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Ex claimed joint tax credits without my knowledge - now being chased for overpayments

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Hi folks,

 

So I'm in a bit of a complicated situation, I'll try to sum it up as briefly as possible. I guess I'm just curious what people think/advice/am I doing the right thing/anything else I could do?

 

Last year I split up with my ex. I knew he had looked into some sort of tax credits scenario a few months before we split, however I never filled in any forms and never saw any money, thus thought no more of it.

 

In June of this year I discovered he's been claiming joint couples working tax credits under both our names since last year. When phoning the HMRC about this they "fixed" their records, and proceeded to inform me that "overpayment letters" would likely be sent out. I told them I'd never received any money nor signed a form, nor knew he was doing this, they told me that I "must have" signed a form.

 

I got C.A.B advice and did a Subject Access Request for the initial application forms (as I disputed the existence of a signature), and while waiting for these to arrive I asked a solicitor for help and also (on a particularly stressful day) phoned my ex and told him to get this sorted out. He said he would, unforunately he uh... doesn't believe in working. Seriously. I don't think he works at all. So I can't really see how he can pay this back, and if he can't, they'll still chase me, right? Even though I never got the money and work hard every week to pay my bills!

 

The solicitor was skeptical about the lack of signature on the form, and I was even starting to doubt myself as to whether I had inadvertantly signed the form as the last few months of our relationship were pretty horrible/a bit of a haze of stress. Solicitor suggested he would send a letter to the HMRC explaining that I did not know about the claim, received no money, and for them to only chase my ex for the money. This letter was sent over a month ago, still no response for HMRC.

 

The past two weeks - letters start flooding in.

 

Firstly, the fruits of my Subject Access Request labour - a massive envelope containing, among other things, the initial application form. It is entirely filled out in my ex's handwriting, and there are NO SIGNATURES on it at all. Not his, nor mine. I can't see why these would be redacted (perhaps his, but why mine? Especially when I asked for it specifically?).

 

Finally, this week I've received two "notices to pay" for overpayments to my ex totalling about £4500. They have been sent to him too (he's told me in an email he's dealing with it). I just don't trust that he will when he thought it was ok to do this in the first place, and also where is he getting £4500 from?? The deadline for re-paying this is in October! If he has no money/offers a tiny monthly repayment, they might still come after me? I've thought of phoning them to say "hey guys, no signature, why are you chasing me?" but I thought it best to wait and see what the solicitor thinks.

 

So that's pretty much where it's at. I've told my solicitor about the S.A.R news and am waiting to hear from him... what a mess! Hope I'm approaching it the right way.

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Hi folks,

 

So I'm in a bit of a complicated situation, I'll try to sum it up as briefly as possible. I guess I'm just curious what people think/advice/am I doing the right thing/anything else I could do?

 

Last year I split up with my ex. I knew he had looked into some sort of tax credits scenario a few months before we split, however I never filled in any forms and never saw any money, thus thought no more of it.

 

In June of this year I discovered he's been claiming joint couples working tax credits under both our names since last year. When phoning the HMRC about this they "fixed" their records, and proceeded to inform me that "overpayment letters" would likely be sent out. I told them I'd never received any money nor signed a form, nor knew he was doing this, they told me that I "must have" signed a form.

 

I got C.A.B advice and did a Subject Access Request for the initial application forms (as I disputed the existence of a signature), and while waiting for these to arrive I asked a solicitor for help and also (on a particularly stressful day) phoned my ex and told him to get this sorted out. He said he would, unforunately he uh... doesn't believe in working. Seriously. I don't think he works at all. So I can't really see how he can pay this back, and if he can't, they'll still chase me, right? Even though I never got the money and work hard every week to pay my bills!

 

The solicitor was skeptical about the lack of signature on the form, and I was even starting to doubt myself as to whether I had inadvertantly signed the form as the last few months of our relationship were pretty horrible/a bit of a haze of stress. Solicitor suggested he would send a letter to the HMRC explaining that I did not know about the claim, received no money, and for them to only chase my ex for the money. This letter was sent over a month ago, still no response for HMRC.

 

The past two weeks - letters start flooding in.

 

Firstly, the fruits of my Subject Access Request labour - a massive envelope containing, among other things, the initial application form. It is entirely filled out in my ex's handwriting, and there are NO SIGNATURES on it at all. Not his, nor mine. I can't see why these would be redacted (perhaps his, but why mine? Especially when I asked for it specifically?).

 

Finally, this week I've received two "notices to pay" for overpayments to my ex totalling about £4500. They have been sent to him too (he's told me in an email he's dealing with it). I just don't trust that he will when he thought it was ok to do this in the first place, and also where is he getting £4500 from?? The deadline for re-paying this is in October! If he has no money/offers a tiny monthly repayment, they might still come after me? I've thought of phoning them to say "hey guys, no signature, why are you chasing me?" but I thought it best to wait and see what the solicitor thinks.

 

So that's pretty much where it's at. I've told my solicitor about the S.A.R news and am waiting to hear from him... what a mess! Hope I'm approaching it the right way.

 

Did the application require signatures or was it done online or by phone ? If it was done online or by phone, perhaps the SAR application is purely the information that was provided and there never was any signatures.

 

Think you just have to wait for HMRC to respond to Solicitors letter. I guess that the application was joint and they can pursue both of you, even if you did not know about it or received any of it.


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Did the application require signatures or was it done online or by phone ? If it was done online or by phone, perhaps the SAR application is purely the information that was provided and there never was any signatures.

 

Think you just have to wait for HMRC to respond to Solicitors letter. I guess that the application was joint and they can pursue both of you, even if you did not know about it or received any of it.

 

It must've been a physical written application because the copy I received was in my ex's handwriting (EDIT - At least I think so - if this was done online, would someone hardwrite a version of the online form and send me it? Guessing not, guessing it would've been a print out of the online form?).

 

I never received any of this money he's gotten, nor did I know he was doing this for the past year, nor was I living with him.

 

Considering the lack of the above, plus the lack of my signature, how can they possibly be chasing me for this money? If that's the case, disgruntled partners/ex partners could be screwing each other over for Tax Credit money left, right and centre (or maybe they are?).

Edited by buttons124
adding info

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If it is handwritten he must have sent it to them. I doubt they redacted the signatures for the SAR, as i could not see the point in this. They would want you to see your signature on the form.

 

If you never applied for it, never signed any document and never received any of the money, then even if he made a joint application, i can't see how they can argue you are liable.


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 Have we helped you ...?         Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

 

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You might want to read this thread - http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?421865-HMRC-want-paying-for-WTC-joint-claim-my-wife-forged-my-sig&p=4788786#post4788786

 

Have you actually made an attempt to dispute the overpayment?

 

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/tax-credits-overpayment-tc846

 

Have you reported your ex for claiming without your knowledge?

 

Please note the fact it wasn't paid to your account won't be relevant as it can be paid to any account of the claimants choosing however it will help you in explaining that you weren't aware of the claim.

 

Although a claim form should be signed, if it isn't, it's normally discussed over the phone with one of the claimants and rectified that way. Your SAR may include records of calls, it would depend on what you asked for.

 

If you are not successful in disputing, you would be liable to 50% of the overpayment.

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