Patricia Pearl - Small Claims Procedure - A Practical Guide


An excellent guide for the layperson in how to use the County Court - a must if you are intending to start a claim.

£19.99 + £1.50 (P&P)

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  1. #1
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    Default Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    Right, this started last July and has still not been resolved. I have a Customer Liaison Executive ringing me tomorrow so I want to be prepared. I shall give it to you all in one hit so please grab a coffee and put your feet up! I want to know where I stand and basically how I can get them off my back!!

    On Thursday 26th July I was cold-called, I sortof knew the guy so we chatted about a few problems I had with BT. He "sold" me on TalkTalk regarding the upcoming free broadband and painfree transferring. He said it would cost me nothing to transfer. During our conversation (once he was indoors) my husband asked him to confirm that it wouldn't cost us anything and he confirmed it. Anyway, did the paperwork, he said we'd be transferred within about 3 weeks and he was on his way.

    After he had left I looked through the paperwork, and it said there was a 29.99 charge for the modem, I also looked through the welcome booklet, which said on page 3 to refer to page 5 regarding free broadband. Page 5 had nothing on it except Talk3 International. So I pondered over the weekend.

    On Monday 30th July I phone to query and "Roxanne" confirmed the modem fee and couldn't understand what I was saying about the free broadband/booklet. I wasn't entirely happy so on 31st July I sent a letter of Cancellation, "in accordance with the Consumer Protection (Distance Selling) Regulations 2000." I also cancelled my direct debiticon, so they couldn't take any money from me!! Within this period I received my Welcome Letter, which I ignored.

    On 22nd August TalkTalk sent me a letter regarding broadband, asking me to contact them to request a MAC. I didn't call.

    On 23rd August I received a First Invoice for 52.76. Somewhat perturbed by this I immediately phoned them up, was told that they had received the Cancellation Letter and was transferred to the Disconnection Team. I was on hold for over 10 minutes, so as my dinner was on the point of burning I hung up and sent an email later that evening instead.

    On 30th August I received an email which said "Our records show that you did in fact contact us on 31st July via letter and requested to cancel your account. I can assure you that we do try and learn from our mistakes or criticism given, in order to avoid errors being repeated. With regard to the outstanding balance of 52.76, I have requested for this to be cleared from your account as this includes line rental cahrge, call plan charge and the connection fee of 29.99, which as a goodwill gestureicon will not be required. As we have not cancelled your account on request you will only be liable for any call charges you may accumulate whilst your service is with us." I awaited a revised invoice.

    On 11th September I recevied a reminder to the original invoice.

    On 10th October I received a Final Demand, now for 81.37.

    On Friday 2nd November I received a telephone callicon from Mr McKay at BCW for 121.53. I told him that I was still waiting for a revised, calls only, invoice. I told him of the email from TalkTalk and he asked that it be forward to him, which I did.

    On Tuesday 6th November I received another phone callicon from BCW. I spoke to Louise who put the account on hold pending looking at the email.

    Nothing else was heard until March this year, when the BCW calls started again.

    On 11th March Morag phoned. They now want over 200. Prior to this I had received no breakdown and no correspondence. She told me to talk to TalkTalk. She said the account was on hold for 3 weeks back in November.

    So, I then phoned Trisha, who transferred me to Customer Services - I was on hold for 15 minutes. I waited as I wanted it sorted.

    I spoke to Anousha. I wanted to know how the hell they had come up with this figure. Apparently there was a 70 Disconnection Fee as the account had gone live - I refused to agree to that as I had never agreed to the account going live. I reminded her that I had cancelled the contract within the agreed time. There was also a 90 day bad debt arrears, I told her I wasn't paying those either, as far as I was concerned I didn't owe them any money, other than the calls for which I was waiting for an invoice. She went off and chatted to her Supervisor and came back saying that the calls amounted to 11.12. She asked me to pay there and then, which I couldn't as I didn't have any cards with me and that I wanted written confirmation that was the amount owing.

    I then phoned BCW back and spoke to Stephen, who sounded somehwat put out that the debt of over 200 had shrunk to 11.12. I asked him at what point was I going to actually receive a letter from BCW and he said that two had been sent out, one in October and one in March. I categorically stated that I had not received any at all (which I hadn't)

    I still hadn't received anything in writing from TalkTalk so on 31st March I sent via Recorded Delivery, a cheque for 11.12 In Full & Final Settlement of my account with TalkTalk, in accordance with my conversation with Anousha. I asked for written acknowledgement of the letter and confrimation of Full & Final Settlement, and that BCW were also informed. "Should I receive any other communication, other than the acknowledgement, I shall, without further warning, be contacting OFCOM"

    Needless to say on 2nd April the Customer Liaison Executive called and left a message, wanting to discuss the account. I didn't call back as I feel I have wasted enough of my time and energy on this already.

    On 3rd April I receive a call from BCW, a Miss McGee. The 3 week dispute is over and TalkTalk want their money. I told her that as far as I am concerned it could go to court, I'd look forward to it. In fact I wanted my day in court as TalkTalk have a reputation for this kind of practice. The call took the wind out of my sails a bit as I thought it was pretty much all over. I had forgotten to take her name so I called back and spoke to Alan Scott, in Customer Services, who gave me her name, told me that he would contact TalkTalk and that I hadn't done anything wrong and shouldn't worry. That same evening Nick, from TalkTalk called on behalf of the CLE and spoke briefly to my husband, as I was at work.

    On 7th April Nick called again, advising me that he was phoning on behalf of Sean Kelly, the CLE, and would be refunding me the 52.76, they would charge me for the calls, etc which would leave an outstanding balance of 85+, at which point I wasn't listening any more! I tried to explain the situation, starting with the cold-call, then the letter of cancellation, etc. He advised me that it would be best if I spoke to Sean Kelly and he would ring tomorrow (today!)

    Anyway, I was at work when he rang, so he left a message. I called back but got through to Customer Support at Carphone Warehouse, who transferred me to the TalkTalk section, which turned out to be Meshka in South Africa! She put an email to Mr Kelly asking him to ring me tomorrow. Since then I have had another call from Nick, asking if I spoke to Sean Kelly!

    HELP - I THINK IT'S A CONSPIRACY TO SEND ME MAD!!!!!!!

    Did I do anything wrong, and what's my next step?????

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    Yes - you did absolutely EVERYTHING wrong !!!

    (only joking - take a deep breath)

    No, what you have done is fine - unfortunately, the majority of correspondence was on the phone and, as you may have discovered, this does not help you at all.

    I would suggest writing a letter tomorrow, detailing what you have written here, stating clearly THIS account is in disputeicon. Copy a letter to BCW.

    Advise that if they are not prepared to agree, you wish to have a "dead-locked" letter so that you may refer the matter to OTELLO.

    All help is merely my opinion only - please seek legal advice if you need to as I am only qualified in SEN law.
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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    So basically my Letter of Cancellation is absolutely worthless!?!?

    As far as I am concerned I did not, and do not, have an account with TalkTalk. They saw fit to open the account, I only ever received one invoice from them and I even went without a landline for a while expecting this to all be sorted out.

    I am in the process of helping my daughter with a BT dispute, but despite asking time and again, both with BT in her case, and TalkTalk in mine, they won't put anything down in writing. So where the hell does that leave us, the Consumer? If I charged out my time in all the manhours (or womanhours) goodness knows how much these particular cases have cost! As for the stress and frustration that can't be measured!!!!

    My daughter has written time and time again to BT and headed it Account in Dispute - nothing gets done for the 3-week dispute period and then the calls/letters start all over again!

    Sorry tiglet, not sounding off at you, just soooo frustrated!! Yes, the majority has been done on the phone, but I have it in writing that they received my Cancellation Letter and that I should just pay for the call charges, yet this varies from between 218.21 to 11.12. I used my right within the Law to cancel the contract within the 7 working day period - I am not in the wrong here!

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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    Oh yes, and what do I tell Mr Kelly when he rings tomorrow?


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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    She asked me to pay there and then, which I couldn't as I didn't have any cards with me
    How lucky. If you had used a card, you would now be trying to get the overpaymenticon back from them as they would have taken the lot.

    Tell Mr Kelly to listen to the phone callsicon and read the notes. If they don't record the calls then that is their problem. Tell him this is the last time you will talk to him and that you will now only converse in writing.

    You really are making it hard for yourself by continuing to talk on the phone to them.


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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    Yes Conniff, I understand what you are saying but I have asked them on a number of occasions to only communicate in writing - doesn't seem to be part of their remit!


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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    You must refuse any further conversations with them on the phone.

    Write to them saying this is the last correspondence you will enter into. Remind them that you cancelled within the first week, you have paid for the calls, mostly to them, and the matter is now closed.

    After you write you 'must' ignore any further calls or you are only elongating the whole saga.

    Let them take you to court if they wish, you have the cancellation confirmation letter and a bank statement showing payment and that is all you need.

    They are only doing this because they don't come under the cosumer credit act and think they can get away with it.


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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    Who doesn't come under the consumer crediticon Act, as both TalkTalk (Carphone Warehouse) and BCW are phoning me.

    The cheque hasn't been banked yet, as it was only recently sent, following my conversation with Anousha. And on a final note, my last letter to them asked for communication only in writing.

    Well, I'm off to scout the interweb for Mr Kelly's address!


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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    Hi Ingrid, firstly all utilities (telecoms, gas, light & heat) are exempt from CCA!

    Secondary BCW i take you mean BCW Group Plc , they are nothing more than a debt collectoricon Agency, most likely Carphone Warehouse sold them this debt that CW could not collect them self.

    See the link below on how to deal with DCAs!

    Dealing with DCA's phone calls - The Consumer Forums

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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    Thanks ASIIndustries! Yes, Buchanan Clark & Wells, acting on behalf of Carphone Warehouse TalkTalk. The first written notification from them that I have received is 11th March - funny how I received that particular letter and no previous correspondence after I told them I haven't received anything previously!

    I have been dealing with Moorcroft with my daughter, so I really should know better! Just got drawn in I'm afraid! I actually thought they might do something about this whole stupid mess!

    Have been re-looking through the paperwork this morning, my Welcome Pack said I was going live on 10th August, 10 days after my Cancellation Letter was sent to them. That should have given them more than enough time to act on my letter! Unfortunately, I couldn't "see" when the activation took place, so was under the misguided notion that cpwicon/TT would adhere to my request for cancellation. Strikes me as sharp practice.

    I strongly believe I was mis-soldicon the contract, which was why I cancelled it. The guy speaks to me on Thursday night and I send a letter on Tuesday, so I'm well within the timeframe! Now they want me to pay for their "mistake"! I told Alan Scott from BCW to tell his Clients to train their salespeople better - the guy who sold me the contract now drives a van for a bottled water company!

    Having gone back to BT, their advisor suggested reporting CPW/TT to OFCOM (though he must have meant Otelo!) So it looks like more time and money is going to be spent doing that!


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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    Hi Ingrid, firstly it is not Consumer Protection (Distance Selling) Regulations that you require, but the Consumer Protection (Cancellation of Contracts Concluded away from Business Premises) Regulations also known as the Doorstep Selling Regulations.

    The Distance Selling Regulations only apply if you buy something over the web, phone or mail order.

    Doorstep Selling Regulations 1987
    The Consumer Protection (Cancellation of Contracts Concluded away from Business Premises) Regulations 1987

    Doorstep Selling Regulations 1998
    Statutory Instrument 1998 No. 3050

    Consumer Direct: Doorstep selling
    Consumer Direct - Doorstep selling

    See post #5
    Unknown Debt - right name! - The Consumer Forums

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  12. #12
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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    Bummer! So I cancelled quoting the wrong regulation!! Where does that leave me now then? I've got the TalkTalk order in front of me, with a Summary Terms and Conditions for Telecommunication Services on the reverse. The only reference to cancellation is in a box at the top headed IMPORTANT!

    If you ordered any Service (as defined below) from us either over the internet, by telephone, by mail order or by any other distance selling method you may cancel the Contract (as defined below) pursuant to the Consumer Protection (Distance Selling) Regulations 2000 ("Regulations") at any time up to 7 working days either after receiving these terms and conditions for any Service or is sooner up to but not including, the date of our supply of that Service to you commences ("Trial Period") provided that you notify us in writing of such cancellation within the Trial Period and return any goods.....etc
    The guy who sold it to me did not suggest what I should do should I wish to cancel, so I just took it off there. I initialed a box on the Contract Checklist that says "I am also aware that I can change my mind and cancel the request within 14 days"

    Mr Kelly has just phoned, and it was his suggestion that he writes his version of events to myself, with his offer of settlement. I agreed that it would be best to have it in writing, he suggested ringing me to discuss it, I said no, I would reply back to him in writing. I asked if he was aware that I had cancelled the contract, he said he would be writing to me. I asked if he was aware of my telephone conversations, particularly with Anousha, and he said he was aware of the case, but not my conversation with Anousha.

    He said there are time limits set asideicon so he would get a letter sent out to me today or tomorrow.

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  13. #13
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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    Hopefully you will get something in writing this time round - it will help you in the long run if it ever needs to go to court.

    All help is merely my opinion only - please seek legal advice if you need to as I am only qualified in SEN law.
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  14. #14
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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    Got the reply - not quite sure where it leaves me now!

    Dear Mrs ............

    Thank you for the courtesy extended towards me in our telephone conversation on 9th April 2008.

    I have fully investigated your case and can see that you did send in your letter requesting to cancel, which we received on the 8th August 2007. (I definitely sent it on 31st July as I knew time was important!) Unfortunately your services were still transferred. I again apologise for the fact that we took over your line even though you had sent in a letter. You were offered a credit back of 52.76 but this was not credited, (it was never taken from my account as I cancelled the direct debiticon as soon as I sent my cancellation letter), as an offer of good will I will add this credit plus another 10 for the mistake today. (To be honest, I am grateful of the gesture, but it will not cover the cost of Recorded Delivery letters, or the telephone callsicon to BCW and TalkTalk!)

    You were informed on the 30th August 2007 that if you did not want to use our service then you would need to contact BT. This did not happen and your service stayed with us. (I did contact BT but they had no record of my account and said they were unable to help me. TalkTalk advised that the only way to disconnect the line was by removing all services completely. This did eventually happen, after initially only allowing incoming calls, then complete cessation) I have cleared the 70 disconnection charge but all the charges from 30th August until you disconnected on the 22nd January 2008 still apply these total 74.30. (There is no breakdown of the charges, I still only have the original invoice of 52.76, so I'm not sure how the charges are made up)

    The offer detailed above is my Full and finalicon offer and will stand until the 18th of April, after which it will be with drawn as all internal escalation processes have been exhausted at this stage.

    I hope that my written response has resolved your concerns. Should you, however have any remaining questions, please do not hesitate to contact me on my direct line......"

    So, the ball is now being thrown back at me.

    Oh, and my cheque sent in my letter headed IN FULL & FINAL SETTLEMENT for 11.12 was debited from my bank account on 10th April.

    What should I do now?





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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    Nothing. You offered a final settlement by cheque - and they cashed it. End of story. Any further demands should be met with a full rejection of any claim they may continue to make. Do get a copy of your cashed cheque, as you'll need this to prove your case.


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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    Thanks buzby, that's pretty much what I thought. Wasn't sure if I had to put without prejudiceicon or something similar on my letter, but there is no mistaking that my letter was In Full & Final Settlement, and in accepting the cheque they have accepted my written offer.

    Do I ignore Mr Kelly's letter, or do I answer his points?


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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    It would be courteous to respond - just say that you note the company has accepted your cheque that was sent IF&FS, and are delighted the matter is now settled.

    You might as well state the obvious!


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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    Well, just had a phone callicon from Mr Kelly asking if I had received his letter and given it any thought!

    He's ringing again tomorrow! Is this reasonable, given I have written and told him all correspondence should be in writing, and I also told him in our phone conversation last week (as per my post on 9th April) that I would reply in writing.

    Does nobody listen anymore?


  19. #19
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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    Sooo, he didn't phone me the following day, which is when he would have received my Recorded Delivery thank you letter!

    However, he did call me on Thursday and Friday, both whilst I was at work, and left a message, asking if I had given his letter any thought!

    Just a waiting game now then!


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    Default Re: Ongoing saga with TalkTalk despite cancelling Doorstep Selling Contract

    In writing only, honey ...

    All help is merely my opinion only - please seek legal advice if you need to as I am only qualified in SEN law.
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