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Totally Crazy

Debt amount: 
Date debt issued: 
Thursday, 1 September 2016
Period debt occurred: 
October 2010 to June 2013
Has your case been referred to a collection agency?: 
Payment Type: 
Youth Allowance
Appealing Debt?: 
Yes in process
Tell us about your debt and how has this affected you? e.g. anxiety levels, financial and accommodation stress: 

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.

I attempted to call multiple times but couldn't get onto anyone as I was trying in between work hours and on breaks.
Eventually after weeks I managed to get a day off work to go into Centrelink - again no help. Also no offer to use their phones.
Finally got someone who placed my debt into review and advised to attempt to get payslips from the times.

Unable to source payslips as one company I worked with in that time went bankrupt and no longer trades whilst the other one is being immensely unhelpful as I no longer work for them. This all happened in September/October 2016.

Skip to May 2017 and I receive a letter saying my debt has been assessed and no further action required. Log onto MyGov (which I finally got sorted) and no money showing as owing to Centrelink.

September 2017 I receive a very general letter saying I may have received correspondence from Centrelink about a debt.

Then I receive phone call from DHS about a unpaid debt. Tell the caller it was placed in review and no action required. He looks further and finds it has been placed "no action" until Jan 2018. He puts me through to another department.

New person is very helpful. Informs me of what has happened and how my taxable income was "averaged" over the years to change my reporting. Also discovers the computer system had taken my reports and added them to its own calculation, making my debt way higher than it should have been. He flags the added together debts to be checked by a person and hopefully corrected, then informs me I am now able to provide bank statements, as well as take the documents into a Centrelink office and have them forward them on.

Recently I have located a number of payslips from this time, which I will be taking to the local Centrelink and making them forward them to aid in my review.

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

This has been a colossal stuff up by the government.

Reading the review into the rollout of the debt recovery system it shows the DHS should have known how many issues were going to arise from this and worked them out before rolling the system out on such a large scale.