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Had a panic attack when I first received the letter.

Debt amount: 
$1605
Date debt issued: 
Wednesday, 12 August 2015
Period debt occurred: 
September 2012 to April 2013
Payment Type: 
Austudy
Appealing Debt?: 
Yes in process
Tell us about your debt and how has this affected you? e.g. anxiety levels, financial and accommodation stress: 

I was in absolute shock and had a panic attack when I first received the letter. Then I was angry as I had to repeat the situation over and over again to different people on the phone. All the call centre workers agreed that it didn't sound right and just to lodge the complaint with my payslips. Payslips which of course I no longer had. So I spent months chasing up the pay person at my old workplace which had been sold in the time since I had worked with them so they had to go through old computer systems to find my details. I was only earning Austudy while I was studding, I was not working due to illness so having $70 going to debt recovery each fortnight cut substantially into my just over $400 a f/n payments things have been tough.

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

Despite calling immediately in December 2015 upon receiving my letter and handing in my payslips and hand written cover letter in person a few months later. I have still to hear what has become of my claim. I have been paying my debt through my Austudy payments but now that I have finished study and am not working they are still trying to get money out of me. They can easily send me "you haven't paid your bill" letters, but I haven't received "here's how your appeal is going" letter.
The only reason I know my appeal is in the system at all is because I called, sat on hold for over an hour to be told,"yes I can see hear here you've submitted your payslips" I'm almost worried now that it hasn't gone through the right channels and it is not being considered as an appeal at all.