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NotMyDebt Stories

We are collecting stories on the site because we think it's important to have a way to people to add their voice to this issue by sharing their story. It's puts a human voice to the issues with using technology and automating systems and providing a blanket solution without providing staff and people that can right wrongs and help people when there is an error. 

Please share your story with us if you have a Centrelink debt story that you believe has been issued in error or due to a fault in the system. 

As frustrating as it is, persist with the appeals process, and know others are behind you. 

Stories are 100% anonymous

Debt amount:
$1468
Payment Type:
Youth Allowance
Appealing Debt?:
Yes but I lost
Date debt issued:
14 October 2017

Had been told by Centrelink that I had a debt of 1400 approx from back in 2014.
I was told that I had been contacted numerous times throughout this period even though I had not once received a letter or phone call from them until September this year (3 years later) even though my contact details had not changed my entire life.

Debt amount:
$1200
Payment Type:
Newstart Allowance
Appealing Debt?:
Yes in process
Date debt issued:
9 September 2015

I was seeing a counsellor for anxiety and stress before i got the letter ~ its why I never responded.

Debt amount:
$3700
Payment Type:
Youth Allowance
Appealing Debt?:
Yes in process
Date debt issued:
24 February 2017

During the time frame they say the debt was accumulated, I was not required to report my income. This was while I was a at university.
I recieved a letter stating that I did not have to report to recieve youth allowance and I received payments without having to declare anything.

Debt amount:
$847
Payment Type:
Disability Support Pension
Appealing Debt?:
Yes in process
Date debt issued:
11 September 2017

I did some part time work during the financial year of 2011/2012 (Aug-Dec 2011 then March 2012).
They say my reported earnings are different to what they have and what the ATO have.

Debt amount:
$28950
Payment Type:
Parenting Payment
Appealing Debt?:
Yes in process
Date debt issued:
15 December 2016

-I am scared that it's never going to end. I am just so sick and tired of dealing with it and not getting anywhere.
-I need to stay strong and hang in there but it is so hard.

Debt amount:
$2400
Payment Type:
Family Tax Benefit
Appealing Debt?:
I don't know how to
Date debt issued:
1 September 2017

I am disabled, one of the injured workers of NSW with 80% of my weekly income... pay my taxes and atill centrelink claims I have a debt...

Debt amount:
$2000
Payment Type:
Newstart Allowance
Appealing Debt?:
Yes & I won
Date debt issued:
17 September 2017

I was fortunate enough to be 'caught' in the 'new and improved' robo-debt dragnet, implemented in response to the scathing senate enquiry into Centrelink's implementation of a no-oversight policy of chasing ambit debts (whilst a government threatened jail terms for those who had received more than their allowance).

Debt amount:
$4000
Payment Type:
Newstart Allowance
Appealing Debt?:
Yes in process
Date debt issued:
1 February 2017

They provided no evidence of any debt (from over 4 years ago).
I was freelancing at the time and frequently had long periods when I was unpaid, and relied on Newstart completely.
They knew this at the time.

Debt amount:
$628
Payment Type:
Newstart Allowance
Appealing Debt?:
Yes in process
Date debt issued:
20 October 2016

When I turned 25, I developed quite bad hip pain. It made working difficult due to the pain, so I had to drop my hours and I was on pain killers daily. I went to Centrelink to help supplement my income as I was on an extensive waiting list for medical treatment/surgery but couldn't get disability, so was put on Newstart.

Debt amount:
$9500
Payment Type:
Youth Allowance
Appealing Debt?:
Yes in process
Date debt issued:
1 September 2016

First off I was unable to login to the stupid MyGov, as I haven't used it in nearly five years (since I became full time and stopped receiving Centrelink payments).
I went into a Centrelink office and was told they couldn't assist as it was debt related - they even refused to help me access MyGov.

Debt amount:
$0
Payment Type:
Newstart Allowance
Appealing Debt?:
Unknown
Date debt issued:
8 September 2017

A letter dated 8 September was added to my MyGov inbox 10 September, to which I was alerted 14 September. This should give you an idea how brilliantly the situation is being handled. I was given 28 days (from the date on the letter) to respond, which as you can see is 22 days from finding out I even had something to which to respond!

Debt amount:
$4120
Payment Type:
Newstart Allowance
Appealing Debt?:
I don't know how to

Was reporting my earnings to my job provider with pay slips now im stuck with a huge amount.

Have paid some off but feel terrified and scared

Debt amount:
$1022
Payment Type:
Parenting Payment
Appealing Debt?:
I don't know how to
Date debt issued:
8 September 2017

Anxiety. Totally stressed about the debt. Can't believe this is happening.

Debt amount:
$3227
Payment Type:
Newstart Allowance
Appealing Debt?:
Yes in process
Date debt issued:
6 December 2016

High stress. Bad moods. poor work performance .
Feeling like screaming but nobody hears.

anger at government.
Utter compassion for other affected worse than myself Especially children.

Debt amount:
$550
Payment Type:
Newstart Allowance
Appealing Debt?:
Yes but I lost
Date debt issued:
9 December 2016

I had some financial issues in the late 2000's that resulted from me losing my job when the company I worked for went into liquidation.
It became difficult to find work and so I decided after multiple dead end jobs to go to university.

Debt amount:
$7300
Payment Type:
Newstart Allowance
Appealing Debt?:
Yes in process
Date debt issued:
14 February 2017

My stress levels have been through the roof.
I have lost count of the sleepless nights I have suffered since this whole farce began and whilst I am 100% convinced I have done nothing wrong I cant stop worrying about it.

Debt amount:
$1612
Payment Type:
Newstart Allowance
Appealing Debt?:
Yes in process
Date debt issued:
20 September 2017

High anxiety levels before work couldn't focus felt physically sick

Debt amount:
$7200
Payment Type:
Newstart Allowance
Appealing Debt?:
Yes in process
Date debt issued:
16 February 2017

It has given me countless sleepless nights an at one stage I contemplated suicide.

Debt amount:
$5000
Payment Type:
Family Tax Benefit
Appealing Debt?:
Yes in process
Date debt issued:
1 September 2017

We were not notified by letter, only on the MyGov website which we hadn't accessed for several months, and forgotten the login and password.

Debt amount:
$9500
Appealing Debt?:
Yes in process
Date debt issued:
11 September 2017

My case is to prove my innocence against a perceived debt/recovery that HAS now been found 7 years later due to an INEFFICIENT SOCIAL SECURITY PAYMENT SYSTEM used by Centrelink
I see this as NEGLIGENCE AND/OR DEFECTIVE ADMINISTRATION on Centrelinks behalf.

Debt amount:
$8648
Payment Type:
Carer Payment
Appealing Debt?:
Yes & I won
Date debt issued:
21 October 2016

Shocking situation this was a payment that I was recving for caring for my dementia suffering 90 year old mother.
Who had since passed away.

Debt amount:
$155
Payment Type:
Newstart Allowance
Appealing Debt?:
No
Date debt issued:
12 September 2017

I got hit with Robodebt recently requiring me to detail *exactly* all my income from 2013.

I ended up with a bill for $154.52 which I paid because I couldn't deal with the stress of objecting.
(I cannot imagine how people deal with the ridiculous debts raised!)

Debt amount:
$6499
Payment Type:
Newstart Allowance
Date debt issued:
4 September 2017

Bloody furiously angry and fired up for a fight. I'm way too angry to be depressed about this.

Debt amount:
$4000
Payment Type:
Newstart Allowance
Appealing Debt?:
No
Date debt issued:
1 December 2012

The letter sent to me via my.gov.au with a confirmation code advised me to check the payment status as I maybe overpaid for the time I was provided with the New Start Allowance.
It affected on my trust to the Centrelink computer system and also the Taxation Office.

Debt amount:
$2000
Payment Type:
Youth Allowance
Appealing Debt?:
Yes in process
Date debt issued:
3 August 2017

I have not been on any Centrelink payments for 5 years. They are asking me for money I earned on student income!

As a trained lawyer I know what my rights are to dispute this but I am stressed how they won't deal in writing and constantly try to put the onus on me (to not be a liar).

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