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New forum Topic. Debt and how to cope with it. - Carers UK Forum

New forum Topic. Debt and how to cope with it.

Share your ideas about the practical side of caring.
Got this idea from a post from Lowrider. Most of us are in debt, we need to know who to pay and who to avoid. Bankruptcy options for tenants etc. What free help is available. Why to never enter into repayment agreements. Difference in law between England and Scotland. I know there are sites out there offering advice but most of them want money of us. Am sure there are a lot of carers out there with stories to tell and advice to give. My disabled partner declared herself bankrupt, was an easy process and took a lot of stress and depression out our lives. I would be grateful for your thoughts if this would be a good idea or not.
Have moved this to the Tips and practical advice section of the forum, along with Lowrider's topic.
Dunno any answers to this one. We're still repaying the thousands of £s which the DHSS overpaid hubby - THEIR MISTAKE, THEIR OVERPAYMENT. Right at the start of his injury, 16 years ago, the DHSS put him onto the wrong benefit (ha! ha! thinking it was a temporary thing, very funny, since when has tetraplegia been temporary?) and because of this, they were paying him more money than they should have. So, when they found this out and put him onto the correct benefits, they'd overpaid by loads. AND WE'RE STILL PAYING IT BACK all these years later. Sorry can't give any advice really, just to say there are loads of us out here in the same boat.
Did you appeal the overpayment decision at the time, Fran? From your post it appears to be an official error which is not recoverable. It might be worth you getting advice from a welfare rights adviser, although you are out of time for an appeal you may still be able make a late appeal.

Nothing has improved, I have a four week overpayment sitting in the bank waiting to be reclaimed. I was underpaid one week and then overpaid four, I was told by the department of the DWP involved that a cheque for four weeks had just been printed and replied that it was an error, they only owed me one, they then sent another duplicate payment. I was told to put it in the bank and they would ask for repayment. That was 18 months ago and I am still waiting to receive a letter asking me to repay it. Luckily we have no debts but it is a nuisance having to remember all the time that the money apparently available to spend includes a sum which may need to be paid back. If I had not said anything they could not reclaim it, official error again, but I did, silly me Image .

I could just send them a cheque of course but this is my second overpayment and the first time I immediately repaid it only to find some time later that they had started taking it out of my money with no prior warning, I sorted that out and a couple of years later they again tried to get me to pay it. They make so many mistakes it is always worth challenging overpayments, there is a strong possibility that they are not recoverable.
Hubby didn't appeal at the time, we weren't together in the early days. I don't know why he didn't, but now it's too late. They're taking around £30 a week, but it'll still be years until it's all finished. Luckily, we can stand the £30 a week being taken out, lots of people wouldn't be able to do that.
You can still try to make a late appeal. Also £30 a week sounds way above the maximum amount that they can take from benefits. I would check it out Fran, your husband should not have to pay for their mistakes.
May i put a link here to a very good site that is available 24/7 it is very muck a self help site but there are many many good template letters etc and a very knowledgeable site team.

It really is the bees knees and so many members to help you out the resources they have is astounding.

It makes up for the CAB who are only open at limited hours.

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/
Not sure if this is in place anywhere else.
But my local housing company put in place an officer whose job was to look at financial exclusion.
This is very much the buzzword within social housing today.
So it might be worth contacting your local council, housing association or ALMO and asking if they have one.
The idea is to look at people income/outgoings before they have a problem or to solve a problem they have.
They will do a check to make sure you are getting everything you should, hassle the DWP and offer other advice.
Of course the up side for them is they get the rent and/or council tax paid.
But here have been example of people in my area thanks to this idea finding out they are entitled to a lot of back payment.
It’s worth looking into.
I am in debt, i treied one of them debt companies but they conned me, so i wrote a letter tot he people i owe money to and gave them a finacial breakdown, i listed everything, ims till waiting to here wot they want to do, but i felt better for doing it
Did you appeal the overpayment decision at the time, Fran? From your post it appears to be an official error which is not recoverable. It might be worth you getting advice from a welfare rights adviser...
Where do welfare rights advisers live ? I've about 15 months of Jobseeker's Allowance to get - as I fell through one of the holes in the system whereby I had a valid claim but didn't actually receive any money!
I could just send them a cheque of course but this is my second overpayment and the first time I immediately repaid it only to find some time later that they had started taking it out of my money with no prior warning, I sorted that out and a couple of years later they again tried to get me to pay it. They make so many mistakes it is always worth challenging overpayments, there is a strong possibility that they are not recoverable.
I also had a road accident and was awarded £15k compensation. Of which, the DWP wants ~£7k and is now bleeding that off my carer's Allowance/Income Support.

As for the letters from the bailiffs re ALLEGED Council Tax owed, they're piling up nicely, unopened - to be dealt with by the human rights lawyer when someone finds me one.

Some years ago I saw a film with Dick Van Dyke in it called 'Found Money' - all to do with dormant bank accounts. Irrelevant - except for the line: "If you can't do anything about it, don't worry about it." - so don't worry about debts you can't do anything about and look at them positively - at least it's not the other way round where you're fighting to get your money!

Mike.