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Exclusive data reveals Centrelink recipients overpaid more than $700 million

4 March 2017

It has been revealed that thousands of welfare recipients in Australia have collectively been overpaid more than $700 million, with some people abusing the system.

In one case obtained by 9NEWS, a Centrelink recipient claimed he only earned $5000 per year, but data from the Australian Tax Office revealed he was pulling in more than $100,000 per year. 

Another customer declared an income of $23,000 per year, but data revealed she was earning more than $70,000 per year. 

"While most people do the right thing, the unfortunate reality is that some people deliberately defraud the system," Human Services Minister Alan Tudge told 9NEWS. 


"At the end of the day if somebody does owe money to the government, they have to pay it back," Mr Tudge said.