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Income support appeal - advice needed :)


claire1986
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i dont even know where to start with this one, but basically when i was pregnant i was told at 29 weeks to change from jsa to income support. all throughout my previous claims (ESA/JSA) i stated my partner worked 24 hours a week. when i signed up for income support the woman didnt even ask about my partner. they paid me income support but wayyyy too much so i called them at the first chance to explain that i think there had been an error, i asked the guy how i would go about paying back and he said because it was their mistake i wouldnt have to pay back. Cue debt collection letter 4 weeks later demanding all of the benefit be paid back. i sent a letter explaining the situation, that i was told i didnt have to pay it back, i got a phone call mid-june to explain my complaint was being dealt with. i rang up a few times for updates but was told it was still being looked into. another debt collection letter came about 4 months from the original claim saying i had to pay it back.they didnt even have the decency to send me a letter or call me to explain the decision.i have chosen to send this to an appeal cos i was told to go on that by numerous people from jobcentre when my jsa ended. and to be told not to pay it back cos it was their mistake. someone at the beginning of december 2013 rang me to explain that the original advisor didnt fill my form in properly and they take ownership for that but because i signed the form they sent me stating my partner didnt work then it was my fault. (i dont remember signing it tbh) i still explained i wanted it sending to a tribunal. i received all the information this morning and they have made me out to be a liar. the customer statement i sign has been 'lost' apparently, and it says i attended a work focussed interview at batley jobcentre,i was never even reigstered at batley jobcentre, my local one at the time was dewsbury. the only time i went into desbury j/c was to hand my matb1 from in to say i was on maternity.it just seems the letter theyve sent to me, which is also going to the tribunal is full of a load of cr#p to be fair,how can i possibly win this when theyve made stuff up?i hope this makes sense, just ask if anything isnt clear but does anyone know what happens now its gone to tribunal?can i appeal what theyve said cos theyve lied about loads of stuff.

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Hi Claire,

The long and the sort of this is it would seem you received money you were not entitled to. I would go to your local CAB office and they can work out an income and expenditure sheet according to the official guidelines of acceptable amounts and you can then make an offer of affordable repayments to the DWP. Backed up by the CAB the DWP should accept the proposal, they usually do.

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yeah i guess thats gonna be the bottom line, i just hate the way they word things to you, and some of the info on the appeal isnt even correct. i will contact citizens advice bureau, i will begrudgingly pay them back, think they need to work on their manners. they just make you out to be a benefit cheat! thank u for your reply :)

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I cant comment of the exact details of your question but I do have experience with DWP making out they have not been notified. I was accused by DWP of living with my ex when I wasn't and they demanded money back from her saying that she had been over paid Income support. Both of us denied any form of fraud, and the whole situation ended up at tribunal. It was amazing how we were told we owed nearly £2500 to DWP but they couldn't even be bothered to send a representative to the tribunal hearing. Any important documentation that we asked to see from DWP had conveniently been "lost" or "no longer existed", it was a complete joke .. no voice recordings of conversations or anything to do with either me or my partner at the time existed. The tribunal service literally within 15 mins threw the case out and demanded a written apology from DWP to us which we never received and obviously dropped any charges against us etc. DWP just think that they are high and mighty and no one can win against them, amazing how us individuals have to provide proof of everything but when you ask to see documentation they hold none exists!

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