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Everything posted by mjc007.5

  1. P. S Before anybody wonders I am on a break
  2. Hiya, Just to add my two pence worth Firstly, best of luck with the surgery. In regard to the smoking - it is of course a personal choice and like any personal choice as long it does no harm to anyone else along the way then good luck to you. It is of course preferable that you stop, at least for a period before the op and ideally completely. Your anaesthetic risk is signficantly raised by smoking and the post operative recovery is equally more prone to complications. Except for life saving procedures your surgeon is able to make reasonable stipultation about behaviour that would be in your best interest and as such I do not see the message itself (the smoking ban) as being unreasonable. Having said that how the message is delivered can often be an issue and a number of surgeons out there have very good surgical skills but lack somewhat in the communication deparment! For all the tired old things about taxes, paying for services etc (I have been told again tonight that someone pays my wages, by another person that they are entitled to whatever they feel is appropriate because they pay their taxes!) A percentage of all of our taxes do pay for the NHS, it is far from perfect in many ways but I wish folk would stop considering it as a service like a bank, supermarket etc. We do get it wrong and in many ways can do better but one of the biggest strains on the NHS is the public's expectations which are often far from realistic!
  3. Hi James, You need to proceed as suggested by ErikaPNP - agree with everything she says (and you have my empathy as well). My family took a case to an out of court settlement (including "re-training") for a surgeon - this is emotive and complex stuff but where there is clear negligence or malpractice you can arrive at something of a satisfactory conclusion to a complaint/legal action although it is often a long and difficult road. It might be that you arrive at consulting a solicitor (one that specialises in medical negligence) and there is no harm in accessing one for an initial chat where no fee was involved (but choose carefully). We started like this, took some direction from ours, went and did some research and then went back and started the ball rolling once we were clear in our minds (and with some of what we had gathered) that there was likely a case. In a claim for healthcare negligence you generally have to prove that harm has been caused (usually the more straightforward part) and that the actions (or omissions) by individual(s), the hospital or both caused that harm (so called "causative link"). At first look this often appears straightforward but once you get into the details proving the "causative link" can be very difficult because of the complexities of healthcare provision. Will try and help if I can, think you should definetly do some prelimary work around if you might want to proceed toward negligence claim. Best wishes to you both and best of luck
  4. Agree with all of the above - harrassment and intimidation it certainly is, relying on your either not knowing they are talking bunkum or your wish to avoid them "writing to your HR manager" will outweigh your desire stand up to them! Seems that the "stuck record" approach works best with these firms - repeat harrassment/no visiting letter, repeat offer of what you can afford to pay, confirm complaint to OFT about their vexatious pursuit of "recovery" action and refusal to agree to your resonable repayment proposals. You can also add they are legally obliged to accept whatever you are trying to pay them in reduction of the debt (they can continue to argue with you for more but the usual tactic of refusing to accept whatever you are offering in the meantime whilst racking up the "interest" and "charges" is not legal). Keep at them and do complain - we will get there if enough people follow through. Best of luck
  5. Hello Lingylulu, Good for you, must be catching some folk on a good day! (rare indeed in this sector) The extra charges and overall balance going vertical the second you tell any of these firms you might have a problem and how to deal with it is a personal choice (and may even be best judged case by case). The preferable thing is to dispute it if you have time and energy because ultimately even if the charges, interest etc is in the "contract" does not make them reasonable, fair or in some cases even legal (and would likely be challengeable all the way to court as a result). However it may be that if there a number of creditors or if time/energy are limited you would choose (at least initially) to accept what is on the table. I have (or will) mainly dispute most of mine but a couple who were very reasonble straight away have not been disputed and if they carry on being reasonable probably will be left that way (to many are being unreasonable to worry about the minority who have been fair!! ) Keep going, sounds like you have maid a good start (still do not trust them though!)
  6. Hi moonsa, Consumer Credit Agreement - template letter is on the site and you need to send a £1 postal order. If they do not respond with 12+2 days the account can be placed in dispute and is unenforceable until they respond appropriately. Even if they do respond (and particularly in this sector) the agreement will very often be flawed in some way - worth scanning to here (minus personal info) and letting the good folk here help you with it This is one of a number of tactics to allow you regain some control of these exchanges and start to sort out the liabilities in your favour. In the meantime keep to your plan - email or letter, offer what can afford, if not already send them the telephone harrassment/doorstep visit letter (template on the site), start paying what you have said, then once some stability and control back with you start challenging the charges/overall balances. Best of luck, keep posting
  7. :)Hello Lingylulu and welcome to CAG, Nothing wrong with your approach so far as an opening salvo - You have been honest, reasonable and polite. Unfortunately experience suggests this will not be reciprocated by most of these firms! Do be prepared for the barrage of contact and harrasing behaviour that is likely to follow. As a result in most cases your next communications should be at least of the type outlined by postggj (I have combined a telephone harrasment and doorstep letter in one) with confirmation of what you are offering because you know what you can afford to pay. Depending on how they respond you can CCA request them - replies are usually quite interesting! You should maintain all times (even if it seems to be going well) an inherent distrust of these firms - even when they have agreed a "repayment plan" with you there is still every prospect of them trying to dip into your account for more! Uncle Buck are one of the worst (although I see from their reply to you and a couple of others lately they are "mellowing" a little ) I can see why many folk want to keep their bank account (or have reason why they cannot change) but for me once these firms have you account details the only way to be sure they cannot inflict perpetual misery on you is a parachute account. If you are staying put your bank (if not already) need to be put on absolute notice that you do not authorise any further payments to any of these firms via either card or direct debit. If they have "security cheques" (and you have the numbers) cancel them (the bank will charge you for this but much less than if they are presented and either clear or "bounce"). They will still try and present them anyway! :mad: I can understand why you might accept Uncle Bucks offer as they are tougher to deal with. However, this relies on your other creditors in the list agreeing to repayment proposal which will probably get lower as you use up the amount you said would be available to repay them and continues to be them telling you what to pay thereby keeping control from you. I think you have only three sensible approaches to the repayment (disptuting the debts, charges etc aside) - 1. Snowballing (which usually involves minimal payments to all but the smallest debt paying them as much as possible. When they are paid off move up to the next one and so on) 2. Pro-rata repayment (once you have budgeted for all your essential expenditure) - plenty of info to do this yourself (As well as CAG, moneysavingexpert there are the debt charities sites - nationaldebtline.co.uk, cccs.co.uk, payplan.com) 3. Everbody gets an equal share of the "surplus" - your first post suggests around £200 free (although possibly this has other debts to pay as well?). If you have that amount, amongst the list of five creditors then obviously everybody gets £40 per month. I would work out what you can afford, decide on an approach above that suits your best, make them an offer of payment (and start to pay it - ideally by standing order). As many have said as long as you are making a fair and realistic offer of repayment which they are getting then despite the threats and harrassment they cannot get any more! Keep going, you will sort it out
  8. Hello Vjohn, Sorry to hear of your woes with QQ - no experience of them specifically but involved with to many others in this area and all to aware that these are standard tactics! If I read your post correctly they are in breach of their own contract in that they did not give you the "advance notice". Interesting that the contract says 3 business days when "industry standard" (according to the British banking associations web site) is "normally 10 days". I might well be wrong but I am not sure that the direct debit guarantee is actually law as such but even it is they rely on contract law, you counter with direct debit rules (or law) and you have a deadlock - QQ and most others on here will try and call your bluff! I would think (and have had some success myself with others in this "market") worth going after the contract angle - if they have not given you "advance notice" of their smaller direct debit payments (and I feel it is likely that they did not! ) then they are in breach of the contract. They cannot hold you to the "contract" whilst breaching it themselves (although they will try) so you have the basis of your "account in dispute"? (others may rubbish this viewpoint but it is a starter for ten ) Certainly go after the bank again to try and get the latest monies they have taken repaid on the grounds that you specify, if not already insist that they make no further payment to QQ (as I am sure you know the only way to be sure if you are keeping the same account is watch like a hawk!). I know it is not for everyone but I can recommend the parachute account - this removes any risk to your income on an ongoing basis, reduces the stress involved as a result and any subsequent charges etc related to your old account can be dealt with as another debt. Back to QQ and probably worth firing a CCA request off (a £1 postal order and at worst you get back an enforceable contract - I have had one company write back asking me to clarify what I was requesting??? ) as well as complaining to OFT, trading standards etc - one thing I am learning as I go is the more of us that register a complaint we will eventually reach a critical mass for action to be taken against this "sector". Best of luck
  9. Hiya Aine, What Suzanne is talking about (apart from the dietary advice which like robjam I may follow as got to many of those lbs - ironic when I do not have enough £s! ) is snowballing and is one way of approaching this (although if you are going to do this I would still suggest start at the smallest and work your way up - starting with the one who penalises the heaviest or makes the most noise just perpetuates these behavioural extremes!). No problem with snowballing and it works for many but with a lengthy list of firms in this "sector" the path you are on is generally the more productive. As others have said you are making reasonable offers, continue to remind each of them that this is the case, and keep chasing the one's who are not responding (you will feel more in control doing this and therefore better - also presents a very good paper trail if they are ever brave enough to try and take you to court!). Only share three of your "lenders" in my very long list - Uncle Buck (already expressed an opinion, likely along with what I have read about PTP and QQ to be the most difficult), Mr Lender (akward rather than difficult) and WDA (agreed a plan quite quickly but when advised being varied due to DMP they tried to take further monies on a cancelled and destroyed card ). Almost all of mine have agreed to some form of repayment plan (and a couple have actually ended up paying me ) Having said all of that the consistent theme from all of us so far is not to worry - they will make a lot of noise and try to worry you into paying them first, warning of dire consequences. Do not let them do this - ultimately this is only money. The good folk here (and my own research) have taught me very quickly that particularly when I am paying back something every month at a level that I can afford the majority of these folk would be very misguided indeed to take any formal action against me and this is the same for most of us! Sleep well, keep posting as things evolve
  10. Hiya, Agree with Robjam, you are doing fine, keep emailing and stick to your guns :) Might need to get a bit sterner in your tone if they escalate things (we can help you with that! ) but for now language of both emails is courteous and non-combative so if it stays like that with them agreeing to your proposal then excellent! Just a thought, is this one within it's cancellation period? (usually 14 days from the loan being provided). If it is and if (I realise big if) you can find the funds from somewhere to chuck at them you should be able to cancel and just repay what they actually loaned you. Keep posting
  11. Hiya Robjam - not a problem, those of us who have been to the "dark side..." with these firms all appear to have similar themes in terms of finding a path back - I think it helps (both from a support point of view and validating the suggested course of action is likely to work) if a number of us are giving similar messages! It seems like an eternity ago that I finally put my head above the parapit on CAG and asked for help but it is a matter of short months. Although part of a much wider mess this "sector" are particularly vexatious and devious when things go wrong and if I had not had the support of yourself, Bub 1, T2upnorth (to name but a very few) at that initially dark place then I do wonder what would have been the result (something of a crossroad - admit defeat and get ill or fight back!). Now - a very long way to go (and using CCCS as well in this journey) but on the path back and chipping in to help and support when I can
  12. Hiya, Keep going as Robjam and Riddick have suggested (depending on how long you are functioning with the "at risk" account versus the parachute account). The banks are increasingly deflecting any issues over these companies claiming payments on cancelled cards or direct debits as "commercial dispute" between you and the company. As Robjam says whilst you would have claim agains the bank it is complicated and time consuming - better to stop them getting their mits on it at all! Riddick is also 100% correct with these firms - standing order always payment of choice (followed by cheque drawn on account of family member followed by crossed postal order). Uncle buck will try and access your account by whatever means they can - pleasently suprising that they appear to have given you three months grace (very out of character) but do not trust them. The remainder mostly will try the same underhand tactics - some will pass to DCA and as Riddick says these will generally accept lower payments. You have got two approaches here once you have decided what you can afford - either "snowballing" (absolute minimum to the bigger debtsbut as much as possible to the smallest. Once the smallest is paid off move up to the next in size, pay the extra to them until paid off and continue like this) or they all get a payment you decide is affordable and equally (either a fixed amount or "pro-rata"). Which one of these you choose is specific to your wider circumstances and choice but stick to your guns. If you offer (and start to repay) an affordable amout to all then whatever huffing and puffing goes on they cannot get any more. The very best of luck - you will be able to sort it - expect a lot of huffing and puffing but generally speaking they will not be able to blow the house down! Keep posting, always someone here that can have a go at answering any questions
  13. More expertise to assist you baldwelder - trust you are well Vint (Baldwelder Vint has held my hand with Halifax CC to what is looking like a positive result ) Did not perhaps express myself so well but was intimating exactly what Vint says - whilst Halicrap shoud at least have the courtesy to respond confirming their position the CCA request could have been ignored as in fact it would not have been relevant to the current account/overdraft (my understanding being, hopefully not flawed, that this would not be covered as an "agreement" under the consumer credit act). It might also (unfortunately) follow that dependent on the reason for the account being put in dispute this would also be ignored as they would not accept such a dispute exists. As Vint and others have quicky showed me, Halicrap and others are good at invalid default notices so might still have a strong position depending on baldwelders answers to the date queries.
  14. Hiya aine and welcome to CAG, Excellent advice from Robjam (as always). Main principle is try not to worry to much, stick to your plan having worked out what you can realistically afford and do not let them bully you. Strongly agree about the parachute account (in fact when you have long list of companies of this type it almost a must for salary/normal banking as it will give you a lot of control back). Remember you want the account in a different banking group to the one they have details for (so the bank cannot "offset"). My own experience of a number of those that you mention is that they will try and bleed your account dry (and keep trying for weeks afterwards, even AFTER you have agreed a repayment plan with them ) There are a number of template letters on here which you can amend to suit for your own circumstances (reduced payment, telephone harrassment etc) and most of those you named have a relevant email address on their site (and if not you can try and get one when they contact you). As robjam says between the regular posters in this forum there are probably most contact details (and often bank account details for paying them) so if you get stuck posting regularly will help you sort them. Talking on the phone will not (generally) work with these firms - the convention is to keep everything in writing (or email) but often worth one conversation if you think it might lead to agreement of repayment proposals that you can afford (I know most here would not recommend this but in very limited circumstances it has worked out for me). If you get this make them back it up in writing, if you do not (or they try to bully you) do not agree to anything, conclude the call and post back here. As robjam says, make sure whatever you offer is realistic and you can afford it. They will huff and puff and try to make you pay them first but stick to your guns. If you are looking for further (free) advice as well as the good people of CAG then don't forget the main debt charities - nationaldebtline.co.uk, cccc.co.uk and payplan.com Once you have your income out of their way take your time, read and research well for your plan and then stick to it. Any questions post back and many wiser heads than mine will help you (I will try and chip in as well, on my way back from a position similar to you so it can be done ) Best of luck
  15. And talking of experts Cerberusalert beat me to it - one of the many experts here who has become required reading on my journey back from the "dark side"
  16. Hiya, Not a problem, always a personal choice about how much (or little) to scan up here but very often is the best way of having folk provide best advice and have been helped with a number this route myself already! Need more info around date sent, date you have to remedy by (and ideally if you have the envelope) so that folk can try help further (this was the basis on which my DN was adjudged faulty). I do not think CCA request will be relevant for overdraft on current account (but may stand corrected) but you may well still have basis for further action dependent on the answer to these questions. Will watch out for reply and hope more expert views will be along soon.
  17. Hi Baldwelder, Welcome to CAG. Is this a credit card? First thing is worth posting the DN up here (minus personal details) - good chance it will be faulty in some form! (mine was! ) Others more experienced will be along but I would think re-send account in dispute letter (recorded), along with complaints to letter to them (and copied to FSA/OFT). After this depends on how far and in what direction you want to go (militant v moderate) - you can withold payment pending their resolution of your complaint/a valid CCA for starters! If they terminate on the back of a faulty DN you can accept their repudiation of contract and offer any arrears as full and final (I am awaiting a response on this ...... very nervously! ) Best of luck and keep posting
  18. Good morning Evil Scotsman and welcome, Further to the sound advice from Bub 1 and Robjam: Although less likely now you have "lost" the card there is a risk that they could still try and draw funds from it and equally that this will be successful. If not already make sure the bank are also told not to accept any attempts to take payment by any of these companies I think from the three you have Wonga particularly are a bit unpredictable - many on here have managed to come to an arrangement with them but I have seen some horror stories as well. There are various contact details between members for these folk (as well as their bank details) so a well placed pm would get you the info needed to start paying them something (or at least escalate things within their organisation) I would now stick to the writing/email line for all communications Stick to your guns - offer what is realistic and no more, whatever they press you for It might be that you could protect your JSA by advising the bank you wish to use your "first right of appropriation". Only just found this?? (so needs checking with those far more wise than me) but it would appear that under common law you have the right of appropriation over your own money and that paid to another. If your write to them in good time (I would think at least 7 days) before the payments to these firms are due with an appropriate letter advising the amount and date being paid in and what you need to "appropriate" it for (rent, living etc..) then this should provide ultimate protection against their underhand tactics. However, it is likely that your bank will (if not already) be alerted to the fact that you have some level of financial difficulty so it might be that you would need a parachute account if you went this route (subsequent overdraft or other bank charges could be subject to their "right of offset" so would only put the problem off a month and change who will cause it!). Ignore any tactics like those you have listed, decline (politely) demands for I&E forms before they can agree a "repayment arrangement" - you are correct that it will mostly be utter rubbish in an attempt to persuade you to do as they say! Even if the free debt management charities/services cannot assist you directly then a wealth of information there to do it yourself (www.nationaldebtline.co.uk , www.cccs.co.uk, www.payplan.com ). Combine their info with what you have from CAG and keep at them! Best luck, hope it works out
  19. And Scarletpimpernel - got sidetracked at work so delayed in posting!
  20. Hiya, Top advice already from Katpuss and 42man. The "cheques act" 1957 - obscure piece of legislation (amended 1992). My best reading of this is that all it actually does is provide the company providing you with the funds some protection against your claiming they did anything wrong or showed incompetence in paying you funds against the cheques!! I can find no mention of fraud in either this or the bill of exchange - as Katpuss says you have a technical breech of agreement with not paying as arranged but this is no more severe than if they cannot provide proper evidence of assignment (I would think). The suggestion of fraud is in fact absurd - the whole premise of this "sector" is that the cheque is an IOU to repay funds loaned now at some point in the future (and in most of cases they will accept this is perpetually "rolled over" as they make much more than the sum loaned to you). To suggest fraud intent would need to be demonstrated (ie cheques were written without any hope or intention of ever paying back what was borrowed) which contradicts their business model. Where the cheques are issued as Katpuss describes or for immediate presentation to an account with the knowledge or intention that funds are not or will not be available then that is very likely fraudulent but in most cases with people caught out in this sector this will not be what has happened (despite what the companies may claim!). In terms of dealings with these folks and your current situation would suggest - No further discussion on the telephone. Personally I think often worth an initial discussion to see if there is some common ground which is contrary to establised opinion here (as long as you tell them any agreement subject to their written or email confirmation of the same). Unfortunately here it would appear their initial position is not to negotiate (and can understand your reaction to them but will prevent you from being in the position of needing to tell them foxtrot Oscar again! ) As Katpuss has suggested let CCCS do their work - refer any further communications to them, bear in mind that if they were brave enough to go to court they would get (at best) a pro-rata amount based on the same principles that CCCS and others are using. In the meantime I would go for a CCA request and see if you can tie that up copies of any notices of assignment (amend/add to the CCA request template). Worth a shot as only £1 postal order (rather than £10 SAR), shorter time scales and my (limited) experience so far suggests that a number of these agreements are likely to be flawed (either as credit agreements or without detailing any contractual right of assigment). I am applying the same principles as you (ie payment of loaned principle but not charges/interest) with some success so stick to your guns! Best of luck and keep posting
  21. Hiya, My understanding is that once the 12+2 days is up then you can move on to the next step and put the account in dispute (this is what I am doing and seems to be working - might have it wrong, others more knowledgeable than me will be along!). There was something about a further 30 days and they were committing a criminal breach of the relevant act - think this is now not the case but not completely clear if there is any particular stipulation as to the 30 days but either way does not stop you acting after the 12+2 days. There are circumstances where you might want to be seen as being "reasonable" and give them more time but overall would say go ahead and take the next step
  22. Sillygirl 1 offers you an equally viable course of action which would in fact be better in certain circumstances (and much less of a moderate than me ) I think the point is that very often there is no one size fits all for these problems - take your time to decide what is right for you and what you are looking to achieve then stick to your plan
  23. Hi, You are getting into areas where I am still on a very steep learning curve myself so not the best person to give advise - worth reading a number of the stickys in the forums and threads by any members of the site team (all good stuff, to numerous to commend individually) as well as a number who helped me in my darkest hour (they know who they are ). The approach that is working for me at present (and this is only what is working for me, does not mean it is right or wrong) - In most cases I will be paying back a sum owed to a creditor and acknowledge this to them. However what in most cases is not acknowledged is what that final sum will be and this is the area of further negotiation, work and if necessary dispute. If by means of an unenforceable CCA or any number of other causes (misold PPI, unfair charges, whatever else ..... and there is a long list) the amount owed has reduced (or even in one case so far ended with a cheque from them in my hand) then all the better. I suppose this my version of standing up for myself with the assistance of CAG and it is debt reduction and eventual debt elimination by a combination of repayment and standing up for yourself. Very much goes back to what I suggested about personal approach - for some the above would be to moderate, the unenforceable CCA and a number of other things mentioned on this site are challengeable right the way to court process but I am not brave enough for that just yet (although I would not shy away from it now thanks to the folks here and there are countless threads of those that have and successfully ). One thing to be clear though is this is never about debt avoidance - if you borrowed it, they have legally enforceable agreements and have behaved (as they expect us to) by the rules then taking an early stance that you are going to repay it will avoid unecessary stress and potentially further costs down the road. Equally you cannot let them bully you - in a very short time I have been truly amazed at the level of at best dubious practice and at worst outright illegal practice employed against the little old "customer" Keep reading, best to post the CCA and other specific questions as seperates threads on the relevant boards. Best of luck
  24. Hiya, This is a very personal choice - I have used them alongside the advice I have been fortunate enough to gain from finding the wonderful people here but it really takes some time before they are taking any of the heat for you (in fact not worth doing for this alone). If you have a look around there are mixed views (primarily because very many folk seem to have experienced that they are not very receptive to people challenging their debts - general principle for them seems to be that the debt is acknowledged and paid). There is an approach around snowballing which would also work very well (smallest first, pay it off, move to next one and so on) but again it is about how much time you have to manage things and what works for the individual. For me personally it has been a bit of a mixed approach which to now seems to be working well - CCCS are (at least for now) receptive to this. I have a whole pile of legally owed and enforceable debt and in this instance they are very helpful (and hold some weight with the creditors) in proposing pro-rata payments. Equally, if I had less debt (in terms of creditor numbers rather than outright value) and more time I would have managed the whole lot myself with the self-help element of their service and others (payplan, nationaldebtline and CAG). CCCS involvement has allowed me to focus my initial attentions on those that are unenforceable or otherwise flawed (the credit cards mainly and a number of from this "market") and in this instance I am have already had some success self managing these with assistance from the good people here - one balance gone completely and one actually owed me money (which went against the overdraft they helped to create!) Basically combine CAG, CCCS, payplan and nationaldebtline sites for your research and advice - speak to an advisor at one of the first three if you want to talk it through. Then a bit of time and compose the plan that will work for you in sorting it all out (this seems to be working for me so far! )
  25. You are very welcome - will always try and help (and it was a quiet night shift!) Keep folk posted and best of luck
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