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    • Every day and every week of delay is causing large numbers of deaths.   I just found this about Sir David King, ex-government scientific advisor and chair in Independent Sage. He thinks government inaction is tantamount to criminal.   https://www.lbc.co.uk/radio/presenters/eddie-mair/former-chief-scientific-adviser-government-criminal-mistake-covid/
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    • your right to reject has not been affected. at the very least you now have moved into the 6 months period where under the Consumer Rights Act you are entitled to give a single opportunity to repair after which you are entitled to reject the vehicle. maybe it will be a good idea to provide them with a letter to make  clear your position and what will happen if the whole matter isn't completely sorted out.   If that appeals to you then you might like to draft a letter and post it here and we can have a look. I think it's a good idea to state your position clearly so that nobody is in any doubt.   in terms of your part exchange vehicle, if you reject your new car then they will be obliged to refund you the entire asking price of it. In other words they will be obliged to substitute a money value for your old vehicle.   it might be worth stating that as well in your letter for clarity. I would suggest that in the intervening time it would be worth making a list of all the losses that you have suffered as a result of this situation and then if it looks like a worthwhile figure then we can help you claim it back            
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      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.
       
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      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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Just generally wondered how you can challenge of Warrant of Entry either used to disconnect your supply or to check the safety of your system - in both cases to gain access to your home, whether you are there or not.

 

Both methods seemed to be used by Debt Collectors to harass and seem quite draconian. I don't understand how someone could be able to enter your house without you being given the chance to challenge the warrant.

 

The Debt Collectors don't contact you with the day they go to court to obtain the warrant. The judge sees no-one to object and therefore issues - no matter what they say. Then the police enforce it on your doorstep as they can see no reason why it could be wrong. In my case - it was for someone that didn't even live at the address!

 

Am I missing something - is there a challenge available?

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Theoretically the scenario you describe should never happen.

 

Can you give us the details in your case so that we can see what has gone wrong?

 

What was the outcome?

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Something very similar happened to my friend last week.

 

She didn't pay the bill so owed the money. Due to cirucmstances was unable to pay the balance so the power company went to court and obtained a warrant of entry. She was not aware of this, but only told a few days before by letter (not recorded) that they had this warrant.

 

She telephoned to query this with the power company and they said that the warrant had been granted and that prepayment meters would be fitted at the proprty.

 

On the day, it was a rep from the DCA who came (with a colleague who was "training", although I understand that there always work in pairs). They had the warrant with them, and said that a letter confirming the date at the court when they obtained the warrant was send recorded delivery. My friend never received that letter as she would have gone along and challenged it (she would have been able and prepared to pay the full bill the following week!).

 

So friend didn't receive the letter advising of the court date - which they said was sent recorded (if they check their records they'll see that it was never signed for) but did receive the one not sent recorded !!

 

Anyway, they changed both meters and the debt is now being repaid weekly via the meter! She asked what would have happened if she'd not been in. The locks to her house would have been either picked or (as a last resort)smashed and meters changed. The locksmith would have "secured" the property and held onto the keys. A letter would have been left to state that the energy provider had gained access to the property to change the meters.

 

Despite this, my friend said the guys were all very friendly and not at all intimidating! And get this ..... they're all on pre-payment meters too:rolleyes:

 

They said they'd never been so busy as lots of people were requesting these meters. He said the majority of their work is carried out on large new houses on recently built estates.

Edited by jaxads

jaxads

 

Halifax - £2281, successfully refunded all charges after LBA letter & telephone call.

Have been offered the difference between the £20 and £12 charges from Capital One -- am sending LBA for remainder.

GE Money - Received settlement of £441, being total charges requested. No interest though.

CCA'd Bank of Scotland / Blair Oliver Scott to produce CCA Agreements on two Credit Cards - well in default, although still chasing payment!!!

EOS Solutions "ceased action on account" on behalf of a friend.

 

All in all, quite busy at the moment and enjoying every minute of it
:eek:

 

 

 

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^ I dont know the lagality of ths but if letters are supposed to be recorded I personally would challenge this by:

 

A) Calling the energy regulators.

B) Calling the courts and making a formal complaint.

 

however to my knowledge they do not have to be sent recorded???

 

I arrived home one day to find EON staff in my kitchen, they had entered with a warrant despite the fact my meter is not inside the house!!! had been upstairs in my house into bedrooms etc.

 

I made a formal complaint, verbally to them regarding this telling them as non of their equipment was in my huse they were trespassing, they did nt fit a meter instead the chap told his boss they could not enter due to dogs being in house, he did this after I explained I needed a further week to pay bill but EON had refused this ( I had given them a large sum very recently too).

 

 

Upon making a formal complaint to their regulators I found out that prior to forcing entry they should call their office for confirmation to continue and that prior to court action they should confirm meter location.

 

Needless to say they accepted my payment offer, it was a choice between that and contacting the papers.

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The Warrant of Entry is issued by a court and it is bailiffs that attend, not a DCA. To get a Warrant of Entry the power company would have had to demonstrate that they tried several avenues beore applying for the warrant. A recorded telephone conversation dated, accounts sent, letters sent are all proof that power company tried to contact person in question. The power company is not obliged to notify the person that they are obtaining a Warrant of Entry. You don't need to be present if they have a warrant of entry as generally a locksmith is called to open the premises. Unfortunately this all adds to the final costs and a power company will generally only use a Warrant of Entry if the unpaid bill is large, i.e. £500 or more or they think the person is going to skip.

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Doesn't need to be a bailiff that attends. It can be any authorised officer of the utility company. The letter, generally referred to as Human Rights Letter, is sent first class. It does not get sent recorded as this would give the person, who often does owe the money being realistic, could then refuse to accept it. The warrant grants the officer the power to enter the premises, using force if required, in order to access the meter.

 

At the court there should be the "information" filed. This is completed and left at the court along with usually a copy of the HRL. The officer of the company who attends will be accompanied by a locksmith, and if working for a DCA rather than the meter operator themselves, by an engineer who will deal with the meter.

 

As ever, hope that helps.

 

RM

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Surfer01

 

The problem is that magistrates do not in fact look at each application in the detail they should. The last time I saw a warrant officer he had at 9.30 am at least 30 applications in his bundle and was out of court by 10.00 am having received warrants on the lot. The very least a magistrate should do is when there is no defendant he/she should ask to see the evidence that the defendant was informed of the hearing. I cannot see that taking less than a minute for each case.

 

Rubber stamping sessions a bound to cause problems.

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As a supplier, we firstly tried to get the money from the customer and then if that did not work over to the DCA. If still no joy then applied to the court for a Warrant of Entry to disconnect the metering as we only dealt with business premises. No one from our company accompanied the bailiff but sometimes the DCA was present. If the customer decided to pay up at the last minute the bailiff had to get instruction from us whether to proceed or not.

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I agree that the judge just stamps and doesn't give time to each application. The burden of proof should be on the energy suppliers/agents to show that they have maintained their side of the conditions for entry. If the account is in dispute for example, it is my understanding that the warrant application can be dismissed. In general, I think that there is something seriously wrong with the current system. Right of access to your private dwelling should be restricted to the most serious of situations. But as I understand it, just a stamp from the judge and they are in, no matter what they claim, and no matter what information they have sent you about the matter.

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We used to set up all sorts of repayment plans to help customers, but in numerous cases they woudl make one payment and then default on the rest. Unfortunately as a supplier we had to buy the power upfront and then re-sell it and out mark up was only pennies. Many pennies make the millions. If you haved a large numebr of people defaulting on business accounts it makes sense to act quickly before they clsoe shop.

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Surfer01

 

Nobody is saying that utilities should not get paid. We are not saying that that the disconnection system is wrong per se. But it should be the very last thing that a utility should consider and if it is done at the very least the utility should gets its facts right. Disconnection should never (it is against all collection guidelines) be used as a threat when an account is in dispute.

 

 

We are saying that warrants of entry for disconnection should be dealt with properly in the courts. No warrant should ever be granted by a magistrate without proof that the customer has been informed and that the application is in the correct name and address.

 

We know that some utilities lie and that most DCAs do so whenever it suits them. Magistrates too easily take the warrant afficers word for it and so warrants can and are issued against non existent customers at wrong addresses.

 

The OP in this thread was complaining that a disconnection team turned up to her address and she had heard nothing at all previously. The warrant was not in her name.

 

She asked what was there to challenge a warrant. I cannot see there is anything unless she is informed of the applcation and the subsequent issue of the warraant. Perhaps it would be a good idea to answer her question.? - I would certainly like to know the answer.

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yes Pelham - that's what I mean.. No problem if there is a bonifide debt but if it is for a disputed debt you have to rely on the Utilities Company or Debt Collection Company to inform you what is going on. Perhaps there is a remedy to challenge a judge's decision retrospectively once people have illegally entered your house?

 

I see that in the legislation, you can prevent access if the warrant is illegal. At least that's how I read it. But it doesn't really help if the police turn up and forcefully enforce it..

 

I think the legislation below is the relevant one?

 

http://www.opsi.gov.uk/acts/acts1954/pdf/ukpga_19540021_en.pdf

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The Warrant of Entry is issued by a court and it is bailiffs that attend, not a DCA.

 

Sorry but this is wrong there is no bailiff involved and the person who attends is a representative of often a separate company who are cheaper than the supplier.

 

To get a Warrant of Entry the power company would have had to demonstrate that they tried several avenues beore applying for the warrant. A recorded telephone conversation dated, accounts sent, letters sent are all proof that power company tried to contact person in question.

 

To get a warrant they would have to state that they had made a number of attempts to contact but no real specific details are usually supplied.

 

The power company is not obliged to notify the person that they are obtaining a Warrant of Entry.

 

Oh yes they are! Under the Human Rights Act they now have to give 14 days notice of their intention to go to court for a warrant.

 

You don't need to be present if they have a warrant of entry as generally a locksmith is called to open the premises. Unfortunately this all adds to the final costs and a power company will generally only use a Warrant of Entry if the unpaid bill is large, i.e. £500 or more or they think the person is going to skip.

 

Sadly this is also incorrect I have been on disconnections in the past where the account was just over the £75 base figure of the day

 

Regards

 

GK

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I have been in contact with consumer direct and they say that

 

a)If an application for a warrant is made it is the court that has to inform the customer of the time and place of the hearing.

 

b) there is an appeal procedure in magistrates courts.

 

 

I do not think either of these answer the immediate problem which is one where the customer does not know of the application nor that a warrant has been issued.

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yes Pelham - that's what I mean.. No problem if there is a bonifide debt but if it is for a disputed debt you have to rely on the Utilities Company or Debt Collection Company to inform you what is going on. Perhaps there is a remedy to challenge a judge's decision retrospectively once people have illegally entered your house?

 

I see that in the legislation, you can prevent access if the warrant is illegal. At least that's how I read it. But it doesn't really help if the police turn up and forcefully enforce it..

 

I think the legislation below is the relevant one?

 

http://www.opsi.gov.uk/acts/acts1954/pdf/ukpga_19540021_en.pdf

you got the right legislation but it has been updated by the utilities act( gas and electric) 1999

simply if an utility company has made efforts to contact you this includes

2 home calls with record one has to be in non working hours.

If they no evidence of children under 5,disability or vulnerable customers as defined under this act the court has to issue a warrant.Simple.

To challenge you have to prove the DCA or authorised officer has not followed this procedure.But be advised a gps record of the call will have been provided. the warrant is valid for 28 days and will be served as soon as possible.This is legal process you can stop it by paying or arranging a payment plan

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mmm. can you provide a link to the updated legislation? and would it really be compatible with Human Rights Act? Just feels very wrong and so will probably end up being wrong in my experience - some day... No challenge??!?

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http://www.opsi.gov.uk/si/si2000/uksi_20003343_en.pdf

 

there the link to the act.

Apparently you gas supply is out of scope under the HR act but electric is.

the utilities get around the act with giving you 14 days notice of action.

This has been challenged apparently and upheld.

Sorry but this action is totally legal been going on for years and challenged loads of times.

I am a collections service delivery

manager for a utility company and i have been in court when a person challenged the act. The main defence is how do a utility company secure the debt? this right is enshrined in law. the comapinies do not disconnect any how just force fit a pre payment meter or in the case of gas pp meter and a spin cap.

 

Wrong i know but untill the law changes there is little anyone can do.

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that is why I was asking about challenging the law.. it feels wrong so in the future sometime I think avenues will open to challenge this.. still, I accept that it has been deemed legal thus far - any more ideas?

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Cant see a way unless the government take a stance like they did with water.Mind not having water has severe health implications.Which the substitution of a credit meter with a prepayment is a neutral outcome.

 

The contentious bit of this is entry into the persons home.

I think it justified because of:

 

1 the meter belongs to the Infrastructure provider not the customer so by all that legal this country they have a right to get there property.In effect it on loan to the household.

 

2 safety implications- especially gas

 

utilities use locksmith and either bypassing locks, drill and fill or replace locks.they have to provide 24 hour key recovery to the house holder.

 

All in all it legal only the government can change this with legislation/

 

In a nut shell the meter is not the house holders.

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  • 2 years later...

How frightening. I am currently in dispute with EON. This is for a disputed electricity debt. They broke into a property I don't live in, despite the fact that they have my current address to contact me. They sent warrant letters to the property address. Did you threaten them with the papers and what sort of arrangement did you come to. I have contacted a solicitor with an interest in debt collection with a view to getting them for harassment.

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  • 3 months later...
http://www.opsi.gov.uk/si/si2000/uksi_20003343_en.pdf

 

there the link to the act.

Apparently you gas supply is out of scope under the HR act but electric is.

the utilities get around the act with giving you 14 days notice of action.

This has been challenged apparently and upheld.

Sorry but this action is totally legal been going on for years and challenged loads of times.

I am a collections service delivery

manager for a utility company and i have been in court when a person challenged the act. The main defence is how do a utility company secure the debt? this right is enshrined in law. the comapinies do not disconnect any how just force fit a pre payment meter or in the case of gas pp meter and a spin cap.

 

Wrong i know but untill the law changes there is little anyone can do.

 

Thanks.

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  • 9 months later...

The locksmith would have "secured" the property and held onto the keys. A letter would have been left to state that the energy provider had gained access to the property to change the meters.

 

Where is the letter left? If it's inside and the premises are secure, the householder won't be able to get at it.

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  • 2 weeks later...

@jaxads..thanks for sharing your friends experience.

 

People who undertake this work fully understand the situations in which people find themselves in. They are normal people and are not in the business of seeking to intimidate people. The bottom line really is that for most people,if you cant pay your energy bill then those people need to contact their energy supplier and make arrangements/have prepay meters fitted. Additionally,they need to manage down consumption. Very few people have a right to free energy or to carry on consuming it regardless and sooner or later,there will be a visit to cut off and/or fit prepay meters. Its as simple as that and no amount of debating as to who received what letter and can it be challenged in court will stop it. All the supplier has to do is present evidence of non payment and its a fair bet,they will be granted a warrant.

 

Warrant officers are accompanied by a locksmith who has the skill and experience to open most locks in a very short space of time,often with no damage.

 

Energy co's do not have to extend credit to anyone and PPMs really are they way forward for many people. The age of cheap energy and flouncing round the house in a T shirt in winter is over.

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