Overpayments and the pay system
If you have been overpaid, find out how to report them and how to get ready for the upcoming tax season.
Record your overpayment
Current year overpayments will not be included on your tax slips until they are recorded in the pay system during the current tax year. It is not necessary for the overpayment to be recovered, or for recoveries to have started, in order to exclude the overpayment from your tax slip.
Why do I have an overpayment?
Overpayments usually occur when certain pay transactions are not submitted or processed promptly. To avoid overpayment situations, it is important to submit transactions that impact a change in pay into Phoenix as soon as possible. A reference guide is available to assist you in understanding your role and the requirements for each of the various pay events.
Overpayments are most often a result of the following situations:
- an employee’s acting pay did not stop when their acting assignment ended
- an employee is (or was) on Leave Without Pay (LWOP) and continues to receive their pay
- an employee received an allowance that they were not entitled to
How can I avoid an overpayment from appearing on my tax slip?
You can avoid having an overpayment appear on your tax slip by ensuring pay transactions are processed in Phoenix in advance. As a first step, you should confirm that any transactions that could cause an overpayment, such as leave without pay, have been entered, submitted and approved by your manager prior to the start of your leave without pay. The sooner transactions are submitted, the better.
To see if an overpayment has been recorded (accessible only on the Government of Canada network) in Phoenix, log in to Phoenix Self-Service and check for a pay stub with a Net Pay of $0.00.
Once your overpayment is recorded in Phoenix, your earnings and the applicable boxes will be adjusted to ensure that your tax slip(s) are accurate. It is not necessary for the overpayment to be recovered, or for recoveries to have started, in order for the tax slips to be adjusted. If the overpayment is recorded in Phoenix during a different calendar year and after the tax slip(s) were issued, you will receive amended tax slip(s) for that year reflecting the adjusted amounts.
Will I be notified if I have an overpayment?
You will receive a letter advising you of an overpayment on your account once the overpayment has been recorded in Phoenix. This letter will provide you with a detailed explanation of the amount owing, the cause of the overpayment, instructions and the deadline to acknowledge the letter, as well as flexible repayment options available to you.
A pay stub with a Net Pay of $0.00 also indicates that an overpayment has been recorded in Phoenix. You can log in to Phoenix Self-Service and check for any pay stubs with a Net Pay of $0.00 to see if an overpayment has been recorded (accessible only on the Government of Canada network) in Phoenix.
If you return the acknowledgment letter within the deadline specified in the overpayment letter, once all your transactions are processed and you have received 3 consecutive correct pays, you will receive another letter detailing the final amount and information as to when the recoveries will begin.
How do I report my overpayment?
If you have been overpaid, or suspect that you may have an overpayment, you should speak with your manager to ensure all transactions have been submitted to your HR unit and are approved in the pay system. You can also consult the important information about overpayments and taxes.
Do I need to repay my overpayment right away?
If you have returned your completed acknowledgement letter, you are not required to start your repayment until:
- all your outstanding pay transactions have been addressed
- you have received 3 consecutive correct pay cheques
- and you have confirmed a recovery agreement
If you have not returned the letter within the deadline specified in your overpayment letter, the recovery at the default rate will start immediately.
If you require additional information or support, employees and managers from all government departments can contact the Client Contact Centre.
- Overpayments and options to repay them
- Flexible recovery of overpayments, emergency salary advances and priority payments
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