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Human error results in a false $3K debt

Debt amount: 
Date debt issued: 
Friday, 17 August 2018
Period debt occurred: 
February 2018 to May 2018
Has your case been referred to a collection agency?: 
Payment Type: 
Newstart Allowance
Appealing Debt?: 
Yes & I won
Tell us about your debt and how has this affected you? e.g. anxiety levels, financial and accommodation stress: 

What happened was I tried to go onto Austudy for University.
During this time, I was on Newstart.

It took Centerlink months to decide not to pay me Austudy.
At that stage, I cancelled Newstart as I needed to focus on my university studies.

Then in late August, I was shocked to see that I got a debt letter.

Apparently, they had accepted me for Austudy before immediately declining it.
Because it had been backdated, they then said that all that money that they had paid me was not suppose to have been paid. Essentially human error.
I was sure that I was in the clear.
I had heard about it in news that Centerlink was collecting debt, so I was kind of prepared. The information on this site was also very helpful.

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

Overall, I'm a little annoyed that there was not a proper check in place before issuing the debt.

After 35 minutes on hold on the phone, it took them just 10 minutes to agree with me that I had not been over-payed.

A month later, they sent a letter telling me that I had successfully appealed the debt.
Apparently, now I have 13 weeks to appeal this decision (lol).