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Posts posted by bluetack

  1. Hello all,

    We've never been in this position before

    hubby lost his job a few months ago and had to sign on for the first time in his life (he is 60 and so completely destroyed).



    Finding another job at this age is proving very difficult.

    We have a mortgage.

    He is now getting support of £83 a week.

    I receive incapacity benefit for a progressive illness.


    It seems that we are entitled to help with the mortgage interest payments but won't get this help for 39 weeks.

    How do people pay their mortgage in the meantime?

    That's almost 10 months for us to wait and I'm pretty sure the house will be repossessed after 3 months of non-payment (our mortgage is interest only).

    We are very confused.



    Our total income without mortgage help is around £850 a month.

    Our monthly direct debits total £1000 approx. not including food.

    We know that we will have to cancel unnecessary things like sky etc. but there is still not enough income.



    Other people seem to get their rent paid so why are we different or am I missing something?


    Also, because he is signing on, hubby is expected to attend all sorts of courses and 'activity' days.

    With just £83 unemployment benefit a week how are we supposed to pay for him to get to these things and look for work, attend interviews etc.?


    Any help/advice would be appreciated.

  2. Below is the reply from Very about my complaint. Interestingly, they have removed the suite completely from their site. This means that I cannot see the description anymore.



    Thanks for emailing us about BRODIE 3 + 2 SEATER SOFA (6AYWR1P).

    Th etechnician has advised there are no manufacturers faults .


    Therefore , if you want to challenge this you would need to submit your own independent report advising what the actual manufacturers faults are .

    This would need to be done on letter headed paper and it would have to advise what the costs for repair would be and what the manufacturers faults are


    Kind Regards



    Kind Regards,


    Colleen Mullen

  3. Would not recommend this to anyone not worth half the price I paid for it

    Cons: Sofa loses its shape quicky, Very enigineers came to view sofa and said that I had to fluff the cushions each day to get them to sit right, not happy with this at all



    Plump cushions regularly to maintain fullness.



    The suite is a 'Brodie'. Above is a review from someone else I copied just after Christmas. I've pasted in the bit about plumping the cushions (doesn't say daily as the inspector told me to do). Can't seem to find the other bad reviews, I wonder why??

  4. Thanks for your advice unclebulgaria, I will follow it and write to the Chief Executive this weekend. I've checked the suite reviews on the Very website and there are many people with this problem. I'll post the response here as I'm sure I'll need further help. There's no other place better than cag that's for sure! behindsofa.gif

  5. Not sure if anyone can help but am throwing this out there just in case.


    Bought a 2+3 suite from Very last June on buy now pay later.



    Payment not due until June 2016 but have been paying it off anyway.



    A problem started to develop in November when the base and back cushions were distorting

    so badly that you sank into the corners when sitting down.

    It was not a cheap suite at £1800 before sale price of £900.



    I contacted Very who said they would send a specialist out but if no fault was found we'd be charged £45.

    The inspector came last week and completely stripped everything down to the bare bones.



    He took all the base and back cushions out of their fitted covers and told us they needed re-dressing.

    He proceeded to pull apart the filling material then pummelled them repeatedly with his fists.



    He said that because a cheap cotton wool type filling had been used

    this would have to be done with each cushion every day.

    He then struggled for a good 15 minutes trying to re-fit the covers (he was sweating).



    I asked how I was supposed to do this daily given my obvious disabilities and arthritic hands but he had no answer.

    He also told me that if the catalogue description said 'plump cushions daily', this would be Very's 'get out clause'.



    The description does say this but I would have thought that this would refer to the scatter cushions that come with the suite.



    Very won't answer my emails apart from telling me that no structural fault was found and I have been charged the £45.


    I've never bought a suite before that requires removing the cushions from fitted covers every day

    and then having a full upper body workout in order to make it useable again!


    Does anyone out there do this to their suite,

    I don't know what to do now apart from contacting trading standards but not sure of my position?

  6. Something very serious is about to happen for my husband with his employment and we really need some advise.

    He has worked for a large, high profile company for 10 years now and loves his job. He has never taken time off sick apart from the odd day, no more than 10 days in the whole 10 years and has never had any work issues such as any disciplinary action etc.



    Everything was fine until about five months ago when the company brought in a new manager for the sales team and my husbands position was altered. He took on his new role and performed well. There were rumours that this new boss wanted to replace the sales team - he wanted to bring in people he had previously worked with. Anyway, he started to micro manage, picking holes in everything my husband did and making his life unbearable. Things came to a head at the beginning of December when my husband had lost so much sleep with worry that he had to see his doctor, he was signed off for two weeks with work related stress. On Friday 18th Dec he was called into the office for a meeting with this manager. A member of HR was present to take notes. He was basically told that the company didn't think that he could handle his job anymore and that they were going to put together a severance package to pay him off and that he would have 10 days to accept. They said that if he refused the package he could still return to work but not in the same roll.

    We believe that the offer will be very small so that it will be rejected forcing my husband to accept another roll within the company but in the same team, in other words he will still have the same boss who we think will then start disciplinary procedures which will lead to the dismissal he wants.

    My husband is nearly 60 so will find it almost impossible to get another job, especially with this type of thing on record. We thought he'd be with this company until retirement.



    I think my husband needs to see a solicitor but he is reluctant to spend any money knowing he'll soon be out of work.

    I don't know very much about this sort of thing but it sounds like constructive dismissal to me, can anyone help please?

  7. In 2011 we had a bill for £19000 for alleged tax credits overpayments. We argued and appealed and asked for a tribunal. We sent loads of paperwork to support our appeal. We have heard nothing since apart from a yearly letter in June stating that we are not entitled to any tax credits (we don't claim any) and that £19,000 is still owed until they make a final decision. I call them each year but they just say that we should have had a tribunal by now and they will put a note on the records that I have rang. I am at my wits end with this. Four years have passed and I'm terrified that one day we'll receive an astronomical demand because they have added interest! We have written numerous letters and receive the same reply 'We are looking into your query.'

    Does anyone know where we should go from here?

  8. I have kept an email+paper+telephone trail for all dealings with Friends Life. I have made a written complaint and their answer was along the lines of 'we may deal with it in a few months time'. There's no point in contacting the ombudsman until you've written a formal complaint letter to Friends Life and waited for their response, they have a time limit of 8 weeks to resolve your issues. I am now talking to TPAS (The Pensions Advisory Service) who are very interested in what's happening with Friends Life and their reluctance to send out any claim forms. I've sent them everything and pointed them towards FL facebook page where they can actually see the people complaining about the same thing.

    Follow this link http://www.pensionsadvisoryservice.org.uk/pension-problems/making-a-complaint/how-we-can-help

    Choose 'ask us' then webchat in the left column and you can talk to them straight away.

  9. I've been waiting for the forms for 5 weeks. Not too long I know but I wanted to get this rolling before I go away in June. I have contacted the FL pension advisers by email and phone but I keep being told the same thing 'We're sorry you haven't received the claim forms yet, we'll get them to you in the next 7 days' then nothing arrives. I make another call and the same thing happens! (They won't accept a request for a claim form by email). I was told that I'd have full payment 4 weeks after claiming but at this rate I'll never see it.

  10. I'm trying to cash in my pension. It's very small so as a small pots payment should be easy, nothing ever is though. Friends Life aren't even sending out the claim forms and they've told me that they don't know when they will be able to do so. I'm furious! The money should now be legally mine and earning me interest, but it seems the pension companies are going to hold off payment for as long as possible by not sending out the claim forms. Their excuse is that they are inundated with requests and have a huge backlog. This is twaddle, they've known about the changes for over a year! Surely their must be a way to charge statutory interest from the date claim forms were requested? Any ideas on this would be appreciated..............

  11. All you say is true, my case was closed today after a very long 4 years. I wasn't ever looking for advice about the case just knowledge of part 36 counter offers and how they should be presented. I'm now talking with someone who is willing to help me and I'll post up anything that might help someone else in the same boat. Thanks everyone, this is a great forum!!

  12. I really wanted this to go to court (have a very big risk appetite lol). My solicitor (trainee) would not support this. i was told to either accept the offer or find someone else to act for me who would pay all costs incurred so far. I only have 3 weeks until the hearing - no-one would take this on now. I can't afford to pay costs, my solicitor wanted £32,000 and god knows what the defendants cost would be! I am left permanently disabled and was lead to believe my case had a very good chance of success - until my solicitor left.

  13. Thanks. I have asked her the question and asked for copies of the letters sent but she said it was done by phone. Too late now for me as the case was closed today. It was due in high court next month with a value of £50,000+ but the defendants admitted negligence and denied causation. I had to accept £3,000 or pay all costs. Thinking of suing solicitor as they admitted by email to being negligent in the way my case was handled.

  14. Thanks Andy, Ganymede - I wish it was that simple! My original solicitor left the company recently and my case is now in the hands of a trainee after 4 years. I had a part 36 offer made by the defendants and asked the trainee to put forward an increased counter offer. I don't think she did this and I have now been forced to accept their first offer.

  15. Hi Margaret,

    Thanks for your reply. Yes, we did submit an appeal and have an acknowledgement. I rang the helpline today and eventually spoke to someone who looked into our case. They told me that our appeal against the penalties was successful and these had been removed 18 months ago (no-one had informed us). He also said the tribunal should have been ages ago and couldn't understand why nothing had happened. I have to do a SAR for the transcripts and the person I spoke to is emailing the Tribunal Support Unit to chase things up. We have good evidence to support our case so we really want to attend. All telephone calls are recorded but when asking for transcripts you have to provide dates, times of calls and the person you spoke to-luckily I have all this info. I'll post all updates.

  16. It's a long time since I've been on here with a problem but it's the first place I turn to for advice when needed!


    A few years ago we were accused of falsely claiming tax credits and were under investigation. We provided all the documents they asked for to prove our innocence but in the end we had to ask for the case to go to tribunal and they agreed to this. We asked for transcripts of telephone calls to be provided to help prove our case.

    This all happened two years ago. Our tax credits were stopped immediately but we have heard nothing about the case since. Each year in June we get a letter stating how much we owe but have heard nothing about the tribunal hearing, nor have we received any transcripts. Does anyone know how long it usually takes to get a tribunal hearing - two years seems an awfully long time and it's driving us crazy with worry? In fact it has caused my husband heart problems and he's now in and out of hospital all the time. Any advice would be appreciated!


    If you are reading this now, please tell me your thoughts because I don't know if I should call them, write to them or let sleeping dogs lay - somehow I just know this won't go away forever. Seems unfair that they can make us wait two years and they're probably going to bump it up with interest.

  17. This thread is quite complicated but I need some urgent, expert help if possible please!


    We started to claim tax credits when my husband lost two businesses and declared himself bankrupt, this was probably about 6-7 years ago. He was discharged after 1 year and became employed by a large company working full time. I, meanwhile invented a product and gained a full patient and my husband took on the task of trying to sell my product as well as working full time (non-conflicting) because I wasn't able to.


    When my husband went bankrupt all joint debts were transferred to me even though I don't work because I have a progressive degenerative desease. The payments on these debts had to come from my husbands salary.


    I rang the tax credits helpline and explained our situation. They pointed me towards their legislation that said: any business losses from self employment could be carried forward to future years i.e. if you earned £20k but had losses of £200k (like us) deduct one from the other then put zero in the income box.

    We thought this was pretty daft but we looked it up on their website like they told us to do and sure enough it was there! (and still is)


    We filled out the tax credit forms in this way knowing that as my husband paid tax and n.i. as normal from his wages the inland revenue always knew that our tax credit claim was transparent.


    Everything was fine until about 2 months ago. We received a letter from tc saying we were under investigation. I rang them immediately and explained the above. After much discussion with other departments the lady told me that the information I was given was only for people who were still self employed and that it was their fault because the information on the website was confusing. She told me not to worry, they would send us a letter in a few weeks.


    We continued to receive tax credits and didn't really think too much about it.


    Yesterday we received 5 letters from tc demanding that we re-pay £12,000 each.

    Today we received 2 more letters fining us £1,300 each for deception, we have 30 days to pay this.


    We are still paying off my husbands debts, we have numerous second charges on the property and a huge mortgage. Our tiny house is in negative equity because it was in the 2007 floods (thats why the official receiver didn't want it).

    My wonderful invention never took off for reasons too complicated to explain so we have an abundance of stock that won't sell.


    My questions are:

    Can someone be fully employed and self employed?

    We acted on their advice-we'd never have found that information on our own so why are we being classed as criminals?

    We have no money, can't even afford a stair carpet, been without one since the floods so how the hell can we pay all this?

    Will we both be sent to prison, I think I'd rather top myself than face that final humiliation?


    Oh, and the tax credits have stopped!

  18. Hello all,

    I am helping my Son who is trying to reclaim his charges from Lloyds TSB.

    I have written the first letter to Lloyds and they have sent a list of charges which totals £3,220.


    The charges for unpaid d/d's and unpaid s/o totals only £1049


    The rest of the charges are made up of:

    o/draft usage fees

    o/draft interest

    o/draft excess fees

    'unplanned' o/d fees


    He qualifies under the hardship rules but I'm not sure which of the above he can claim for. It seems unfair if he cannot claim all the interst and other fees back as the overdraft wouldn't exist if they hadn't been charged in the first place!


    Does anyone know which charges I put onto the 'Bank charges Interest calculation' sheet??


    Many thanks in advance.

    Blue xx

  19. Well folks, today I went to court with first credit and in the end they won, they were claiming an original debt on a lloyds tsb overdraft of approx. £2,800.

    I used the right to offset the claim with approx. £2,100 in unfair bank charges including interest.

    The judge's ruling was that I would never be able to claim all of the bank charges back so he halved my claim, allowing only £1,100.

    Meanwhile, first credit had added over £1,000 to their debt in interest charges which the stupid judge allowed.

    So, as you can see by the figures, I still owe them nearly £3,000 which I have to pay within ten days.

    I still have to make a claim through the courts for the bank charges though but the judge told me to wait until a ruling has been made.

    First credit said I would still be liable to pay the whole debt eventually because by the time a ruling on bank charges had been made most of the charges I am claiming for would be statute barred.

    I've had a hollow victory today and can't pay the £3,000 in ten days, the judge advised me to go bankrupt!!

    Gosh, that'll help a lot won't it folks!

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