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    • I came across this discussion recently and just wanted to give my experience of A Shade Greener that may help others regarding their boiler finance agreement.
       
      We had a 10yr  finance contract for a boiler fitted July 2015.
       
      After a summer of discontent with ASG I discovered that if you have paid HALF the agreement or more you can legally return the boiler to them at no cost to yourself. I've just returned mine the feeling is liberating.
       
      It all started mid summer during lockdown when they refused to service our boiler because we didn't have a loft ladder or flooring installed despite the fact AS installed the boiler. and had previosuly serviced it without issue for 4yrs. After consulting with an independent installer I was informed that if this was the case then ASG had breached building regulations,  this was duly reported to Gas Safe to investigate and even then ASG refused to accept blame and repeatedly said it was my problem. Anyway Gas Safe found them in breach of building regs and a compromise was reached.
       
      A month later and ASG attended to service our boiler but in the process left the boiler unusuable as it kept losing pressure not to mention they had damaged the filling loop in the process which they said was my responsibilty not theres and would charge me to repair, so generous of them! Soon after reporting the fault I got a letter stating it was time we arranged a powerflush on our heating system which they make you do after 5 years even though there's nothing in the contract that states this. Coincidence?
       
      After a few heated exchanges with ASG (pardon the pun) I decided to pull the plug and cancel our agreement.
       
      The boiler was removed and replaced by a reputable installer,  and the old boiler was returned to ASG thus ending our contract with them. What's mad is I saved in excess of £1000 in the long run and got a new boiler with a brand new 12yr warranty. 
       
      You only have to look at TrustPilot to get an idea of what this company is like.
       
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    • Dazza a few months ago I discovered a good friend of mine who had ten debts with cards and catalogues which he was slavishly paying off at detriment to his own family quality of life, and I mean hardship, not just absence of second holidays or flat screen TV's.
       
      I wrote to all his creditors asking for supporting documents and not one could provide any material that would allow them to enforce the debt.
       
      As a result he stopped paying and they have been unable to do anything, one even admitted it was unenforceable.
       
      If circumstances have got to the point where you are finding it unmanageable you must ask yourself why you feel the need to pay.  I guarantee you that these companies have built bad debt into their business model and no one over there is losing any sleep over your debt to them!  They will see you as a victim and cash cow and they will be reluctant to discuss final offers, only ways to keep you paying with threats of court action or seizing your assets if you have any.
       
      They are not your friends and you owe them no loyalty or moral duty, that must remain only for yourself and your family.
       
      If it was me I would send them all a CCA request.   I would bet that not one will provide the correct response and you can quite legally stop paying them until such time as they do provide a response.   Even when they do you should check back here as they mostly send dodgy photo copies or generic rubbish that has no connection with your supposed debt.
       
      The money you are paying them should, as far as you are able, be put to a savings account for yourself and as a means of paying of one of these fleecers should they ever manage to get to to the point of a successful court judgement.  After six years they will not be able to start court action and that money will then become yours.
       
      They will of course pursue you for the funds and pass your file around various departments of their business and out to third parties.
       
      Your response is that you should treat it as a hobby.  I have numerous files of correspondence each faithfully organised showing the various letters from different DCA;s , solicitors etc with a mix of threats, inducements and offers.   It is like my stamp collection and I show it to anyone who is interested!
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DG Solicitors - has anyone dealt with them?


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Hi everyone, I hope someone can help. there are 2 parts here:

 

1. I owe HSBC about £2,200 on a card. After several months of not hearing from them when I offered them £20 a month (I had really hit on hard times), they got Metropolitan Collection Svcs after me. They would accept nothing less than £45 a month, with a £50 initial payment due. I paid the £50 as I was working again (but not for much money) and wanted to do what I could.

 

However, that was in April. I have since moved and my marriage has ended. Out of the blue I have 2 letters that have been post re-directed to me from DG on behalf of HSBC threatening legal action. After some research (looking at my bank statement) I see I hadn't set up the DD from my account properly, so all they ever got was the first £50 (I can see that from the amount they are claiming I owe as well).

 

Obviously I need to write them ASAP and let them know what happened. I am under the impression from this site that:

 

a) I should apologise and explain what happened;

b) I should ask for a copy of my CCA with HSBC to buy a little time;

c) I should give them my new address (as much as I dread this).

 

Correct? Anything I should add / omit? Any comments are most welcome!

 

2. The complicated bit is, I am starting Uni in late September full-time and will not be working more than a day or so a week after mid-September... so any agreement I do enter into with them (and the other agreement I am in with a different card/collection agency) will have to be re-adjusted radically if not cancelled as I will have almost no income.

 

In anyone's experience, are these agencies at all sympathetic once you start school / stop full-time employment? Or will I have to go to court to defer everything until I am working full-time again? I only owe about £4,000 across both cards. I have almost nothing in my bank account and will be living on my student loans and grants practically.

 

I am very confused!

 

Thanks people, if you can help I will be so happy :)

Edited by weevil_6969
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The first thin you need to do is get off a CCA request to these people ASAP. Find out if they have a valid agreement. If they do only offer them what you can reasonably afford should this be only a pound a week/month. If they decided to take you to court a Judge would not make you pay more than you could afford. Remember to keep everthing in writing and NEVER speak to these people on the phone. If you do set up a payment plan with them use a Standing Order as YOU control it not them as in the case of a Direct Debit.

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hi ive been dealing with these guys been ok accepting a five pound payment a month on a debt £2500.00 i ve since gone down the cca request and still waiting for a reply from them i would send them a cca request

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Thank you ODC and peppapig!

 

It has also come to my attention that I should request an S.A.R - (Subject Access Request) as well because during those 4 months or so that HSBC ignored my offer of £20 per month, they were *racking* up interest and non-payment fees... so this could bring down the total amount they are trying to collect considerably.

 

This site is FABULOUS :grin:

 

So I will be doing some serious research tonight, adapting a couple of the letter templates from here, and potentially getting a couple of postal money orders going for the CCA and the SAR. The lot will be sent recorded post (the expensive £4 one that I can fully track), without my signature anywhere.

 

I will keep watching this post for replies.

 

:cool:

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They would accept nothing less than £45 a month, with a £50 initial payment due. .

 

The cheeky muppets will accept what you tell them you will pay as you are the boss of them, not the other way round........and unless they are preparred to take you to a county court, then if it was me - they'd get £0.00 per month :rolleyes:

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Thanks mr. ton :)

 

If a person has virtually nil income, no assets, no savings, doesn't own a home or a vehicle, and lives basically hand to mouth... they will have to accept what you can give and nothing more (and it could still hurt) I reckon.

 

The court can't force you to turn over the last penny in your current account if it's going to cause hardship, can they? If it means not being able to eat or pay my rent... I could get turfed out! I'd be on the street.

 

Perhaps a rhetorical question but being new to this it's a bit scary yet :confused:

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Note that Metropolitan Collection Services (and their alter-ego, Central Debt Recovery Unit), and DG Solicitors are all part of HSBC.

 

I have had extensive dealings with them. You need to put everything in writing with them; never speak to them on the phone. The first thing to do is a CCA request, then a SAR to HSBC; state in the SAR letter that you want all data held by subsidiary companies including MCS and DG.

 

Usually court action is the last thing these creatures want. They know that even if they can produce an agreement and get judgment, the court will only order affordable payments - this could be £1 per month. They'd rather bully people into paying more than they can afford.

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Hi, i fully endorse Scarlet Pimpernels post above,Yes in the 1st para i would apologize for the error, but after that i would go for it.

Yes give them your new address.

Come back here when you get anything, no they wont be sympathetic to anything, they have one thing on their mind MONEY , sorry but thats how they are. dont speak on the phone, only in writing.

Dont worry about court yet, (a long way off) but keep coming back here, with ANY developments (very important).

regards CCM.

Please note i have no legal training any advice i give comes from my own experience and from what i have learned on this site

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Thanks mr. ton :)

 

If a person has virtually nil income, no assets, no savings, doesn't own a home or a vehicle, and lives basically hand to mouth... they will have to accept what you can give and nothing more (and it could still hurt) I reckon.

 

The court can't force you to turn over the last penny in your current account if it's going to cause hardship, can they? If it means not being able to eat or pay my rent... I could get turfed out! I'd be on the street.

 

Perhaps a rhetorical question but being new to this it's a bit scary yet :confused:

 

The court would take into account what income you do have & make exceptions for all essential costs like bills,clothes,food,travel costs etc..what ever was left is what they would decide on, which can be £1 per month with a bit of easy exaggeration of your essential costs ;)

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My experience of DG (solicitors) is that they are pretty civilised - I've even rung them up a couple of times. Had perfectly normal conversations and the lady at the other end gave me some useful advice on my benefits claim on one occasion.

 

No experience of MCS though.

I really do appreciate all those 'thank you' emails - I'm glad I've been able to help. Apologies if I haven't acknowledged all of them.

You can also ding my gong if you prefer. :)

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Fantastic advice, I will get crackin' on them both. Do you know what they will accept as proof that I have changed my address? The SAR guidance makes it pretty clear that is they feel the request is inaccurate or incomplete in any way, they can ignore it:

 

 

  • You should ensure that the bank has all the information about you which it needs to identify you in it's records and also to be satisfied that it is you who is requesting the data disclosure. If you have changed address / name from that registered on your account send proof of this with your initial request.

 

  • If the request is incomplete in any way then the bank has a valid reason for not complying.

So I wonder what they would accept as proof that I have moved and that it is in fact me... would they accept a photocopy of something? I am not going to send them a paycheque stub!

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I should probably clarify - I haven't been living here long enough to have any substantial post, everything is in my housemate's name, bills-wise, and my bank is an internet-only job and they may not accept a print-out of a statement. Maybe I should let it lie and have stuff forwarded, it does come through rather fast.

 

OK thanks again everyone who replied and if anyone has anything to add, cheers muchly :)

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HSBC's pet solicitors, i too have dealings with them and MCS both the same people apparently

 

DG are in default of my CCA request and still sending fortnightly threatograms threatening court action

 

do as been advised send a CCA request to DG solicitors and come back here if you get anything back from them

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As far as the S.A.R - (Subject Access Request) is concerned, send it to HSBC's head office, and make clear in the letter that it is a full SAR, not just a request for copy statements, and should be passed to their Data Compliance Team in Sheffield.

 

From my experience with HSBC/MCS/DG, once MCS become involved almost everything is computer-generated; there seems to be little human involvement. If a personal reply to anything is needed, it tends to come from HSBC or DG. As has been mentioned, DG are slightly more civilised, but don't be fooled - they are just as capable of mendacity and smoke and mirrors as any of the others.

 

Again in my experience, not being able to provide a valid agreement (or indeed any agreement at all in my case), does not stop HSBC. In one of my cases they continue to send a regular monthly letter demanding payment, and in another they sold the account (to Robinson Way, who were fecked off successfully).

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  • 2 weeks later...

I have an update: HSBC returned my SAR stating that they can not process it without a signature! Elsewhere on this forum I have read that it's not a good idea or necessary to include your signature as it it easy for the unscrupulous to forge it where they see fit...

 

They sent back my £10 money order made out to them as well.

 

Any advice? Meanwhile I will go check on what I think I read somewhere on here.

 

Cheers :)

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They did the signature trick with me too. It's a sign of progress - HSBC have an offshore office which responds to SARs with copy statements; once they know you want a full S.A.R - (Subject Access Request), they try to dissuade you.

 

I refused to sign and return the form, and instead took it to a branch. The staff didn't understand what it was all about, and had to clarify it with some higher formation within HSBC. That done, they wanted to deal with it in a little side room, but I refused. Anyway, I signed the form; the asst manager countersigned it, and I then scribbled over my signature with a black marker, explaining that it was to prevent fraud, and that I knew the whole thing was a timewasting exercise on their part. I also presented them with an invoice for my travel and parking costs.

 

The form is sent to the Data Compliance Team in Sheffield, who were the only people in HSBC who were helpful.

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May be worth reporting them to the Information Commissioners Office also.

Please note i have no legal training any advice i give comes from my own experience and from what i have learned on this site

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The letter states thus:

 

"Thank you for your recent letter with regard to information concerning transactions and charges on your account.

 

Unfortunately, you have omitted to sign your letter (poor english!). May I ask you please to submit fresh instructions ensuring your letter is signed. I apologise for the inconvenience this may cause you, however, your signature is a legal requirement.

 

I have enclosed your postal order as the Bank is happy to waive any fees for the production of this information.

 

Yours sincerely

 

(looks like electronic sig)

 

M__ P___

Customer Resolutions Manager"

 

So they haven't exactly returned my request, but are asking for a new one.

 

:confused:

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I'd be interested to know just which statute law requires a signature on a SAR; it's a red herring.

 

However, it'll probably be best to send a copy of the letter back to them with your signature over your name, or with lines ruled through it.

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Yeah SP, I am curious about that too!

 

It sounds like a good idea, they can't forge / copy my signature that way.

 

Also, the forwarding order from my move just expired & I know I have to give them my new address; should I go into a branch with the lot & have them update it on the spot? Then I can prove my identity without sending stuff through the post (I have no utility accounts or anything with my new address on it that I'd be willing to share with them).

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Here is the relevant bit from the Act, it doesnt say any thing about a signature, only about identity, so i would think a utility bill or similar would suffice?

 

F2 (3) Where a data controller— (a)

reasonably requires further information in order to satisfy himself as to the identity of the person making a request under this section and to locate the information which that person seeks, and

 

(b)

has informed him of that requirement,

 

 

the data controller is not obliged to comply with the request unless he is supplied with that further information.]

Please note i have no legal training any advice i give comes from my own experience and from what i have learned on this site

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It amazes me that these cretins are satisfied enough with your identity to send their threatomatics to you yet when you ask for information they are not so sure. Mmmm now if they werent sure who they were threatening with their begging letters then they would be in breach of the DPA for sending them.

Although this sticky of Pauls refers to CCA requests I think its valid for SAR requests

 

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/letter-templates/131333-dca-creditor-demand-specimen.html

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Here is the relevant bit from the Act, it doesnt say any thing about a signature, only about identity, so i would think a utility bill or similar would suffice?

 

F2 (3) Where a data controller— (a)

reasonably requires further information in order to satisfy himself as to the identity of the person making a request under this section and to locate the information which that person seeks, and

 

(b)

has informed him of that requirement,

 

 

the data controller is not obliged to comply with the request unless he is supplied with that further information.]

 

I'm sure that's the law they will quote, but since an individual can change their signature at will, some other form of ID is likely to be a better bet. I still say it's a red herring.

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Agreed SP/ODC, its up to us to cut them off every time they wriggle/squirm.

Please note i have no legal training any advice i give comes from my own experience and from what i have learned on this site

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Re: showing ID - that's why I think I may need to go into a branch because I have moved since all this began (and they have changed DCA back to their in-house solicitors)... and I have no utility bills here in my name as I am only renting a room. Should I do that? I can no longer access my details online as they cut me off a long time ago.

 

Even though they are being cheeky, wouldn't it look better for me if this ever ended up in court (which, for the small amount i owe, may not be worth their while) as I appear to be showing "good faith" by going into a branch to update my address & then re-submit the letter to them via recorded post (again)?

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