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Debt Management repayment plan

horizonshorizons Member Posts: 11 Listener
Hi, sorry if this is in the wrong catagory.My mother has been sent a letter saying that her mother was overpaid a sum amount while she was alive. Becuase she (Her mother) went into hospital and didnt tell DWP. Anyway to cut a long story short. The amount is not huge and My mother wants to set up a re-payment plan with the DWP Debt Management team. Will the DWP Debt Management team want to see bank statments and other documents to set up the re-payment plan? Or will the DWP Debt Management team and My mother just agree on a monthly amount that she can afford. She does get Pension credit, only a few hundred per month. Thanks

Replies

  • woodbinewoodbine Member Posts: 1,119 Pioneering
    Hi hope you are well today? How long was she in hospital? does she get SRP plus pension credits? how long was she in hospital?\ difficult to advise on limited information
  • janer1967janer1967 Community champion Posts: 2,161 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi and welcome to the community. I am not too sure about how the DWP debt management works but other debt management just go through income and expenditure and come to an agreement on payment plan without seeing any bank statements or anything else 

    I was told I dont know if it is true that if you make an offer of a payment then they cant refuse it and this has always been true in my case 

    Hope this helps and you get something sorted 

    I wold also enquire as it isnt your mothers debt is it still recoverable, was you mother a guarantor or benefit from her will.

    May be worth getting advice from CAB or welfare rights
  • horizonshorizons Member Posts: 11 Listener
    It was my Mother who was the guarantor of her mother ( I think )
  • janer1967janer1967 Community champion Posts: 2,161 Disability Gamechanger
    Ok but you dont normally have a guarantor for DWP they are for loans and rent etc in case the lender doesn't pay 

    Get some expert advice 
  • woodbinewoodbine Member Posts: 1,119 Pioneering
    Sorry my first reply doesn't even make sense to me now -( if your gran has died owing the DWP overpaid benefits then they can only be reclaimed from her estate, if she left no estate then no money is owed. I hope that makes more sense? But as @janer1967 says if in doubt get expert advice.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Community champion Posts: 19,339 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi,

    If she did leave estate then this shouldn't have been distributed until everything that was owed was repaid back, including the DWP overpayment.
    Community champion and proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice i have given to members here on the community.
  • horizonshorizons Member Posts: 11 Listener
    Hi,

    If she did leave estate then this shouldn't have been distributed until everything that was owed was repaid back, including the DWP overpayment.
    Im not 100% sure about everything at this point. All I know is the amount that my Mother needs to pay back is about £500. A small amount that she is willing to pay back to avoid any drama, she is just wondering if she can make a re-payment plan over a certain amount of time, will the DPW Debt Management want to see bank statments or other documents before setting up the payment plan,as she is concerned about her privacy.

  • janer1967janer1967 Community champion Posts: 2,161 Disability Gamechanger
    As I said in my first post debt management dont usually ask for bank statements just income and expenditure 

    Either speak to CAB or ask DWP 
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 4,718 Disability Gamechanger
    Several aspects to this. 

    1 - your mother can’t do anything in respect of this until she applies for an appointeeship after death to handle your grandmothers benefit affairs.

    2 - I totally get why she might want to just pay up and move on but given the choice she would surely rather keep the £500?

    3 - overpayments cannot be recovered unless there has been a misrepresentation or failure to disclose. This sounds like a straightforward failure to disclose entry into a hospital or similar institution. Two key questions then 

    a - did your grandmother have an appointee? 
    b - did the reason she went into hospital prevent her from writing to or ringing DWP?

    If she was acting for herself and was unable to disclose then the money should not be recoverable but to get to that point you will need to challenge the recoverability and need advice.

    If she had an appointee then it’s they who should have disclosed and they from whom recovery should be sought unless they too have an argument against failure to disclose of misrepresentation etc. 

    Your mother has no liability here unless she was the appointee whilst your grandmother was alive. 

    Now, after reading this you might still think, but I just want it paid back. Here’s the thing though. Payment is by lump sum. Claimants can negotiate if there are health or financial hardship reasons but your mother cannot. If the money is in the estate then it comes out as a lump sum. There is no negotiation to be done. If the money is not in the estate then that needs saying and that is usually the end of the matter. 

    Therefore if the money is in the estate your mother has 2 choices.

    1 - pay it back as a lump sum.
    2 - challenge the recoverability decision.
    3 - there is no 3.
  • horizonshorizons Member Posts: 11 Listener
    They have already said that she can set up a payment plan. This is a situation that went back 4 years ago, so its not recent. The case is abit complex. But all I know is that they have said that she can sep-up a payment plan
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 4,718 Disability Gamechanger
    Hmm. I smell a rat. When was the overpayment decision a d why is your mother involved?
  • horizonshorizons Member Posts: 11 Listener
    edited July 31
    The decision was made about 3 and a half  years ago. Shortly after that she spoke to the DWP, they told her to forget all about it. And  we did, then she gets a follow up letter 2 weeks ago reminding her that they have tried to contact her and so forth, and she has two options, to pay in full or to set up payment plan. And my mother was the executor. So thats why they contacted her.As others have said, I think Im going to CAB , as its abit complex. And I really think me and my mother just need to speak to someone. But thanks for the advise given.Will take that into consideration

  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 4,718 Disability Gamechanger
    Hmm. Not sure it is that complex. DWP pull this stunt a fair bit. Declare an overpayment recoverable. You think you need to challenge it so they put you off that by saying they’ll exercise their discretion to not recover at that time. 

    In other words the decision that it’s recoverable still stands. They just choose to initially not recover so you don’t do an MR or appeal and then after 13 months you’ve lost your appeal rights.

    Then they wait until the person dies and use the fact that it was earlier deemed recoverable and you didn't challenge it at the time to take it straight out of the estate. 
  • horizonshorizons Member Posts: 11 Listener
    edited July 31
    I will have to get some more info and facts , but we have decided to fight the case and not give in so easy. From what we have read on here and other sites.
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 4,718 Disability Gamechanger
    Excellent. I can assure you that is the correct thing to do. 
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