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I fought the debt and won, but not without tears and debt collectors

Debt amount: 
$1939
Date debt issued: 
Tuesday, 9 January 2018
Period debt occurred: 
July 2011
Has your case been referred to a collection agency?: 
Yes
Payment Type: 
Austudy
Appealing Debt?: 
Yes & I won
Tell us about your debt and how has this affected you? e.g. anxiety levels, financial and accommodation stress: 

I received this when I was as I was saving up for a trip overseas, and working 55 hours per week.
I can't describe how stressful this was when I thought I'd no longer afford my dream trip.

Trying to prove payments from 8 years ago proved pretty hard and even when I provided the information, they lost it and sent me to the debt collectors.
I broke down many times but eventually won.

All that stress and tears and there is no consequences or apology from Centrelink

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

So so poorly, I felt like a criminal and thought this debt was going to bankrupt me.
I worked 7-6 and due to their long hold times it was almost impossible to get through on a single lunch break.

That being said, the people I talked to were so kind and they were the ones you really pushed me to fight it seeing that my claims were true and valid.
It really sounded like they had seen so many false debts and wanted to fight it.