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Everything posted by gd47

  1. Firstly, many thanks in advance for any advice...it is very much appreciated. The basic facts are as follows... My partner has been a customer of Barclays for about 40 years! She has never been overdrawn and any loans she has had from them in the past have always been repaid exactly according to the agreements. Her age is 64 and has fallen foul of the Government's pension regulations (which is affecting many women). She is disabled and in receipt of DLA, which is her only income. I am in receipt of a basic state pension, plus an additional sum of pension credits to supplement our joint income. I have recently lost my DLA award and have failed to qualify for PIP (although an appeal is in progress)...this resulted in my partner also losing carer's allowance for me. As a result of all of this, my partner has approached Barclays and has asked if her payments could be reduced temporarily until she reaches pension age or my PIP appeal is successful. Barclays have refused outright, saying that they think she can afford to pay the full amount of £200/month as she is in receipt of DLA! This has caused her a considerable amount of distress, as she thought that they would be fairly understanding. My attitude is that she should now stop all payments and let them do whatever they can to recover their loan (my partner has no savings or assets and we live in a council flat). Obviously, this has now started to have an adverse affect on her health (having suffered from strokes in the past few years). Quite honestly, I am furious at the bank's intransigence, but would very much like to receive any advice as to how to proceed. Once again, many thanks.
  2. Hi, Just had a letter from the local council saying they are going to participate in the "Rental Exchange" scheme with Experian. Perhaps I'm being a bit over concerned, but the mention of Experian, council and sharing information immediately makes me extremely cautious! Should I opt out from this scheme? Incidentally, I have never had any rent arrears, so in theory should have nothing to worry about. Additionally, I wonder how much the council is making out of the deal, given that neither Experian nor the local council are world-renowned names in the field of philanthropy.
  3. Many thanks in advance for all advice! The situation is as follows: In February this year, my brother informed me that he couldn't cope with dealing with his local council regarding his council tax arrears (he has been suffering from extensive serious health problems, which have also affected his mental capabilities). His problems regarding council tax initially began when a direct debit payment was refused. The council were asked to set up a new direct debit, but instead repeatedly tried to collect on the old one. Eventually, my brother contacted me to try and help. To this end, I contacted the council and explained the situation. I also enclosed relevant permission from my brother authorising me to deal with the matter on his behalf. Eventually, I received a reply (after a two-week wait) requesting further information and my suggestions regarding payment. I replied by email, giving further details of health problems and the opinion that, given the circumstances, he should be classed as a vulnerable person. I also proposed payments of £100/month to cover the arrears of £700, rising in April to £200/month, the extra £100 to pay towards his 2016/17 liability. He has been paying this amount regularly and has not missed a payment. No reply has been received from the council regarding my proposal, despite payments being made in anticipation of the offer being acceptable to them. Now my brother has informed me that the council have sent him a court summons for the entire sum plus costs for 2016/17, the liability order hearing to take place on 11/07/2016. He is obviously extremely upset by all this. I have submitted a SAR to the council in order to try to find out what has been happening. Should I (or could I) apply to the court for an adjournment, given the disputed outstanding sum and the ongoing SAR? Any advice very gratefully received! Many thanks, George.
  4. Nothing quite so uplifting as previous posts, but the following story raised a grim smile (from me, anyway!).. http://www.focus-fen.net/news/2016/02/06/397387/thisisenglandorguk-migrants-in-murmansk-go-too-far-with-russian-girls-some-in-hospital-some-in-jail.html
  5. Hi, Really can't seem to get any further with this... In January I started looking round to change my energy supplier, as EDF had nearly doubled my DD just before Christmas. Eventually, I subscribed to the Cheap Energy Club on MSE, which were having an auction in order to get cheaper costs for their members. In February (can't remember the exact date) I completed the online application to change suppliers to Sainsbury's Energy. I received confirmation from Sainsbury on or around 20th February, along with terms and conditions. A couple of days later, I received another letter from Sainsbury, saying that the switch could not go ahead as I owed some money to EDF. After thinking about things for a few days, I decided to stay with EDF as they offered me their Blue Price Promise deal, so I returned a card supplied with the "Welcome to Sainsbury's Energy" pack to cancel the switch. This was posted on 27th February. However, the switch seemingly kept going through, and after phoning Sainsbury's on 19th March, having received another letter saying they were providing my gas from 30th March, I was told that they hadn't received the cancellation notice within the 14 day cooling off period, but it was a couple of days late. After a long and heated discussion, the contract was cancelled, but things still seem to be going (or have gone) ahead. EDF say my electricity account with them will go "live" in a few days but they haven't been able to recover my gas supply from Sainsbury's (this is despite paying a regular DD to EDF and also informing EDF on the 3rd March that the switch had been cancelled by myself, when they immediately sent me new contract details for the new price plan and a DD schedule!). So basically I'd like to know where I can go from here? I seem to be stuck in a limbo of constantly changing suppliers (had an email from EDF just two days ago stating "The withdrawal process has begun for your EDF Energy Electricity account.". Meanwhile, I have just this minute received an email from Cheap Energy Club congratulating me on a completed successful switch! Sorry for the long post...I just wanted to include as much information as possible. Thanks in advance, George.
  6. Thanks for your reply... I assume that it's Aqua credit card. Would it make a difference? Can Aqua re-assign it to whoever pays them the most?
  7. Had a text message from them this morning, presumably about my Aqua arrears, although no mention of Aqua. This afternoon, I received a phone call from them. It was recorded and I could upload the conversation, especially as no security questions were asked! Perhaps a moderator could give permission (the only personal information revealed is my full name, with which I have no problems giving on this forum). given my current situation (ESA support group, trying to catch up with bedroom tax) I don't suppose there is much they can do. My total debt to Aqua is £748 (£650 limit + charges, which was increased from £250 with no request from me). My other liabilities are a Vanquis card (£250,currently covered by protection plan), Capital One (£200, up to date, but probably with a few penalty charges) and a £650 Halifax overdraft (for which I have advised them of financial hardship, but they are still charging me £30/month). Sorry to ramble on a bit, but any advice would be much appreciated! Many thanks in advance, George.
  8. This is my latest reply, after having received notification that my complaint should be resolved by 27th August... Thank you for your reply dated 30/07/14. I would, however, refer you to the fact that my original complaint was delivered by hand to your XXXXXX branch on 15/05/14, almost twelve weeks ago. During this time, a further £139 has been charged in fees, despite you having been informed on more than one occasion that my income is solely Government Benefits (Employment and Support Allowance and Disability Living Allowance). I am taking this opportunity to further prove hardship by enclosing a copy of a letter received from XXXXX Council confirming the fact that my financial situation is being further pressed by my liability for the "bedroom tax" (and, rather surprisingly, an increase in council tax, which I will obviously question). I also wish to bring to your attention the provisions of the BCOBS, which appear to have been ignored in my case on quite a number of occasions, specifically: Refusing to help when asking for a loan to repay my overdraft (this was during a call to one of your telephone banking staff. This would have repaid my overdraft at a far lower rate than the monthly charges being imposed (the loan was refused because I am in receipt of Disability Living Allowance...at least that's what I was told by telephone). I have had "fees added on to fees", thus directly causing my account to be subject to "unauthorised borrowing" charges. This is specifically mentioned in the BCOB Sourcebook as being an example of a contravention. Additionally, as my original complaint has taken in excess of eight weeks to receive any kind of resolution, it would now be perfectly reasonable for me to submit it to the Financial Ombudsman Service for consideration. I am, at present, not considering taking that route purely due to the timescale involved (and also in the hope that a satisfactory outcome can be achieved in an amicable fashion). I also appreciate your invitation to telephone should I wish to discuss the matter, but my various medical problems preclude this approach by myself, therefore I request that all communications in this matter are by either email or letter. Thanking you for your understanding. Yours sincerely, Any further advice/comments gratefully received!
  9. I delivered a letter to my local Halifax branch on 15/05/2015 to try and reclaim my Ultimate Reward account premiums. No reply at all, so sent this email to David Nicholson... I apologise for having to contact you personally in this manner, but I am in a state of some desperation. On Thursday 15/05/2014, I hand-delivered a letter to my local Halifax branch (XXXXXXX) expressing my concerns that I was, in effect, mis-sold my Ultimate Rewards Account. To date, after nearly eight weeks, I have received neither a reply nor acknowledgement, which explains why I feel a need to explore further avenues of communication. This relates to an incident in August 2010, when I visited the XXXX branch in order to request an increase in my overdraft facility (mainly due to a relationship breakdown!). It was implied to me in the branch that I should open an Ultimate Reward account in order to "make this a little easier". I thought about it for a few days and opened the account online and my overdraft was duly increased. Since then, I have been advised that I may have been mis-sold the account, for a number of reasons. Firstly, it should not have been necessary to upgrade my account in order to benefit from an increased overdraft. Secondly, as I have a number of pre-existing medical conditions (I am currently in receipt of Disability Living Allowance), the included travel insurance would be rendered void. Thirdly, I do not own a car, so the breakdown cover would also not be suitable. I have therefore requested a refund of the premiums paid, which amounts to a total of £625.93p. I have suggested this sum could be used to repay my overdraft facility, currently £600, which could subsequently be removed. In addition, I have paid a total of £1463 in charges on my overdraft, which, given my only income is Disability Living Allowance and ESA, is (to me, at any rate) a considerable sum. I am not attempting to reclaim the charges, just £625.93 Ultimate Rewards premium payments. Obviously, I wish to return to a normal Reward account as soon as possible, as I have been very happy with Halifax up until this incident. Additionally, I have previously contacted Halifax (about two years ago?) with a view to obtaining a loan in order to be able to repay my overdraft. This was met with outright refusal, as I was told loans are not available for those in receipt of DLA. I have since resorted to using "Wonga" as a means of reducing my liability for unauthorised overdraft charges as, rather surprisingly, they are cheaper (in my case). I have also recently had to replace many household items (which has in itself involved considerable expense) due to my son having bought himself a property and moved (I felt I had to help him as much as possible, as a first home is always costly to equip!). Incidentally, the property was bought with a mortgage from Halifax, for which my son and myself are extremely grateful. Once again, apologies for having to contact you personally. Kind regards, If the above doesn't produce any result, would I be justified in raising the issue as a BCOBS complaint?
  10. Many thanks in advance for any advice! Basically, my circumstances are as follows: My only income is ESA and DLA. In about 2008 I opened a Halifax Reward current account. In September 2010 I upgraded it to an Ultimate Reward account in order to receive an overdraft (needed at the time because of relationship problems and having to find temporary accommodation). Halifax granted me an overdraft of £650, of which £300 was fee-free as part of the benefits of the packaged account, the remainder being charged at £1/day if used. Anything over £650 was classed as unauthorised and subject to a £5/day fee. Of course, I ended up using the entire amount and have in effect been living on the overdraft for the past four years, being unable to find a way out of my situation. I have approached the Halifax for a loan in order to repay the o/d, but have been told that because I am in receipt of DLA that I am not eligible. Meanwhile, I have been using Wonga in order to avoid the £5/day unauthorised o/day fees (always repaid promptly with no problems whatsoever). Since upgrading my account in 2010, Halifax have charged me a total of £1398 in o/d fees plus £595 packaged account fees. I just don't seem to see a way out of this mess! Once again, many thanks in advance.
  11. Thanks Consumer dude for the very quick response... I get a discount (or so I've been told!) for paying by DD.
  12. I've had an Ultimate Reward current account with the Halifax for the past few years. I'm in receipt of DLA and ESA. The £15/month charge is acceptable, given the breakdown insurance, £300 fee-free overdraft, etc. However, I have been paying on average £30/month to them for an authorised overdraft of £650 (my fault, for using the facility, I know!). I applied for a personal loan in order to repay (and cancel) my overdraft, but the response was 'No' because I was 'in receipt of DLA, a loan was not available'. In order to avoid unauthorised (and some authorised, which amounts to either £1/day or £5/day) overdraft charges I have resorted to Wonga, (which I have paid back earlier than the agreements...and have actually saved me money, very surprisingly! Back to the thread title... My DD to EDF for electricity and gas was returned unpaid as I was 64p(!) out with my authorised overdraft (after it had been paid). Yet they permit their own charges! I have had numerous '£5/day unauthorised OD fees' caused by Halifax charges alone (as well as the £1/day charge, between the £300 'free' overdraft and the £1/day fee in excess of £300). None by my exceeding my OD facilities. I'm at a complete loss as to how to move forward with this! Many thanks.
  13. Well, that's possibly some good news! Who will LegalCare turn to now? Surely not SDK law, because if so, there is a conflict of interest issue. Anyway, I'll keep everyone informed of any further developments. Oh, and many thanks slick132 for creating a new thread.
  14. Here's my reply... Dear Sir/Madam (Well, that's how you referred to me, despite my name being George...perhaps you read "The Famous Five" at one point in your sad life?). Actually, it's ME who should be taking action against YOUR client for purporting to offer me "legal" advice. The so-called "legal" advice was not even from a qualified solicitor. Irrespective it was garbage, I cancelled my "subscription" immediately via PayPal (which, as you are no doubt aware, is completely in accordance with the ruling deliverd by Mr Justice Kitchen in the case of OFT v Ashbourne Management Services Ltd). Incidentally, your client LegalCare is involved in a MLM business which is possibly on the very fringe of UK legallty. Check this link, should you have any doubts: http://10pstreet.co.uk/legal-care/ Should you wish to pursue this matter further, then by all means proceed. If you choose to do so , then I would respectfully bring to your attention the reply in the case of Arkell v. Pressdram (1971), which I would rely upon.
  15. I've started receiving 'threat-o-grams' from GPB re: LegalCare. The 'legal advice' I received from them was utterly useless and I cancelled via Paypal the same day. I was under the assumption that the advice was going to be from a qualified solicitor, which it obviously wasn't. Unfortunately for GPB, I'm fairly confident that I can put across a solid case against paying a single penny to this thoroughly unscrupulous company (LegalCare, that is...certainly not GPB, who I'm sure are paragons of virtue!). Oh, and I'll also contact Watchdog, Trading Standards and anyone else I can think of!
  16. Good point, but don't Travel Republic bear any responsibility for selling a (by virtue of local law) what, in effect, was an illegal (or at the very least an invalid) ticket?
  17. Thanks for the very quick replies! My friend's documentation was all in order...it's just that there is a 'law' (or whatever, be it CAA rules or an Egyptian law) which says that anyone who has been in Egypt for longer than a certain period of time is not allowed to leave the country on a charter flight. My point is, who is responsible for this situation? My friend was not aware when he purchased the ticket. Everyone is made aware of entrance requirements, but problems leaving a country? Quite honestly, it's not something which would even enter my head when booking a flight ticket! Should he have even been sold the ticket in the first place...after all, should not travel companies know the rules and regulations regarding the products they are selling? Once again, many thanks.
  18. I've offered a friend advice on this one, but I'm not quite sure where to start! The facts are: He booked a return flight ticket to Hurghada from Manchester through Travel Republic. The carrier was Thomas Cook. Upon arrival for his return flight back to Manchester he was denied boarding at check in as he had been in Egypt for more than three months. Evidently, there are rules in place which state that any stay in excess of three months invalidate return by charter flights (be it Civil Aviation rules or Egyptian law). He was 'obliged' (ie compelled) to stay in Hurghada Airport for about 48 hours until he could return to the UK on a Turkish Airlines schedule flight which he had to pay for. At no time was he offered any assistance whatsoever by Thomas Cook. He tried to complain to both Travel Republic and Thomas Cook on his return to the UK, even to the extent of just a refund on the return section of his ticket, but has been fobbed off with just a standard 'your responsibility to ensure your visa was in order' letter (it was, otherwise entry would have been refused in the first place! ). To clarify, his problem was with departure, not entry. Thanks in advance for all your invaluable advice!
  19. Margaret Moran (Lab, Luton South) has been informed! Here's hoping!
  20. Changed my energy company from Scottish Power to EDF a few months ago, as Scottish Power were unable to offer me a social tariff, which EDF could. Today I received a letter asking me to contact First Locate in order to pay my final Scottish Power bill otherwise a default would be recorded on my credit file (didn't say which CRA though). Is this a genuine threat, as I don't remember ever giving Scottish Power permission to forward my personal information to other parties (or would it be in general terms and conditions?). Many thanks!
  21. Having been empowered by UK26 and his ongoing battles, I decided to try the "free" Equifax credit report service. Anyway, here's a copy of the email I sent, which sets out the details after being "demanded" prior addresses... Perhaps this could be forwarded to the appropriate department... I attempted to apply for an online credit report. After giving my current address (where I have been resident for 6+ years, I was prompted for a previous address. I delved, and found, my previous address. Then, I was prompted for yet another address!! In my opinion, this is just an excuse for a "phishing" expedition, and, as such, I will neither take part in, nor condone, such a venture. As I believe it to be entirely inappropriate, I will be forwarding this reply to the CAG, in order to receive well-researched and appropriate advice as to any further action which may be taken. As to my original request regarding my credit report, this can be considered as the reply stated in the well-known case of Arkell v. Pressdram (1971). Any comments more than welcome!
  22. Checked with the mods before posting this and they OK'd it (in fact, I don't even know if this is the most appropriate section to post this, but here goes, anyway!)... Following a reccommendation from various members (read in posts, not by PM), I signed up for membership of "annualcreditreport.co.uk", in order to check my credit report (sorry for stating the blindingly obvious, but...). I received a letter dated 8/1/2009 from them, quoting my security code, as for some unknown reason my account could not be verified online. Now, on the same day , I received a letter (also dated 8/1/2009) from MIL Collections regarding an almost (within a few weeks) statute-barred account. Also, since that date, I have been receiving emails from a company called "checkmyfile.com" I happen to believe in coincidences, but some are actually too coincidental!! All three companies mentioned are based in Truro, Cornwall. Actually, I've just noticed that "annualcreditreport" and "checkmyfile" are both registered at the same address. Also, "annualcreditreport" has a PO Box no. 166 in Truro, whereas MIL Collections has a PO Box no. 116 in Truro! Are all three companies affiliated?
  23. Signed up for a so-called "Credit Expert" report a month ago. Received this today (and I include my reply!) Without Predjudice Do you seriously expect a telephone response to a junk/spam email? Well, here is an "urgent" response from me... Oh, I expect you gleaned an email address of mine from a company called Expirian (or rather Creditexpert (sic)) They can also xiss off. ----- Original Message ----- From: egg@lowellgroup.co.uk To: Subject: Urgent: Please call Lowell Group Date: Wed, 14 Jan 2009 13:32:39 -0000 Dear This is not a spam e-mail and should not be treated as junk mail! Please contact The Lowell Group regarding an important matter, quoting reference number xxxxx by calling us on 0844 844 4739 Please do not reply by e-mail. Thank you Andrew Bartle Chief Operations Officer The Lowell Group Any other suggestions?
  24. Great result Tigs, and an inspiration for us all!! :):):)l
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