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 Post subject: DWP OVERPAYMENTS/DEBT COLLECTORS BOTHERING ME
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 12:39 pm 
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Hello
I hope I'm in the right place first time on today?
I was on benefit for a short time in 1998 due to my marriage breakdown I could not face work so was on income support for a couple of months, to cut a long story short.
I ended up with an overpayment which the DWP tried to claim back in July 2000, I was declared Bankrupt just before I recieved there letter.After my Disharge I recieved another letter I asked for more information like dates and times ect.
I then heard nothing until 2008 again I asked for information as I had not got the answers the first time round again I heard nothing until August 2009 when I was sent a letter telling me I had a couple of weeks to pay or it was in the hands of Debt collectors.
I have been to the CAB twice they have said the debt should have been desolved with the bankruptcy but not only that the date of the DWPS decision was July 2000 which means after July 2006 they can not claim it back anyway , in other words they are 3 years out of date.
I keep getting phone calls from IQ the debt collectors telling me I have been given the wrong advice and I should pay with a card over the phone.despite me asking them not to ring again they keep bothering me its really stressing me out can anyone please advise? :|


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 Post subject: Re: DWP OVERPAYMENTS/DEBT COLLECTORS BOTHERING ME
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 4:06 pm 
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Overpayments by the DWP are not treated the same as a credit card or bank debt. An overpayment means you had money from the Government that you were not entitled to and they will not let it go. As with all Government/Taxpayers money, they do not write it off even if you were declared bankrupt it would not have been included in the BR.

Unless the laws have changed DWP overpayment debt never becomes statute barred. It has been passed to debt collectors and bailiffs can be appointed with out them going to court. This type of debt is classed the same as Council Tax and motor fines, they can grow very quickly as charges are added. If you think you do not owe it because there is an error, I think you should be in contact and sort it, to stop collection costs spiralling out of control.


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 Post subject: Re: DWP OVERPAYMENTS/DEBT COLLECTORS BOTHERING ME
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 10:44 pm 
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Simon is only partly correct, and IQ completely wrong.

DWP debts cannot become statue barred, however, they are covered in bankruptcy.

This was made clear to them in the case of Balding v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions which clearly stated that benefits are included, irrespective of if they have notified you of overpayment of not a the time of the bankruptcy. However, as per normal with bankruptcy fraudulent cases are not included.

I would suggest talking to IQ and initiating a formal complaint to DWP citing the above case which can be found here:

http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWCA/Civ/2007/1327.html

What you should be aware of though is that DWP may not have closed you case correctly when you were discharged from bankruptcy, so as far as IQ are aware the debt is still live.

Tim

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 Post subject: Re: DWP OVERPAYMENTS/DEBT COLLECTORS BOTHERING ME
PostPosted: Sat Oct 03, 2009 11:26 am 
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Overpayments by the DWP are public money and do not have to be repaid if the error in overpayment is of their fault.
If however the overpayment was due to you not informing them of a change in circumstances then they are fully obliged to recover the money and I cant see that this would be covered in the bankruptcy.

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 Post subject: Re: DWP OVERPAYMENTS/DEBT COLLECTORS BOTHERING ME
PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 11:17 am 
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DWP overpayments are recoverable even if the cause was "official error" - ie the fault of the DWP

unless, it can be shown that the claimant was not responsible for the cause of the O/P, or that they were aware that they were being overpaid at the time the overpayment was being made.

the DWP can and will try to recover an overpayment even if it was clearly their fault, unless the claimant appeals against the decision to recover

however in all cases other than fraudulent examples the DWP can use their discretion not to recover an O/P, even if it was the claimant's fault. in this case (assuming it wasnt covered by the bankruptcy, which i believe it is) using the grounds that the O/P was so long ago as to be unreasonable to be recovered now, and that since the time of the O/P the claimant has had such financial hardship that they had to apply for bankruptcy


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 Post subject: Re: DWP OVERPAYMENTS/DEBT COLLECTORS BOTHERING ME
PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 11:39 am 
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Now I am confused, with so much conflicting information?
I read some where on this site there are time limits of 6 years from the date the DWP made there decision? I also got the same information from the CAB so I dont know what to belive now


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 Post subject: Re: DWP OVERPAYMENTS/DEBT COLLECTORS BOTHERING ME
PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 11:43 am 
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everett wrote:
Overpayments by the DWP are public money and do not have to be repaid if the error in overpayment is of their fault.
If however the overpayment was due to you not informing them of a change in circumstances then they are fully obliged to recover the money and I cant see that this would be covered in the bankruptcy.

why whos the wrong doer?


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 Post subject: Re: DWP OVERPAYMENTS/DEBT COLLECTORS BOTHERING ME
PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 11:54 am 
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if you dont report a change of cirsumstances that would affect the amount of benefit you receive, eg your income increases so the amount of means tested benefit you receive would reduce, then you will continue to receive the existing rate of benefit until they become aware of the change. this is known as the overpayment and as the claimant caused it but not reporting the change, the DWP want it back

this is why its important to report changes in circs to the benefit agencies - DWP housing/council tax benefit etc, as it can prevent an overpayment occuring, but also because the change might result in more benefit being due to the claimant (an underpayment) and if its not reported the extra benefit won't be paid


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 Post subject: Re: DWP OVERPAYMENTS/DEBT COLLECTORS BOTHERING ME
PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 11:56 am 
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Hi Tim
I understand what your saying but IQ have been told about the Bankruptcy and they told me it makes no odds, I still have to pay it back?


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 Post subject: Re: DWP OVERPAYMENTS/DEBT COLLECTORS BOTHERING ME
PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 11:57 am 
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I guess every case is different, but the DWP do have a strict policy of chasing overpayments. Just like the taxman, they will pursue it beyond all belief with the excuse, we have to get it back it is public money. I hope you can get them to forgive it, if you are successful it will give many hope.


http://www.cpag.org.uk/cro/wrb/wrb190/overpayments.htm


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 Post subject: Re: DWP OVERPAYMENTS/DEBT COLLECTORS BOTHERING ME
PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 12:18 pm 
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charliejoe wrote:
Now I am confused, with so much conflicting information?
I read some where on this site there are time limits of 6 years from the date the DWP made there decision? I also got the same information from the CAB so I dont know what to belive now


i think the CAB have misadvised you. maybe your best option is to contact the official receivers office that deal with your bankruptcy


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 Post subject: Re: DWP OVERPAYMENTS/DEBT COLLECTORS BOTHERING ME
PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 12:51 pm 
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WHoa, Halt, Disist, Go No Further.

Lets get back onto topic.

DWP Overpayment and Bankruptcy.

Dispite what IQ are saying, the debt was included in the bankruptcy, thanks to the Balding Case, no if's, no buts (to coin a phrase)

Providing that the overpaying is not covered by the fraud exemption, and that ONLY applies if formal fraud action has been taken, i.e claimant has been interviewed under caution, claimant has either admitted fraud, or they are being charged with fraud. If this has not occured then they dont have a get out of bankruptcy card.

IQ are hoping that you don't knwo the law, and they will calin it only applies to Hosuing Benefit as that was what was refered to by the judge, however, he aslo made it clear it applied to ALL DWP payments.

Quote:
DWP also state:

The three categories into which an overpayment can fall when an individual is made bankrupt and then discharged are:

a the overpayment period and overpayment recoverability decision are both prior to the date of bankruptcy

b the overpayment period is prior to the date of bankruptcy but the overpayment recoverability decision is made after the date of bankruptcy

c both the overpayment period and the recoverability decision are after the date of bankruptcy

This decision only applies to category a and only when deductions have been made after the date of discharge. It does not apply to cases classified as fraud.



SO the overpayment occured BEFORE BANKRUPTCY, it is NOT fraudulent, and they attempted to intially recover PRIOR to the bankrupcy. This all fits class a, perfectly.

This is not the firtst time the DWP and IQ have tried to convince people otherwise, and unfortunalty will not be the last, howerver, as the learned judge could have said, "until the govenment change the law, DWP can whislte (OK my words then)

Tim

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 Post subject: Re: DWP OVERPAYMENTS/DEBT COLLECTORS BOTHERING ME
PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 1:12 pm 
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Hi Tim
Thanks for your response

From what I can remember I was declared Bankrupt first then weeks later in April 2000 the decision was taken to recover
I sent them a copy of my bankruptcy certificate then heard no more until December 2006?


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 Post subject: Re: DWP OVERPAYMENTS/DEBT COLLECTORS BOTHERING ME
PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 1:17 pm 
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charliejoe wrote:
Hi Tim
Thanks for your response

From what I can remember I was declared Bankrupt first then weeks later in April 2000 the decision was taken to recover
I sent them a copy of my bankruptcy certificate then heard no more until December 2006?


So although the overpayment is from 98 they took the decison to recover in 2000
TalbotWoods wrote:
WHoa, Halt, Disist, Go No Further.

Lets get back onto topic.

DWP Overpayment and Bankruptcy.

Dispite what IQ are saying, the debt was included in the bankruptcy, thanks to the Balding Case, no if's, no buts (to coin a phrase)

Providing that the overpaying is not covered by the fraud exemption, and that ONLY applies if formal fraud action has been taken, i.e claimant has been interviewed under caution, claimant has either admitted fraud, or they are being charged with fraud. If this has not occured then they dont have a get out of bankruptcy card.

IQ are hoping that you don't knwo the law, and they will calin it only applies to Hosuing Benefit as that was what was refered to by the judge, however, he aslo made it clear it applied to ALL DWP payments.

Quote:
DWP also state:

The three categories into which an overpayment can fall when an individual is made bankrupt and then discharged are:

a the overpayment period and overpayment recoverability decision are both prior to the date of bankruptcy

b the overpayment period is prior to the date of bankruptcy but the overpayment recoverability decision is made after the date of bankruptcy

c both the overpayment period and the recoverability decision are after the date of bankruptcy

This decision only applies to category a and only when deductions have been made after the date of discharge. It does not apply to cases classified as fraud.



SO the overpayment occured BEFORE BANKRUPTCY, it is NOT fraudulent, and they attempted to intially recover PRIOR to the bankrupcy. This all fits class a, perfectly.

This is not the firtst time the DWP and IQ have tried to convince people otherwise, and unfortunalty will not be the last, howerver, as the learned judge could have said, "until the govenment change the law, DWP can whislte (OK my words then)

Tim
TalbotWoods wrote:
WHoa, Halt, Disist, Go No Further.

Lets get back onto topic.

DWP Overpayment and Bankruptcy.

Dispite what IQ are saying, the debt was included in the bankruptcy, thanks to the Balding Case, no if's, no buts (to coin a phrase)

Providing that the overpaying is not covered by the fraud exemption, and that ONLY applies if formal fraud action has been taken, i.e claimant has been interviewed under caution, claimant has either admitted fraud, or they are being charged with fraud. If this has not occured then they dont have a get out of bankruptcy card.

IQ are hoping that you don't knwo the law, and they will calin it only applies to Hosuing Benefit as that was what was refered to by the judge, however, he aslo made it clear it applied to ALL DWP payments.

Quote:
DWP also state:

The three categories into which an overpayment can fall when an individual is made bankrupt and then discharged are:

a the overpayment period and overpayment recoverability decision are both prior to the date of bankruptcy

b the overpayment period is prior to the date of bankruptcy but the overpayment recoverability decision is made after the date of bankruptcy

c both the overpayment period and the recoverability decision are after the date of bankruptcy

This decision only applies to category a and only when deductions have been made after the date of discharge. It does not apply to cases classified as fraud.



SO the overpayment occured BEFORE BANKRUPTCY, it is NOT fraudulent, and they attempted to intially recover PRIOR to the bankrupcy. This all fits class a, perfectly.

This is not the firtst time the DWP and IQ have tried to convince people otherwise, and unfortunalty will not be the last, howerver, as the learned judge could have said, "until the govenment change the law, DWP can whislte (OK my words then)

Tim


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 Post subject: Re: DWP OVERPAYMENTS/DEBT COLLECTORS BOTHERING ME
PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 1:39 pm 
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OK to muddy the waters a bit more.

Moving away from Balding there was a judgement prior to that called Steele, and that covered b and c.

But I will double check this evening, and ensure that it is covered, which I strong beleive it is, as otherwise DWP could nwo start claiming back monies over paid prior to peoples bankruptcy going back a long long time.

THere is a clear cut off and I am 99.99999999999% sure that this debt is covered, it is just a case of IQ being stupid!

Tim

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