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  1. Hi, We are a married couple. We are entitled to tax credits but not universal credit (due to savings). However next week I am going abroad (out of the EU) where we are building a house. We are still a couple but as I understand it with me being out of the country I cannot be on a tax credit claim (even if this would reduce the amount we can claim). I'll probably come back to the UK in September, but that's not yet certain - it could be later but not earlier. Wife will come to see me in August for a month (she works in school so no problem) Apparently UC is being rolled out in our area in late 2018. So is it correct to apply for TCs now (or as soon as I leave in the country) in wife's name? (Money will go into joint account) When I return to the UK then would that be a new TC claim (so potentially going onto UC)? Or just a modification (we'd still be entitled to TCs if I'm here, it doesn't make too much difference to our income)?
  2. I have used this forum a couple of times for myself but this time am enquiring for a friend who has MS and leukemia and is highly anxious at present. She had been on ESA until March, having been forced out of her teaching job in quite harrowing and underhand fashion a couple of years ago. She was put onto JSA and has been supplying bank statements to the Benefits Office here. She had been paying her rent out of rapidly dwindling savings until her savings fell under the limit preventing a housing benefit claim very recently. Despite her condition she has in the year that I've known her continued to apply for work in teaching, and is registered with at least three agencies. She has had interviews and trials which have come ot nothing. It does seem the MS is the likely reason. My friend has run herself into the ground pursuing these jobs and is clearly upset at not winning them. She is a genuine and ethically-minded person. It's clear that stress is affecting her symptoms, and this week's events have really been out of order. She has just had a 'compliance meeting' this week which has not gone at all well. The person carrying out the interview is from the 'Fraud and Error' department. The DWP employee does not seem to have been very sensitive in the way he handled things, and my friend brought the meeting to a halt and said she wanted a witness present. She then rang me. I've never heard her in the condition she was in. Despite her condition she is a tough thing and represents herself well normally, with proper assertiveness and self-respect. I scarcely manage the same myself. I got the the Benefits Office about half an hour later and the meeting was resumed. We had asked ot record the meeting. The employee said he wasn't sure that could be done and would have to get advice, and we ended up settling for my being present as a witness - my friend is burying he rmother in the next week or so and doesn't want things dragged out with all that's going on. My friend and I both referred to the misconduct we have expeienced in the last year, which is from the housing department of the council and the DWP alike, in both our cases. My friend's Maximus assessment for example was carried out by someone who was then sacked, and I've seen the lie-strewn report he wrote on my friend, a not-quite-separate matter that will be attended to. A statement was typed in by the employee and my friend asked me to read it, as she was getting befuddled both with the stress and as part of the MS. She signed the statement. It was a pretty awkward meeting. The fella didn't really seem to know what he was doing, and I would hope he feels bad for the distress he caused my friend. We would like some things cleared up. This DWP employee used the phrase 'deprivation of capital' in reference to my friend's having gifted her son with money. He did not explicitly say that the gifting would be viewed as such but it was muddily expressed, and we're wondering how arbitrary the notion of 'deprivation of capital' is. My friend is a single mother in her 50s with one son, who has mental health troubles and seemingly something on the autistic spectrum, and has been neglected by professionals. After her divorce from a man who wasn't the boy's father she has been very supportive of her son including financially. I think anyone would be the same and that my friend's gifting him money should not be viewed with cynicism. Ordinarily as far as I know - and I think I read this this week in relation to something else - there is no limit to money being gifted. The amount since my friend has been claiming JSA I would think is all that is relevent too. In no way has the gifting been a dodge of any kind, but is of a compassionate basis that it would be shocking to have to explain. The other question is asked because my friend is worried about being treated as a fraud case. We think we've established that either all or almost all of the period she claimed JSA, her savings fell under the threshold. But she also submitted all those bank statements, and from March till now nothing was said. (Weirdly today she has been asked for the bank statements again by this man, who is sitting in the building where the DWP's copies are held - why can't he just access these?) So if there was any period, say for a few weeks or so, where she recieved JSA but had over the threshold amount, this can't become a fraud case can it? She declared everything. She was in receipt of the lowest JSA amount and was looking for work. At worst this is an employee's error isn't it? She was put on JSA when the ESA ended. I understand there are two different sets of criteria for JSA but presumably my friend has fallen inisde one of them to have been put on JSA. Sorry I haven't been able to make this shorter, but it would mean a lot to my friend and me also if we could get good response on this. I'll see the friend tomorrow and would like some good, calming news if possible. Many thanks.
  3. So I will start with a brief bit on my situation - Two years ago, I was on ESA for social anxiety, failed the ATOS test and had to go on JSA. http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?327891-Help-with-applying-for-ESA-due-to-social-anxiety My disability adviser was/is great and I was referred to an organisation who dealt with people with disability's looking for work. The programme was for a year and they found me a placement, suitable for someone with my condition. This all ended and I was back to the Job Centre, where I was told I will now be referred to "Triage"(Work Programme) Ive been with them for a few weeks, my anxiety is pretty high and they were understanding to an extent, one to one meetings and such, but that's changed and they want to stick me in a crowded classroom (Which a 10 on the richter scale of social anxiety for me) I explained this, but they claim as I am on JSA, their hands are tied. I dont know what to do now. I failed the ATOS test 2 years ago(Not been claiming ESA since) and wondering if I should see my doctor to claim it again? Would I even be allowed to or would it be denied as it is the same condition and I had previously failed ATOS and never turned up to my appeal(Anxiety be damned) Thanks for any replies in advance.
  4. My wife has been on pip for sometime now, I recently found out and applied for carer's allowance and have been receiving carer's for my wife for about 3 month's (she has ME as her main disability) During a recent visit to CAB on one of my bad day's they suggested I should be entitled to pip myself with my medical condition's and amount of pill's I take daily, I applied thinking I wouldn't get anything (knowing the problem's my wife has been through to get her awards and knowing the government cut's all the time) I got a SMS message from DWP telling me I have been awarded pip don't as yet have the letter so not sure of what my entitlements are (I'm assuming low lever of care component which is what my wife is entitled to) So now I have been awarded pip myself would it be wise for me to give up my carer's allowance entitlement ? We do help each other out, I have difficulties bending down, wife has difficulties cutting food ect she is very forgetful at times due to ME (these are just a few highlighted examples)
  5. In 2014, I was due in court for an alleged crime which was fitted up and racist. my wife and I signed to apply for LAA, and it was based on the earnings she was receiving as I was a poor musician. before the case date or I even had a Barristor, I had Rossendales harassing me to pay them £586. 00 per month, which I retaliated withe vitriolic replies. The case date was not set up until Oct, and by that time I had ignored all notices from Rossendales, and was going through nasty Divorce. As soon as I was divorced they started harassing me again, but I am fighting this tooth and nail because they have not bothered to go after my nasty ex wife, just me, and their insipid excuses is that I was the one who signed the agreement, my argument is that under the Consumer Credit act 1974, this is a joint agreement, hence both parties are responsible for the debt and the bailiff fees etc. They have visited my house and I received several letters with costs and threats to take control, to which I have vitriolically replied stating my case which seems to fall on deaf ears. I have made complaints through Resolve, and to Matrons and the LAA, which seem too have stopped the visits, and I have read all the anti bailiff blogs , and the law , but these seem to be a law unto themselves. Fortunately I have a partner with whom I am able to stay with, whilst I make my case, and can take evasive action, like purchasing my own wheel clamps for when I do have to leave my car on the driveway, when I am at my address. My question is : Am I right that the CCA agreement is a joint one, or am I liable for these ridiculous fees plus the LA costs?
  6. I viewed a flat yesterday morning for a rental. I made a payment of 350 pound and was told the property would be taken off of the market when I make an offer. I was also told the money would be refundable if the landlord does not accept my offer. At the end of the day I made an offer of 340pw. The landlord refused and counter offered 350pw. I declined that and the agent suggested 345pw as a compromise. I told him to see what the landlord said, but had yet to discuss with my brother, who i was renting with. Having discussed with my brother, who was unsure about 340pw to begin with, I called the agent and told them my brother was not happy with 340 and we wanted a refund. By this point, the landlord had not confirmed whether he would accept 345pw as he had to speak to his partner as well. So all in all, the offer was only live for a matter of a few hours, it wasn't confirmed and since I made the deposit, I know the agency still had the advert live and had made at least one viewing, directly after mine so it wasn't really taken off the market at all. However, the agency are trying to retain the full 350 pound as compensation for the landlord. I thought the deposit was to cover reasonable costs incurred? It's not like it was off the market for a week. And besides, there had been no agreed and confirmed offer. Do you have any advice to get at least part of the money back or is there no real hope in your opinion? many thanks.
  7. Another couple of (hopefully quick) questions. We don't get paid for staff meetings - they are out of hours but only about one hour every couple of months, although it's annoying due to getting there of an evening. Most of our staff are on minimum wage. Due to not being paid, as these meetings are not optional, does this mean this would drop workers under the NMW even if they have signed a contract waiving the right to pay for staff meetings? And... If you ask for a copy of your contract, how long does your employer have to provide you with a copy? Many thanks again for any help and guidance.
  8. Hi I have just said goodbye to the lady that completed my PIP assessment. I have a diagnosed anxiety/panic disorder and Dysphagia which is a swallowing disorder. One question that threw me a bit, I do not leave the house unless absolutely necessary, and if I do, its with my mum in her car. I never go out alone, and will always have my mum or brother with me, so I am always with someone and I made this clear. I also made it clear that I do not walk anywhere, because I don't, it's not something I can deal with being on my own etc. The lady asked me if I could give my mum directions to the local shop if we were together in her car (5 streets away - lived here all my life etc) so I said yes, because I have gone to those shops all of my life and they are just up the road. I haven't seen that question come up at all anywhere on the internet, and since I would be with my mum in the car, so aided by her, I do not understand her asking it? It shows I can plan a familiar journey I guess, but I would still have to be with my mum and in her car to do it, so that question doesn't come up on any self assessment forms online. Would anyone know why she has asked this and what affect its going to have? As she left she told me there is an appeals process, so I am not hopeful, but I guess I will just have to sit it out and wait for the zero point decision letter coming to a doormat near me soon and take it from there. I recorded the assessment on my phone and its a good recording so I am going to type it up ready for me in case I need to appeal, I know I can't officially use it but just good to have for my own notes.
  9. Hi Everyone, In November I have bought a car for my wife, but she said she wants something smaller to drive, so I decided to sell it. I was a legal owner of the car, V5 was on mine name and address. I'm not a car dealer, it was a private sale. This is a copy of my ad on AutoTrader: "Features & Description: 85k Miles with Full Ford Main Dealer Service History, Long MOT, Low Insurance, Cheap to drive, HPI Clear, 2 Keys, Excellent Overall Condition, Clean Inside and Out, Some Little Age Related Scratches but Nothing Serious, No timewasters, tyre kickers or business offers, please., Full service history, Next MOT due on 21/09/2015, Electric windows, Air conditioning, CD player, Height adjustable driver's seat, Folding rear seats, Metallic paint, Spare wheel (Space-saver), Power steering, Steering wheel rake adjustment, Steering wheel reach adjustment, Traction control, Central locking, Alarm, Immobiliser, Driver's airbags, Passenger airbags." Guy came last Tuesday, before, he asked me on the phone about any issues, I told him about scratches, high clutch( which worked ok, with no slips etc.) He was happy and came to see it. On my driveway he was examing the car very deeply, he checked everything, car itself and all documents. I was trying to be as honest as I could, told him everything about the car, I showed him all scratches, scuffs etc. We have been on a test drive, we did about 10miles using town roads and motorway. The car worked as it should, to only issue was a hardly noticable something like a "whizz" on the 5 gear. We both agree that is nothing serious, everything worked properly. (When I bought a car my mechanic also checked the car and he didnt find any faults) After that buyer was very happy with my Ford and we made a deal. We have signed a Car Purchase Contract, where one of the point is: - "The seller undertakes to carry out work on the car" - He ticked NO and also - "The buyer accepts the car with specified faults" - He ticked YES Then he took the car and drove it home (about 200miles!). Five days later (last Saturday) he phoned me and said, that I sold him a damaged car! He had big difficulties on his way home, then he went to Ford garage where been told that there is a leek and some fault with the gearbox and it will cost 1200 Pounds to fix it! And he already spoke with lawyer and if I not cover that bill he will meet me at court because: a) I sold him unroadworthy car. I found on Citizen advice bureau website that: "A vehicle is unroadworthy if using it would cause danger to the driver, passengers, other road users or pedestrians. Common signs that a car may be unroadworthy include: headlights that don’t work faulty brakes cracked wing mirrors worn out tyres seatbelts that don’t work properly a faulty exhaust system." So I cant agree with him, all these where work perfect and the car was safe to drive, he also checked the car very carefuly and was really hapy with it b) He sais the that ma car didnt match the description from Ad, because i stated that "car is in excellent overall condition" which I in my opinion was on Tuesday. It wasnt perfect ( I said to this guy many times that car is not perfect, there are some scratches, high clutch, cause its 6 years old, and 85k miles, but still looks and drives very well,he was ok with that) c) He said that I wanted to sell it after a month, because I knew was faulty, what is completely not true. Do I need to worry? When I was selling car everything worked as it should. I didnt force him to buy it! I am also wondering why he didnt call me on Tuesday, when like he said: "Had big problems with driving this car home" ? Or even next day? Its weird for me, and I dont want any problems, pay any money, or going to any courts. If You could give me any advices I will be very grateful, cause I didnt sleep last night because of that. Thanks. Jack.
  10. Police called to home of Jan and Julia Tshabalala on Christmas morning Relative and neighbour discovered couple's bodies in West Sussex house Their two children, who had disabilities, were not at home at the time Hours earlier the children had Christmas dinner with their parents Thought that the couple were found dead after an apparent suicide pact http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2887735/Husband-wife-two-young-children-died-Christmas-morning-suicide-pact-deep-financial-trouble.html
  11. Holidaymakers who have an accident or fall ill while on holiday risk having their travel insurance claim turned down if they have had just two alcoholic drinks. The Financial Ombudsman Service, which adjudicates on consumer complaints, has warned that insurers are increasingly accusing customers of "alcohol abuse" in order to wriggle out of paying claims. It has disclosed the details of cases to highlight the issue. In one, the insurer insisted that a customer suffered from "alcoholism" even when medical evidence showed that they had consumed no more than two alcoholic drinks. Travel claims are most commonly rejected if a customer is accused of not declaring a medical condition. However, the ombudsman has reported a rise in complaints over insurers using alcohol consumption as an excuse to avoid paying. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/insurance/travel/11113938/A-couple-of-drinks-Its-alcohol-abuse-and-we-wont-pay-your-claim-say-travel-insurers.html travel insurance – alcohol exclusions http://www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk/PUBLICATIONS/ombudsman-news/120/120-alcohol-exclusions.html
  12. My ex has recently got a temporary studio flat from the council with a view to getting her on the council property list. She is not currently working (FT mum) as we have a baby of 9 months. So naturally she is recieving the usual benefits (housing, IS, and whatever she is eligible for ect...) We broke up on good terms and she allowed me to stay weekends at her previous address (her mums) so i can spend time with my daughter as she lives quite far. At that time she wasn't receiving benefits. Now she is not letting me stay at her temporary place in fear that the council and the benefit agency will claim that we are living as a couple. I dont contribute to any of her bills or pay for any child care (officially) or have anything that links me to her address. I live at my parents and pay rent as well as the phone bill and internet. All my bank accounts are registered at my parents, my driving licence and car are all registered at my parents where i actually live for 5 days a week. If i stay 2 nights a week (on the sofa no doubt!) should she have anything to worry about. I have done some googleling and it seems that if i can prove that i'm not living there. That we should have nothing to worry about. She also claims the Landlord (who works for the council) said she is not suppose to have visitors, i believe that is false as i'm sure that is against human rights!
  13. Just to give background. House repossessed in 2008, Husband made bankrupt but not me, because I wasn't on the mortgage so my debts weren't rolled into his. Have an outstanding overdraft with Lloyds TSB. I shut my account with a £0.00 balance in Jan 2008. After the house was repossessed I did pay for post to be redirected to our address but never received a letter from Lloyds. About 4 years later I received a letter telling me my account was overdrawn by about £600. I can only assume something was missed and Lloyds applied their MASSIVE OD charges afterwards (my main reason for leaving them). I haven't got a formal 'Your account is closed letter' which in hindsight I should have asked for. The debt has been passed to a debt collection agency who send me letters periodically. I've never responded to them. When would this debt become statute barred? 2nd one..... 3 Mobile have recently started chasing me for a phone contract from 2005. I don't recall leaving an outstanding balance but apparently I owe them £68. They have passed this to Lowell/Red. Again I get periodic letters that I've ignored. Would this be Statute Barred? Many thanks
  14. Hi there I have a couple of questions on ppi if anyone could help that would be great First my husband claimed ppi for an old debt he is just at the end of a trust deed, the claim was upheld and a cheque sent out when he received the cheque that day he got a call to say that as he is still in the Edinburgh gazette that the cheque was now sent in error and that it had to go pay his debts, it's probably a straight forward answer but this was quite a horrible situation if we had been told it was upheld but used to pay previous debtors then that would have been fine, but then you have a cheque sent out and us thinking a bit of luck for once was coming out way, I felt they didn't investigate properly n got our hopes up it was enough to help is out in a big way, just feel sick every time I think about it and my husband thinks he had let his family down again, should they have investigated situation a bit better before sending us cheque? Secondly not related if a debt was statue barred and sold on can ppi still be claimed?? Thank in advance
  15. Good evening all. Ive not been on the forums for some time now due to a lot of personal reasons. I was however wondering if much has changed. When I was last on I had great help from a few people on here regarding agreements being enforceable. If I remember correctly there were certain criteria which had to be met to make an agreement enforceable and I had a battle on my hands with Halifax who, in response to a SAR, had sent me not an agreement but instead a copy of an applicationform which had been signed by me but not the Halifax. I had written to them to say the debt was in dispute and in the last couple of years the debt has been passed to 3 different debt agencies and each time I have written to say the debt is in dispute and it has on each occasion been passed back to the Halifax. A month ago I got a letter from yet another collector and I replied with the same response ( I also pointed out that the Halifax had no right to pass on a debt that is in dispute - Is this still correct?) Today I got a letter from them which states that the Halifax have 'no record of there being a dispute' and they have also sent another copy of the same application form. So now I need to respond, but need to be sure of my facts- Am I still correct about the terms and conditions in an agreement, has anything changed? I also wondered about the 6 year 'statute barred' rule. Does this still exist? I havnt had direct contact nor made a payment to the Halifax in 5 years 8 months since I first sent the dispute letter. Does the fact that I have had to respond to other companies regarding the debt negate this? I would appreciate any help on this please. Thank you
  16. Hello, first post, just loving this forum. It has answered so many questions and removed many fears already but...... I have been on a DMP since 2003 with 11 creditors and £53k of unsecured debt. I was with the CCCS until Nov 06 when they got a bit upset that a joint account with an overdraft wasn't on the plan. I went self-admin as until then I had had no bother with any of my creditors. One of my loans was with Northern Rock who passed it on to First Credit a year or so ago. When with the CCCS they were fine now FC are hassling me saying I need to pay £140 pm against my offer of £26 pm. They are threatening me with allsorts of legal rubbish and having read several posts on here am not overly bothered. They are ringing everyday saying the same rubbish which is getting annoying. So from what I have read I should send a CCA request but I have read that this needs to be an executed one although the templates on other threads don't mention this? Do I need the word executed in the letter? Also can you just send a £1 coin or does it have to be a PO or cheque? I have also read that you can request a deed of assignment but not sure if I should be asking for it or how to ask for it? Assuming that they don't reply within 12 days then I believe I can stop paying them? What will happen then? Do they take me to court? I would really like to give them some grief but am unsure how to proceed. Any help greatfully received
  17. Hello, I was on ESA in Leicester England and moved in with a friend who is on full ESA in Wales. I had not passed my ATOS Medical Exam and was waiting for my Tribunal hearing in Leicester. But now that I moved to Wales, suddenly a couple of Compliance Officers made us claim as a Couple when we really are not a couple. But anyway so now all of a sudden I received a huge package of papers from Leicester Job Centre, with all my Appeal stuff in it, and a letter saying something like that I will hear about my Tribunal Hearing soon. Now I am just completely confused because from what I was told, I wouldnt even have to worry about getting any more sick notes from my doctor or having a Tribunal Hearing or anything like that, now that I am claiming as a Couple with my friend? Can anyone please enlighten me about this? Also, if I still DO have to go to a Tribunal Hearing, and lose it, what happens then to this filing as a Couple thing? Thank you
  18. hi! When I started my degree I was single mum with one child. I received full financial help. After time I started live together with my partner and I become pregnant with my second baby. As full time student I cannot get any housing benefit- they said it is because I am not single anymore, even I have one 5y old baby and second on the way. Also I cannot claim Income support- because this type of benefit is only for single parents. I cannot get Job seekers allowance because I am student. I cannot get ESA, they said if I can study that mean I can also work. MY Child tax credit is in process for last 3 month. My husband is working- so he is paying £500 rent+ £140 council tax, + rest bills, car insurance and everything else and we cannot survive. We are in so bad situation, that WE Cannot afford to be together, bec when I was single at least I got some help... After baby I think I will go back to work, but anyway we need help at least for next 3 month... SO what you could advise? Thank you Bolton council said that It was MY DECISION TO MAKE RELATIONSHIPS ;(
  19. Right I'm going to keep this short as possible I have about 6/7 PDL's and have informed them all on a number of occasions I am on a DMP with CCCS. My first payment is due to go out 1st August. Theres 4 things I need advice on (all different companies)... 1) Quickquid took £200 out of my account last month even though they knew about the DMP etc, so I had it reversed. My bank [HSBC] wrote to me stating the amount woud be taken again since they had receieved proof etc. So I rang up HSBC, and told them while I did owe QQ money, I had not authorised the £200 and that I wondered if they could hold off redebiting my account since there is no money in there - I have switched accounts now thanks to all the PDL taking money unauthorised.. I wrote to QuickQuid asking them to wait until my first payment through CCCS was made but had no reply. Fast forward to last week, and I discover that HSBC, even though they said they would hold the redebit until 6th August have taken it out. This has left me £200 over my overdraft limit... So what is best to say to them? 2) Minicredit have sent me their usual threatening letters, but the latest one stated if things werent settled by 7th august, they'd have no choice but to pursue legal action and what not: Should I be worried about this? 3) Marshall Hoarse Bailiffs: First of all: WHAT A BUNCH OF C***S! (Excuse my french ) I received a text from them about 30 minutes ago, and after searching the net cannot find anything similar: VISIT ARRANGED. Call now on 08433811111 to confirm a convenient time for this as waisted visits will be charged for if no contact is made and you are not home. Seriously? 'Waisted' ? Not only can they not spell, but they are now actually telling me they have arranged a visit. WHAT THE HELL DO I SAY TO THEM? As you can tell, I'm getting to the end of my tether with all these bullying tactics, and am starting to be worn down by the threats I'm receiving Please if anyone has any advice, I'd love to hear it
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