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Robo-debt class action letter from Centrelink

In late May 2020, Centrelink issued a class action notice (the Notice) to more than 500,000 people who may have a robo-debt, advising them they have until 29 June to opt out of the class action.

In late May 2020, Centrelink issued a class action notice (the Notice) to more than 500,000 people (past and present) who may have a robo-debt, advising them they have until 29 June to opt out of the class action. The class action is being brought by private law firm, Gordon Legal, and relates to the controversial program where Centrelink debts were raised using averaged information from the Australian Tax Office. Centrelink has already conceded that key elements of this program were unlawful in response to litigation initiated by Victoria Legal Aid on behalf of clients. Gordon Legal's class action seeks compensation for the large number of people affected by this program.

The notice includes complicated information about the class action, and advises people to contact Gordon Legal. VLA have had a surge in numbers of people calling as a result of this letter.

Key information for VLA clients

VLA is not providing advice about this Notice. People seeking advice or with questions about the Notice should contact Gordon Legal, the firm bringing the litigation, or visit their website. Contact details for Gordon Legal are included in the Notice.

See Gordon Legal—Robodebt class action(opens in a new window).

Class action options

The VLA website has information to explain what a class action is and to explain the options someone has if they get a notice.

See 'Robo-debt class action and opt-out notice' under Robo debts(opens in a new window).

Clients who get this notice are likely to have (or to have had) a Centrelink debt. People can seek to have their debt reviewed, even after they have paid them off. There is no time limit for seeking a review.

VLA has comprehensive information about Centrelink debts and how to seek a review, on its website.

See Robo debts(opens in a new window).

Updated