Lost SASSA Grant Money? Learn How to Recover It via Dispute

Lost SASSA Grant Money? Learn How to Recover It via Dispute

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By Anele Zulu

The South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) provides monthly grants to over 19 million vulnerable South Africans. These grants serve as a vital lifeline for many people. However, some unscrupulous companies are illegally deducting money from people’s SASSA grants without their consent.

If you find an unauthorized deduction from your SASSA grant, you can lodge a dispute to get your money back. But before that let’s try to understand some basics, shall we?

How Unauthorized Deductions Happen?

Unfortunately, many companies use predatory tactics to deduct money from SASSA grants without consent. Here are some common schemes:

  • Telemarketing calls pressuring people to sign loan contracts
  • SMS messages asking people to call a number which signs them up for a “service”
  • Door-to-door salespeople persuading people to give banking details
  • Mobile apps and websites falsely claiming to assist with grants

How to Lodge a SASSA Dispute?

If you see an unauthorized deduction from your SASSA grant, you can dispute it by following the below steps:

  1. Sending an SMS: Send an SMS to 34548 with the required dispute details (see below)
  2. Calling the SASSA Helpline: 0800 60 10 11 to report unauthorized deductions
  3. Visiting a Regional SASSA Office: Speak to an agent in-person regarding the dispute

SMS Dispute Details

The SMS dispute must include the following details:

  • Topic: Dispute
  • ID Number: Your 13-digit SA ID number
  • Name and Surname: As they appear on your ID
  • FSP Name: Company that made the deduction
  • Duration of Policy: How long the deductions occurred
  • Reason for Dispute: Either “I never signed a contract” or “misrepresentation”
Unauthorized deductions

What Happens After Lodging a Dispute?

After you lodge a dispute via SMS, call, or in-person visit, here is what happens:

  • SASSA investigates the unauthorized deduction
  • The company must prove you agreed to their service and deductions
  • If no proof of consent, SASSA contacts your bank to refund deducted amounts
  • The entire investigation and refund process usually takes 6-8 weeks

How to Avoid Scams in Future?

To prevent unauthorized deductions in future:

  • Never give your SASSA card PIN or banking details to anyone
  • Don’t respond to marketing SMSs, calls, or door-to-door salespeople
  • Only use the official SASSA website (https://srd.sassa.gov.za/) and contact numbers

By being vigilant and disputing any unauthorized deductions right away, you can avoid becoming a victim of predatory scams. Report any suspicious activities related to your SASSA grant immediately.

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