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  1. Thanks for the reply. It's just so confusing, under our "personal circumstances" section, it says total hours worked in a week "40", true as I've mentioned for the time periods when he actually was working, I know that the number of hours you work affects your claim as it can't fall below 30 (as a joint claim for a couple with children) but just can't seem to work out how that affects the self employed (whilst going through the notes that apply to changes in personal circumstances, it does state that you need to inform them if your usual working hours change, you stop working or are laid off). This from the HMRC website: If you're now working fewer hours If your hours have gone down temporarily, you can normally carry on getting your usual tax credits payments for four weeks. This is from the date your hours dropped. This can happen as long as you expect your hours to go back to normal after four weeks. If your hours have gone down until further notice or for good, you may carry on getting the same tax credits payments for four weeks. This is from the date your hours go down. This can happen as long as you continue to meet the other qualifying conditions for Working Tax Credit. After the four weeks is up, your tax credits may: stop if you no longer qualify go down if you still qualify for some payments What you need to do You must tell the Tax Credit Office within one month if your hours of paid work fall below the minimum for your circumstances. To find out the minimum working hours, see 'Number of usual working hours' at the top of this page. You also need to get in touch within one month if either of the following happens: you or your partner were working at least 30 hours a week, and your hours have dropped to less than 30 hours a week you're in a couple with children, and your joint working hours drop to less than 30 a week See, a few weeks in between jobs as a self employed person I'd expect them to understand, but 5 months might raise a few eyebrows...
  2. hi there, I wonder if anyone can give us an idea of what to expect when we renew our tax credits... From April to August last year, my partner was working 40 hours a week as a self employed subcontractor. Then the company he was working for folded, but rather than sign on and claim JSA as we were sure we could weather the financial storm without doing so, he continued to look for work and we lived off our small savings (and sold pretty much everything we owned). Our second baby was born in November, so having him at home was a godsend really as I was pretty ill, all in all he was not working for around 5 months. By the beginning of Februuary thanks to the generosity of friends and family we had managed to find him enough tools etc. to set up on his own as a gardener. So he informed HMRC that he was now a sole trader, and at the time I rang tax credits who said that that in itself made no difference as he was already registered self employed. Things are really positive now, he is working 6, sometimes 7 days a week and we are financially back on track. However, now that we have got last year's accounts back from the accountant and it's time to renew our tax credits claim, I realise that the details they have for last year won't be correct, (he DID work 40 hours a week when he was working, but obviously that doesn't apply to the 5 months off). I feel stupid that we didn't tell them about the 5 month period where he was looking for work but not signed on. We continued to receive tax credits for that period, which I assume is fraud as now I've looked into it we should have told them within four weeks if he wasn't working? Being newly self employed last year, we just didn't think as I assumed our award would just be based on income (overall, he still made a profit of £4237 for the year) Will they just ask us to pay it back from future awards? Or will they cut off our award altogether for not disclosing all of the relevant information? I'm making myself sick with worry as this was a genuine oversight as we had so much on our plate. Any advice gratefully received.
  3. Thank you for the link.. "...Thirdly (and this is where your rights differ), if you have bought the car from a dealer, the car must be of satisfactory quality. Satisfactory quality is defined as what a ‘reasonable person’ would regard as acceptable, taking into account factors such as price paid, fitness for purpose specified, appearance and finish, safety and durability. If it becomes apparent that the car was not of the quality you were led to expect, you are quite within your rights to go back to the dealer, even after some weeks or even months of use. If it was the case that you were invited to carry out a thorough inspection of the car before purchase, and then you go back to complain about something which that inspection should have revealed, you will have no legal rights in that regard." So I'm still no closer to being sure of where I stand. I'm a reasonable person, and I don't think that £1400 should buy you only six weeks use of a car... A quick "once round the block" inspection at the time of purchase would not have revealed the car's underlying problems, and the seller will just argue that it's hard luck and that they must have occurred in the six weeks I've had it. I don't think I can prove otherwise. Giving up shortly No need to fight boys
  4. ... and sorry to post whole emails but it would appear that i do need my hand held by somebody. That's kinda why I'm here!
  5. so... not looking hopeful I'm afraid. This is what I sent: Dear Sir, I am writing regarding the silver Volvo Estate registration N****** which I purchased from you on 07/04/10 for £1400. Last thursday 27/05/10 I noticed a leak underneath the car and upon investigation the water and coolant tank was found to be empty. I took it to our local mechanic the following morning, although I have only today spoken to him because of the Bank Holiday. The car is showing the following symptoms: Misfires from cold with a rattle, takes 2-3 secs to start Loss of water and coolant He suspects a problem with the turbo or more likely the head gasket, although I have asked him to hold fire on further investigation or repair until I had contacted you and you'd spoken to him yourself. In short, I am looking at a very expensive repair bill for a car which I have had for only six weeks. Now I understand that you would almost certainly not have known about an imminently failing head gasket, however I'm sure you are also familiar with the Sale of Goods Act and that in this case it could well be argued that the car is unfit for purpose and that I have not had reasonable use of it for the price paid. I would appreciate it if you could contact the garage: *Garage contact details* to discuss these issues, and then get back to me by email a.s.a.p. As we live in Devon it would be difficult to return the car to yourself in order for you to arrange a repair without putting it on a transporter, although this is not out of the question, I am instead seeking a partial refund as a gesture of goodwill to cover the cost of repairs so that we can settle this matter amicably and without resorting to legal channels. Yours in good faith, Mel Turnbull and his response: Hello Without Prejudice. I'm sorry to learn that you are experiencing some problems with the car. However the vehicle was sold to yourselves 'as seen' and without warranty. You will also recall that it was inspected by a mechanic/friend at the time of sale and was given the thumbs up. As you said, the car was absolutely fine when it left here. Unfortunatley cars are mechanical objects and they can go wrong. Once again i am sorry that the car has developed a fault 6-8 weeks after purchase but i cant be held responsible for that. I am fully aware of the sale of goods act so i do consider this matter closed. John @ *********. Now, a friend did give the car a quick look when we bought it, but only in the sense that he started it, it ran ok, there was no major fault apparent from a quick once over. He is not a mechanic and was not acting in a professional capacity. Leg to stand on?
  6. Thanks for the quick responses chaps I have sent an email to the vendor along with the details of the garage who have the car now, so that he can discuss a diagnosis with them personally (cars in no sense my strong point!) and will wait and see what he has to say. Tried to keep the tone friendly but did mention the SOGA as well as requesting that he reply by email so we'll see!
  7. Hi guys, I'm new here so hope I'm in the right place. 6 weeks ago I purchased a second hand 1996 Volvo Estate from a dealer in Berkshire, I'm in Devon. It cost £1400, I foolishly turned down the 6 month warranty the guy offered as I couldn't afford the extra money, the car overstretched my budget as it was but I took the gamble as the full service history and lack of advisories on its last MOT suggested it was a goody. Tragedy struck last week, I noticed fluid leaking from underneath and the local garage have diagnosed that it is either the head gasket on the way out or a major problem with the turbo. I've asked them to put any repairs or a more comprehensive diagnosis (don't want them to start taking it apart until I know where I stand legally) on hold as either of these is going to be pretty expensive and I wondered if the SOGA is applicable in this case and whether there was any way in hell I could recover any of the costs from the dealer? Surely I've not had reasonable use out of the car for the price? Any advice very welcome as I haven't really got a clue on my consumer rights, or the money for repairs.
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