?: 
I don't know how to
Tell us about your debt and how has this affected you? e.g. anxiety levels, financial and accommodation stress: 

This alleged debt has had me spending hours of my time chasing Centrelink to even have details of this alleged debt. I started my first new job in years - Centrelink had been sending multiple letters to my employer chasing confirmation of my income two days after I started. Not only did this make me look like I've done something wrong, it tainted my employer's view of me.

I have been asking for months to have any information relating to my alleged debt in writing. Centrelink took my address down incorrectly - so didn't send any documents to me. I had to call and confirm my address over the phone despite providing it on several occasions previously.

Now I have received a letter this week stating that they tried to call and left messages. I 100% did not receive these three calls in the past week and have phone records to show it. I can't even begin to explain how much anxiety this is causing me - especially when I am trying to do the right thing and resolve this. I am certain this debt has been raised incorrectly, and despite this, I am trying to follow the process outlined by Centrelink.

This has affected me in several ways. I have since lost my job, which has caused me further financial strain and severe anxiety.

Unfortunately my experience is not unique. It has not been resolved. I have not been provided to this day any evidence of what I have incurred, meaning I am unable to seek legal advice. This means that I am not in a position to appeal the decision. I don't see how any of the tactics employed by Centrelink are legal, let alone of a standard expected by a government agency.

How do you feel about the way the Government has handled this process?: 

My conversation with a Centrelink debt recovery agent today sums my experience up succinctly: "You won't be harassed or anything until 13th August". This was the agent's exact words.