Large benefits overpayment

I'm going to try and give as much info as possible.

A few years ago my wife was invited to an IUC. The allegation was that housing benefit and income support had been overpaid.

My wife sought legal advice and attended the IUC but her solicitor spoke to the fraud investigators before hand to get some disclosure. He came out of the room walked over to my wife and told her to go home and don't even bother with IUC as they have nothing.

She heard nothing for a month or so. A letter arrived saying that she had received an overpayment for housing benefit and income support and she needed to pay it back. She disputed the dates in question via a tribunal and lost.

This was 5 years ago. She has been chipping away at the debt at an affordable amount with agreement from council and dwp however now the council want to increase the repayment by 10 times what it currently is and say that they will register a CCJ if she doesn't pay. The dwp aren't taking this aggressive line.

My wife has no assets, her name isn't on my mortgage or on any bills at all and the only joint thing we have together is a child tax credit claim.

Can my wife write this money off through an iva or bankruptcy? I am getting conflicting stories from different companies regarding this. The national Debtline say the money can be written off If no administravive penalty was given, no caution was given or no successful prosecution took place.

They also say that my equity in the house will likely be unaffected as she's not named on it and has never made a single payment towards it.

I'd like other people's opinions please on how to proceed?


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