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Not my problem...

Debt amount: 
$975
Date debt issued: 
Wednesday, 18 April 2018
Period debt occurred: 
April 2014 to September 2015
Has your case been referred to a collection agency?: 
Yes
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: 

This debt was because my group certificate had the incorrect date on it. The accountant had corrected the date with the tax debt within weeks of it being issued, but Centrelink did not have the correction.
I was treated like a criminal, left on hold forever whilst they ‘read my file’ and when I finally looked at the issue, it was nothing to do with me. Despite this I had to run around and get all the paperwork for them...info they would already have had. As I work an average of 10 hours a day, waiting on line became a huge stress on me and held up my work. At one time the man said hold the line, I’ll read your file...I asked him to call me back when he had read my file, he said hold the line, I said no thanks, call me back, he said he would need to check with his supervisor if he could do that...he came back to me 45 minutes later. I let him know he was incredibly disrespectful and should not be in the job. I sent paperwork in to them electronically and would receive a debt with interest notice. I’d call them and be told I should have notified them when the paperwork went in to them. WHAT! They asked for the paperwork and it takes a minimum of 30 mins to get to speak to anyone...then another 30mins whilst they ‘read your file’! Then another call to hold off the debt collector and stop interest. When the paperwork was finally checked I was left with a debt of $260 - from an income report not matching the actual income. My employer, when I started, messed up my pay and corrected it the following fortnight...I have paid this and the interest back at $20/fn. The minimum.
This situation was a total head funk for me. I could not understand why I was having to waste my valuable time fixing up another persons slack work.

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

This was dealt with in a manner that was accusatory, demeaning, authorititive and totally pointless. I felt like I was screaming at a brick wall. It nearly sent me nuts because of the total lack of control I had over the situation.