Debt Collection from Social Security Recipients to Be Frozen
Typically, the National Insurance Institute (NII) is the sole creditor permitted to collect debts from people receiving subsistence benefits or child allowances by reducing the amount of benefits provided. On 19.3.2020 ACRI appealed to the director general of the NII, along with Haifa University’s Clinic for the Realization of Rights in Civil Proceedings, requesting a freeze on debt collection from recipients of such benefits, given the difficult economic situation residents of Israel have been compelled to contend with during the Corona crisis. Attorneys Meskit Bendel of ACRI and Reut Cohen of the Clinic noted that any current reduction in the amount of these benefits would gravely compromise recipients’ right to live in dignity, and harm their material and physical well-being.
Following the appeal, the NII informed us that it will not collect new debts from recipients of such benefits until June. We applaud this decision, and will continue to urge the NII to expand the freeze to existing debts.