The Guides to Social Policy Law is a collection of publications designed to assist decision makers administering social policy law. The information contained in this publication is intended only as a guide to relevant legislation/policy. The information is accurate as at the date listed at the bottom of the page, but may be subject to change. To discuss individual circumstances please contact Services Australia.

6.3.4 Methods of debt recovery


A debt owed to the Commonwealth is recoverable by one or more of the following means:

  • legal proceedings
  • garnishee notice
  • debt payment arrangements
  • deductions from instalments payable to another person for the same child
  • recovery from an ADI, if the debt arises from a payment to the wrong person, or the amount is to be recovered from a deceased estate, and/or
  • deduction or setting off in relation to a payment to which the debtor (or another person) is entitled under another Act, but only if the other Act expressly provides for recovery of the debt by such deduction or setting off.

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