Go to top of page

Unjust and unreasonable

Debt amount: 
$8000
Date debt issued: 
Wednesday, 1 November 2017
Period debt occurred: 
January 2010 to January 2012
Has your case been referred to a collection agency?: 
Yes
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: 

The first I new of my debt was from a text from the debt collection agency.
I called them and they straight away demanded payment.

I told them I had no idea what this was regarding and they said I would have an email in MyGov I logged in and nothing was there.
I began to think it was a hoax or scam so I told them I would not be providing my information over the phone and they said I should ring Centrelink.
I then called Centrelink and was put straight back through to the credit agency.

Once again they demanded payment and told me if I didn't pay the debt would be deducted from my pay and I wouldn't be able to leave the country!
I got in touch with Centrelink compliance department and was told the debt was raised in 2017 and letters had been sent (to my old address - which baffles me as I receive all other Gov correspondence at my current address).
He said the review had been completed and the debt transferred to the credit agency.
I hadn't even been given the opportunity to firstly be informed of this debt, and secondly prove I have no debt!!

He said I should try to get my bank statements and payslips.
The debt is from 2010 - 2012 (no specific dates were provided) and the bank no longer hold my statements.

I have decided to submit a request for information through the freedom of information act and I will wait to see what information they provide....
But one thing is for sure, I will not be repaying this so called 'debt'.
I do not owe anything to Centrelink and I am astounded at the treatment I have received. I would not have expected this from a country like Australia.

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

I am extremely angry, shocked and disappointed.