Robodebt settlement: Disappointing payday for Robodebt victims

Some victims of the Robodebt debacle have taken to social media to express their anger at receiving tiny settlement amounts, some less than $1.Last week, Services Australia finished calculating the settlement for eligible registered group members of the 2019 Robodebt class action. While most were set to receive $50 to $300, others were lucky to get a full dollar.“Glad to know the years of angst, torturous phone calls, admin time on finding seven year old bank statements, to reverse the initial Robodebt, amounted to a nice settlement payment of 6 cents, with an additional bonus one cent! (I rarely use sarcasm, but..),” wrote one victim on Twitter.To which another replied: “We got royally screwed over. I’m so devastated … Gordon Legal have buggered this up.”“Got my #robodebt settlement. Don’t worry, I won’t spend it all at once,” wrote another, alongside an image showing he would be paid $17.90.“I got $1.12 for my Robodebt settlement. That doesn’t even cover the fuel it probably took to drive to Centrelink, let alone the 4 hours I had to take off work to sort out their mistake,” shared another.Even $1.12 was big though, compared to many people who took to Reddit to share their settlement payments of far less than a dollar.Some even began to wonder what the lawyers got out of the whole thing: “What did the lawyers get from it? Another yacht worth perhaps?” wrote one Twitter user.The answer is, Melbourne law firm Gordon Legal who handled the class action, received $10.3 million of the total $112 million win, to cover costs.The rest of the repayments were calculated individually, based on the interest that would have ben paid on the incorrectly taken money.“It depended on individual circumstances,” a Gordon Legal representative told“It depended how much money was paid and how long it had been taken for — then it was calculated using the Federal Court’s interest rate.“The settlement payment is a separate thing from the refund. It was in addition.”It’s important to note that refunds were already sent out. This settlement payment was essentially the interest that would have been earned on the Robodebt money.Originally published as Fury over disappointing payday for Robodebt victims