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I feel bad coming here for help but please bare with me About 20 years ago I was taken into my local DSS office where I admitted claiming benefits while I started a new business. I was given the option of paying back the amount I owed or go to court. I agreed, of course that I should pay this back and as I did, I also received a summons and was sentenced to prison time. At this point It felt unfair as we had agreed to pay and not face court. However, I had taken the benefits. I stopped paying the money because of this. I felt the prison time served was enough. why should I be punished twice? However even though I have not been on benefits since I am now starting to get demands for the £2000 with court action threatened. I am not on benefits but am self employed,on a low low income and so am worried. I know I can make an offer to pay weekly, I was wondering if I can make a request to see the original paperwork to see if the court or pay option was recorded. Also, is there a statute of limitations on such a debt after so long also. Thanks
Hopefully good news for Gym members at LA Fitness and Dave Whelan Sports (DWS) and those with other gyms whose Admin is handled by Harlands :- These gyms have agreed to make cancellations easier for folks when their circumstances change. See The OFT report here - http://www.oft.gov.uk/news-and-updates/press/2013/62-13 Extract from The OFT press release on 10th September :- The undertakings to the OFT from LA Fitness, DWS and Harlands Group include: * Extended rights for members to cancel their contracts early should their circumstances change in a way that makes attendance at the gym difficult or unaffordable - for example if they lose their job or suffer an injury * A commitment not to describe membership as being of a fixed duration, if the contract automatically continues on a rolling basis after the initial membership period has expired * Greater transparency about key membership features, including initial membership periods and cancellation rights, and for these to be provided upfront as part of the sales process. It will be interesting to see how well the gyms or gym admin Co's stick to the new undertakings. This is in addition to the agreement that The OFT reached earlier this year with Bannatyne Fitness Limited, David Lloyd Leisure Limited and Fitness First Clubs Limited, to change their contract terms. Time will tell ...............