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  1. Don't leave it too late to find out if you're eligible for financial help and support through Warm Home Discount schemes this winter. They are run by energy companies but tend to close in late November or early December. One in 10 of allhouseholds are eligible for some form of help with their energy bills. Those that qualify include low-income families, disabled, elderly and other vulnerable customers. http://www.homeheathelpline.org.uk/about/
  2. Interesting question on the floor... I have a JCP 50% discount card which gives me 50% off fares for train including season tickets. It was given to me at the start of December. It is valid thru Feb 2019. However that is my issue. The date is valid for is the 29th Feb 2019... This year doesnt have a leap day of course but is it invalid as it has a date that doesn't exist? Or is it valid until the 28th Feb 2019 by default?
  3. Does anyone have experience of challenging the 20% discount repayment for Right to Buy terms with a local council in the final six months of the five year no move rule. There is a proviso written in the contract that says in exceptional circumstances they will waive this. Would anyone know what these exceptional circumstances might be, or if there has been a successful challenge. I have been told it would be too costly to ask and I would be unsuccessful if I engaged a solicitor to do this hence my post to clarify this would be the case. Thanks in advance.
  4. Good morning, Lets I will explain situation. My girlfriend bought 1 month ago at work 50% discount card from colleague. The card was sold with oyster and 50% Jobcentre discount card. The person put her photo inside the job centre card and signed for it. She was told that it is legal card and he is working in Job Centre. Yesterday inspector stopped her on the bus and she told that the card is fake one and she can not use it. She paid for this card 80 pounds to this guy. They confiscated it and gave her two tickets: one for counterfeit ticket and other for reference. They told that the letter will come in next 10 days. I have several questions: 1.) What happened next 2.) What you suggest me to do? 3.) Any recommendation? Thank you.
  5. Hi, I have received a letter from TFL for failing to produce a valid ticket, pass or photocard for my journey the London Underground. have asked for my side of the story and have been advised that legal proceedings may be taken against me. What happened is that I was on the tube then an inspector came on and I gave him the Oyster card that I had used for the journey. He scanned it and asked to see the railcard attached so I gave him my student railcard. He then told me that there is a greater discount on the card and asked if I have another railcard. I said that I don't. The inspector revealed that it was a privilege discount which is 75% and that I should have a privilege card to be entitled to it. he then cautioned me and started questioning me and I explained that I bought the blue Oyster card and then asked a staff member to attach my 16-25 student railcard to it. The inspector withdrew the oyster but returned my student railcard. I was told that even though it may have been a staff mistake where the wrong discount was attached, TFL can still take action against me for using a discount that I wasn't eligible for and benefitting from it. Please advise me on how to respond to their letter. Should I argue that it is not my fault that the staff made a mistake and I am not responsible to correct it. It was the staff's responsibility to check the right discount was given and there was no reason for me to assume they could not properly perform their job. Also, I could have only found out that the wrong discount was given after using the oyster and then calculating the fare I was charged, so travelling without a valid photocard was unavoidable. I didn't know that privilege discount existed, so even if I noticed that I had a greater discount, I would have still not known what is was for me to go and report it. I would appreciate any help on how to respond to this to get the best outcome possible.
  6. Being a new customer of Hastings direct I was astonished to see that my many years of no claims discount (as submitted) had been reduced to 9 years by hastings when i was attempting to check the new policy details. It seems that whatever your actual NCD, if it is more than 9 years, Hastings directs' system only allows a maximum of 9 years to be entered and that this reduction is done automatically without notice (other than showing the substituted amount buried in the policy details). Both my prior insurance suppliers' systems had no issues with recording and reporting NCD in double figures. I noticed this and complained, to be told that if I sent evidence of my NCD, they would note it and report it if I left them..... Which leads me to assume that if someone does not notice this and raise a complaint, then anyone with more than 9 years NCD will lose it or potentially at least be put in an awkward position at next renewal time. This has clearly been occurring for some years and disturbingly the following related thread seems to indicate that Hastings will do nothing when this is found at a later stage. Referred Thread 217431 Problem with proof of NCD http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?217431-Problem-with-Proof-of-NCD-(no-claims-discount)
  7. Hi All Lowells have just offered me 50% off a £5k debt on an overdraft from 5yrs ago. I have a letter and also on their system it shows the 50%. I can pay either in full or in part by Direct debit. Are overdrafts harder to defend due to not needing a CCA? Or os the opposite true and it's harder for them to go to court with? They say this won't remove the full debt from my file. This is what they say: Note: If this account is on your credit file and you opt to pay the 'Discounted Balance' your credit file will be updated to show as 'Partially Satisfied' once your payment plan is successfully completed. If you choose to pay the Full Balance your credit file will be updated to show as 'Satisfied'. It may take up to 50 days for your credit file to be updated. If you do not maintain your payment plan, your discount will be removed. I am leaning toward accepting this if I can pay by DD in affordable amounts and with no interest. However, if I pay by DD it seems open to Lowell changing the terms mid way through. Am I correct in this concern? Based on reading here, most cases are mainly based on F&F payments not DD, but I assume I need to write letters and get it in writing that they confirm if I start payments via DD then it will be full and final "settled" on my credit file when the debt is repaid? Any other advice before I enter into communication on this? Lowell had 2 debts of mine from this bank. One CC and one overdraft. The CC has been cancelled due to no CCA. I actually had a loan from the same bank which was meant to consolidate the overdraft and CC. The bank gave me the loan based on them cancelling the CC and overdraft. They said it was a requirement for approval of the loan from the underwriter. They did neither and I crept back into debt with both. Thanks again all. D
  8. Hi, long time member, (but been away for a while so name changed a bit, hoping admin can sort old ID out soon) . A family member has received a nice green letter from Capquest concerning an old MBNA debt for approx £1400. There is an offer of discount of approx 75%. Now, family member has said that he doesnt recall last payment but must be well over 6 years by now. Ive advised that he should get his credit ref file ( I personally hate these organisations, but thats another battle) to see whats on there, just in case it shows anything up. My instinct is to sit on the letter, the only trouble is, hes living with partner at their parents house. should they do anything more than ive advised at this stage. They were going to sent a statute barred letter out, but we need to know for sure first, otherwise we could shoot ourselves in the foot. considering this nice offer, suggests to me that its a straw clutch and we can expect a couple more letters before we need to do anything further. thanks for any ideas, ( its kind of good to be back )
  9. Hi All, My landlady told us in Feb that she was selling our house. We moved out in April when a suitable property came up, but had to pay double rent and council tax on the two properties until the end of June when my tenancy ended I did however manage to get a one month discount on the old property as I wasn't living there. Now that the landlady is renovating the house to sell, she too has applied for the council tax discount (as she's not living there) and has been declined as there needs to be a period of 6 weeks of someone living there since that last claim before she's entitled to it. Because of this, she has told me that what I did was 'unacceptable' and that she will be taking the £119 (one month's council tax) out of my deposit. We are going through the DPS, but but the email this morning told me that my request for repayment of my deposit has been declined and that that I to settle it with her - which is impossible as she is totally unreasonable. Who is in the right here? She is stating that it was my responsibility to pay all bills (which I have done), but in claiming the discount (which I was perfectly entitled to), I have breached this part of my contract. Any advice much welcomed.
  10. Hi, I just wnated to know where I stand on a potential non-issue. Just kind of curious incase anything comes of it. I work for a company that offers it's employees a 40% discount on it's products. To claim this discount we have to fill out a form with what part numbers we require and personal details. We have to email this over to our sister company who will reply with the discounted price. We then have to ammend the form with the discounted price relating to to Part Numbers requested. The items will then be delivered to us and we shall receive an invoice after receipt of goods for us to check items over and then pay for them. I worked out that the cost of something that I was buying should have been £385.56 before VAT, they quoted me the price of £325.56 before VAT via email. I confirmed the order and the customer service lady told me that it been processed. That was all yesterday. Today I have received the items but still no invoice. My question is, that if the company notices the price typo (only £60 in my favour but still) and invoices me the correct price of £385.56 +VAT... Where do I stand to challenge this? The goods are in my possession and I was quoted a certain price that I accepted. Will I have to return the goods to re-order them or will I be forced to pay the correct amount. Obviously the company I ordered from is the sister company to one that I work for so I am not that keen to cause trouble but want to at least hold my ground a little bit.
  11. So within the past few months I had used a loan broker site in an attempt to get a loan. I don't know for sure which one so apologise on the unhelpful nature on this account. I was not accepted so thought nothing of it and moved along. A bit later on I had a random debit for £29.50 from a site I hadn't recognised and again at the end of this month the same payment occurred. I finally discovered who this was and it was a site called My Discount Codes, who offer a subscription service for some sort of discounts. Haven't a clue what they actually do since once I discovered this I demanded the account be closed and to be refunded for the money taken from me. They thought they were admirable in refunding me 25% of the funds and believe I signed up when seeking a loan - something I definitely would not have done and should surely require explicit permission - not signing up then hoping people lapse on the free trial they offer. When trying to figure out who they were and in my dealings with them, I was able to access the Zendesk helpdesk and noticed that it redirects sometimes to 'Loans Direct' (and also 'Old Brands' from My Discount Codes. A quick search of this forum shows they are well known for this sort of thing if it is the same Loans Direct company. Few questions; What are the legalities of taking details to sign up for things like this when the details were used for a completely different purpose? Who are the best bodies to address the issues I have here? What is the best way for me to go about getting a refund? Will my bank still be able to do this 2months on?
  12. Hi, I'm a single expat (this is starting like a lonely hearts advert! ) but, I still own a house in the UK which I rent out. Currently it's empty and I've been paying council tax. I applied for the single person discount but it was denied on the basis that I was a landlord. However, I assume this is normally done on the basis that you are getting single person discount on the property you live in elsewhere. In this case that does not apply to me because I live abroad and am not getting single person discount on any other UK property. The property in question will be nominated as my main home for capital gains if I sell it and was my last residence in the UK. Do I have a case for disputing the denial of single person discount with the tribunal? I've email the council several times disputing their original decision and they have not replied. The council in question is Brighton.
  13. 2 weeks ago there was a discussion on the Winter Home Discount (WHD) if anyone is following this you may want to have a read up on this here >>http://researchbriefings.files.parliament.uk/documents/SN05956/SN05956.pdf or see my attachment Number SN 05956, 6 May 2016 Summary This Commons Library Briefing Paper looks at the Warm Home Discount scheme (WHD). The scheme started on 1 April 2011 and was originally to end on 31 March 2015. Since then it has been extended twice, first until 2015/16 and most recently until 2020/21. The WHD scheme is part of the measures designed to help those in fuel poverty; further discussion can be found in the Commons Briefing Paper Fuel poverty. Information on sources of help for constituents with domestic energy bills can be found in the Library Briefing Paper Help with energy bills. The Commons Library Briefing paper on The Energy Company Obligation sets out details of funding to improve energy efficiency in the homes of ‘those most in need’ and in difficult to treat housing. Extension to 2016/17 and to 2020/21 On 8 April 2016, the Government published its consultation document on an extension to the scheme for 2016/17 (Warm Home Discount Scheme: extension to 2016/17) and an impact assessment . The Government proposes to keep the scheme unchanged for 2016/17 in respect of the Core and Broader Groups. Further details for the period to 2020/21 are to follow in 2017 and are expected to be linked more closely to other fuel poverty initiatives. To check to see if you qualify see here >> https://www.gov.uk/the-warm-home-discount-scheme List of suppliers of the scheme see here >> https://www.gov.uk/the-warm-home-discount-scheme/eligibility Winter warm discount 2016-2017 SN05956.pdf
  14. Please can anyone advise me on Council Tax single person discount. I'm living with my 2 children. My eldest moved out Sept 2015. In Sept this year the council started taking 50% increase on the amount Ive been paying. They had an old letter that stated my eldest child was on a college course until Aug 16 (when in fact she had moved out a year prior to this). I notified the council that she wasn't living here and not to take another inflated payment from my account as I wasn't in a position to cover this. Initially I got a reply within 3 days to advise about the letter being the reason they had increased the amount taken. I replied, all done by email to state that categorically I was the only adult living at the house and needed single person discount applying. Then one evening during a particularly manic tea time, a woman called at the door, I was in the middle of taking a phone call at the time. She waved a paper under my nose and asked if the electoral listing was correct. I said no, my daughter wasn't living here she was at University and living in another city. The woman said it was ok, this was just for the purposes of a vote, did I want her to have one? I said I did. I emailed the council and told them about this and clarified that she didn't live here and asked again for them not to take another payment. I heard nothing from them for 26 days (they state a reply within 28) which seemed odd since all my previous emails had been replied to within a week. This also meant that another payment had then been taken. Ive had a reply to say that while my daughter is at university she is deemed to live with me and I needed to provide a certificate to say what course she was on and the dates. Is this regular? She doesn't live here. She doesn't live in student accommodation, she has her own housing contract and she very definitely doesn't live here. I wanted to challenge this but TBH in order to resolve it quickly and prevent further payments being taken I asked her to get a certificate and sent it off. I have now received another letter so say that this isn't the correct certificate (even though its an official notification from the uni with the course dates which is what I was told I needed). This all feels like a total runaround. I'm not sure what I should do, I shouldn't have to provide my local council with info about her, shes an adult living her own life in a different city. Thanks in advance for reading.
  15. I have a valuation tribunal upcoming, and I have received the following correspondence. The issue is that the council will not grant the 1st month discount because the previous occupiers used up this discount. As we are first time buyers and didn't actually move in till at least a month later I was hoping the 1st months council tax would be discounted 100%. However this is not the case. Is there anything that I can backup this case with as it's basically their legislation against what I think I should be entitled to. Issues in Dispute The dispute concerns the application of the 100% discount for one month for properties that are unoccupied and substantially unfurnished for the period 20 June 2016 to 20 July 2016. Decision Sought The decision we seek from the Tribunal is that the appeal is dismissed based on the reasons set out below. Reasons for Decision The Council Tax (Exempt Dwellings)(England) (Amendment) Order 2012 omitted the exemption Class C of the Council Tax (Exempt Dwellings) Order 1992, whereby properties that were both unoccupied and substantially unfurnished for a period not exceed six months were exempt from Council Tax. Billing Authorities were then able to prescribe classes of empty dwellings, and the level of discount applicable under Section 11 of the Local Government Finance Act 2012 referred to Section 11A of the Local Government Finance Act 1992 (appendix 10) North West Leicestershire District Council made the decision that for properties that were both unoccupied and substantially unfurnished, there would be a one month 100% discount from Council Tax from the date the property became such, after which there would be a 0% discount (appendix 11 & 12) The Council were notified by the previous owners that the property had become both unoccupied and substantially unfurnished more than a month prior to Mr Buyers purchase of the property. The previous owners contacted the Council as and when changes occurred, and there is no reason to disbelieve them. Furthermore, no evidence has been provided to dispute the information provided by them. In line with North West Leicestershire District Council’s local discount scheme, the property had been unoccupied and substantially unfurnished for more than a month prior to 20 June 2016, therefore no discount is applicable for the period 20 June 2016 to 20 July 2016. The Tribunal is asked to dismiss the appeal on the grounds set out above.
  16. Today in the post we had an offer of 15% off our subscription if we took up the offer. I logged into the address given as I wanted to see how it would apply in our case as we have the movies on discount at present. There was a button that you needed to click and I thought in doing so I woudl be able to get more information and how mcuh the discount would be. T o see this info I had to log in which I did and on logging in got a message that I had now got the discount and was locked into a 12 month contract and it seems there is no way to cancel this as we do not want to be locked into any contract. Seems a very underhand way of locking people into contracts as no "Confirm" button or being able to view the discount before confirming.
  17. Hello fellow forum members I'm looking for some advise for my sister who has had her insurance renewal come through at a higher than expected price. Upon looking into the renewal, it shows her no claims bonus is at 4 years, not the expected 9years that she should be entitled to. She rang her insurance company today to find out the reasons why this has happened, and they have stated its due to an incident that occurred in 2015. To keep this story shorter, it was a 50/50 clash of mirrors... my sister informed her insurance of the incident (as you should do) and told them that she and the other party would be sorting the issue between themselves, she assumed that was the end of it. So now due to this minor accident, that no one has made a claim on she has lost 5 years of no claims (as she didn't have it protected) due to the fact there "may" be a possible future claim. Does this sound right? It was my understanding that any accident should be reported to your insurance company, but in doing so she is now worse off even though she has gone through the correct channels. Any help or advise would be greatly received. Thank you in advance
  18. I bought a pair of boots from Littlewoods in December and use a £30 discount code. They did not fit and were immediately returned. They're now charging me for the value of the discount code even though I didn't keep the item. The customer service told me I'm required to pay for the 'broken discount code' (whatever that means as I didn't break any code!!) Perhaps she meant breaking a contract but I assume one is entitled to return online good without penalty. So can anyone enlighten me regarding this issue as I can't understand what is going on and how I'll paying £30 for trying a pair of shoes. What t & c's I'm breaking that I'm required to pay for the discount I never had as the purchase did not go ahead. Any advice very welcome. Thank you:)
  19. Up until last year I was insured as a driving instructor and had my own car and paid my own insurance and accumulated 6 no claims years from the insurers. I had decided not to continue as an ADI and looked elsewhere for insurance. I received my NCD and uploaded it to the new insurers who refuse to accept it as it was earned, they say, on a commercial vehicle. I have phoned my previous insurers and they said they have never had a problem like mine, and suggested I give permission for the new insurer to call them. The insurers I have now have said I can alter my policy on line (have tried with no success)I want to cancel within the 14 day cooling off period and look elsewhere now, for which they will charge me a fee of £25 as the policy began on 2/1/2016 and charge me for the days of insurance on a daily rate. Quote me unhappy !! Any advice appreciated. The insurers I have are the same Aviva
  20. Good evening all, I've just renewed my insurance policy and moved from Churchill (Who wanted £1400 to renew me) to Hastings Premier, who wanted £400 to renew. I've informed Churchill that I'll be leaving them and my policy lapsed on 14/11/15. At this same date, my policy with Hastings has come into force. I had a bit of a grumble on the phone to Churchill, as I don't like change, and said that I think it's disgraceful that my insurance has gone up by £1000, especially seeing as I'm now 25 and have five years NCD behind me. None the less, I've left them. But do you think I can get them to send me my NCD proof? I've had at least four phone calls now with promises relating to my NCD letter, but nothing. Then, today, 18/11 I get a letter saying "Your motor insurance policy is due to expire soon and we recently wrote to you with details of your renewal. Please therefore take a few minutes of your time to discuss your cover for the next year"... etc. If they can fire me a letter out dated 13/11, then why the hell can't they get my NCD out to me when I called them and told them I wouldn't be renewing about 3 weeks ago! I don't know what to do, as Hastings Direct aren't exactly the most sympathetic of companies, I don't want to annoy them by chasing my NCD around and around, and risk having my policy cancelled! What's the crack? Where do I stand? Cheers, Caeleb.
  21. Hi all I have claimed warm home discount from Npower for 2 years now and not received any rebate back, I sent them a message but they didn't reply, I rang warm front and they said they only deal with Pensioners, and when I pressed them they said I can't speak to anyone but my energy supplier, why do I think I am in for a long haul! Anyone else had problems, if so how did you get on? Obviously I will try harder, but someone here might know who I can speak to, to save time. Thanks
  22. Hi I was wondering if anyone can help. An OAP became very sick, was hospitalised and is recovering further in a nursing home. This has been over three months. Is she entitled to a water rates discount since she is not on a metre but her property has been empty and I can vouch that no water has been used. She has records that she has been in hospital and living at the nursing home. She lives alone. She was advised that because she can not prove that no water has been used they wont discount her. But it didn't sound right to me. Thanks Clear33
  23. I'm currently repaying (on a payment plan) an old council tax bill on a property which I vacated in 2013. For the period the bill covers, I was living alone, but never claimed a single person discount at the time. Have made initial contact with Council, who say they can only retrospectively apply a single person discount from 1st April 2014. I understand that each council will set its own policy on how far they will backdate single person discount, and that there is no legislation as such which governs this? So my question, has anyone successfully badgered their council into applying Single Person Discount on older bills? (Mine goes back to 2011/2012). If so, any tips on how I may best approach them? Thanks.
  24. I have just moved into a housing association property and i'm just wondering how much CT reduction I can expect to receive? I'm a single person living there. I know the rate is 25% discount for that, so I assumed that I would pay 3/4 of the full bill (It's £120 a month So I would pay £90). However when I go on benefit calculators such as the turn2us benefits calculator, it says I will only have to pay £5 a week towards CT. My details: I'm claiming carers allowance and IS (£420 a month) Rent: £400 a month (Applied for housing benefit, shared rate as i'm under 35 which will be £60 a week off rent) A second relevant question is would the council be funny if i'm not moved in after the first week? I signed the tenancy yesterday and have started paying rent. The property itself is a complete mess. No carpets, no cooker, no shower. The previous tenants clearly had kids because the walls are stained and the wooden flooring is filthy. They housing association know its that bad too as they have given me vouchers for paint and wallpaper. Then there's activating gas and electric, as well as a big list of other things I need to do before I can move in. The place needs a lot of work and with bank holiday weekend approaching, I can't find anyone to transport my things to the new address so it looks like I wont be able to move in until the end of next week. Finally, will having £4000 in my savings account cause any problems with my HB and CT benefit claims? I know it may sound bad that i'm a council tenant with 4k in savings, but that money was built up since being on the housing list by being allowed to live in my previous property rent free so I could save up and also family donations to help with the new place. After factoring in the cost of moving in (carpets, electronics, moving van hire, etc), that £4000 will be gone. Thanks
  25. As the title says, my mother who is 76 years old has been asked to carry out a review. (She currently pays nothing) She is worried sick because her son, my brother has used her address as a contact point since his wife chucked him out 2 years ago. He was thrown out on the street whislt his former wife stayed in the martial home (rented). He stayed with me for some time and at my sisters house also. As he did not have a permemant address, he used mums address for everything. eg. bank account, drivers licence, employer etc with post still going to mums.. Looking from the outside in and on the face of it, it does look like it was his place of residence but that has never been the case. He would only stay over at mums when he had the kids overnight, which was about once every fortnight if he was lucky. He soon met someone new and stayed mostly at her address, who incidentally was paying full council tax, but was never declared as living there because of his physco ex wife. He didn't want her to spoil his new relationship, yet it was her desision in the first place, but that's another story. So fast forward a year or so and now mum is worried sick. She is so protective over all her chidren and especially the grand children and thought she was helping him out, but is now worried she will be in serious trouble. How should mum handle this?
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