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  1. Sorry, do you mean she probably DID or DIDN'T sign for the OD? I'm wondering what the relevance of that is (I think I read something about post 2004 agreements being signed online with a checkbox, is that what you're referring to?)
  2. Okey dokey, thanks for the info. The reason I'm worried is that she WILL be moving house this year, a DCA could send a claim form to the old address at anytime in the future and we might miss the letter. We know that Cabot own this debt I thought sending a SB letter would stop the possibility of any further action (I've seen on this forum that DCA's will be happily writing about one debt to someone's new address and still send a claim form for a different debt to their old address!)
  3. I forgot to ask, is it the last date of payments to the DCA or the last date of payments to Lloyds that determines the statute barred date?
  4. My mum actually can't remember exactly when she stopped paying, she had a payment plan with Lloyds which was then transferred to the DCA. The DCA kept demanding higher monthly payments and as far as she remembers she stopped paying shortly after receiving the PPI cheque (which was paid into a new bank account, nothing to do with Lloyds). Her memory isn't great but she thinks the debt might be from an overdraft. I've tried asking several times but she just can't remember. She hasn't moved since 2012 and has been at the same address for around 30 years. Is it worth requesting another SAR to find out when the last payments were made, and if so should this go to Lloyds or the DCA?
  5. I wasn't going to make a post as I've prepared an SB letter which is ready to send, but the more I read about backdoor CCJ's the more uneasy I feel! My mother received a letter from Search Squad which she thought was related to a family tree search, she called the number (dialling 141 first!). Turns out that a company called Global Debt Recovery wanted to get in touch about a debt. My mum was sure that this must be a mistake so she called GDR. She didn't admit any liability and didn't give her phone number but the guy said she'd be receiving a letter from GDR with details. He said the debt was from 1998 to 2010 and was originally taken out in 1995. She received a double-sided letter from Cabot Financial and GDR saying that Cabot own the debt, the OC was Lloyds Banking Group, and Cabot have instructed GDR to recover the debt, of around £1000. She can't remember the debt but she did have financial difficulties many years ago (I helped her get PPI back after she'd been well and truly fleeced by Lloyds/TSB for credit card and loan fees). I helped check her credit file with Experian, Equifax and Callcredit; there are no debts showing for the last 6 years and no CCJ's. I told her to ignore the letter (because I think DCA's are lower than pond life) but her partner is advising her to pay the amount, because he doesn't want to worry about knocks at the door etc. They are in the process of moving to a new house, so the thought of a backdoor CCJ is worrying me. The original letter from SS went to their new house. I've made an SB letter for her to send, slightly adapted to include that she doesn't recognise the debt, it's not shown on her credit report and so it must be SB or it belongs to someone else. I'd already setup a Royal Mail redirection from her old address, but what's to stop a DCA that have bought a debt from YEARS ago sending a claim form to her previous address in the future? I'm not sure what the best course of action is, I remember years ago I SAR'd Lloyds/TSB and we did eventually get the paperwork after some stalling tactics. My mum can't find that now though. Should we make a new SAR to try and find out if her debts have been sold on? If they're over 6 years old should we then send new address details to the DCA's and then follow up with a SB letter? I've seen in the forum that people are getting letters about 20 year old debts! My mum is an OAP and she spent years being hounded and threatened by these unsavouries, I'd really like to get them to back off once and for all.
  6. Ok. Well the last letter that arrived was a single sheet, printed on both sides with one side from Cabot and the other from GDR.
  7. I think Cabot Financial, Global Debt Recovery and Search Squad are the same company. My mother received a letter from SS and called them, thinking it was related to a family tree search. Luckily she withheld her number before calling them, but unfortunately the letters from GDR and Cabot have now started appearing
  8. I was thinking about this and wishing that I'd done the same. Do you tell them that you're recording the conversation? Can it be used as evidence only if both parties were aware they were being recorded? The LA has found a new tenant to move in to my old place, hopefully a couple of days before the start of the next rental period. I am keeping my fingers crossed that the LL will agree to it, as I assume that they won't take rent from both parties for the same month.
  9. I did try to return the keys but couldn't get in contact with either LA or LL. In the end I left them in a safe place and then let the LA know where they were as they had said they would seek new tenants. With no TA I didn't know who I should be giving them to which is why I didn't post them to either office. I've just seen that OFT has guidelines for landlords that state a tenancy agreement should be given to a tenant before the date the keys are handed over, and before a deposit for the property is taken. Is this ever enforced, and what happens if a LL doesn't abide by the guidelines? I can't remember the last time I had a TA and whether it was provided in advance before the move-in date (I suspect not). Does a TA become less legally-binding if a T is not given time to inspect it? I'd never really thought about it before, but when starting a new job the contract is always posted well in advance of the start date.
  10. Yes I did but I had to fly abroad at short notice.. the LL and LA were both shut for the weekend and no answer to phone calls. I tried to get in touch to arrange handing the key over but couldn't. There was absolutely no choice I had to go straight away. I could have flown back just to do the handover but the LA has assured me that they will find new tenants. There was no itinerary when I moved in and no tenancy agreement so I don't believe they can deduct anything. I doubt they'll trash the place, and even if they do I took very detailed before & after photos, plus there is a huge demand for property in that area and I don't think they'd waste their time when they could very easily get new tenants.
  11. This is very useful thank you. Not 100% sure about the deposit though; I received a reply from Shelter and they told me that I will have difficulty getting my deposit back if the LL doesn't agree with the minimum term. I have emailed the LL again to say that I've moved out & the property is clean & empty and that I have signed paperwork stating 6 months. I've asked them to send me what they have on file for the property. I think that by law if they do have a TA then I should have a copy too.
  12. At the very least I have learned from this experience to check EVERYTHING that requires a signature.. no matter how nice the LL seems EDIT: I left in month 4 but I have already paid up until month 5. I expect I will probably be paying for month 6 as well unless the LA can find new tenant's for October. I have no problem with paying for 6 months as that's what I agreed. I don't know how much commission the LA receives but they seem very keen to get new tenants in quickly. My worry was that the LL can refuse to release the deposit, saying that the TA was 12 months.
  13. I just think it's a bit sad that after a LA and a LL agreed in writing and verbally to a 6 month contract; they can both then insist at a later date that it's a 12 month contract and this is considered "entirely my own fault". For a member of the site team (of a consumer advice website) to give that 'advice' as a first reply, along with an overall condescending tone, I think is quite depressing. Not everyone deals with rental agreements often and this deposit protection scheme wasn't even in existence the last time I rented in the UK. It's my fault I didn't check the small print of the deposit letter, yes. But I did not enter into a 12 month contract and then expect to be able to leave after 6 months with no penalty. I also didn't suggest that i could leave after 4 months giving only a month's notice and shouldn't have to pay the remaining 2 months rent. That wouldn't be fair. The LA said they will try to get new tenants in ASAP so I can be released early. As far as I can see, no TA means that the payment of rent is by default in arrears. I don't need to pay in advance, hence why I stopped my automatic payment. If a new tenant moves in and starts paying rent, I don't trust my LL at this point to refund a portion of the rent if he received 2 lots. I've also seen that anything a LA arranges with a T is legally binding and the LL is ultimately responsible for, because tenants aren't expected to know whether the LA or LL is responsible for certain things. No TA also means that by law the LL can't make deductions from the deposit because allowable deductions need to be stated first in the TA. If the LL makes deductions and I take him to court he will lose. Regarding the council tax, I think that different council have different rules. That's what I've seen so far online anyway. My particular council will give a discount if the property is empty but only if it's unfurnished, and then it's only for 1 week. Regarding my LA who didn't want anything to do with me last week, I mentioned in an email that a rival LA was advertising the property as immediately available and that the LL must have read my email to him and informed them. They were very quick to respond, I had 5 missed calls and 2 emails within 10 minutes. They wanted my assurance that they could have access to the keys and that I gave them my permission to find another tenant ASAP. They also confirmed that they wouldn't charge me any fees!
  14. Hello King sorry I didn't see your first reply as I didn't refresh the page while I was typing my last message! I had another look and I think I'm liable for council tax for the length of the tenancy. I don't mind paying for the 6 months that I agreed to as that's only fair (although it would have been nice not to have to pay for the 2 months that I wasn't living there!), I just worry that the landlord will refuse to take over payments saying that my AST is 12 months. I finally got a copy of the draft TA from the LA and as I suspected I'd never seen it before. It's 10 pages long and I definitely didn't sign it! The only thing saying 12 months (that I signed) is the deposit protection certificate which I didn't read properly. Hi Steve. Thanks for the info, I hadn't thought to send letters as I usually do everything by email. Yes I signed the deposit letter and sent it back. Because I'm stupid and didn't read it properly! I guess because it looked like an official government scheme document rather than something from the landlord. Plus it was in very small print (not a good excuse I know), I'd already moved in at that point & I thought the paperwork was done and dusted. I'd also just moved countries, started a new job & was doing 3 courses with exams looming in the next 2 months. But hopefully the fact that I also didn't notice my name was misspelt will go slightly in my favour. It was a stupid mistake and I admit that, but probably not as stupid as the LL forgetting to give me a TA.
  15. Hello RainbowTears, thank you for the reply. I have been through everything 3 times and there is no separate TA. I have a signed form from the LA stating move-in date, 6 month term, monthly rental cost & deposit amount. The only form I got from the LL was a standing order mandate form for the monthly rent which gives the first payment date & says it will continue until further notice. And the deposit protection letter which came after I moved in. I wasn't sure whether to cancel the standing order but I thought I'd rather pay the last months rent with a one-off payment. I read on a landlord's website that a LL can't make a tenant pay the rent before the start of the month. I'm just worried that they'll keep my deposit & the deposit scheme will side with them because they've entered the TA as being 12 months. Can I be issued with a CCJ if the deposit is taken to pay the last month's rent? Hi Colin, the LA told me that had a "draft copy" of the contract that the LL sent them. But they won't let me see it. There is no way I'd have signed it if he'd given it to me! The LL is ignoring me but I'm sure he's read my email, because the flat is now advertised as immediately available. He is the only one that I told the flat was empty & ready for viewings, not the LA.
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