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Franny and Zooey

Robo debt repayment by government?

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Franny and Zooey

Did you get a letter from Centrelink about the class action?

 

You expecting any money out of it?

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born.a.girl

Daughter did, yes.

 

 

Expecting her tax refund from June 2018 to be returned (it was taken against the false debt).

 

Also hasn't finalised tax return for June 2019 until the false debt was removed.

 

She was about to submit a stat dec about it.

 

(3 x separate employer errors caused hers.)

 

 

How about you?

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Dianalynch

That’s a hideous experience for your daughter Born a girl.

 

The untold suffering and anxiety of the vulnerable won’t be compensated for, not that it can be monetarily, but an attempt should be made.

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born.a.girl

That’s a hideous experience for your daughter Born a girl.

 

The untold suffering and anxiety of the vulnerable won’t be compensated for, not that it can be monetarily, but an attempt should be made.

 

Thankyou, yes, spending years of your life defending having to pay a debt that should never have been raised in the first place will leave its mark.

 

She at least had me to help her, many don't have anyone they can turn to.

 

Even then, when it first happened, she didn't admit it to me until she came to me in tears when the debt collectors started calling. She just assumed she'd made a stupid mistake, and if she'd had $3k, she'd have paid it.

 

I'm sure there are plenty who paid, not knowing how or where to start.

 

Plenty more, driven to despair.

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Green Sage

I found it interesting that the government is refunding all the Robo debts. And the timing of it, any budget blow outs this year will be blamed on covid19, so they will easily hide the magnitude of it.

They shouldn’t have been raised in the first place though!

 

But is that the end of it? Or is the class action still going ahead?

 

Like was just said, these debts cause so much more suffering than just having to pay the money. Suffering of already vulnerable people.

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rosie28

I found it interesting that the government is refunding all the Robo debts. And the timing of it, any budget blow outs this year will be blamed on covid19, so they will easily hide the magnitude of it.

They shouldn’t have been raised in the first place though!

 

But is that the end of it? Or is the class action still going ahead?

 

Like was just said, these debts cause so much more suffering than just having to pay the money. Suffering of already vulnerable people.

 

The timing works with the class action, Centrelink doesn’t like precedents set, and it’s a handy little bit of economic stimulus too.

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born.a.girl

The government had already been given advice, last year I believe, that there could be no defence in court to the actions taken, and that the action was bound to win.

 

The did stop pursuing all/most of them (daughter heard nothing about her remaining half), and I'd hoped that they might drop the obvious ones (hers being one - there is actually no cross-over in her bank statements between employer and Centrelink). Given we have plenty of time on our hands at the moment I suggested she get the stat dec info together (as recommended by a Centrelink staff member last year).

 

She'd written the draft of that when the announcement came.

 

I believe the action is still going ahead, for damages.

 

An apology would make the world of difference to people.

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Ozquoll

^^^

I'd like to see the action go ahead. If nothing else, extra publicity about the whole evil scheme that was Robodebt might sway a few votes at the next election.

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~*~blizzy~*~

Yes I’m affected, yes I paid a large sum, and I’m hoping the decision last week will have it returned to me.

The debt didn’t make sense to me but it was more than 7 years earlier and I didn’t have access to the bank statements to prove otherwise, only group certificates and tax returns which were averaged

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Bethlehem Babe

Apparently it’s all labor’s fault. And the gov flat out refuses to apologise. Says the debts are likely still there.

These guys are complete scum.

 

https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/now-is-not-the-time-scott-morrison-blames-welfare-principle-also-followed-by-labor-for-robodebt-scandal-20200601-p54ye2.html

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born.a.girl

Yes I’m affected, yes I paid a large sum, and I’m hoping the decision last week will have it returned to me.

The debt didn’t make sense to me but it was more than 7 years earlier and I didn’t have access to the bank statements to prove otherwise, only group certificates and tax returns which were averaged

 

 

Do you have the date of the first letter they sent to you?

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Lesley225

I hate the way they say it's teh ATOs fault due to incorrect assessments and Labor also did it.

 

The assessments were correct they were just used incorrectly and Labor didn't rely only on averaging they checked them further rather than sending 100K letter out a day all based on an incorrect algorism.

 

All stretching the truth to make them sound like it wasn't their fault.

 

Most people go in and out of work. Just because you earned say 20K for the first three months then lost your job was no reason to assume it was earned over the entire year.

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born.a.girl

I hate the way they say it's teh ATOs fault due to incorrect assessments and Labor also did it.

 

The assessments were correct they were just used incorrectly and Labor didn't rely only on averaging they checked them further rather than sending 100K letter out a day all based on an incorrect algorism.

 

All stretching the truth to make them sound like it wasn't their fault.

 

Most people go in and out of work. Just because you earned say 20K for the first three months then lost your job was no reason to assume it was earned over the entire year.

 

 

It would have helped if each and every employer in that situation put the correct dates on the group certificates.

 

That's all the evidence many would have needed (including my daughter) of the dates worked.

 

Instead, lazily, a good 1/3 of the debts at one stage were caused by people having group certificates that stated they worked the whole year, when they didn't, according to a Centrelink bloke I spoke to.

 

Fortunately one touch payroll will make sure that doesn't happen again.

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~*~blizzy~*~

 

 

 

Do you have the date of the first letter they sent to you?

 

Yes, why’s that?

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bakesgirls

I received a letter from Centrelink regarding the class action. I signed up to be part of the class action last year.

 

I was forced to pay over $6000.00 back from when I was on PPS. They income averaged and then told me that I had to pay all the money back. It was devastating at the time. I'd done everything they asked and reported my income religiously and then they moved the goal post on me. I even went so far as taking it to the administrative appeals tribunal, but they said that it met the Centrelink criteria for owing money so I had to pay it.

 

I fully expect to get every cent back because I didn't do anything wrong and I certainly never owed them any money.

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born.a.girl

Yes, why’s that?

 

 

Because they say they can only 'automatically' go back so far (when they sent them in the 2015 year) and prior to that it will be a case by case basis.

 

 

It may be that some people will need to apply for their refund.

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Murderino
The timing works with the class action, Centrelink doesn’t like precedents set, and it’s a handy little bit of economic stimulus too.

 

A couple of previous individual cases have been settled right at the last minute, just before Federal Court, so they could avoid precedent.

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Green Sage

 

 

A couple of previous individual cases have been settled right at the last minute, just before Federal Court, so they could avoid precedent.

 

But they can still sue now can’t they? They damage is done, refunds won’t stop all legal proceedings, will they?

 

This is why I wonder about the timing of it all.

 

And the lack of apologies is still very defensive “we aren’t to blame” behaviour. Like they’re still trying to avoid lawsuits.

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~*~blizzy~*~

I received a letter from Centrelink regarding the class action. I signed up to be part of the class action last year.

 

I was forced to pay over $6000.00 back from when I was on PPS. They income averaged and then told me that I had to pay all the money back. It was devastating at the time. I'd done everything they asked and reported my income religiously and then they moved the goal post on me. I even went so far as taking it to the administrative appeals tribunal, but they said that it met the Centrelink criteria for owing money so I had to pay it.

 

I fully expect to get every cent back because I didn't do anything wrong and I certainly never owed them any money.

 

I did exactly the same. It was really devastating back then and it cause lots of issues in my relationship.

 

I’m not holding my breather but certainly watching closely to see the next steps

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-Emissary-
Posted (edited)

 

 

Thankyou, yes, spending years of your life defending having to pay a debt that should never have been raised in the first place will leave its mark.

 

She at least had me to help her, many don't have anyone they can turn to.

 

Even then, when it first happened, she didn't admit it to me until she came to me in tears when the debt collectors started calling. She just assumed she'd made a stupid mistake, and if she'd had $3k, she'd have paid it.

 

I'm sure there are plenty who paid, not knowing how or where to start.

 

Plenty more, driven to despair.

 

I am a corporate accountant and years ago, before Robodebt,I got caught up in a Centrelink debt (SPP) because they took my salary and averaged my pay over the period in which I worked. My pay slips were fortnight and didn’t match Centrelink’s pay cycle. The review lady even admitted that I appeared to be doing the right thing (the amount fluctuated between owing and being owed so she can see I wasn’t under reporting my income) but unfortunately as I didn’t have the exact hours I worked (got reviewed a couple of years after) so she could align the periods, I ended up with a debt but didn’t get a fine because I wasn’t a fraud. I was fortunate to be able to afford to pay back the debt but it left me fuming.

 

It makes me wonder if one touch payroll would actually solve the problem I faced. I’m not familiar with how one touch payroll works but I sure as hell hope it does help solve the reconciliation in mismatch periods.

 

The whole system is sh*t. Even when you do the right thing and report your income accurately and according to their guidelines, you can’t guarantee you won’t end up with a debt if you work irregular hours like many casuals do.

Edited by -Emissary-
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SplashingRainbows

It’s single touch payroll.

 

And I don’t think it will completely solve the issue with centrelink as it still reports wages for a Week / fortnight / month when paid not when earned.

 

However one might hope that those using filtering systems now can more easily see who is completely excluding reporting their income v those whose income occurs for part of a year but not the remainder of the year.

 

All of the above requires the people analyzing this ‘data’ to actually understand

A) centrelink reporting requirements and

B) the tax reporting requirements and the differences between the two.

I’m not sure if that understanding was ever truly present in the robo debt scandal.

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born.a.girl

I am a corporate accountant and years ago, before Robodebt,I got caught up in a Centrelink debt (SPP) because they took my salary and averaged my pay over the period in which I worked. My pay slips were fortnight and didn’t match Centrelink’s pay cycle. The review lady even admitted that I appeared to be doing the right thing (the amount fluctuated between owing and being owed so she can see I wasn’t under reporting my income) but unfortunately as I didn’t have the exact hours I worked (got reviewed a couple of years after) so she could align the periods, I ended up with a debt but didn’t get a fine because I wasn’t a fraud. I was fortunate to be able to afford to pay back the debt but it left me fuming.

 

It makes me wonder if one touch payroll would actually solve the problem I faced. I’m not familiar with how one touch payroll works but I sure as hell hope it does help solve the reconciliation in mismatch periods.

 

The whole system is sh*t. Even when you do the right thing and report your income accurately and according to their guidelines, you can’t guarantee you won’t end up with a debt if you work irregular hours like many casuals do.

 

 

No, I don't know how many it will solve, either, but it will at least help those whose employers don't do the right thing in other areas.

 

No payslips, an income statement that says 1st July - 30th June working period is not uncommon.

 

My daughter put me on to speak to the Centrelink bloke when we made the first phone call, because as soon as I asked to see her group certificates, I could see what the problem was. He said about 1/3 of the debts they currently had, were due to incorrect dates on them.

 

Banks statements showing no crossover of funds (and the employer payments adding up correctly) was insufficient, I've no idea why.

 

Separation Certificates completed by employer, sent to Centrelink, debt cleared. 12 months later, the debt from one year popped back, employer had failed to sign the form for the second year. Oh dear, then she tells us she's sold the company and can no longer sign things under that name.

 

The stupid thing about our daughter's is that hers should have been one of the easier ones to solve AND should have resulted in employers being told in no uncertain terms what it means when you fill in 'dates these payments apply to'.

 

I've no idea why that was changed from the more obvious 'if the person was not employed for the whole year, write the relevant dates here'.

 

 

Cases like yours are a lot harder to deal with, and even when people have had the large lump of their inappropriate debt removed, they've often ended up with situations like yours - overall it matches, but they don't hesitate to make you pay back the 'overs' and ignore the 'unders'.

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born.a.girl

I did exactly the same. It was really devastating back then and it cause lots of issues in my relationship.

 

I’m not holding my breather but certainly watching closely to see the next steps

 

 

 

Did you get a letter from Centrelink, about the class action?

 

It's quite a long letter and specifically refers to 'Robodebt'.

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born.a.girl

https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2020/jun/02/coalition-wont-rule-out-passing-new-laws-to-reboot-robodebt-scheme

 

 

What an obnoxious thing to say:

 

 

The prime minister, who announced aspects of the robodebt scheme in 2016 as treasurer, also argued the unlawfulness of using income averaging did not mean “those debts don’t exist”.

“And I think all Australians would agree that it’s important that if there are overpayments of welfare or other things like that, then the government has to be diligent about taxpayers funds and make sure that we recover monies where it’s right to do so,” he said.

“But you’ve got to do it in the lawful way and we will ensure to continue to do that with our projects going forward.”

 

 

The strong inference to the wider world out there, is that people are getting paid back on a technicality.

 

I know two liberal voters who will immediately interpret it that way.

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~*~blizzy~*~

 

 

 

 

Did you get a letter from Centrelink, about the class action?

 

It's quite a long letter and specifically refers to 'Robodebt'.

yes I did. I read every damn line of it !

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