I nearly had a heart attack when I got the letter. Everything went white and I had to sit down. There's a terrible feeling of powerlessness. Luckily I have had the same part time job and can access all my payslips and had the debt reduced to $6000. But I'm angry because it looks like I actually owe this money and I don't. The issue is how they work it out. For 6 months of one year I was working and my payments were suspended, as I had requested. But now, 7 years later, they have taken the whole year's income and balanced it against the fortnightly rate of my pension. Not fair! I have honestly and dutifully reported my income fortnightly and now they do a yearly review? When I worked my income fluctuated... One fortnight I earned $4000 gross. I have to give centrelink this money?
They are workers under performance pressure and well aware how unfair and incorrect these debts are.