DWP Debt Management

in Debt-free wannabe
4 replies 1.1K views
Hi, hope someone can advise here. I've just had a letter last week (been in hospital so just go around to dealing with it) from the Department for Work and Pensions, Debt Management Section........asking me to pay back £22.17 - the balance of a Social Fund Loan. Now, it's not a lot of money and not a huge issue except that I supposidly had a loan from the Job Centre back in 2000 for £30 in advance of my job seekers claim starting to pay out. Now, I cant remember EVER asking for an advance on the job seekers and was only on it due to redundancy for a few weeks. As I have just explained to the chap from DWP on the phone, I cannot remember every having this money and I asked him if he could prove it and he said there was too much paperwork involved to have to go back and to try find a signature etc to when I supposidly signed for this money. My question is can the DWP chase me after 9 years - does the 6 years of no contact not stand when it's a government body? I dont have a problem with the £22.17, it's just I really cant remember ever having it, but they are linking it to my National Insurance Number.

Any ideas people?
Jo

Replies

  • fatbellyfatbelly Forumite
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    Forumite
    From National Debtline:
    The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has six years to take action through the courts to recover benefit overpayments and social fund loans. This time starts running from the date of the final decision made on the overpayment and from when the social fund loan was due to be paid. But the DWP are still allowed to make deductions from your benefit for a debt over six years old as they don't need to go to court to do this. This applies to overpayments of benefit such as Income Support, Jobseeker's Allowance, Pension Credit, Housing Benefit, Council Tax Benefit and paying back social fund loans.
  • Kilmaley01Kilmaley01 Forumite
    273 Posts
    Hey thanks FB - that's what I thought. And that info is from National Debt Line so should be accurate?

    I didnt want to throw the 6 years thing at him on the phone as I wasnt sure that DWP didnt have different rules. I guess with it being linked to my NI Number that they must have give me this money but I have no recollection of it - 2000 was the last time I signed on until just before Christmas gone when I signed on for 5 weeks. I've been married since but I'm guessing they will have married it up after I signed on end 2008?

    What should I do now as the gentleman (and he was very polite) I spoke to said he would put a note on the screen saying what I said, that I didnt remember the debt and wasnt prepared to pay it unless the proved it. To which he said would involve too much paperwork. Shd i leave it as it is, or send them the 6 year letter thing?

    Thanks again - so many helpful people on here.

    Jo
  • fatbellyfatbelly Forumite
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    I think the ball is in their court (to use a tennis metaphor).

    You've said you didnt remember the debt and weren't prepared to pay it unless they proved it.

    The six-year thing is a defence against court action but I don't think they'll try that for £22.17

    I suspect it'll just lie there until you next claim jsa!
  • Kilmaley01Kilmaley01 Forumite
    273 Posts
    Well fingers crossed I wont have to do that. Thanks for the help....x
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