Jenny* was being pursued by Centrelink for a “robodebt”. Centrelink alleged she had been overpaid approximately $3,000 during a period of time over seven years ago.
Jenny was employed during the overpayment period, but she could not prove her earnings to Centrelink as her former employer paid her in cash and did not issue her any payslips. During the overpayment period, Jenny’s daughter took her own life. Jenny, therefore, found it difficult to provide instructions about that period of time. Jenny has a diagnosis of PTSD.
Jenny was in severe financial hardship when she contacted Mackay Regional Community Legal Centre as Centrelink was withholding amounts from her Disability Support Pension.
Mackay Regional Community Legal Centre assisted Jenny by speaking with Centrelink on her behalf, as her PTSD prevented her from doing so herself.
Mackay Regional Community Legal Centre arranged for Centrelink to pause the debt recovery during the debt reassessment process. They then successfully requested a waiver of the overpayment debt based on Jenny’s special circumstances. Jenny was also refunded the money that Centrelink had withheld from her pension.
(*not her real name)