Was issued with a debt notice (dated Dec 2016) but did not receive it as my address had changed and I hadn't been on Centrelink for around 2 years (even though my address was up to date with medicare and ATO).
When I eventually received it, it was for 2014-15 FY and around $5750 (including a late fee).
I was incredibly anxious and overwhelmed!
I couldn't sleep or think straight.
I've never been in debt before and always lived within my means.
I'd finally gained part-time ongoing employment in 2016 and had started saving a little but this debt would have represented a large proportion of my savings.
I'm still a low-income earner.
This took up a lot of my time (at least three days to track down all payslips and bank records, including phone calls to Centrelink).
I was incredibly anxious, confused and scared for weeks.
I requested a review of the debt and it was reduced by $3000.
It was so inflated and incorrect their initial amount!
I believe it could still be incorrect but I just want to pay this and move on with things.
Terrible. The onus is always on an organisation to have evidence of a debt, rather than the other way around.
It's a callous system, deeply (and perhaps intentionally) flawed, that preys on the most vulnerable people in our society.