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Rank; Hector Tax Inspector

1 Posts

Posted - 19/04/2010 :  14:17:22  Show Profile Send lizza a Private Message
I'm looking for some advice please regarding a problem with tax credit overpayment which I have ignored for too long... I have a serious problem with procrastination which gets me into all sorts of trouble. I got married Jan 07 but didn't inform tax credits until May, due to this I was overpaid in that period. I recieved a letter stating that I owed something over 400 and paid it immediately, a while later I recieved more letters, again for something over 400 (I am a disaster with letters and money, don't look after either!) so I telephoned up, said I had made a repayment, was there a mistake? I was told payments were not being updated due to a computer fault and to ignore letters. I then got a call in June 09 to say there had been 2 overpayments of 400 odd pounds made over the 2 financial years and I had only paid one. My financial circumstances are such at present I just can't afford to repay, I have been sent appeal forms but don't know if there's any point in completing. Any advice would be much appreciated

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Posted - 19/04/2010 :  17:27:42  Show Profile Send samthe a Private Message
1. There were 2 overpayments because the delay covered 2 tax years (06-07 & 07-08).

2. You accept the delay was your fault so there is no point in disputing (not appealing - that is something different), unless you want to do so to get details of how the second overpayment was calculated and to check that the amount is correct.

3. TCO has recently introduced a new rule which means that you should be able to offset against the second overpayment (not the first one because you have already paid that) any entitlement you would have had if you had claimed correctly as a couple. So if you did have an entitlement after you notified them in May 07 the amount you would have been paid as a couple from 6.4.07 up to the date they ended your single claim should be offset. If this is the case you have to ask for offsetting. Do so on the phone & then confirm in writing (recorded delivery; keep a copy).

4. If you have had any letters from the Debt Management Unit (probably from Cumbernauld) keep them informed by phone of what you are doing. You have to do this separately from your contact with TCO. They should suspend recovery action until the amount you have to pay has been settled.

5. Can I suggest that as you accept you have a seriouos problem with letters, procrastination etc. it might be an idea for your spouse to make sure these things are dealt with promptly. It is always a mistake to ignore/delay action on any kind of official communication & this applies especially to tax credits where the result of failure to act can often be far worse than the amounts you have quoted!

6. If you do end up having to pay anything back they will accept payment over 12 months without difficulty, & over up to 3 years with some enquiry into your finances.
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