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Expected to Work/Barriers to Full Employment Policy & Procedures

Published Date: January 01, 2019
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18 Overpayment, Debt and Recovery

No Repayment of an Overpayment

AUTHORITY
Income and Employment Support Act (IESA), section 35(5)


INTENT

To guide the circumstances under which it is appropriate for a client, financial administrator or third party to be exempt from the requirement to repay an assessed overpayment or a benefit they were not entitled to receive.

POLICY

Repayment of an overpayment is required and will not be waived by the Director in the following instances:

  1. The person received the benefit by fraud; or
  2. In the Director’s opinion, the person received the benefit by willful misrepresentation; or
  3. The overpayment is the result of a signed repayment agreement; or
  4. The overpayment is the result of a default sponsorship agreement.


This policy is not intended to apply in circumstances where the overpayment has crystallized into a debt.

Appropriate Circumstances – No Repayment of an Overpayment
Under the Income and Employment Supports Act (IESA), section 35(5), the Director (or delegate) has authority to waive a person’s requirement to repay an overpayment.  Appropriate circumstances for the Director (or delegate) to waive a person’s requirement to repay an overpayment are as follows.

A. Overpayment is Less than $50
Overpayments valued at less than $50 for any Period of Assistance (POA) are waived from the requirement to repay. This includes overpayments that accumulate over numerous POAs, to a total of $50 or greater, but which are less than $50 per POA.


B. Time Elapsed is Longer than Three Years
If an overpayment, in its entirety, is for a period older than three years from the date it is discovered, it is waived from the requirement to repay.  If an overpayment extends back farther than three years, but continued within the last three years, then the overpayment is not considered to be older than three years.

C. Administrative Error
If an overpayment is wholly the result of Administrative Error caused by program, it is generally waived from the requirement to repay.

D. Other Circumstances
If circumstances A to C do not apply, the totality of the situation is considered when determining if an overpayment should be waived.  Some factors that are considered, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Whether the client made a reasonable effort to advise the program of their circumstances;
  • Whether the client was aware that the benefit was issued in error;
  • Whether the client’s disability or medical condition contributed to the error;
  • The extent of the client’s role in the creation of the overpayment (versus the extent of the program’s role in the creation of the overpayment);
  • The client’s financial situation; and
  • Whether the client benefitted directly or indirectly from the overpayment.

Note:
The Appeal Panel has jurisdiction to rule upon the Director’s (or delegate’s) decision to waive a person’s requirement to repay an overpayment.