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Weekly state pension in arrears after someone dies.

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  • Spendless
    Spendless Posts: 24,177 Forumite
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    BooJewels said:
    I got my expected letter from DWP about over-payment of my aunt's Pension Credit (mentioned earlier in the thread) on the 21st June, having spoken to them on the 9th and them generating the letter as we were on the phone.  So it took 12 days for a letter already prepped in the system to arrive, so I think it's going to take rather longer than that for them to see and respond to a new letter, unfortunately.

    I haven't actually had a letter about paying back the pension yet, plus I think there might be something else.  I thought I might have had it by now, as I'm only a week-ish behind your estate.  My sister and I are executors and main beneficiaries and there's a third beneficiary.  We've decided between us to keep an amount back from our share to cover what I estimate we might potentially owe and pay the third person their full share at this time.

    I will pay the amount if asked, because my aunt was very proud that she never owed anyone a penny after she paid off her mortgage in 1972 (many years early), so she'd be mortified at the idea of not paying it, so it feels right to do so - as it's in her name.
    From that I think it'll be nearer a month then before a reply. Mum said yesterday if anything owed she'll pay from hers leaving myself and the other beneficiary alone.

    Ultimately it's up to Mum as she's sole executor but my Nan spent since the mid 1970s caring for my Grandad who was a stroke patient for 25 years, both having to give up work early and frequently found herself over a threshold by a very small amount for claiming anything whilst not having the full pension package that would have happened  if early retirement hadn't been enforced followed by  spending her last 8 years in a care home which took the huge majority of her estate so the view is that for once Nan has the law on her side over costs/repayments and won't be giving any monies voluntarily as she paid and saved the state enough during her lifetime.  Different strokes for different folks. 

    I will update as and when anything is heard.    
  • Spendless
    Spendless Posts: 24,177 Forumite
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    Mum has had the DWP letter today. It explains how a payment into a bank account after death can occur and how they try and recover the repayment first from the bank and if this isn't possible they ask for a refund. The last paragraph reads

     'Whilst these overpayments of benefit payments arise through no fault of any individual we do have a duty to seek refund of overpaid public funds However if there are no funds available from the estate please be reassured that you are not responsible and you will not have to pay the repayments,   

    So it falls short of admitting there is no legal redress to claim these monies back which was the question asked. However Mum is satisfied she won't be chased up for it and stands by her decision not to repay it. 
  • BooJewels
    BooJewels Posts: 2,951 Forumite
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    Thanks for the update @Spendless - I haven't heard any further from DWP about my aunt's pension - I'm pretty sure that she also got an additional week paid. But I do feel that it's up to them to sort this stuff out - I'm not going to chase them - I did Tell Us Once mid February and they wrote very quickly (within a few days) about her eligibility for Pension Credit after Probate was granted, as mentioned earlier.  Officially the estate has been distributed and finalised now, so in view of what you've posted, I might well just tell them so, if I hear further from them.

    But in your Nan's circumstances, it doesn't sound like she caught much of a break from the state, over a difficult life - so I think your Mum's right in not paying it back this time, if she doesn't have to.
  • tooldle
    tooldle Posts: 1,540 Forumite
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    It does read as though return of funds may/will be sought. Given that the majority take far more from the state over a lifetime than make a net contribution (2 or 3 in 10 are net contributors), perhaps a cross reference is made against other records to establish if chasing up is likely to yield any result. I’m guessing in many cases the amounts are simply not worth the admin, unless significant serps are involved, which seems not to be the case here.
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