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About Joshd

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  1. Hi mancdude, don't take any notice of Zinc they are a bunch of cowboys, literally! Take a look at my contribution from March 2010. Since I wrote to them I have not heard a murmur from them. I sent them a well composed letter stating the action I would take against them should they pursue me further. No phone calls and no threatening letters since. People need to take a hard line with companies like these and under no circumstances speak on the phone to them, don't be intimidated, don't worry, and don't let them control you. They rely on fear, don't be afraid.
  2. Chicago 1234. I have had dealings recently with Zinc Recoveries(formerly UCS). I know they wound up UCS owing money to inland revenue amongst others. They also laid off employees of the company. The Directors of UCS then started up again as Zinc Group/Recoveries etc. On 8th August 2009 a request for a CCA along with payment was signed for by UCS. I sent this request after receiving calls regarding an alleged debt I was supposed to be responsible for. I had no knowledge of such a debt and had never heard of the company the debt was owed to. Needless to say, I have to this day not had a reply. Months went by, then I again started to get calls. This time it was Zinc Recoveries. I again gave them my normal response, being, please put your requests for information in writing. A week later I received a very amateur looking letter containing the normal threats etc, and it was unsigned. I have since written to these cowboys putting everything down in black and white fully comprehensively. That was 2 weeks ago. I have not had any calls since and have also not received a written reply. Companies such as these rely on intimidating people and frightening them into arranging to pay a debt over the phone not even knowing whether the debt is that persons or not. I would suggest to all, that you should ask for details in writing and under no circumstances whatsoever, give any information via the phone. All written correspondence is evidence you can use at a later date should it become necessary. And please don't be afraid if a letter contains a phrase such as ( we may take further action) or similar wording. Remember, these people have been doing this work for a while, it's how they milk a living from the rest of us. They know how to intimidate people. Don't let them win!
  3. Mazbck, Great news! I'm so happy for you. It does mean that the DWP are finally realising their mistake in employing a company like ATOS to determine peoples lives. Hopefully there will be big changes in the methods they use, namely, a system whereby when they have reached their quota all or most other claimants are refused ESA. I fought against the DWP and after many months eventually won. It does take a great deal of complaining to right a wrong, I honestly think that it is part of the process. My local MP was brilliant and supported my claim. Unfortunately, unless others contact their local MP and explain what this stupid system does to the individual claimant then it makes life very difficult for genuine claimants to be heard where it can have the most effect, namely in Parliament. Although, as I say, I won like you I shall still actively campaign on behalf of those less fortunate than myself. I was a Carpenter, had my own business and earned a good living. I am slightly disabled now but not completely incapable of some sort of work. I am more than aware there are others far more disabled than me and any cut or change in benefits proposed in the future must be opposed. All the best.
  4. Hi Zamzara, Don't know if you read my earlier comments. Basically, I had problems with a reduction in benefit due to changing from JSA to ESA. I lost about 25 pounds a week. I was badly advised by the local jobcentre who assured me that there would be no change to the level of benefit. As stated, when the change came through I realized that my benefit had been reduced. I immediately phoned DWP to complain. I initially got fobbed off and received many replies which mainly consisted of rules etc. Not once did they address my complaint that I had been badly advised, they just didn't care. I kept on and on, I wrote letters, emailed DWP at their London address, contacted my local MP. I basically became a thorn in their side. Finally, I got the result I wanted and DWP have made me a payment to cover my loss. My advice to anyone is to keep on complaining even though you may get refused over and over again.
  5. Leahkins & Mazbck, Been reading about your experiences. The whole system is flawed and many wrong decisions have been made by Atos medical teams. I was one of the lucky ones, but having said that, I suffered a loss of 325 pounds during the assessment phase. Unfortunately, Atos are committed to a quota system set by the government. Only a certain number of claimants will be successful, this is the governments direction not the fault of Atos. Obviously, Atos will make some mistakes aswell. Since my claim, even though it was successful I have complained not just on my behalf but on behalf of other claimants. As I have already said the system is seriously flawed and improvements are needed and quickly! I have complained to my local MP, complained directly to DWP and the PM. It even got to the stage where I complained to the Independent Case Examiner. After many months I have been awarded 350 pounds by DWP. It does pay to complain, particularly if you feel Atos have made the wrong decision, complain to all the above I have mentioned and as a last resort, complain to Independent Case Examiner, this usually brings results. I had rejection after rejection, but you have to follow the correct complaints procedure. Anyone not sure what to do, please ask, I'll help all I can. Best of luck, and don't give up hope.
  6. Chris 5664. If some other moron attends your home, call the police and inform them you have a child who was terrified by "some man " who had his foot in the door and was attempting to enter. Make the point that your 11 year old was unable to sleep for a few days. Basically, use your imagination, much like the DCA employees who will try any trick in the book to achieve their bonus payment. OFT guidelines state that a mutual time must be arranged before any visit. Even then, you are not obliged to give any information, it is for them to prove they have the right person. If you are responsible for the debt they are chasing, make the moron an offer "that You can afford" not what they say you can afford! Above all, please don't let them intimidate you and your family and remember, there is always someone on CAG to offer support and advice. All the best mate.
  7. Thanks PGH7447, will contact Zinc and advise them of disputed account. By the way Zinc is supposed to be good for spots isn't it?
  8. Hi Chris, Just bear in mind what advice you have had here. Namely, only court bailiffs with a warrant can legally enter your home. These doorstep cavaliers are trying to intimidate and frighten people. Looking at the circumstances of the visit to your home, was it pre-arranged or did he just turn up without your knowledge or agreement? Either way he had no right questioning a child of 11, even the police can't do that without an adult being present. Complain, complain and then complain again, they cannot be allowed to get away with that kind of behaviour. Just remember they have no right of entry and put your wifes mind at rest tell her not to invite them in under any circumstances and not to be intimidated by such bullying morons.
  9. Hi Mr Ton, Was I glad I came online tonight! I had sent a request for CCA to ultimate credit services 1st August 2009, recorded delivery which they received on 5th August ( checked with PO ) Didn't get any calls or mail and certainly no reply to my request until Monday 5th October 2009. I was then called and I'm pretty sure the guy said Zinc. Presumably, looking online the directors have changed the name of company. Can you or anyone else let me know whether the CCA I requested from UCS is the responsibility of Zinc now? It has been over 8 weeks since I requested the CCA, I did send the fee aswell. Appreciate any reply and information regarding this problem.
  10. Hi everyone, I have a couple of questions someone may be able to help me and others with. I was contacted by UCS a few months ago regarding a debt from 4 years ago. The debt was a Burtons account and GE Capital was the account I made payments to, presumably GE Capital are Burtons bankers. I raised a question about the way my account was being handled. On receiving a reply which basically said that any payments taken from my account were my responsibility, whether authorised by me or not. I wrote and advised GE that no more payments were to be taken without my authorisation. When it continued I stopped making monthly payments. Most of the balance is added interest. I sent a CCA request to UCS which was received by them on 5th August 2009. I also included the correct payment for this. They stopped calling me straight away, that is until last week! I have never received an answer to my CCA request. I can only assume that they thought it appropriate to start phoning again having stopped for 6 weeks. They really are chancers, rude, arrogant, and above all ignorant. I don't give them any information or confirm anything, that seems to shut them up. The last time they called the person said they were calling from Zenith and then mentioned UCS, I can only assume that they have been taken over, I thought Zenith were an Insurance company. Anyone help there? By the way, because I refused to confirm anything I was threatened with "a doorstep visit" to which I replied "you do that". Seemed to do the trick, he sounded suicidal. Anyone got any updates on this company and whether they have joined with Zenith? Be grateful for any guidance.
  11. Mazbck, Don't know if you have had your interview by now but there is really nothing to worry about. You don't mention whether or not you have been assessed, ie attended a Medical examination. After the assessment you will hear shortly after if you have been awarded ESA. If so you will get all monies backdated to the day you made the claim. As has already been mentioned here, the Work focussed interview is simply a way of determining how you feel about being able to take on some work and how they may be able to help you achieve this. The Adviser can give you help towards fares/petrol etc to attend Job interviews ( Remember to supply receipts ). Just one more point to consider! If you are in receipt of Disability Premium on a claim for JSA, this Premium is taken away until a person has been assessed and you don't get this returned, you lose it full stop! However, if after the assessment you are found to be eligible for ESA, rather than 60-50p per week this is raised to 89-80 per week. And you benefit from the extra help from your adviser. It's complicated but that's government agencies for you! Good luck!
  12. Hi Sorrylittlelot, You should still be able to claim Housing benefit/Council tax unless your Girlfriend is earning more than she should, even though she works just 16 hrs, it's the amount that is taken into account. Jobcentre will be able to tell you what she can earn without it affecting your benefits. In any event you should still be eligible for some help towards HB/CT. If you have a Disability then claim ESA if not then claim JSA neither should make any difference to the level of benefit. If still unsure ring CAB. Hope this helps. Good luck!
  13. Bluestwo, Whatever happens just pay what you can realistically afford. Don't rely on the overtime being available, you may hit a problem later. You will not be taken to court because as long as you make regular payments and stick to them no judge will find against you. He or She will see that you have made regular payments so it is important you maintain such payments. Be sensible, and make a payment regularly that doesn't overstretch your budget. Best of luck and don't be forced to pay more than you can comfortably do.
  14. Duffychick, Been looking at your MILs case. To be honest, if she has served the same company for over 20 years she is in a very strong position to take this company to an Industrial Tribunal. Although they employed her again, technically it would seem apparent to a Tribunal that it was a deliberate act by the company to take the steps they have. Keep all you have in writing and arrange to speak to a solicitor for half an hour. Ask your MIL beforehand to try to remember exactly what was told to her by her immediate boss and if possible the date of such. Dates etc could become valuable evidence at a later stage. The important thing is whether your MIL wants her job back or to be compensated for loss of earnings. I would advise that she doesn't take any offer of work from this company again. Go and see someone at the local CAB they have people who are conversant with employment rights and law, if not a solicitor as suggested beforehand.
  15. Thanks for comments Patrickq 1. I have complained to my local jobcentre, involved my local MP etc. I eventually got the email address of Jonathan Shaw MP for disabled people and I have been complaining for weeks now about the treatment I received from his department. I ended up receiving letters which consisted mainly of rules etc,(the standard response by these depts). Nothing constructive, and my concerns were not addressed. Jonathan Shaw doesn't actually do anything, he passes concerns to others to deal with. My local jobcentre to be fair, sent a request on my behalf to the depts Inverness office who apparently have the discretion of awarding a Special Payment to claimants who they believe have been wrongly advised. Surprise, surprise Inverness office refused my claim even though it was asked for by my local jobcentre. There is no appeal against their decision. The system is stacked against the claimant, I have heard a rumour that the government intend to make further cuts at the expense of the most vulnerable in society. I wish I was able to take a job, my condition limits my search and the present recession doesn't help. I would suggest people in the same position should contact their local MP and gain their support. I will post the email address of JS MP for all who need it. Just emailing the dept may give them something to think about. I also have names of people and address of the Inverness office if required. Might help other peoples cases if they bombarded the dept with mail. Good luck all.
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