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02 mobile broadband help please-payment taken without consent from bank account


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Hi, not sure if this is in the right place, but just after some advice please. My stepson has a contract mobile with O2. As he was a 'loyal customer' they offered him some freebies or a mobile broadband dongle. He opted for this, needless to say when it arrived (£15 per month btw for 18months contract) we told him to send it back as we already have home broadband. As he is a naive 20 yr old he kept it and used it (not much as the coverage is not great in our area). He defaulted on his payments, and the penultimate letter he received from them said that he was to contact them to either pay his arrears (about £30) or they would terminate the contract and he would have to pay cancellation fee, forward it to debt collecting agency etc, etc. The last letter (dated 24th April 2010) said something about them now terminating the contract and the final bill would be sent within 6 weeks including the cancellation fee ( sorry bit vague, stepson in bed now, letters in his room, but I cant sleep cos its going over and over in my mind) but he has not received further communication from them since that letter of 24th April 2010, yet they have taken over £200.00 from his account last week which has put him overdrawn which will incur bank charges. My question is this, can they do this? I thought they had to notify you if they were going to take that amount out? WHat can I do to help him. I'm not impressed, first with him for not sending the thing back (kids for ya!), but secondly for o2 to just take the money out without advising him! He is still waiting for the final bill! ANy help would be really, really appreciated.

 

Thanks

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contact the bank and invoke the direct debit guarantee as he was not written too or p'haps see if you can do a chargeback on the card he might have used?

 

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Hi thanks for your reply, how do I go about doing that? Does he just ring and explain what happened? What about O2? He called them up when he found out and they said that the details of disconnection and cancellation were in the terms and conditions, which he said he had never received and they said that they were on their website, yet he has never been advised that that is where they are! Should he send them a letter complaining or just do the bank thing first?

 

Your help is always appreciated.

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Hang on. You have no right to intercede or contact anyone.

 

You are infringing your stepson's right to privacy, and you won't get far trying to tell his bank what they can and cannot do with a DD. By all means, guide him but if he doesn't take your advice, there's nothing else you can do.

 

I doubt he'll be successful in getting the DD recalled, he provided the network with a mandate to take unspecified amounts on unspecified dates. They cleary have told him he owed them money, and they were able to make a debit to assist in the closure of the account. Providing the network issued a bill showing this amount, and stated it would be taken by DD. They have completed their side of the deal, and a reversal for mandate breach will not take place.

 

He would have been given a copy of the T&Cs if he signed up in a shop (on the reverse of his airtime agreement). It is HIS duty to read the T&Cs either before or within 14 days of the account inception. He can then repudiate the contract and walk away. After this period, the service contract is confirmed, and the lock-in becomes active.

 

I don't see what you think O2 have done wrong - a contract commitment was taken out, and defaulted. I would be more concerned at his credit file being totally trashed with a default (something you may have been able to avoid by the debit going through). If it wasn't made, or failed, the credit file would be damming him for 6 years, at a time he probably needs it most.

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Hi Buzby, thanks for your answer. I have never had any intention of ringing his bank for him, although it may have seemed like that by my first sentence of that post. He was upset and asked if they could do that, I said I wasnt sure so that's why I'm on here.

 

It was just that the last letter from O2 said that they would send him a final bill with the cancellation fee included, which he has not received, so he didnt know they were taking that money out. And he said the first he knew about terms and conditions was when he rang them after the money was taken out and they said they were on their website (he never went to a shop, this was all originally over the phone).

 

He's not disputing he defaulted or that he owes the money, its the fact that he didnt know they were taking that amount out at once or when. If he knew then he would have made sure that it was either paid over the phone (good old parents! lol) or he would have made sure there were sufficient funds in his account so as to avoid unauthorised overdraft charges. Thats really what I was getting at.

 

ANyway, thanks for your help, I think this experience, if anything, has taught him that us parents don't talk out of our bum all the time and that maybe he should have listened to us when we told him to send it back lol :)

 

THanks again

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Sorry Buzby just re-reading your answer. His his mobile contract with O2 is fine, its an additional 'dongle' for mobile broadband that he got for his laptop that is the problem, its just I saw you put airtime and I thought you may be thinking I was talking about a mobile contract but I;m not, its his mobile internet connection dongle thing...... or am I just over analyzing again! I'm sorry :-|

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There will be TWO contracts, the Internet dongle will have a seperate number from his mobile phone one, as O2 practically give the dongles away because of the ongoing commitment, so do check, as a default on either can affect his credit score. Similarly, each SIM will have its own minimum commitment.

 

Hopefully he'll listen to you when you recommend PAYG as a much more safer option! :)

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how does £30 get to £200.if you did not get the final bill with cancellation fee and have no knowledge of this amount or the money going from your stepsons account you need to get a Subject Access Request sent off to 02. so that you can find out if a final account letter was sent out or not.you can get a template letter on this site from the forums library under the heading bank templates and adapted to your needs,this will cost £10.with a S.A.R 02mobile will have to give you all the information they have regarding your stepsons account including any letters sent to you.I think if you have a case to approach the bank once you have all the details via a disagreement resolution procedure.

Ladyhawk

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SAR costs £10. If all that is required is a copy bill, then they can often provide this FoC, or they may make a charge if you've requested them before. No point wasting good money on info that is of no relevance.

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