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How to Stop Unauthorised Withdrawals from your SASSA Grant?

For many South Africans, the social grants provided by the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) are a crucial source of income and support. However, instances of unauthorized deductions from these grants can severely undermine their intended purpose, leaving recipients in a precarious financial situation. If you have noticed suspicious charges on your SASSA card, it is imperative that you take action to dispute and halt these unlawful deductions.

In this article we will outline the key steps you can take.

Common Types of Unauthorized Deductions

SASSA grant beneficiaries frequently report encountering the following types of unauthorized deductions:

  • Life Insurance Premiums – Payments for life insurance policies that were obtained without the recipient’s full knowledge or consent.
  • Airtime and Data Purchases – Charges for airtime or data bundles that the recipient did not authorize or initiate.
  • Loan Repayments – Deductions for loan agreements that the recipient did not knowingly enter into or approve.
  • Funeral Policy Premiums – Costs associated with funeral or burial plans that were signed up for without the recipient’s explicit consent.

How to Check Your SASSA Balance and Transaction History?

The first step in addressing unauthorized deductions is to closely monitor your SASSA grant transactions and account balance. You can check your balance through the following methods:

  • Using your SASSA card at retailers that offer balance check services.
  • Visiting a SASSA office or pay point location.
  • Calling the SASSA balance inquiry line at 120301#.

To view your full transaction history and identify any unauthorized deductions, you can:

  • Visit your nearest SASSA office in person.
  • Call the SASSA helpline at 0800 60 10 11 to request a statement.

Carefully review your transaction history and flag any unfamiliar or unauthorized deductions for further investigation and dispute.

How to Stop and Dispute Unauthorised SASSA Deductions?

If you discover unauthorized deductions on your grant statement, you can initiate a SASSA dispute process by contacting SASSA directly:

Step 1: Gather Relevant Information

  • Record the names of the companies or entities responsible for the unauthorized deductions.
  • Note the exact amounts and dates of the unauthorized deductions.
  • Calculate the total sum of money that has been deducted without your consent.

Step 2: Submit an SMS Dispute

Text the following details to Q-link on “34548”:

  • Topic: Dispute
  • Your ID number
  • Your full name and surname (as it appears on your official identification document)
  • FSP Name: The name of the company or entity you are disputing
  • Duration of the Deductions: How long the unauthorized deductions have been occurring
  • Reason for Dispute: “I did not sign a contract/misrepresentation”

Step 3: Follow Up By Phone

Call the SASSA helpline at 0800 60 10 11 to ensure that your dispute has been received and to request any additional steps or documentation that may be required. Be prepared to provide supporting documents if requested.

What is the Typical Timeframe for SASSA Dispute Resolution?

The timeline for resolving a dispute can vary on a case-by-case basis. Simple unauthorized airtime deduction disputes may be resolved within days or weeks, while more complex disputes involving unauthorized loans or policies could take over a month to resolve.

Can You Get Your Deducted Funds Back?

If SASSA determines that the deductions were clearly unauthorized and illegal, you may be eligible for a refund of the full amounts deducted. However, refund policies and success rates can vary, so it is advisable to seek official clarification from SASSA regarding the potential for a refund in your specific case.

Preventing Future Unauthorized Deductions

Once your dispute has been resolved, it is crucial to take proactive steps to prevent further unauthorized deductions from occurring:

  • Never share your SASSA card PIN with anyone, under any circumstances.
  • Ignore and hang up on marketing calls or texts requesting your card details or personal information.
  • Exercise caution and thoroughly review any SASSA-linked credit or loan agreements before signing.
  • Make it a habit to check your statements monthly for any unfamiliar or unauthorized deductions.
  • Report lost or stolen SASSA cards immediately to prevent unauthorized access and charges.

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