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  1. #1
    babsx's Avatar

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    Default Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Hi Everybody,

    This is my first post, and hopefully my last! (probably not though) I will try and keep it brief.

    I am the administrator to my Aunt's estate, after completing all formalities, it is unfortunate that DWP Debt Management have raised their heads. They think there have been overpayments in Pension Credit. From all accounts she was quite a poorly lady and on all sorts of benefits when she died at 75 without friends or family. The Council cleared out her flat, and I have been given very little of her paperwork.

    Debt Management have asked me to supply bank statements from 2003 and 2008 of which I've worked out the reason for requesting those 2 dates, these 2 statements have been sent, and they are now fishing for further information regarding an old savings account, which I now know was closed in 2002. Plus they would like to know where she got her capital from, a question I do not know the answer to.

    I have 2 questions for the forum:

    1, A solicitor has told my husband that he thinks they can only claim back 6 years? Or can they claim back to 2003? At the time (2003) she was just over the £10,000 threshold.

    2, Would be better to say no idea where she came by her capital?

    To sum up, I suspect she was overpaid, but I think as she was incapacitated and unable to leave her flat, lived a frugal life, even without an up to date working telly (from a health assessment I found in her papers) and she basically accrued the capital over years.

    Before I reply back to them I would appreciate any feedback from the forum
    Thanks in advance

  2. #2
    Streetwise's Avatar

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Hi there is a thread further down at 7 or 8( D.W.P and recovery from estates),it might help,regards Streetwise.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    As you'll see from the other thread I've been involved with DWP for overpaid PC for the last year. To answer your questions:

    The 6 year question is answered in the thread but as I understand their legal right is 6 years for information, they can only ask before then.

    I would tell DWP that you understand the savings account to have been closed in 2002, that you have no knowledge of where any capital came from and that you can identify no other assets at that time & between 2003 and date of death.

    I found it was worth explaining our position i.e. yours as administrator, your level of contact with the deceased, and (presumably) no other relatives etc. Depending on the value of the estate and the potential overpayment they may ask for a refund or just abandon the case.

    Hope this helps.

  4. #4
    babsx's Avatar

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Many thanks for your reply. I'll send a letter to them and see what happens

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    worry wort's Avatar

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Dare I ask how you've got on with this?

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    Firemonkey's Avatar

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Hello everyone,
    have
    This is my first time in a forum and I think I posted a reply in the wrong place. I will explain my cirumstances and hopefully someone in the know will pick up my question. I have read previous "threads" and gained some valueable knowledge. My mum died this April and came to live with me in February 2013. I received a letter from DWP Estates Management asking for a record of mums savings which was £35,000. I know the first £10,000 isn't counted and I have worked out she was overpaid £30 a week. Mums bungalow was signed over to me 9 years ago but for inheritance tax she was deemed to still be receiving benefits. The property didn't become mine until she moved in with me in February 2013. My questions are

    1. How far back can they claim overpayments because the bill could be over £100,000. I am aware the bank only provides statements for 6 years.

    2. Can they force me to sell mums bungalow. The time ownership transferred to me seems to differ. I thought it was mine 9 years ago but for inheritance tax it only became mine in April of this year.

    3. Should I request mums bank accounts for the last 6 years so I can go through them?

  7. #7
    wales01man's Avatar

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    I think you will find if DWP suspect fraud by your mum hiding the money from them they can go back a long time,sorry you wont like this but if she deliberately withheld information she stole from the taxpayer and I would want the DWP to claim back the money.

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    MissFM's Avatar

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Quote Originally Posted by Firemonkey View Post
    Hello everyone,
    have
    This is my first time in a forum and I think I posted a reply in the wrong place. I will explain my cirumstances and hopefully someone in the know will pick up my question. I have read previous "threads" and gained some valueable knowledge. My mum died this April and came to live with me in February 2013. I received a letter from DWP Estates Management asking for a record of mums savings which was £35,000. I know the first £10,000 isn't counted and I have worked out she was overpaid £30 a week. Mums bungalow was signed over to me 9 years ago but for inheritance tax she was deemed to still be receiving benefits. The property didn't become mine until she moved in with me in February 2013. My questions are

    1. How far back can they claim overpayments because the bill could be over £100,000. I am aware the bank only provides statements for 6 years.

    2. Can they force me to sell mums bungalow. The time ownership transferred to me seems to differ. I thought it was mine 9 years ago but for inheritance tax it only became mine in April of this year.

    3. Should I request mums bank accounts for the last 6 years so I can go through them?
    Hello Firemonkey

    So sorry that you have lost your Mum.

    I think your calculation may have a rogue nought in it - £30pw would take approx. 66years to become £100K - also, once her savings were down to £9,000 (I think) she would be entitled to full benefits. - between that and what she had it's a sliding scale.

    Am also a bit confused as to when you actually were given the house? Presumably it was to avoid inheritance tax under the 7 year rule but for that to work she would have had to have had no financial benefit from it after signing it over (ie paid a market rent etc.)

    I'm sure a more knowledgeable Beagle will correct this if I'm wrong but hope it helps.

    In your shoes I would probably invest in a session with an accountant experienced in these matters.

    Good luck.
    “Find a place inside where there's joy, and the joy will burn out the pain.” Joseph Campbell

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    bluebottle's Avatar

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Quote Originally Posted by Firemonkey View Post
    Hello everyone,
    have
    This is my first time in a forum and I think I posted a reply in the wrong place. I will explain my cirumstances and hopefully someone in the know will pick up my question. I have read previous "threads" and gained some valueable knowledge. My mum died this April and came to live with me in February 2013. I received a letter from DWP Estates Management asking for a record of mums savings which was £35,000. I know the first £10,000 isn't counted and I have worked out she was overpaid £30 a week. Mums bungalow was signed over to me 9 years ago but for inheritance tax she was deemed to still be receiving benefits. The property didn't become mine until she moved in with me in February 2013. My questions are

    1. How far back can they claim overpayments because the bill could be over £100,000. I am aware the bank only provides statements for 6 years.

    2. Can they force me to sell mums bungalow. The time ownership transferred to me seems to differ. I thought it was mine 9 years ago but for inheritance tax it only became mine in April of this year.

    3. Should I request mums bank accounts for the last 6 years so I can go through them?
    Did your mum make a will and did she bequeath her home to you so that you inherited it on the occasion of her death? Also, was she subject to a Power of Attorney under the Mental Capacity Act 2005?

    You may need to seek professional legal advice from a lawyer, but I would have thought DWP could not force you to sell a property you had inherited under the terms of a will. Seek professional legal advice anyway to be on the safe side.
    Life is a journey on which we all travel, sometimes together, but never alone.

  10. #10
    Firemonkey's Avatar

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    That is a little harsh. I am picking up the pieces of mums dishonesty. I acknowledge money has to paid back but mums bungalow is part of my financial future. I didn't steal the money!!!!!!!!!!!

  11. #11
    Firemonkey's Avatar

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Thankyou for your reply. I have asked mums bank to send me her statements so I can do some calculations. I is my intention to fully co-operate with DWP and send them the bank statements when they request them.

    Mum and I went to a solicitor 9 yrs ago and the house was legally transferred to me with mum being able to live there and pay a peppercorn rent. I have to say we were not motivated by inheritance tax as we never thought we would be affected by that. Mums bungalow is only worth £150,000 so doesn't meet the £325,000 threshold. However, for their purposes mums bungalow only became mine when she moved out and came to live with me. Everyone has a different criteria which is why I was worried that DWP would still class mums bungalow as part of her estate.

    Yes, you are right about my initial calculations. I panicked and envisaged a worse case scenario

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    wales01man's Avatar

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Sympathy for you but if she claimed money which was unlawful why should you not pay it back from her property?i know of someone who failed to declare they had a private pension of less than 220 a year when the DWP found this was not declared in a benefits assessment they claimed the overpayment back and decided not to take legal action for non declaration. Best to be honest because in the current economic climate this Government will claw back every last penny it can

  13. #13
    Firemonkey's Avatar

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Thankyou for your reply. The bungalow was not in the will because it had been signed over to me 9 yrs ago. Everything else was bequeathed to me. The solicitor didn't think I needed Power of Attorney because we were just talking about personal possessions and £35,000 in the bank.

  14. #14
    Firemonkey's Avatar

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    I do feel embarrassed and guilty about this. It isn't a problem I can freely discuss. But I have to repeat that I didn't do this and I will fight to keep mums/my bungalow. I realise that benefit fraud is wrong and is especially sensitive because of our national dire straits. I have worked hard all of my life and paid my full tax and and NS contributions. Mums bungalow is now rented and I am in a new world of "tax self assessment". I called them to find out what my tax liability was. I, personally, have never had any intention of defrauding the state.

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Quote Originally Posted by Firemonkey View Post
    I do feel embarrassed and guilty about this. It isn't a problem I can freely discuss. But I have to repeat that I didn't do this and I will fight to keep mums/my bungalow. I realise that benefit fraud is wrong and is especially sensitive because of our national dire straits. I have worked hard all of my life and paid my full tax and and NS contributions. Mums bungalow is now rented and I am in a new world of "tax self assessment". I called them to find out what my tax liability was. I, personally, have never had any intention of defrauding the state.
    Hi Firemonkey,

    I for one am not judging you - but I suppose different people have different reasons for posting.

    In many ways, that what these forums are all about!
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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    I don't for one minute doubt your integrity/honesty even more so because you are seeking advice would I think you intent to defraud the state,the blame if there is any is with your late mother who failed maybe unknowingly to declare the money,its easy done if your trying to fill in the ridiculously long forms,i like others admire you for sorting this many would not,you should view this as a mistake from your mother that you now are putting right you have nothing to be guilty for

  17. #17
    Firemonkey's Avatar

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Thankyou for your response. This is an emotive issue and a problem I want to sort out as soon as possible. I am waiting for a response from the DWD but I am assuming they will want bank statements. Mums bank have been helpful and they are sending me ALL of her bank statements which I will look through. Ironically, The Estates Recovery Dept are situated in the Forset of Dean so I can take them myself.

    I want to shout from the rooftops(anonymously of course) to warn people and for adult children to check what their parents are getting in benefits. Is there anywhere where this advice can be posted?

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    charitynjw's Avatar

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Quote Originally Posted by Firemonkey View Post
    Thankyou for your response. This is an emotive issue and a problem I want to sort out as soon as possible. I am waiting for a response from the DWD but I am assuming they will want bank statements. Mums bank have been helpful and they are sending me ALL of her bank statements which I will look through. Ironically, The Estates Recovery Dept are situated in the Forset of Dean so I can take them myself.

    I want to shout from the rooftops(anonymously of course) to warn people and for adult children to check what their parents are getting in benefits. Is there anywhere where this advice can be posted?
    This forum is as good a place as any, Firemonkey.

    Currently Active Users

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    & that's at six o'clock on a Sunday morning!
    CAVEAT LECTOR

    This is only my opinion - "
    Opinions are made to be changed --or how is truth to be got at?" (Byron)

    You and I do not see things as they are. We see things as we are.
    Cohen, Herb

    There is danger when a man throws his tongue into high gear before he
    gets his brain a-going.
    Phelps, C. C.

    "They couldn't hit an elephant at this distance!"
    The last words of John Sedgwick

  19. #19
    Twiggy's Avatar

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Thanks for all the good information. We just received the DWP letter asking for probate details. We know mum in law didn't declare increased savings so are expecting a DWP investigation and all the hassle involved. Will try to update this thread as we go along.
    did the bank involved charge for the statements?

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    hello twiggy, did your mum in laws increase in savings happen after her initial claim for pension credit? If the DWP had allocated her an assessed income period and the increase happened during that or if she turned 80 during it and moved into an indefinite assessed income period then her increase in savings is irrelevant and they know it. She could have won the lottery during an assessed income period and would still have had an underlying claim for pension credit. these people are jokers pure and simple. They are being propped up by people who should know better. solicitors will tell you it happens to a lot of people and to pay up so will citizens advice who in my experience were totally useless as far as this is concerned. All the DWP form asks for is your mum in laws financial details at the time of passing not at the time of claim which means the form is not fit for purpose as it only gives a snapshot of her finances not the full motion picture from claim to passing. If your mum in law had an assessed income period it will appear on any and all letters from the DWP even the annual 'your increase in benefits' letter has it at the bottom of page one. If she had one I suggest ringing the recovery from estates phishers and getting in their face I did it was over inside one hour as i threatened to sue them if it wasn't.

  21. #21
    Twiggy's Avatar

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Quote Originally Posted by marcus18 View Post
    hello twiggy, did your mum in laws increase in savings happen after her initial claim for pension credit? If the DWP had allocated her an assessed income period and the increase happened during that or if she turned 80 during it and moved into an indefinite assessed income period then her increase in savings is irrelevant and they know it. She could have won the lottery during an assessed income period and would still have had an underlying claim for pension credit. these people are jokers pure and simple. They are being propped up by people who should know better. solicitors will tell you it happens to a lot of people and to pay up so will citizens advice who in my experience were totally useless as far as this is concerned. All the DWP form asks for is your mum in laws financial details at the time of passing not at the time of claim which means the form is not fit for purpose as it only gives a snapshot of her finances not the full motion picture from claim to passing. If your mum in law had an assessed income period it will appear on any and all letters from the DWP even the annual 'your increase in benefits' letter has it at the bottom of page one. If she had one I suggest ringing the recovery from estates phishers and getting in their face I did it was over inside one hour as i threatened to sue them if it wasn't.
    Yes to a great extent I agree they seem to be trying it on as her letter in 2012 advising of her claim for extra pension credit specifically said she had an AIP. As far as we know she was below £10k at that time and the increase in savings was probably due to the extra pension credit but I guess they have to check. They haven't asked for bank/savings statements (yet).

    One problem we have is the ridiculously long time it takes from DWP to answer letters etc. We've been waiting nearly 6 weeks for them to tell us whether they think she owed them money or not.

    We still don't know whether we're also facing a refund claim from the county council as she was over the savings limit for home care in her last couple of years and should have been paying at least a part of those costs herself.

    Nowhere (despite intensive trawling) can we find any information as to whether county councils check the home care support situation on death, nor whether they pursue such things if they find they have 'over supported'.

    We could ask them of course but that would be 'giving the game away' so to speak. Not sure what our legal position is as executors - i.e. if we think she's been given too much support are we bound to own up....

  22. #22
    marcus18's Avatar

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Does her letter from 2012 state the dates of her AIP? Was she 80 already? Did she become 80 during the AIP? The AIP over-rules everything they do not have to check and you have no need to tell them of an increase in savings during one.

    A brief summary of my mums case which is on here in greater detail but you can see if this is in anyway similar.

    original claim for income support dated 1994 when she was 65. She had less than £1000 in the bank at that time. changed to pension credit when everyone elses did (2003/2004). In 2006 she sold her house to move to a council bungalow with me as her sole carer as she was starting with vascular dementia. I wrote to them and told them even though according to their rules i didn't have to because she was in an assessed income period. I got a letter back which said her income did not alter her entitlement to pension credit. I kept both letters. During her AIP she became 80 and moved to an indefinite AIP until she died in february this year. In may after the will had gone through and beig sole executor and beneficiary i got the DWP and started panicking until on here and elsewhere i read about AIP's and then i got angry. She had been charged for her home care, respite and rent on the savings she had if the DWP had got their invented way she would effectively have lost the entire value of her house. The solicitor who handled the will didn't want to know, citizens advice brought a whole new level to the definition of crap. i rang the dwp recovery team told them the situation told them the letters i had the proof i had as her DWP appointee etc and told them that if it wasn't resolved inside one hour I would be suing them as she nor I owed them nothing and as an until recently full time carer I had no income but this sum was preventing me from claiming income support/housing benefit/council tax benefit etc. I got a phone call within 45 minutes to say they were aware of the AIP and had both letters from 2006/2007 and they would take no further action and put it in writing which i got the day after. I am still actually considering suing them as healthwise I am still suffering due to the shock of the situation - i have gone through my entire life (51) without owing anyone a penny. They will have your mum in laws original claim as they had mine. Since it appears legitimate and she was covered by an aip game over. I can't stress enough how important it is to get the dates of the aip sorted then ring them and get at them. They are chancers, it's debatable whether they really are the DWP or an offshoot paid by results because the first time i rang them i got a hello dwp etc the second time i got a totally different reply which didn't mention the letters dw or p.

  23. #23
    Twiggy's Avatar

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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Quote Originally Posted by marcus18 View Post
    Does her letter from 2012 state the dates of her AIP? Was she 80 already? Did she become 80 during the AIP? The AIP over-rules everything they do not have to check and you have no need to tell them of an increase in savings during one.

    A brief summary of my mums case which is on here in greater detail but you can see if this is in anyway similar.

    original claim for income support dated 1994 when she was 65. She had less than £1000 in the bank at that time. changed to pension credit when everyone elses did (2003/2004). In 2006 she sold her house to move to a council bungalow with me as her sole carer as she was starting with vascular dementia. I wrote to them and told them even though according to their rules i didn't have to because she was in an assessed income period. I got a letter back which said her income did not alter her entitlement to pension credit. I kept both letters. During her AIP she became 80 and moved to an indefinite AIP until she died in february this year. In may after the will had gone through and beig sole executor and beneficiary i got the DWP and started panicking until on here and elsewhere i read about AIP's and then i got angry. She had been charged for her home care, respite and rent on the savings she had if the DWP had got their invented way she would effectively have lost the entire value of her house. The solicitor who handled the will didn't want to know, citizens advice brought a whole new level to the definition of crap. i rang the dwp recovery team told them the situation told them the letters i had the proof i had as her DWP appointee etc and told them that if it wasn't resolved inside one hour I would be suing them as she nor I owed them nothing and as an until recently full time carer I had no income but this sum was preventing me from claiming income support/housing benefit/council tax benefit etc. I got a phone call within 45 minutes to say they were aware of the AIP and had both letters from 2006/2007 and they would take no further action and put it in writing which i got the day after. I am still actually considering suing them as healthwise I am still suffering due to the shock of the situation - i have gone through my entire life (51) without owing anyone a penny. They will have your mum in laws original claim as they had mine. Since it appears legitimate and she was covered by an aip game over. I can't stress enough how important it is to get the dates of the aip sorted then ring them and get at them. They are chancers, it's debatable whether they really are the DWP or an offshoot paid by results because the first time i rang them i got a hello dwp etc the second time i got a totally different reply which didn't mention the letters dw or p.
    The 2012 letter does not state the period of the AIP, only that 'you have an assessed income period'.
    At that time she was a few weeks short of her 90th birthday.

    As she didn't keep many records we cannot categorically state that her savings at that time were below 10k, but we presume DWP would have checked at the time. If above 10k then not by very much.

  24. #24
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    Default Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Then i would suggest the AIP is indefinite and the game is over she nor you owed them anything.

    https://www.entitledto.co.uk/help/as...-income-period

    she has no need to declare increased savings.

    They have access to all this information. This shouldn't be happening on the scale it is it's disgraceful and insulting. The current older generations whose relatives are being attacked by these chancers were and continue to be incredibly honest. As i've said to someone else on here they are getting away with it because it's not a photo opportunity issue for mp's and solicitors etc are part of the problem. The solicitor who dealt with my mums will emailed me about eight weeks later to ask how i was going along with it. I wrote back more or less what i've written here this afternoon and got no reply - at the very least you would expect a "well done" or "glad you dealt with it" .

    There are two very easy solutions. One the "DWP" checks details of the original claim and any correspondence/involvement since against the details they are presented with. Two, any solicitor applying for probate checks the facts first. If my mums estate had been £25000 i wouldn't have needed probate i could have simply gone through the solicitor and the bank. £25000 would have still been enough to rule her out of means tested benefits but because it wouldn't have gone through probate then it wouldn't have gone to the DWP even though someone could have stashed away £25000 throughout a claim rendering it illegitimate throughout. The system is flawed throughout.

    edit I just checked on later letters my mum's wording changed to "she has an assessed income period" with no date given so it looks like that is the wording of choice when it becomes indefinite.
    Last edited by marcus18; 14th September 2017 at 17:16:PM. Reason: extra info

  25. #25
    Spirit200's Avatar

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    Cool Re: Debt Management Recovery From Estates Pension Credit

    Quote Originally Posted by wales01man View Post
    Sympathy for you but if she claimed money which was unlawful why should you not pay it back from her property?i know of someone who failed to declare they had a private pension of less than 220 a year when the DWP found this was not declared in a benefits assessment they claimed the overpayment back and decided not to take legal action for non declaration. Best to be honest because in the current economic climate this Government will claw back every last penny it can
    .
    As a fellow taxpayer, I think that the this Government should claw back every last penny it can
    Why not?

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  4. Debt management (and credit repair services) guidance Consultation
    By Amethyst in forum Consultations - improving the future for consumers
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    : 19th July 2011, 15:18:PM

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