Written answers

Thursday, 5 March 2020

Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection

Social Welfare Overpayments

Photo of Bernard DurkanBernard Durkan (Kildare North, Fine Gael)
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1156. To ask the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the circumstances in which it is assumed that an overpayment of jobseeker's allowance had taken place in the case of a person (details supplied); the extent to which current weekly deductions are being made; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [3139/20]

Photo of Regina DohertyRegina Doherty (Meath East, Fine Gael)
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The person concerned was in receipt of a jobseeker payment that included an increase in respect of a Qualified Adult from 5thFebruary 2018 to 28thAugust 2018.

Persons in receipt of means-tested payments are obliged to inform the Department of any change in their means or circumstances which may affect the rate of payment.

During the course of review of the person's entitlement, it came to light that the person's spouse was in employment. My Department wrote to the person 31stAugust 2018 to inform them of the potential overpayment and offered an opportunity to comment within 14 days, but the person did not do so.

A revised decision on the person's entitlement to a jobseeker payment was issued on 9thNovember 2018. This letter explained the reason for the decision and outlined how the overpayment was calculated. This correspondence was returned to my Department by An Post, noting that the person concerned no longer resided at the address provided. As my Department did not have a forwarding address for the person, this notification could not be re-issued to the customer at that time.

Deductions in respect of the overpayment have not yet commenced. My Department is happy to write to the person concerned at the address provided by the Deputy or, alternatively, the customer can contact the local Intreo Centre to discuss the overpayment.


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