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Everybody has a story and mine is probably not exceptional but is worth outlining here for background purposes.

 

I was co-habiting with my partner for many years and we have two children aged 12 & 4

 

Last year my partner started an affair and at the beginnin of this year, walked out on the family home and children.

 

What has come to light since then, is that my partner had been using my bank card to service her personal debts. Since I am now unable to work my debts (loans I agreed to take out, overdraft, etc etc) have fallen into arrears and I am now being persued for them by DCA's

 

I was earning appox 31K p.a. I am now claiming income support and have recently had my mortgage interest payments covered.

 

I wrote to all my creditors asking them to consider writing off the debts (not the mortgage), however, I am now being chased by DCA's even harder.

 

I have provided all creditors with statements of income, and informed them of my hardship status.

 

When we moved into our house, we were encouraged to take additional borrowing from our Mortgage provider in order to furnish our new home and Im not sure if this is secured or not.

 

When my partner left, they took most of the paperwork relating to credit agreements. They had also been intercepting statements due to the hours I was working and I was unaware (niave) of the pending problems.

 

I have requested and received copies of bank statements and there are approx £1,500 of charges & interest over a two year period. There are daily cash withdrawls amounting to hundreds of pounds and payments going to my partners personal depts for thousands.

 

There is approx 50K of negative equity on the property (thanks to missed payments and payment holidays and the housing market collapse) I have no savings left. I paid the water, gas and electric bills with this.

 

I have made an appointment with the CAB and am receiving legal aid with regard to a residency order for the children.

 

I'll now get to my questions

 

Since I am claiming and receiving benefits, can I argue that I have no spare income with which to make an offer of payment?

 

If the bank card used to make these payments to my partners personal debts is clearly in the name of a male and the person making the payments was female, have the bank been negligent in processing these transaction requests and will I be able to recover them or was I negligent in the eyes of the law for leaving my card at home where I thought it would be safe.

 

I was thinking of using the letter requesting a true copy of the agreement to see if this will lead to them dropping the persuit of the debt. I have made 1 payment of £1 under duress because they wouldnt stop phoning me.

 

If anyone can advise me of the steps I need to take to resolve these issues, I would be very grateful.

 

Many Thanks

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For credit card debts, catalogue debts and the loans you will need to send off a CCA request to whoever is demanding payment now. This should be sent recorded delivery and include a £1 postal order. Do not sign the request. http://www.consumerforums.com/resources/templates-library/86-debt-collectors/581-cca-request-letter

 

Make nominal payments of £1 to each of your creditors, in the unlikely event that any of them decided to apply to a court for a CCJ it will show that you are not ignoring the debts. Even if it were to go as far as court a judge would look at your circumstances and income and make a decision as to what he thinks you can afford, this could be as little as £1 per month.

 

When you get the CCAs back, scan them remove identifying details and post them up so we can check whether they are enforceable or not, then we'll advise from there.


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If the card was used without your authority, then technically it can be classed as theft, of which then becomes a police matter.

As for your income - it would be for a county court to decide what you repay once all outgoings have been taken into account, which would prob be £1 per month in your circumstance.

Edited by mr.ton

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Hi, So sorry to hear of your problems but you have come to the right place and between us we will be able to help.

 

With regard to the unauthorised use of your credit card, I think I am right in saying that this would have to be reported to the Police, and then the whole thing will probably get nasty - if this is something you feel you can handle, then I would certainly seek help with that.

 

As suggested above, send of the CCA's and then start a new thread for each individual item (we all had many of them too - no judging, just help on here)


Every journey begins with a single step :):)

 

Please note: I have no qualifications in this area - my advice is learned from the wonderful members of this Forum. Thanks to you all for your help.

 

If you have found my post helpful please leave a short message by clicking the star to the left of my profile - Thank You

 

The only person entitled to your Personal Finance details is a Judge not a DCA

 

Move all banking activity to another banking group if you have a dispute - your funds can be used to offset debts within the same group.

Be careful with Banking details (card/account numbers) as these can be used to take unauthorised payments.

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It is a breach of the conditions of issue of a bank debit card for anyone to use it except the person in whose name the card was issued. If your ex used it to pay her own debts without telling you then that is theft but that leaves the question of how she got the PIN number, which she would need to use the card - either that or forge your signature. I think if you raised the question with the bank of why they authorised payments when someone else was using the card, they would reply that they would like to know how she got the card in the first place. Were you in the habit of leaving your card and PIN number lying about the house?? Or did you tell her she could use the card and now all has come to grief you are wondering if there is anything you can do about getting that money back? I very much doubt you will get it back and if the bank discovers someone else was using your card they will withdraw it.

 

Now to the debts. Never speak to debt collection agencies (DCAs) on the phone. Overdrafts are not covered by the Consumer Credit Act 1974 in that they are at the behest of the bank, although you are entitled to a letter giving the rate of interest applied and overdraft limit. The bank can withdraw them at any time and they then become payable. Offer them £1 a month and tell them that is all you can afford.

 

You can make requests for copies of the agreements for credit cards and regulated loans.

 

Creditors and DCAs - Letter Templates & Budget Planner

 

Scroll down to letter "N". Send a £1 Postal Order and print, don't sign your name. They have 12 + 2 days to reply. If they have not sent an enforceable agreement in that time, you can stop paying them and put the account in dispute. Scan the letters on here and we will take a look at them and tell you whether they are enforceable. There is a template you can get here for putting them in dispute.

 

If there is a secured loan in addition to the mortgage, that is more difficult and if it is over £25000 it is unregulated ie not covered by any consumer law legislation. You can look to see if there is any PPI on it that you may have been mis-sold but at the end of the day your house is vulnerable if they take you to court.

 

Benefits alone does not prevent your creditors asking for money but it does limit what you can do. Stick to the priorities - mortgage, council tax, utilities, food and the children and if there is anything left, that is what goes to the creditors. If there is absolutely nothing, then that is the reality of it and you cannot do what you cannot do.

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I am responding on behalf of AJ

 

The situation is not looking good as far as I can tell for the following reasons.

 

The Loan may have been in excess of £25,000 - I need to confirm this

The bank card may have been used initially with consent for some transactions - again I need to confirm this

 

I will recomend the CCA letter is used for the other loans as these were personal loans for less than the £25,000 limit mentioned above.

 

Would you advise to make an offer of payment of £1 to all creditors or ask them to write off the debt for the loans less than £25,000

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I would wait to see what the CCA requests produce. It is possible to ask for unsecured debts to be written off but it is unlikley they will.

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Thanks again for your replies.

 

He had a meeting with the CAB today and this looks very productive.

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It appears that the original loan taken out along with the mortgage was for approx £20K. Subsequently an additional £10K was borrowed plus £4K admin charges and the new consolidated loan was secured against the property. Happy Days!

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I have a question for the legal eagles amongst you.

 

I understand that that my partner had the right to take out a loan against the property, but surely the lender has a duty to get the consent of the person who's bank acount is being debited as well.

 

Im thinking of using the Direct Debit Guarantee Indemnity Scheme to recover the payments, since the mortgage company never had my consent to debit my account for the new amount.

 

Have they broken any rules by accepting the change?

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