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Overpayment letters / notices

Last amended 
12 December 2022

Overpayment letters / notices

Initial letter / notice

If an overpayment has not been wholly repaid or waived, the delegate must send the client a letter that complies with s 205AAA of the VEA.

The recovery notice must contain the following information:

  • the date on which it was issued; and
  • the reason the overpayment was incurred, including a brief explanation of the circumstances that led to the overpayment being incurred; and
  • the period to which the overpayment relates; and
  • the amount of the overpayment at the date of the notice; and
  • the day on which the amount of the overpayment is due to be paid; and
  • that a range of options are available for repayment of the overpayment; and
  • the contact details for inquiries concerning the overpayment.

The overpayment is due and payable 28 days after the date the notice is issued (s 205AAA(2)). This 28 day timeframe will not apply if the person otherwise enters into an arrangement with the Commonwealth to pay the outstanding amount. This could be an arrangement to pay the debt by instalments (s 206(1)(c)), or to have the amount deducted from a pension or other benefit payable under the VEA (s 205(2)). This 28 day period will also not apply if the debt is subsequently waived, written off or deferred.

Follow-up letter / notice

If the debt remains wholly unpaid and the client failed to enter into an arrangement to pay the overpayment, or they entered into an arrangement but failed to make a payment then the Commission may give the person a follow-up notice in accordance with s 205AAA(3) of the VEA. Where a delegate sends a follow-up notice, this should contain the following information:

  • the date on which it was issued (the date of the further notice); and
  • each of the matters set out in the initial letter; and
  • the effect of ss 205AAB and 205AAD of the VEA, which deal with interest and administrative charges; and
  • how the interest under section 205AAB is to be calculated.

If a client is sent a follow-up letter, then they may become liable to pay interest under s 205AAB or administrative charges under s 205AAD. A client cannot be liable to pay interest or administrative charges unless they have been sent a follow-up notice under s 205AAA(3).