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Student Loan Issues - Help Appreciated!


Pickle-head
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Hi.

 

This is my first time postinghere. I've read through tons of threads and some of my questions have been answered but i'd love a little more guidance!

 

I took out a Student Loan in 97 & 98. As I understand it, both are covered by a CCA or is it just the 97 one?

 

I started making some payments back in 2001 until I realised i could defer, which I did and payments stopped.

 

Since then i've heard nothing from them until very recently. I have since settled abroad but they have started harrassing my parents (on a daily basis in fact). Apparently the debt has been passed to Close Credit and they are threatening legal action.

 

I don't know what the total I owe is yet as I don't want to call them without knowing all my rights.

 

so can I

 

A) Request a statement of all monies owed including charges, interest etc.

B) Do I have to tell them i'm living abroad?

C) Can I get them to stop harassing my parents?

 

I want to pay it back, but only what I owe, No charges and stuff. I don't want them to know i live abroad though. I have no PAYE earnings for the last 3 years but I do have a UK bank account I can pay them out of.

 

What are my options?

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Hi Pickle

 

When, exactly, did you last acknowledge this debt to them in writing? When did you last make a payment?

 

I think these could be statute barred, so the timings are very important (has to be over 6 years).

 

HC

Any help and advice is offered in good faith, based solely on my own knowledge and on experience gathered from this site. I am not qualified to offer legal or financial advice, which you should seek from an expert before making any important decisions. My opinions are therefore offered without liability.

 

If I've been helpful, please click my scales. :-)

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Hi Pickle

 

When, exactly, did you last acknowledge this debt to them in writing? When did you last make a payment?

 

I think these could be statute barred, so the timings are very important (has to be over 6 years).

 

HC

 

Thanks for replying!

 

I don't remember the last time I acknowledged it in writing. In fact, apart from the loan documents themselves; I don't think i've ever sent anything else in the post to them.

 

No wait, I lie. I deferred in 2002 (dammit!)

 

What's this statute barred thing?

 

What if i've acknowldged the debt over the phone?

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A debt becomes statute barred if there has been no payment or written acknowlegement of the debt for a period of 6 years.

 

Over the phone does not count.

 

But, if you deferred in writing in 2002, that counts as an acknowledgement.

Any help and advice is offered in good faith, based solely on my own knowledge and on experience gathered from this site. I am not qualified to offer legal or financial advice, which you should seek from an expert before making any important decisions. My opinions are therefore offered without liability.

 

If I've been helpful, please click my scales. :-)

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so can I

 

A) Request a statement of all monies owed including charges, interest etc.

B) Do I have to tell them i'm living abroad?

C) Can I get them to stop harassing my parents?

 

 

A) Yes. You need to do an S.A.R. Sorry, I'm running around like a headless chicken at the moment and can't locate a link to this.

 

B) I don't see why. I haven't told my creditors my new address, I just use my folks as a c/o address.

 

C) Yes. You need the phone harassment letter - again, here somewhere, but I'm being headless again.

 

Edit: They're in the library here: http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/bank-templates-library/

 

Subject Access Request and Telephone Harassment. Edit as needed. Post on here before sending and somebody will check them for you.

 

Send recorded delivery so you have a record of them getting it.

Any help and advice is offered in good faith, based solely on my own knowledge and on experience gathered from this site. I am not qualified to offer legal or financial advice, which you should seek from an expert before making any important decisions. My opinions are therefore offered without liability.

 

If I've been helpful, please click my scales. :-)

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  • 1 month later...

Hey hey!

 

So here's an update. My account has been passed to Close Credit Management. Rang them and have sorted out a payment plan. I'm paying back £120 a month.

 

I paid the first payment over the phone and then set up a Standing Order which left my bank account but did not arrive in theirs! I contacted them, supplied them with my bank statement and they are looking in to it.

 

They've got an online thing where I can check my account and make payments etc. Now, when they sent me a ****ty letter saying they'd not received a payment, they said my amount oweed was £3654. Now it's higher! I checked my 'statement' and they're charging me $74 a month stating 'Increase in Overdue Amount'.

 

Since my loan is covered by CCA, surely they can't be charging me anything and they sure as hell can't charge interest on an amount in arrears can they? Even if they can, why is it the same cost and not a percentage? (the charge has been added every month since they took over my account in August)

 

Any ideas.

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Hi picklehead

 

Glad you're starting to get this sorted out.

 

I'm unsure what all these charges are. As there is some interest payable on a student loan (and I think they hiked this up this year). But this sounds as if it's Close Credit adding their own charges and not Student Loans and there are OFT guidelines with regard to this.

 

I think you need to get a proper breakdown of your debt. Can you get enough information from the statement? If so, good. If not, you should consider an S.A.R. as above. At any rate, I'd be challenging this if I were you.

 

Let us know.

 

HC

Any help and advice is offered in good faith, based solely on my own knowledge and on experience gathered from this site. I am not qualified to offer legal or financial advice, which you should seek from an expert before making any important decisions. My opinions are therefore offered without liability.

 

If I've been helpful, please click my scales. :-)

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Thanks!

 

Yes, I knew that there would be interest charged on the Student Loan itself but this is definitely not an interest charge. I've queried it with Close Credit and am waiting for a reply.

 

If i don't hear anything soon, or if their answer is something along the lines of 'These are charges we apply for x' I will certainly be starting an SAR as they are totally unfounded.

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Good

 

Let us know picklehead. Once you know more detail about what these charges are you can start to challenge them. There's some folk here with some great letters to help you do this.

 

:)

Any help and advice is offered in good faith, based solely on my own knowledge and on experience gathered from this site. I am not qualified to offer legal or financial advice, which you should seek from an expert before making any important decisions. My opinions are therefore offered without liability.

 

If I've been helpful, please click my scales. :-)

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Absolutely, I will keep this thread updated with my progress.

 

I have nothing against paying back the loan, but I don't agree with them slapping on over £70 of charges every month!

 

One question. If a Debt collection Agency has taken over the debt from Student Loans, does that mean that oncei've paid them back i'm free of the debt. Or, is there some weird thing where SLC pass on the amount i've not paid to them and keep the rest (meaning i still owe SLC money?)

 

I just want to make sure that the amount i'm being asked for is the full amount I owe.

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If a DCA takes on the debt, they take on the whole debt - so once it's paid, that should be that - you would not owe SLC anything.

 

I think you can be sure that the amount you're being asked for is the full amount you owe -and then some!

Any help and advice is offered in good faith, based solely on my own knowledge and on experience gathered from this site. I am not qualified to offer legal or financial advice, which you should seek from an expert before making any important decisions. My opinions are therefore offered without liability.

 

If I've been helpful, please click my scales. :-)

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  • 2 weeks later...

Ok so apparently, every month SLC defers a missed payment to the DCA so it seems that when I don't pay the SLC each month, they pass that missed payment along.

 

That seems reall weird though.

 

Of course, the guy at the DCA has gone all quiet over the holidays.

 

I just wish somebody would give me a straight answer!

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Hi Pickle-head

 

Hope you had a good Christmas.

 

How did you find out about the above? Have you got details from Close?

Any help and advice is offered in good faith, based solely on my own knowledge and on experience gathered from this site. I am not qualified to offer legal or financial advice, which you should seek from an expert before making any important decisions. My opinions are therefore offered without liability.

 

If I've been helpful, please click my scales. :-)

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Hi Pickle-head

 

Hope you had a good Christmas.

 

How did you find out about the above? Have you got details from Close?

 

Yep, not too bad. you?

 

I found out because they have an online system where you can make payments and see statements. I e-mailed the guy I have been talking to and that's what he told me.

 

Surely SLC wouldn't just split the debt between themselves and a DCA?

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Well - it looks as if Close must be collecting on behalf of SLC - so they don't own the debt, they're just the authorised collection agents. It's odd though - I thought they used Smith, Lawson and Co, who are their in house heavy mob (note the initials are the same).

Any help and advice is offered in good faith, based solely on my own knowledge and on experience gathered from this site. I am not qualified to offer legal or financial advice, which you should seek from an expert before making any important decisions. My opinions are therefore offered without liability.

 

If I've been helpful, please click my scales. :-)

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They use the name Smith Lawson & Co to try and scare you.

 

They then pass the debt to an independent, bottom feeding DCA such as (in my case) NCO (Europe) Ltd

 

Pickle head- have you recovered your £20 per reminder letter charges?

 

This would reduce your debt and get these muppets off your back for a while.

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  • 1 year later...

C) Yes. You need the phone harassment letter - again, here somewhere, but I'm being headless again.

 

They have my parents address and another extended family member's who they are sending lots of correspondence to (addressed to them directly). Since both of these people are a bit on the old fashioned side they are nervous about letters and are now very angry with me.

 

Can I get the SLC to stop sending these letters address to extended family members? Is there anyway I can do it without the letter since I'm on the other side of the planet and it will take time and I don't have the details of my student loan either.

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