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  1. Hi I've been receiving letters from Lowell regarding a debt for a mobile phone account which isn't mine. I mistakenly decided to ignore the letters until county court claim has been started against me. I've filled out the form online to give me some extra time to defend it and form a case but I'm hoping I can find a way to force them to annul or at least postpone the claim. I've looked around here and apparently because it was a mobile phone contract, a CCA request letter would be ineffectual because it was a service agreement. So I'm thinking about sending them a "prove it" letter and possibly a Subject Access letter but I'm unsure of how effective this will be. Any advice and suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Also, Lowell have put a default notice on my credit card report which is what I was wondering if they can legally do that without any proof?
  2. ’ll try and keep this as brief as possible but I’ll need to explain a bit of background. When I was in university I rented a room in a house with three other students that I didn’t know between July 2012 to June 2013. Npower supplied the electricity and gas. I gave the first meter reading in July and the first bill came in October and we each paid a fourth to the landlord and I thought this arrangement would continue. However, towards June 2013 I contacted the landlord as we hadn’t got any more bills and queried what was going on he said he’d put the bills solely in my name. I was amazed that this was possible and called Npower to refuse to be the only sole name on the bills but they said this was the landlord’s right. Shortly after that the other tenants all left and two of them half way around the world. The bills at this point still hadn’t come to the house (although they might possibly have done so but one of the other tenants liked to take people’s mail…) and I gave a forwarding address and explained that as I was only one of four tenants they should only send me a fourth of the bill. Instead they started sending widely varying bills (anything from £1300 to £2000+) and after talking to them on the phone failed I then wrote them a letter showing them my tenancy agreement saying that I was only responsible for a fourth of the bills, emails to and from the landlord where he took responsibility for paying the bills if we paid him. Npower ignored all correspondence from me and the demands for payment became nastier and they and debt collection companies started sending letters to my parents as well calling them. I wrote them a cheque for over £500 which was a fourth of what they were asking for at the time. The demands didn’t stop and became more and more frequent. It was deeply stressful and if I’d the whole amount I’d probably would have just paid but I didn’t; however, the demands finally abruptly stopped. But, now more than four years after I paid Npower the £500 and the demands stopped a debt collection company called Wescot that Npower used before has started asking for money again. I think this was because I just updated the electoral register to my new home. It’s a horrible and not to mention embarrassing to start life with my partner in our new home and to be threatened again by this very ruthless debt collection company. I am not sure what to do next and was wondering if someone advise me what they make of these options? Just pay the damned bill and all the nasty extra charges they added. Would this be the end of it? Would accepting it give them the right to damage my credit report? Ignore it and hope it goes away like last time. It hasn’t affected my credit rating so maybe they don’t have enough information about me? And perhaps me going on the electoral register here just tripped some automated system? Pay the bill but take the only other U.K tenant to small claims court for their share? Or even half would that be possible? Threaten to refer their behaviour to some ombudsman or consumer body? Things like calling my parents and writing to them, calling on a Sunday, using aggressive and threatening language etc. Would this scare them enough to leave me alone? Sorry for how long this post was and thank you if any advice you can give.
  3. I have recently been doing some research into legalities of purchasing debts and enforcing them.. From what i've read online and social media sites When a DCA purchases your debt you do not have a contract with them. you run up a bill with BT avoid paying for 3-4 years then lowell/cabot etc crawl out of the woodwork and decide to chase you for said debt.... however technically you never entered into a contract with lowell/cabot etc only the original creditor when you ask for documentation regarding your contract with said DCA they can only provide you with copies of the original contract with the original creditor which is no longer your debt as the DCA has purchased said debt. in effect the DCA has paid your debt off for you you have no contract with the DCA therefor do you have to pay?.. .. i challenged Lowell a few weeks back and guess what they agreed that my account was indeed paid off and no longer worth them chasing me for it, it wasn't statute barred by any means just me challenging them.. I can post the letter I received from Lowell to show you how i did it and if someone could give me their input on what i've done or simply remove my post if moderators do not agree with it
  4. Hi there, this is my first post here so please be patient I have a Barclaycard with limit of £4000 (I actively reduced this from 6K) of which I currently owe just over 3K. I am only able to pay £100 a month so the debt is only being reduced by about £60 a month. Now Barclaycard are increasing their APR my monthly payment will reduce even slower than now. I tried to apply for a 0% balance transfer card but was unsuccessful. My husband has only managed to open a Lloyds Platinum card with a 1K limit so we can transfer £950 onto that and make regular payments no problem. It is only recently that I realised that I am paying PPI on my Barclaycard, however, I finished work in August 2013 due to back trouble. I have been in receipt of ESA until very recently following a Health Assessment which deemed me fit to work (!!!) My benefit stopped. My husband works in forestry and is on a low income but we are not eligible for any other benefit. So I'm thinking that I should have claimed on the B/card PPI - but is it too late now. If any claim was rejected could I reclaim the PPI payments made on the account. Can I write and ask B/Card to freeze the account and interest as I am only interested in paying the debt off and will not be using it to make purchases etc. I find it SO frustrating to read about all these long term 0% cards and then find we are not eligible to receive them. How am I supposed to improve my Credit rating when I am finding it SO difficult to keep afloat? Sorry for the long post - just wanted to make sure that had given as much information as possible.
  5. Hi, I'm looking for some advice, haven't used the site before but came across it when trying to research. I joined JD gym in December, joining online. The main reason I joined was because it was the only gym in the city that was contract free. The website clearly states several times "No contract- cancel at any time". Because of various referral incentives I persuaded my husband and mother to join also. We were supposed to receive free towels, bags and a PT session. Over the 5 months that I attended I saw the club deteriorate; it took us 4 months to receive the bags and towels as they were out of stock or manager not available and no one else had access to them. We booked in a PT session twice and turned up both times to find the PT could not carry out our session as he'd been left on the floor by himself, there was never any effort to contact us beforehand to avoid a wasted trip. The showers got smellier, the gym got busier, often despite paying a premium for off-peak membership there wouldn't be any treadmills or rowers available for the best part of an hour. My mother and I decided to quit. We spoke to the guy at the desk who gave us a number for Harlands who are responsible for procuring the direct debits. I tried to call them but one of the digits had been incorrect so I called the gym and they gave me an email address for Harlands Customer services. It took 2 emails for them to reply stating that they couldn't find my name on the system and asking me to provide my DOB. I did so, they replied again saying they still couldn't locate me could I send my address which I did. They still couldn't find me so advised me to call their customer services. I called and was cut off the first time, put on hold for 40 minutes the second time and eventually they also couldn't find my details with my full name, address, DOB and start date. They advised me to email customer services detailing my intention to quit and cancel my direct debit, a view shared with several others trying to cancel on JD's facebook page. This was at the beginning of May. This week I received a debt collection letter from Harlands stating that I owe nearly £53 in charges including a "cancellation period charge" and an "admin charge for default of payment". Naturally my mother and I were appalled at this so I called the number on the letter; Harlands Customer Services. The lady was not particularly helpful claiming that I need to email customer services informing them of my intention to cancel. When I read the emails out to her she told me to "tone down my sarcasm or she would have to end the call". I'm not entirely sure whether she thought the responses I was reading from Harlands was sarcastic or the fact that I was disputing the effectiveness of emailing them. She told me that JD gyms had changed their cancellation terms recently and had sent correspondence to all members to inform them of this. Not myself, my husband or my mother have received anything via email, post, text or phone from JD other than fitness updates. She said they were unable to cancel things at their end as it was up to JD so I could either contact them to sort the issue or.... email Harlands Customer Services. I did both. After sending two emails I am still waiting 4 days later for Harlands to reply. JD only replied once I had made a public post on their facebook page about being very disappointed in their customer care and response to cancellation. (Upon looking on the facebook page I can see there have been quite a lot of people who have struggled to cancel as the process is not clear and they get no replies). JD have messaged basically sending me a copy of the generic Harlands T&C's. and stating that I have to give 14 days notice via email if I wish to cancel. This would be entirely fine if they would accept a cancellation but two months on and I am struggling to make any progress and incurring more fees each month. The T&C's are geared towards a contract-based membership and make no mention of contract-free memberships. In fact, to my mind the only contract that should be in place is the direct debit agreement. I can't see how legally you can have no contract with a company and yet be billed for services unused, paid in advance and cancellation periods. Please can anyone advise on this. Thanks in advance.
  6. This is part real and part hypothetical. I'm currently hunting down a new second-hand car, and looking at private ads. I am getting bogged down in the new road tax legislation. I truly can't see how it's supposed to work. When I buy a car which is parked on the roadside, I become the owner of an untaxed vehicle since the existing tax no longer moves across to me with the car. I can go and tax it myself, assuming there's a post office within easy reach, or I can get to a secure computer, and there are no hiccups, etc. Meantime, I'm breaking the law. I am also the owner of an uninsured vehicle. So, likewise, I can then get insurance but all the while I'm doing that, I'm breaking the law by having it parked on the road. So far as I can tell, there's no requirement to demonstrate insurance when obtaining road tax - but do I still need it anyway, for their computers to validate the tax application? If so, I need to insure it before I go looking for a post office. I reason that I could tax and insure it before paying for it, but then I'm trying to tax a vehicle which already has another current road tax on it, and trying to insure a car which legally belongs to someone else, on the false basis that it's mine. What are people supposed to do??
  7. My wife has had to have two assessments in the last few years whilst on ESA, due to her ill health and mental health issues. She scored a 0 on the first one, we appealed, and 2 years later the appeal went through and we scored 19 points (not much of a difference, eh?) and we got our benefit back. 7 months later, they sent he for assessment again. Once again, she scored zero. We went back to appeal, 13 months later it went through and we scored 18 points We went back to the full rate in March of this year. It's now just the start of June, and we're being told she has to be assessed again, only 3 months later. Is this right? isn't their some form of minimum time frame, given that she's been repeatedly cleared, has given medical notes through out all appeals, and that she has only been back on the benefit for 3 months? It's making her ill, she just saw the ATOS envelope today and burst out in tears and had a panic attack, It's so hard for her to go to these things. Not just because of a bad knee operation that has left her unable to walk much further than the bathroom and back, but because her stress and anxiety kick in and she will literally be sleepless for days before the appointment, throwing up and breaking down. Whilst reading this, if anyone can also help me out with another question too I'd be most appreciative. My wife started the ESA as a mental health issue, however since she was on the claim within the last year, she was given surgery on the NHS for a knee operation. A Knee operation that has since been revealed that would be of no use to her (they originally thought it would help fix her knee joint which kept coming out of socket). This operation, combined with her high rising knees brought on from hyper mobility (which is why the op should not have happened apparently) leaves her with a knee that swells up and bruises over night if she walks as far as going around town. She will be in agony, and has to take multiple Tramadol tablets each day to knock her out so she isn't in too much pain to rest. Obviously, this is now another obstacle in the way of work... will this be accepted on her ATOS report? or when she fills it in, will she only be able to talk about the mental health issues that the claim was originally for, and she still has. Just wondering, because if we can use the knee thing too, I intend to. Because they don't understand mental health at ATOS at all. We constantly said in our first exam that my wife is incapable of going as far as our local shop (100m) without being accompanied by me and planning it in advance, and even then sometimes it was too much. On their report back, she scored 0 and they said "Angelina has no issue with going to the shop on her own" So yeah, would be nice if we can use something that is physical and can be seen, since they seem to ignore what isn't in front of their eyes. From reports, they will likely ignore physical too but I want to make it harder for them to be such [edit]s. I'm also planning on taking a voice recorder, and recording the whole assessment. Maybe that will force them to write down what is said, and not just tick the box that means she loses benefit and they get a gold star.
  8. Hi, I am new to this and now at the end of my tether. I don't know where else to turn to for advice. In 2002 after a brief period of unemployment, i was accepted to study as a student midwife. My then partner and father of my only child (who is now 15) wasn't happy as he worked away for long periods of time as a HGV driver and thought that my course would interfere with my spending quality time with our child, so we split. As he was away for work for long periods of time, it was pointless moving him moving into a property and paying rent for a place that would remain empty, so he moved into the spare room. when he returned home, for a few days at a time, that was when I did my course work or shifts at the hospital. He only contributed towards the mortgage and our childs maintenance. I recieved no other help from him, either financially or emotionally. Because of this, I applied for and got working and child tax credits, based on being a single parent (which I was!!) This continued until I qualified and got a job as a midwife in 2006 when this benefit ceased. I casually saw a few people during this period and so did my ex partner. The first letter arrived in 2008 (if I recall), stating that I had fraudulently claimed benefits as a single parent, when in fact they knew that my ex partner had been living there. They were asking for approx £3,500 to be repaid for the year 2003-2004. I spoke to someone on the phone, and they were made aware of the facts of our residence and that we were not in a relationship and at the time that seemed to make the DWP happy, they even turned up at the door unannounced and they were shown the living arrangements. We were still living by this arrangement as it suited the needs of our child, my ex still worked away from home and neither of us had met anyone serious enough to change these arrangements. I heard nothing again until 2010, when the DWP now stated that I owed approx £12,000 for a different time period to the last one stated. This time I asked for proof of what they were claiming and A breakdown of the figure that they were requesting. I heard nothing back. UNTIL February 2012 when I received another letter, this time requesting £21,000 for yet a another differnt time period. And this one threatening court action. I really cannot take any more of this harrassment. I am still paying student debts off, I dont live in a palace, my house is falling to bits as I never have any spare money to fix her up properly and I work full time hours in a very stressful job, so I could do without this stress at home as i know that it is starting to affect my judgement at work. Can somebody please offer some advice!!!!
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