Social Security Experience Panels: overpayments

This report outlines the Social Security Experience Panels views expressed in a survey about overpayments.

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The overpayments survey was completed by 141 panel members. Just over half (56 per cent) of Experience Panels members who responded to this survey had experience of receiving an overpayment from a government body. The majority of those with experience rated their experience as a negative one. Participants suggested that it was often difficult to contact DWP and that communication was poor. Many also expressed the view that repaying an overpayment was a time consuming process. Furthermore, participants spoke of how the client was rarely to blame or at fault for the overpayment. 

Participants were asked how they would like to be contacted by Social Security Scotland if an overpayment were to occur. The two most popular methods of contact were post (73 per cent) and email (49 per cent).

Participants were also asked where they would like to pay back an overpayment. The most popular option was over the internet with almost half of participants selecting this option (48 per cent). We also asked how participants would like to pay back an overpayment. Agreeing to have the overpayment taken from future benefits and by setting up a direct debit or standing order were the most popular options.

Very few participants selected that they would like to pay back an overpayment in full in one lump sum.



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