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Comcare Overpayment or Comcare Debt?

Comcare Overpayments

Just because Comcare has sent you a debt letter claiming for an overpayment does not necessarily mean you have been overpaid and owe them money.

Elringtons is looking for people who have been sent overpayment letters for a new type of Federal Court claim. We want to help people who, through no fault of their own, have been burdened with a debt claim by Comcare in unfair circumstances.

[accordion clicktoclose=true tag=p][accordion-item title=”When can Comcare claim a debt for overpayment?“]

The law which governs Comcare claims is called the Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988 (‘the Act’).

When you make a Comcare claim and it is accepted, Comcare is liable to pay you compensation if you satisfy certain eligibility criteria. For example, if you are incapacitated for work because of your injury, Comcare must pay you weekly payments.

Section 114 of the Act permits Comcare to recover overpayments in certain circumstances. These are:

  1. You have been paid compensation because of a false or misleading statement or representation made by you to Comcare; OR
  2. You have been paid compensation which should not have been paid; OR
  3. There is a specific part of the Act which states you must pay the amount (for example, if you receive compensation from another source).

Points 1 and 3 above are reasonably straight forward. It is point 2 which, we say, can result in injustices.

[/accordion-item][accordion-item title=”Compensation which should not have been paid“]

  1. Comcare makes a decision that a person is entitled to compensation;
  2. Comcare pays the compensation;
  3. At a later date and after the compensation is paid, Comcare changes its mind and revokes their earlier decision which stated compensation should be paid;
  4. Comcare claims that because of the new decision which revoked the earlier decision, compensation should not have been paid; and
  5. Comcare claims as a debt the compensation on the basis it was an overpayment.

We say this is wrong!

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This will depend on the exact reason Comcare claims for overpayment. You cannot seek review of a decision by Comcare to claim for an overpayment. However, you can:

  1. Ask Comcare to waive all or some of the debt; or
  2. Ask Comcare to not enforce all or some of the debt against you; or
  3. Request a review at the Administrative Appeals Tribunal of the decision which Comcare says gives rise to the overpayment (for example, stopping your incapacity payments); or
  4. Commence proceedings in the Federal Court on the lawfulness of Comcare’s debt claim.

[/accordion-item][accordion-item title=”What can Elringtons do to help?“]

We represent many people in Comcare claims. We can help you with:

  1. Reviewing the decision which cancelled your entitlement to compensation at the Administrative Appeals Tribunal
  2. Writing to Comcare on your behalf seeking the debt be waived (if we say the debt is owing)
  3. Commencing a Federal Court claim on the lawfulness of Comcare’s debt claim

[/accordion-item][accordion-item title=”Unlawful Debt Claims by Comcare – Clients for Federal Court Proceedings“]

There has been media coverage about Comcare’s practice of claiming debts for overpayments. We want to challenge Comcare’s practice because we think in some circumstances it is unlawful.

We are looking for people who:

  1. Have received a debt letter from Comcare;
  2. The debt claimed is due to an overpayment;
  3. You have previously received compensation paid by Comcare; and
  4. The debt arises because of a decision revoking your entitlement to compensation and Comcare now claims the compensation be paid back.

If you meet this criteria, we want to hear from you. There are strict timeframes for challenging a debt letter, so you must act quickly. However, even if it has been some time since you received your debt letter, we still want to hear from you, as in some circumstances you can extend time to commence Court action.

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About Us

We are specialist Comcare Lawyers. We represent clients in a range of matters involving physical and psychological injuries. Matt Bridger and Tom Maling are our lawyers who work with clients in Comcare matter. For more information about us, please see our Comcare homepage.

For more information or to make an obligation free appointment, please do not hesitate to contact Matt Bridger or Tom Maling:

Other Elringtons Articles

p: +61 2 6206 1300 | e: Info@elringtons.com.au


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