New Zealand Law
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You can ask for the decision to be reviewed as WINZ has a system of a review, and then you can further appeal to the Social Security Appeal Authority. You should challenge the backdating if you weren't living together at the time, and make sure you tell them that you were open about the new relationship. If they want to force you to pay, then they would need to make a claim in court and you would have a defence that you acted in reliance on the payments being correct and changed your position relying on their pay,nets being correct. This won't necessarily end this, but should help negotiate a figure you can actually afford