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Found 148 results

  1. Hi everyone, I'm new one here and sorry for my mistakes, english isn't my first language ))) The question is about PPI claim. I moved to UK in 2010 and opened my bank account in Lloyds bank. Because of I didn't speak in English very well the lady in bank sold me Silver account and I didn't know I can have a free one. I knew only this year (2018) in April and I did complain through Resolver and than escalated to Ombudsman. Today I received the answer with refuse. They write it's too late because of it's more than 6 years from opening account date and I should receive the letter with AES (annual eligibility statement) in 2014. How do you think can I fight for my PPI money back or not? thanks
  2. Hi Guys I have received a letter of claim from Restons solicitors for a debt bought by Cabot financial. I have made a complaint to the financial ombudsman that the original creditor ‘ a credit card company ‘ refused to deal with several mistakes on my account over a year before Cabot bought the debt and simply told me to deal with the 3rd party debt collectors. The ombudsman said that as they were still the legal owners of the debt they had a duty to deal with me and not pass the buck to the debt collectors. The amount Cabot are claiming is for £1800 when the correct amount after deducting the disputed amount is £1150. My question now is, should I contact Restons who have sent me a letter of claim and say they will start proceedings on 18 05.2018 or Cabot or both and tell them its a disputed amount sold by the original owner of the debt and I have now made complaint to the FOS for which I have received relevant paperwork and a reference number. So would they like to put proceedings on hold whilst this matter is dealt with by the FOS as I see no point in starting court proceedings when they are trying to claim the wrong amount.I I don't dispute the lower figure. So far I have made no contact with either company.
  3. some may be familiar that i filed an IRL claim with payday loan companies due to my gambling addiction, is this worth pursuing with the ombudsman further after their response? even though mr Lender have agreed to waive all interest and fees it looks as though the ombudsman is saying that they didnt have to do thorough checks as it was my first loan with them
  4. Its time to get rid of these incompetent idiots, I have linked to the HM Government epetitions site. http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/29619 BTW this was not started by me, everyone please register your support!
  5. This very recent Local Government Ombudsman's decision (released 10 days ago) is another one of importance. In this particular case, a motorist had incurred a penalty charge notice from London Borough of Haringey for wrongful parking. As the contravention was for parking as opposed to a CCTV contravention, she received a Penalty Charge Notice on her car advising that the charge was £130 but if she made payment within 14 days, she would be entitled to a 50% discount bringing the penalty down to £65. She told the council that she could not pay and offered to clear the debt over a 15 month period at £5 per month; the Council refused but offered here a further 14 days to pay at the reduced rate. She refused to pay. A warrant of control has been issued and passed to bailiffs to enforce and the debt has risen from £65 to £513 (to include bailiff fees of £310). PS: Please see the next post for a copy of the decision.
  6. Hi all : a while since I posted. Had rejected PPI claim from LLoyds TSB : upheld by Ombudsman. However since the Plevin case , in the last few days Ive had a letter from the Ombudsman saying Lloyds are now ready to make me an offer and if the Ombudsman don't hear from me by 12th December they will assume this is ok and close the case. I realise it won't be much but never the less its better than nothing as I had given up on it to be honest. Let's wait and see... thanks
  7. This is yet another important decision from the Local Government Ombudsman and one that once again makes clear that if a debtor who is subject to bailiff enforcement considers that he may be 'vulnerable', he must be prepared to provide evidence and outline how his 'vulnerability' affects his ability to deal with the debt. In brief, Mr B's complaint was as follows: Mr B incurred 5 penalty charge notices. He believes that there is a law from the year 1600 that means that he can’t be fined and so can park anywhere. He and his wife both have Blue Badges and he considered that being granted a Blue Badge means that he has meet the criteria for ‘vulnerability’. Mr B told the Council he was a vulnerable person. However, he had not explained why he considers he is vulnerable. He was of the opinion that it is the Council’s job to prove he is not. Mr B complained a business centre issued the warrants rather than a court and so were invalid. Mr B complains that the bailiffs did not have the correct warrants. The Council has said the court sends the warrants electronically and so there are no paper copies. PS: A copy of the decision can be read in the following post.
  8. Devon County County (16 017 119) Decision date: 17th August 2017. Published on the LGO website: 17th November 2017 Vulnerability and bailiff enforcement is a subject that is of great importance and sadly, it is a subject that is very much misunderstood. The LGO have made a number of decisions regarding the 'definition' of vulnerability and the following case is another one where the LGO confirm that a 'vulnerable' debtor must provide evidence to demonstrate how their vulnerability affects their ability to deal with the debt. PS: The following is a shortened copy of the decision. A full copy can be accessed from the link at the foot of the post. Background: (9) Mr B has received 5 penalty charge notices (PCN) for parking offences since 2014. A parking enforcement officer placed two on the car and Mr B received three through the post. On the telephone, Mr B told me that he did not take account of parking laws as he believes there is a law from the year 1600 that means he can’t be fined and so can park anywhere. (16) The Council has said that Mr B first used the words’ vulnerable’ about his wife and him both having Blue Badges on 3 December 2015. (17) The Council said it advised Mr B on 5 July to contact the bailiffs for them to consider his ‘vulnerability’ and for him to provide them with whatever evidence they need to confirm his status as vulnerable. The Council advised Mr B that if the bailiff did deem his to be a vulnerable household the Council would withdraw the warrant and cease activity. (18) The Council said Mr B did not supply the bailiffs with supporting evidence. It has said the blue badge issued to Mr B, shows they have met the criteria of limited mobility to have a blue badge issued but may not necessarily be vulnerable. (19) The Council says that Mr B thinks that his vulnerability means that he is exempt from paying these fines. The Council says it disagrees with Mr B’s interpretation. It considers he is still liable to pay these fines, but any vulnerability means the Council has to consider extra discretion over how these fines are paid, e.g. deferring payment periods, accepting lower instalments until debts paid. (20) The Council has asked Mr B to provide supporting written evidence of his ‘vulnerability’ for it to find out if there are other conditions from which he suffers that may fit his interpretation of vulnerability, e.g. Mental health, depression, post- traumatic stress, at risk of self-harm, inability to understand and engage with the process. The Council says that if Mr B does meet any of these criteria, then it may withdraw the warrants and close the cases. Mr B has not provided supporting evidence. Analysis from the Local Government Ombudsman: (23) Mr B complained a business centre issued the warrants rather than a court and so were invalid. The TEC is the court appointed by the Secretary of State and the Department of Transport to deal with registration of debts arising from penalty charge notices. I can find no fault on this point. (24) Mr B complains the bailiffs did not have the correct warrants. The Council has said the court sends the warrants electronically and so there are no paper copies. For completeness, I will ask the Council to send me its electronic records showing the warrants but I can see no evidence of fault on this point. (25) Mr B believes that under the Taking Control of Goods National Standards 2010, (updated 2015) as soon as he told the bailiff company finds out he is vulnerable (with no explanation) they have to withdraw. He believes that he does not need to provide details of his details of his vulnerability; it is then the Council’s job to prove he isn’t. (26) The Taking Control of Goods Regulations 2013, part 2, regulation 10 set out the circumstances in which an enforcement agent may not take control of goods. It says an enforcement agent may not take control of goods of a debtor where a child or vulnerable person is the only person present. The legislation does not give any further guidance about how a vulnerable person is defined. (27) Mr B told the Council he was a vulnerable person. However, he has not explained why he considers he is vulnerable. He considers that it is the Council’s job to prove he is not. (28) It cannot be right that a person can say they are vulnerable and all outstanding debts are written off without them giving further information. If this was the case, then there would be no way for the Council to enforce any debt collection as anybody could claim vulnerability without evidence. I do consider it reasonable for Mr B to explain why he considers himself to be vulnerable. (29) In any case, a vulnerable person still has to pay the fines, but any vulnerability means the Council has to consider extra discretion over how the debtor pays the fines, e.g. deferring payment periods or accepting lower instalments. It should also allow the vulnerable person time to get help and advice. (30) I have found no fault in the Council’s actions. The Council gave Mr B the opportunity to appeal the PCN’s and to appeal to the court. No further recovery action has been taken once he told the bailiffs and Council he is vulnerable. However, I do consider it reasonable for him to give details of his vulnerability if he wants the Council to consider removing the warrants. http://www.lgo.org.uk/decisions/transport-and-highways/parking-and-other-penalties/16-017-119
  9. The following is a copy of a very recent decision from the Local Government Ombudsman. This particular decision is a vitally important one as it refers to the correct procedure that should be followed if an individual has had his goods taken to settle another person's debt. In almost all cases, the goods in question would be a motor vehicle. PS: As the decision is very lengthly, I have split it into two separate posts. London Borough of Ealing (15 016 609) Summary: The Council’s enforcement agents were not at fault when they seized Mr X’s car to recover an outstanding penalty charge. But they failed to advise Mr X of his right to make a claim under the Civil Procedure Rules. The Council has agreed to take the steps recommended to remedy the injustice caused. The complaint The complainant, whom I shall call Mr X, complains that enforcement agents acting for the Council removed and eventually sold his car to pay for a debt which related to the previous owner. Mr X says he provided the Council and enforcement agents with proof he had bought the car in good faith but they did not accept it. Mr X would like the cost of the car refunded. He would also like the Council to reimburse him for the cost of possessions he lost when the enforcement agents seized the car and the hire car costs he has since incurred. The History The car referred to in this complaint was formerly owned by Mr Z – who previously lived at the same address as Mr X. The Council issued a Penalty Charge Notice (PCN) to Mr Z. When Mr Z did not respond to the PCN, the Council obtained a court order which allowed its enforcement agents to recover the money owed. On 10 September 2016 the enforcement agents issued Mr Z with a Notice of Enforcement (NOE). This told him that enforcement action had started and gave him 14 days to settle the balance or agree a payment plan. Schedule 12 of the Tribunals, Courts and Enforcement Act 2007 (“the Act”) says that once enforcement agents issues an NOE, the goods of a debtor are “bound”. This means the debtor cannot sell them or give them away. But Schedule 12 of the Act says that if a person buys goods from a debtor which were bound, they can keep them if they can show they obtained the goods: in good faith;for valuable consideration (normally money but can be something else of value); andwithout knowing the belongings were bound. Mr Z did not respond to the NOE and on 28 September 2016 enforcement agents visited his home address. The car was parked outside his home address and the enforcement agents took control of the car. When enforcement agents take control of goods they are deciding which goods they can sell to meet the person’s debt. Once an enforcement agent takes control of goods they are known as “controlled goods”. Enforcement agents will not always remove controlled goods straight away. The enforcement agents posted an inventory to Mr Z’s home which said the car was now controlled goods. They also affixed a notice to the car. To stop the enforcement agents removing the car Mr Z needed to pay the outstanding debt. Mr Z did not respond and the enforcement agents returned to his home on 03 November 2015. They clamped the car and posted a letter to Mr Z asking him to make contact and settle the debt or they would remove the car. On 03 November 2015 Mr X emailed the enforcement agent. Mr X said he bought the car on 20 September 2015. Mr X provided a copy of a handwritten receipt for £3000 and a copy of the “New keeper’s details” section from the car’s V5C (its registration document). When someone buys a car they keep this section and the seller sends the rest of the V5C to the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA). The DVLA then issues a new V5C. Mr X also supplied an email confirmation from the DVLA which showed they had been notified using its online service that he was the registered keeper of the vehicle. The DVLA’s online service is relatively new. On 05 November 2015 the enforcement agents visited Mr Z’s home address and removed the car. The enforcement agents had not heard from Mr Z and they did not consider Mr X to have provided sufficient evidence he had bought the car. Mr X emailed the enforcement agents on the same day. He explained he had paid £3000 for the car on 20 September and had already spent £1100 on maintenance. Mr X gave them two days notice and said he would then be seeking legal advice. On 09 November 2016 the enforcement agents emailed Mr X. They set out the events to date and said that “The evidence you have provided to date is a handwritten receipt on a page out of a diary and the new keeper supplement for the logbook. Neither of these documents prove ownership of the vehicle.” The enforcement agents did not make reference to the email from the DVLA Mr X supplied. The enforcement agents also said “We notice the vehicle has remaining [sic] untaxed since 20/09/05, it is illegal to keep an untaxed car on a public highway.” The enforcement agents concluded by saying “we are satisfied that all you have done is changed the registered keeper with the DVLA to avoid seizure of the vehicle...As you live at the same address as Mr Z we strongly suggest you decide between you who will be setting the balance as the vehicle will be released to auction on 19 November 2015.” Mr X replied on the same day and said he had “instructed [his] solicitors to take this matter further.” On 19 November 2015 the enforcement agents emailed Mr X and explained they would sell the car at auction unless they received payment. They did not receive payment and the car was sold. In January 2016 Mr X complained to the Ombudsman. Because the Council had not considered Mr X’s concerns through its formal complaints process the Ombudsman asked it to do this. The Council provided formal responses to Mr X as follows: The Council was therefore satisfied the car was transferred while a warrant was held against it. If the car had been transferred at the beginning of September then the DVLA would have issued a V5C earlier than the beginning of December. If Mr X remained unhappy he could complain to the Ombudsman. Was there fault causing injustice? The Ombudsman is not an appeal body and does not retake decisions which were properly made by a Council (or parties acting on its behalf). The Ombudsman’s role is limited to checking if there was any fault in the way a council made a decision. If there was no fault or flaw, the Ombudsman may not, by law, intervene in the judgment reached by a Council. This is the case even where the Ombudsman may have given different weight to a piece of evidence or reached a different decision on the same facts. I do not consider the Council’s enforcement agents were at fault when they seized the car Mr X says he bought from Mr Z. This is because of the following: Mr X says he bought the car on 20 September 2015. This was after the enforcement agents issued the NOE and when the car became “bound”. The enforcement agents took control of the car on 28 September 2015 but Mr X did not contact them until 03 November 2015 when they clamped the car. Mr X showed the enforcement agents an undated handwritten receipt and an undated “change of keeper” section from the V5C. Mr X says he bought the car in good faith, for valuable consideration, and without knowing it was bound goods. Mr X also sent the enforcement agents an email from the DVLA showing he had told them he was now the registered keeper. I note the enforcement agents did not directly refer to this in their email dated 09 November 2015 – they simply mentioned the undated documents. But they did also say “we are satisfied that all you have done is changed the registered keeper with the DVLA to avoid seizure of the vehicle.” They also noted the vehicle was not taxed from 20 September 2015. A vehicle’s tax is automatically cancelled when the DVLA’s online system is used to register a change of keeper. I am therefore satisfied the enforcement agents did take into account all of the information provided by Mr X. But they did not consider Mr X to have provided enough supporting evidence that his purchase of the car was genuine. This was a decision they were entitled to take and meant they were entitled to seize the car. I also note that: Mr X did not provide the enforcement agents with any proof of insurance from 20 September 2015. Arranging insurance is normally the first thing a person does when they buy a new car. I asked Mr X about this and he said his insurance company needed a copy of the V5C before they could insure it. This is not normal practice. Mr X did not provide the enforcement agents with any evidence he had withdrawn money from the bank to pay for the car. As part of my investigation I asked Mr X about this. He said he borrowed the money from his brother and repaid it instalments. In response to my enquiries Mr X told me he sent the Council a revised V5C in late October / early November. The Council did not return it and so Mr X had to apply for a duplicate – this is why the V5C he has was issued in December. Mr X cannot provide proof he sent the V5C in late October / early November and the Council says it has no record of receiving the document. It is not possible for the Ombudsman to establish exactly what happened. Mr Z did not provide any evidence in support of Mr X’s case. Mr X sent me bank statements for October, November and December 2015. These show payments to the DVLA each month with a reference number which matches the car’s registration number. Mr X says these payments were for the car’s vehicle tax. But there is no evidence Mr X showed this evidence to the enforcement agents. For the reasons set out above I cannot uphold this part of Mr X’s complaint. This decision should not be seen as setting any precedent about what constitutes evidence of ownership. Each case should be considered based on the evidence provided and the particular circumstances of the case.
  10. Hi, I suffered a change in circumstances leading to a significant drop with my salary. I was unable to honour my direct debit to Harlands to cover my gym membership for Xercise4Less so cancelled it without giving them any notice. I find out later that they charged me a £25 admin free as per their terms and conditions. The T&Cs mentioned were news to me as not aware of any. None were presented at the time I took my membership out, and all I signed was the direct debit mandate to authorise them to deduct £9.99 on a monthly basis. I eventually found the T&Cs in the acknowledgement email from Harlands, but they were hidden within the DD instruction and mandate so I missed them. Also the principle term states that this agreement will commence once signed by both parties - neither party has signed and Harlands/X4L didn't seek a signature. Due to the too'ing and fro'ing, misinformation, adding charges willy nilly, they are now saying the balance is now £171.74. I sent Harlands a letter offering £13.99 to cover membership costs between 2nd May and 12th June (based on Slick's template on this forum - thank you), but this has now lapsed and no further contact has been received from Harlands. I've gone through the complaints procedure with X4L, and not received a satisfactory reply. X4L are insisting that I pay £34.99 to cover one months gym membership and an admin charge (this has been dropped from £171.74). My argument is the t&cs weren't agreed and I should pay nothing as I haven't received anything that I haven't paid for although I did offer to pay £13.99, and . The next course of action I was going to take, was to raise a complaint with the relevant ombudsman, but can't find who the relevant ombudsman is. Does anyone on this forum know who the relevant ombudsman is? If there is no relevant ombudsman, what is my best cause of action? Thanks, in anticipation
  11. This is a bit complicated, I will try and make it brief"! I moved into this house in 2002, as a single parent. My ex husband came round to see the boys, I asked him if he would call at the phone box on his way home and see how I go about getting the phone connected. The phone was connected instantly, I rang up to set a direct debit up to pay the bills. I have paid every month since September 2002. Letters ect always come addressed to him. I always tell them that he does not live here and never has. I have had different responses, some say they will change the name on the account to mine, some have said I need his permission to take his name off even though he has never lived here and I pay the bills Some say I would need to set up a new service with them. I no longer have any contact with ex husband. I have the same conversation with them every time I ring them ARGGGG . Fast forward to the past year or so, I have had constant problems with the broad band , cut outs and very low speed. I am not getting the service that I am paying for. After many frustrating phone calls to BT, I kept a log of the Broadband speed and decided to complain using Resolver, as recommended by Martin Lewis. The case was escalated to The Ombudsman. I thought I had a watertight case. I have now been told by the Ombudsman that they cannot proceed with the case as BT say I have no authority as the service is not in my name. I have contacted BT and told them that I am not happy as they have been quite happy for me to deal with the service(during renewal of contracts etc) They have been quite happy to take my bank details and take my money. I have told them that as they have been taking instructions and money from someone who is 'not authorised' them they should refund me and allow me to leave the contract with no financial penalty. I doubt they will agree-Help! Effectively, They are prepared to take my money even though I am not authorised but manage to evade an investigation by The Ombudsman by saying I am not authorised.
  12. In the main area of the forum a few days ago, a debate took place regarding a question from a member of the public regarding a letter that he has received from a firm of bailiffs in relation to a Liability Order granted 6 years earlier. The OP wanted to know whether the Liability Order was statute barred (which it is not). Another poster advised that a complaint to the Local Government Ombudsman should be considered and that the LGO may likely make a finding of 'maladministration'. The following two LGO decisions would indicate that a complaint to the LGO would not amount to 'maladministration'. and furthermore that a Liability Order is not covered by the Limitations Act.
  13. I've been getting inaccurate roaming data on my Vodafone bills since February. The charges are correct but the itemisation is wrong. The bill lists countries I never went to. I've complained to Vodafone and they said since bill amount is correct there is nothing they can do. They don't control the roaming itemisation (despite me roaming on a Vodafone overseas network). So I filed a complaint with the ombudsman and they agreed with Vodafone. I have been offered £60 as compensation for the inconvenience and the fact I was not informed I had the option to go to the ombudsman but, on the substance of the complaint, they agree with Vodafone that the roaming itemisation is out of their control (apparently it's fed back from the SIM of the roaming phone) and as long as the amount on the bill is correct there is nothing to be done. I declined their resolution stating that I was connected to a Vodafone network overseas so it is within Vodafone's power to fix this. Also since the SIM is provided by Vodafone this is also their problem. They rejected my reasons and restated their offer of £60. I now have the choice of accepting it and take the £60 or rejecting it, loose the £60 and take further action myself. The question is, what action can I take? I'm not really interested in £60. I just want an accurate bill which I don't think is too much to ask. Do I have any chance with trading standards, companies house or HMRC? Surely there must be trading rules about providing accurate invoices? Or should I just take the £60, put up with the inaccurate invoices till December and switch provider when my contract is up?
  14. Hello everyone. I submitted my N1 form plus fee and supporting evidence to CCMCC on 25/1/17 regarding Disability Discrimination by The Parliamentary and Health Services Ombudsman. Having looked on this site, I noticed advice being given regarding P36 rules but in doing so I am now a bit confused. My question is: - If The PHSO make a financial offer to settle and I refuse on the grounds that I am claiming for damages/compensation, which depends entirely on the judges discretion and therefore have no idea what the award could be, will this go against me if the judge awards less than the settlement offer? Thank you in advance.
  15. Hi. I recently submitted a complaint to Clydesdale Bank Plc regarding a credit card I had dating from early 1997. The complaint was declined, and I subsequently complained to the Financial Ombudsman. The good news is that the Ombudsman wrote saying that the Clydesdale were going to make me an "offer". Of course, I'm still waiting, and so to pass the time, I've put together a spreadsheet based on a previous one that I've seen used that calculates the PPI amount plus paid CC interest and then adds on statutory simple 8% interest to both. I guess I wanted to know if my assumptions are correct. Depending on the APR that I used, my calculations indicate that I could be due a compensation payment of anywhere from around 8K to > 40K even as high as 76K potentially (depends on how the calc is done). (As background, for a long time before my current job, I was stuck in the proverbial hole, card maxed out, paying interest by the bucketload and also paying late charges and the like - couldn't get out of it - mostly paid the minumum, or ran behind, it was a nightmare!). Potential Claim : 76,484.31 PPI Paid: 4,328.45 CC Interest Paid : 31,759.29 8% Simple on Principle Plus Int : 40,396.57 Two questions: 1. Have I got the calcs right? 2. Can I claim 8% on the credit card interest that I've calculated to have paid as well (i.e. 8% on the 31K as per my calls, or just 8% on the PPI figure of 4.3K?) Interested in your thoughts people! interestcalcs_pub.xls
  16. The following LGO decision (which was only released this week) is a vitally important one as it deals with a number of misconceptions and inaccurate advice regarding bailiff enforcement. For instance, this decision addresses the following misconceptions:
  17. Miss-sold a product, received final response from ombudsman whom stated that we were an accidental landlords, the Financial Ombudsman went onto say that the bank, Yorkshire Bank, had missing paper work. They ruled in the favour of the bank, we fought back, by saying it was an unfair process, as they had missing paper work but the financial ombudsman said they had treated us fair, so would not re-open the case. We went back to the ombudsman and stated this was an unfair process, as it was not true and Yorkshire Bank is misleading. The ombudsman stood by their decision but said we could take them to court, in which we have just started court action. I later found information in our own filing cabinet that showed upon mortgage application that the house was tenanted by our daughter and we had made it clear and it was stated clearly on the application. As we went through that information it became clear that the bank had mislead the ombudsman, they had not informed them that we already had a mortgage on our own property from the same company, when we were filling in paper work, we agreed to questions like, are you paying for a residential mortgage, we answered yes thinking it was this property we live in as the advisor had just been speaking about it. The product we had wanted was a buy to let, on interest, we ended up getting a residential mortgage on payment plan, we didn’t know what this was as no information was provided, so never questioned it as thought it was a buy to let. They also mis-sold another product at the same time, which was a signature account once that complaint was made we received a final response from Yorkshire Bank admitting no liability, however, we took this case to the financial ombudsman also a year before this one and they found in our favour on that particular case, which was sold to us at the same time as this residential mortgage was, for a tenanted property. We have recently found out by Yorkshire Bank that this was not just missing paper work but the mortgage file is lost. Yorkshire Bank got out of this by saying but we have system files, it was these system files that were produced to the financial ombudsman, obviously missing out the information that we already had a mortgage before application and with themselves at our home address. Our home address is residential. Missing out the information that the property was tenanted before mortgage application, missing out information that we wanted a buy to let on interest. Yorkshire Bank mis-lead the Financial Ombudsman, plus the discussions with Helen, which they can’t keep on system files. I have been writing to them for months by recorded delivery, they would not respond, i used the last method I possibly could use, it was facebook multimedia site, we got them to speak to us, however it was transferring letters we had already sent to them via facebook. We then got a call from Yorkshire Bank, stating they found the letters in a closed file and don’t understand why they went in that particular file. During the call the lady made a mockery of the complaint, when I mentioned our daughter was a tenant in that property, she said, “oh your daughter”, although it was clearly documented. We have since then had four tenants who are not related or friends. That same advisor then started to tell us on the phone what the original advisor would have said to us at the mortgage application appointment, I said, “hold on a minute” your putting words in our mouths, that was not said at all. We have asked for a copy of the call but they said they will play it in a branch near us but we can’t have the recording. They admitted fault in another letter today with regards to no correspondence and put £100 in our bank without asking us if we would accept, we don't want the money, we want justice. Hence the court case. Is there any information you could supply us with or support us on, as I am doing this court case myself as we can't afford to employ a solicitor? We have also asked the bank permission as we are going to auction on the property but they said we need a valuation, we said it has to be quick and urgent as the auction is June 2017. We waited so long on them responding but never received a reply from them in three months, we have had to take the next course of action to help ourselves as the Bank has turned their backs on us at that point. I don’t mind the valuation, but June is fast approaching and this valuation in case there is a shortfall on the mortgage (all of this knowledge has been sourced by me from the internet) is not only our problem, Yorkshire Bank has contributed to this by not supporting us or responding to us, when we were desperate. We have also asked for email correspondence from them, they have refused, saying letter only. Because they did not respond to our other previous letters they have placed us in a bad situation dragging us along while times are getting difficult and trying to not get into the area of repossession, and now they think they can pull the strings and tell us what to do after all this time. We are not going to be able to afford the full mortgage and the council tax, our limitation is June 2017, hence the auction. We need some help or some area of support to reach to, we will do the work, this is not an issue, but please, some light at the end of the tunnel would be greatly appreciated. Thank you x
  18. This is another recent decision from the Local Government Ombudsman. This particular case addresses the common subject of single parents and whether or not they may be considered 'vulnerable' for the purposes of bailiff enforcement. There have been a couple of Ombudsman's decisions regarding 'vulnerability' and as in this particular case, the LGO confirm that it is for the debtor to provide evidence as to how their 'vulnerability' affects their ability to pay or deal with the debt. LGO Decision: North Hertfordshire District Council Miss X complains the Council has used bailiffs to try and collect a disputed council tax debt, even though she is vulnerable. The Ombudsman will not investigate the complaint as she has not seen any evidence of fault in the Council’s actions. The complaint 1 The complainant, who I shall call Miss X, complains via her MP that the Council has used bailiffs to try and recover a disputed council tax debt, despite her telling the bailiffs she is a vulnerable person. Back to top How I considered this complaint 4 I have considered Miss X’s complaint to us, the information her MP sent and the Council’s to Miss X’s complaint to it. Miss X has had the opportunity to comment, via her MP, on an earlier version of my final view. What I found 5 In 2010 the Magistrates’ Court granted the Council a liability order for a council tax debt it said Miss X owed. The Council passed the debt to its bailiffs in the same year. 6 Miss X disputed the debt, saying she should have received council tax benefit. The Council said she had made claim for backdated council tax benefit, but this was refused as it was outside the time limit for backdating benefit. 7 I note the points above as background, but I am not looking at why Miss X owes the debt as any complaint about her liability is be late, and the Ombudsman has previously considered a complaint about Miss X’s benefits. 8 In spring Miss X sent the bailiffs a ‘‘cease and desist’ notice saying as a single parent with a seven year old daughter she was a vulnerable person and the bailiffs should not be taking action to recover the debt. 9 The bailiffs wrote to Miss X asking for further information so they could assess her situation and decide how it affected her ability to pay. As Miss X did not send the information the bailiffs visited her twice later in the year. Miss X then complained to the Council about this. 10 In 2014 the Government issued National Guidance for Enforcement Agents. Paragraph 77 says - “Some groups who might be vulnerable are listed below. However, this list is not exhaustive. Care should be taken to assess each situation on a case by case basis.” 11 One of the groups listed who might be vulnerable are single parent families. 12 The Guidance is clear that if a debtor falls into the list the bailiffs must assess the individual case to see if they should take extra care in recovering the debt. Just because a debtor is a single parent does not, of itself, mean they are vulnerable. 13 The bailiff’s asked Miss X for more details of why she was vulnerable; she did not provide any information. So I cannot say the bailiffs were wrong to continue their recovery action. 14 I will not investigate Miss X’s complaint about the Council using bailiffs to recover a debt from a vulnerable person. Miss X did not send any other information to support her claim and the Council and bailiffs were not at fault to continue recovery action. http://www.lgo.org.uk/decisions/benefits-and-tax/other/16-010-888
  19. Made a complaint to FOS about paypal. Just got a reply. Seems like the adjudicator's provisional conclusions. He's found paypal had done no wrong. Here's what it says on the bottom of his email: Notice the change in font size, when it says "But If you don't agree with what I’ve said, please let me know why by 6 February 2017. I’ll look at any new information you give me and let you know what I think." I had to really strain my eyes to read this. Surely this is a nudge tactic by the FOS to close-off complaints.
  20. Complaint was about Bank of Ceylon (BOC) United Kingdom (UK) branch. After months of waiting in the assessment queue, my complaint finally ended up on an adjudicator's desk. Adjudicator from what it seems to me went through the file so quickly he missed vital details I'd given on the form and via email. For example, I told the FOS I had further evidence to produce and also to contact me by email, as I was abroad. He ignored both these. He concluded that he had enough to issue a decision. He then attempted to call me on the mobile (even though I said - contact me by email only. I told the FOS a while ago and there was a 'case warning' added to the file about that. He had ignored this warning or misunderstood it). After he failed to contact me by phone, he went on to issue his conclusions in favour of BOC (UK). His conclusions contained language such as "BOC (UK) have said ....". So I had no alternative but to disagree with his conclusions and ask for the evidence he relied upon. I also told him he hadn't contacted me even once to introduce himself before reaching his conclusions and that he failed to ask for the evidence I had specifically mentioned before. He got back saying he will provide me the case file evidence only after I send him "further evidence". I then contacted his manager to complain. She asked him to send me the case-file evidence straightaway. I then lodged a service complaint against the adjudicator, and his manager (removed) found that he had committed no wrong. I escalated it to a senior manager and asked for the complaint to be looked at by a different adjudicator. The senior manager found the Adjudicator (removed) could have done things better. But he said the complaint could not be assigned to a different adjudicator. In effect the conclusions stood even though it was made without considering all the evidence. He offered for the complaint to be passed to an ombudsman, for review. Of course, the review is based on what the adjudicator concluded. Ombudsman wasn't going to start afresh. Truth be told, in nearly 90% of cases ombudsman "rubber-stamps" the adjudicator's decision. In this case even though I sent in new evidence to the Ombudsman she ignored it (or interpreted it in favour of the bank) so that the adjudicator's decision stood. After all, you can't have an ombudsman reverse an adjudicator decision that was the result of serious procedural irregularities. By the way, FOS takes at least a month to below decision FOS.pdf
  21. I enquired about joining BT in December. While I was still with TT they kept sending me 'don't leave, speak to our loyalty team to see what they can do' messages...so I did. 28 Dec - agreed a new deal 10 Jan - not heard anything so rang them. New deal hasn't been processed because I'd 'missed Jan's payment' (it's DD so it's their fault they didn't take it!) made me pay Jan's bill there on the phone. Couldn't talk about new deal because payment hasn't been processed 12 Jan - they rang me back & agreed new deal. Later that day I received confirmation email of package....it's completely different to what we agreed on the phone!! 14 Jan - they stop my internet & phone. Turns out they've 'processed a cancellation' from the beginning of all this mess.. .even though I stayed with them!!! I've paid Jan's bill for them to cut me off!!!! The new deal I've agreed starts on 26 Jan - and I keep getting letters emails about the package I'm having and they're all different!!!!!
  22. The Local Government Ombudsman's office has just released the following decision. Re: London Borough of Haringey. The complaint 1. The complainant, who I shall call Ms A, complains the Council allowed her to make payment towards an outstanding Penalty Charge Notice (PCN) although it had passed the matter to its enforcement agents (bailiffs), incurring additional costs. What I found 4 The Council issued Ms A a PCN for a parking contravention on 29 September 2015. Ms A did not pay or make formal representations against the PCN so the Council pursued the debt against her. It issued a warrant of execution and passed the debt to its bailiffs to enforce on 16 June 2016. 5. Ms A made a payment of £97 for the PCN using the Council’s online system on 23 June 2016. However by this point the Council had already passed the case to its bailiffs, incurring further costs. Ms A says she paid the fine so bailiff action should cease. However, the Council says she is still liable for the bailiff fees. Ms A says the Council should not have allowed her to make a payment online when the case was with its bailiffs. The Council confirmed it passed the debt onto the enforcement agency on 13 June because it had not received payment and sent a Notice of Enforcement on 16 June. 6. Ms A complained to the Council that she had not received the statutory notices the Council says it sent. The Council confirmed it sent the notices to the registered keepers address. These included the Notice to Owner, the Charge Certificate and the Order of Recovery. Each notice summarised the amount due at each stage. The Council said Royal Mail did not return the letters as undelivered so considered them served. The Council included copies of the notices it sent to Ms A in its response to her complaint. 7. A motorist may make part-payment towards a PCN debt and there was no reason for the Council to refuse Ms A’s payment made on 23 June 2016. Ms A sought to challenge the Council’s action but was unsuccessful, and the Council is therefore entitled to pursue the debt against her, including by passing the case to its bailiffs. Ms A made payment only after the case had been referred to bailiffs and the Ombudsman cannot therefore say she is not liable for the bailiff’s fees. The Council’s acceptance of Ms A’s payment has also not caused Ms A an injustice as it has been put towards the cost of the PCN and bailiff’s fees incurred to pursue it. http://www.lgo.org.uk/decisions/transport-and-highways/parking-and-other-penalties/16-008-073
  23. I have experience of how bad Consumer Protection is in the UK. Since February 2014 I have had a complaint with - The Ombudsman Service Limited Registered Office: Wilderspool Park, Greenalls Avenue, Warrington, WA4 6HL. Registered in England and Wales. Company registration number: 4351294 VAT registration number: 798 3441 79 - regarding the energy supplier switching process and the criminal activity of Spark Energy in attempting to charge me for gas and or electricity when I have been paying First Utility. The Ombudsman has failed to act, the latest response from them was 03 June 2015, Rhys Brown Ombudsman Services: Energy. I sent a reply on 01 July and reminder on 14 October. I have therefore decided to act by disqualifying ALL statutory authorities; they are obviously just a sop and actively support big business NOT consumers.
  24. The following is another very recent decision from the Local Government Ombudsman on the subject of vulnerability. Once again, the LGO confirm that evidence needs to be provided if a person considers that they may be 'vulnerable'. Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council PS: The following is a short version of the decision. A link to read the full report is at the end of this post. The complaint Mr X complains that the Council has unreasonably taken Council tax enforcement action against him despite his vulnerability. What I found The law says people must pay their council tax before the installment date stated on the bill. If people pay late on more than two occasions they lose the right to pay by installments. The Council can then demand that they pay the full amount which is due for the rest of the year. If they do not pay the Council can serve a summons and ask the magistrates for a liability order. A liability order is an order confirming the person must pay the council tax and costs. Further costs are incurred when magistrates grant a liability order. If someone does not pay the council tax, and the costs, the Council can ask enforcement agents to collect the debt. Enforcement agents charge fees which must also be paid. Mr X has council tax arrears from 2013/14 and 2014/15. The Council has provided evidence of Mr X’s non payment of Council tax and the courts upheld the summonses when they issued the Liability Orders. Mr X did not make any arrangements to pay his council tax arrears. In November 2014 Mr X told the Council he was a vulnerable person. The Council asked him to provide evidence and held his account for a month to give him time to provide the evidence. Mr X did not provide evidence of his vulnerability and the Council sent his account to enforcement agents (bailiffs) for collection. Councils can use enforcement agents to enforce Council tax debts. Mr X says they should not be used as he is vulnerable person. The enforcement agents wrote to Mr X in November 2014 asking for medical evidence of his vulnerability signed by his GP or a medical professional. They did not receive any medical evidence from Mr X. In September 2015 Mr X sent the Council a copy of a letter from his local mental health team inviting him to an appointment as evidence of his vulnerable status. In October the enforcement agents wrote to Mr X detailing the amounts he had to pay to clear his council tax arrears. Mr X provided the council tax department with a copy of a letter to the Housing Office on 25 January 2016 about his mental health. The Council told the enforcement agents who arranged for its welfare team to deal with him as they are experienced in dealing with vulnerable people. The enforcement agents returned Mr X’s accounts to the Council as they could not contact him. The Council contacted Mr X numerous times about the arrears on this council tax accounts. The law allows councils to instruct enforcement agents once the court has issued a liability order. The law also says that the court costs and fees charged by the enforcement agents must be paid. Although Mr X says he is a vulnerable person, he did not provide evidence of this to the Council until January 2016. Without evidence to support Mr X’s contention that enforcement agents should not be used, there is no evidence of fault in the Council’s decision to utilise them. Final decision There is no evidence the Council has been unreasonable in its decision to take enforcement action against Mr X for council tax arrears. http://www.lgo.org.uk/decisions/benefits-and-tax/council-tax/16-001-201
  25. I am having a nightmare with the Ombudsman Service - Property following a complaint against an estate agent which has not been investigated in a fair an unbiased manner. I am desperately trying to establish what my rights are with a view to taking matters further following the investigating officer's final decision. I came across an old thread in this forum (linked below) and was hoping to be able to contact some of the members who had posted in this thread. I am particularly interested in the comments in post 29. Any help or guidance will be appreciated! (As a new member I am unable to post a link to the old thread) It was titled Complaint about Ombudsman Services Property and was started in 2012) Default Re: Complaint against Ombudsman Services Property Quote Originally Posted by Alirus View Post We're going through a similar nightmare with the Ombudsmanicon Services Property and would love to know how you managed to get the lead ombudsman involved as there is no way we will get anywhere if the case is reviewed by the same officer who is clearly biased in favour of the firm. It's very difficult - at the moment, it's a three stage process. Each time they issue a provisional decision, you can accept or reject. If you accept, it becomes the Final Decision. If you reject you have to provide new evidence or show that they made some kind of error in the decision making process. If this works, your complaint gets bumped up a level. You start with an Investigation Officier, then it goes to Investigtion Manager, then up to Ombudsman him/herself. If you get as far as the Ombudsman, when they write, it's the Final Decision regardless. You accept or reject. If you accept, it becomes binding on both parties. If you reject, you get nothing but you can pursue other methods of complaint (court proceedings etc). I can't find anywhere on their website where this process is detailed and it's not made clear from the outset that this it works, so I can't refer you to anything 'official' to show this is how it works, but that's our experience. Our case was reviewed by the Ombudsman in the end, but it took a very very long time. You just have to stick with it and keep writing the letters. Brace yourself for a long battle. In the meantime, please contact Steve G (ombudsmans61percent) who has already posted on this thread - he's trying to get everyone to work together to highlight the practices of this terrible unfair process.
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