Wednesday, January 23, 2008


Oh, it's all gone horribly wrong.

The attempt at GET has been called off on account of (1) me not having a bloody clue what I'm doing (see comments, previous post), and (2) me ending up feeling like I'd been scraped off the sole of my own shoe (probably because, see 1 above). I think I'll settle for: as long as I get up every day and go to work when I'm supposed to, then I'm doing quite enough.

The Inland Revenue have been sent me a nasty letter. It's to do with my Working Tax Credits claim from 2003. You don't want to be bored to death by the details - suffice to say, I haven't claimed or received any money from them since I stopped work in 2005 (because, Working Tax Credits, duh), I hadn't heard from them since 2006, I thought everything was fine, I even have a letter from them saying that I owe them nothing and they owe me nothing... but now I have a bill for over £500, which, frankly, is more than a month's wages, and an accompanying letter threatening legal action and 'interest accruing daily until the balance is zero'. I fear this may take a lot of untangling.

Steve keeps injuring himself (mostly hurting his back or his leg) and I can't do anything to help. He's also studying really intensively, so by the time I crawl in from work, we're both shuffling about like the living dead - in body and in brain - to try and prepare a semi-nutritious evening meal between the two of us. It would be comical if either of us were brain-awake enough to appreciate it.

It's the end of January. 'Nuff said.

Even my yarny is causing problems - I started turning the heel on my sock and lo, halfway through the ball, a KNOT. And not just a tangle which with care and attention might be unpicked. No, this was a proper, two definite ends of yarn, tied together in a big ugly knot. Okay, so not the end of the world, I cut it off and then started knitting again as if with a second ball... but for pity's sake, this was supposed to be my birthday-treat, make-me-happy, pleasure-to-knit-with super-nice yarny!

Send positivity soon plz.

*Note for foreign readers: Working Tax Credits are a kind of UK welfare benefit that you get if you are in full-time work, but earning less than X amount. Various factors (including children, disability, hours worked, phase of the moon, consumption of cheese etc) are taken into account when figuring out (a) what that X amount should be for each person and (b) how much Tax Credit that person should be given. The system is hugely complicated and has lurched from one catastrophe to another since it began.


Anonymous said...

*sends positivity*

good luck sorting out the Inland Revenue!

Unknown said...

Try the Tax Credit Casualties Site
It is very helpful with guiding you through disputing this overpayment. It helped me lots.
Good Luck

Mandy said...

Don't give up on the GET. You can do this. thats me being positive :)

We all need a bit of spring sunshine or alternatively a bar of high cocoa solids chocolate.

Oh Inland Revenue, Mmmm. Good Luck!

Supermouse said...

70% might be something to bear in mind. It's not a cure, but it does help many people get through it. I hope things get better soon.

Anonymous said...

*applies tea*

Mary said...

Thanks everyone.

Maggie said...

HI Mary, thanks for dropping by and enquiring after me - it's nice to know that I'm missed! ;-)

Took a long time to begin to pull back after the norovirus, and then John brought me a delightful cold home from work. So been spending rather more time in bed than planned.

I'm trying my own version of GET which consists of getting up and dressed every day. Though not doing too well on it yet what with the cold and all.

Today we're off to Abersoch to see a new (to us) caravan which is quite exciting. I have instructions to take lots of photos for John's Mum to see. Hopefully if we like it it'll be sited by the beginning of March ready for the start of the season.

Sorry to hear you're feeling ground down by the GET - the thing that I try to remember is "baby steps". You've already made a giant stride by beginning work, so be a bit kind to yourself for now. Suspect it will be easier to make some more progress with the lighter evenings once horrid January is over.

Hope you get the Revenue sorted out soon. What a nightmare for you.

Hugs from Liverpool

Anonymous said...

I remember saying to you once that you can't quit the tax credits system. We were specifically told this when I used to work there (FYI in the building where those Child Benefit discs went missing from).
We used to have to phone people to ask if their information is correct and we had loads of people telling us "it's crap I just want to cancel it" Feel sorry for the poor computer monkey who has just phoned you who then has to tell you "I'm afraid we're not able to cancel it what you should do is put any money we give you into a separate account and when we ask for it back then you won't have spent it" These are the same people who set up the CSA (I assume) It's a shambles and I really really hope it's able to be sorted out with the minimum of fuss although I doubt it.

Good Luck

Mary said...

Hi Roxy - yes, I remember that conversation. I guess I should repeat now what I said then because it is important: all the frontline staff I have spoken to on the phone have been nice people, who have behaved in a supportive and professional manner and really tried to help me.

It's the system that is at fault. If nothing else, it needs at least to have a Department Of No, Really, That's Enough Now, Let's Leave This Poor Bugger Alone.