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Asset conversion fraud

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Hi. I wonder if anyone can offer any help to me.

 

Earlier this year I went to a second hand car dealer in Rochdale and saw a car I liked. 18 months earlier I had bought a car from another garage and took finance out on it. As I had not planned to visit the garage in rochdale before I set off that day, I did not know whether the finance on the old car was in the form of a loan or hire purchase. The garage ran a HPi check and told me there was no outstanding finance on it so they would take it as a deposit on the car I had seen. We then did the deal and I drove the new car away.

 

The problems started within three weeks of purchasing the car. My marriage broke down and as a result my finances took a serious hit as everything my wife and I had financially was in my name but we were living to our means - using both incomes. When I left her, I of course lost her income and couldn't afford to make the repayments to all my creditors and so have had to take out a debt management plan. The bank who provided the finance on the original car then contacted me to say that they would not be accepting the offer of payment from the debt management plan as the car was on hire purchase. I told them that the garage said it wasn't showing on the HPi checker but they still disputed this. I contacted the garage yesterday and they again ran the check on the old car and said again it wasn't showing as having finance outstanding on it but again the bank said it did.

 

To cut a very very long story short the bank are now saying that they are referring it to their legal department and that they will probably bring action against me for asset conversion fraud.

 

Does anyone know what this is and what the consequences of this for me would be?

 

Thanks

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It sounds like you could be in a spot of bother here. The HPI check isn't the primary legal 'document' - the agreement with the bank is. What has happened to all the original documentation relating to your purchase of the car in dispute? How long was the original HP agreement supposed to last?


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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Hi thanks for reply. The documentation is at my old house but my wife is being awkward with me about it. The agreement was for 4 years.

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The agreement was for 4 years

 

Did you not realise the finance was secured on the vehicle? You're not allowed to dispose of it while the finance is still outstanding. This is the basis for the court action the bank is proposing.

 

You could perhaps rely on the HPI check not showing any financial obligations. But this is only a mitigating circumstance as the court will ask why you didn't check the original agreement.

 

This sounds a bit too cut-and-dried for us to be able to help very much. Nevertheless we'll do what we can.


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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I understand what your saying but like I say I hadn't planned on buying a new car that day it was only because we passed the garage and I called in and ended up coming away with the new car.

 

So what would the worse case scenario be?

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I think you are best getting proper legal advice, escpecially if the HP company report you for fraud!

 

Is there no way you can settle the full amount with the HP company? Doing that should stop things going further if you do it quick enough.

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No there is no way, I'm already on a debt management programme and so every penny is tied up with that. The plan has paid money to the bank already and they have accepted the payment but not the proposal.

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I hate to be the bearer of bad tidings but you can be put away for fraud.

 

Mind you that's a worst-case scenario. I would take Ruprecht's advice and see a lawyer asap. Most solicitors will give you a 15-minute free consultancy. Alternatively see your local CAB.

 

 

I know it's not particularly relevant but has anyone explained to you why the bank's loan did not show up on the HPI check? - have you asked anyone?


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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Nobody has yet given an explanation why it doesn't show up on the HPi check at the garage. They have run the thing twice now and both times it showed as no outstanding finance secured on the car. But the bank say when they run it, it does.

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Nobody has yet given an explanation why it doesn't show up on the HPi check at the garage. They have run the thing twice now and both times it showed as no outstanding finance secured on the car. But the bank say when they run it, it does.

 

The fact that it doesn't show on any HPi check isn't really relevant at all.

 

You said the HPi company turned down your offer of payment in your first post so you must have known there was an outstanding amount.

 

Any chance of getting the original car back?

 

Other than that or sorting out an acceptable payment plan with the HPi company, I am not sure what your options are.

 

If it is a small amount there is always the chance they will do nothing.

 

If any sort of proceedings are started against you then you are best getting legal advice on it. I don't think anyone on here would want to give advice to you on a potentially criminal matter and if they did it would be best not to take it!

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Whilst there may be a possibility of some sort of criminal action, the primary interest of the finance company will be the money. It is unusual that an HP agreement would not show in an HPi report.

 

Send the finance company a CCA request - that way you'll have a copy of the agreement and you'll know exactly what's involved.

 

Which company is this?

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CCA is a request for a copy agreement made under s.77/78(1) of the Consumer Credit Act 1974.

 

Have a look in the templates section on this site and you'll find the correct letter to send. Send it recorded delivery.

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Also, it may help a little if you can obtain a printout of the finance not showing on the search.

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