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Allied Intl Credit - Advice please!


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Hello all,

 

Just when I think I've got one debtor sorted for the time being, I receive something I did not expect at all.

 

Barclays Partner Finance (BPF) have been included in my Debt Management Plan (DMP) since 2007. When I went on maternity leave I had no option but to reduce my payments to the DMP and this was put into effect. I have not been able to increase my repayments by much since returning to work as my partner lost his job a year ago and has not had any work since. All creditors except BPF accepted the reduced payments. BPF would phone me up and ask for more, without threatening, and I would explain the situation, saying I am paying as much as I can, and they would say ok, we'll call you back to discuss the matter next month.

 

These calls suddenly stopped about 8 months ago. BPF continue to accept my repayments through the DMP and would send me annual statements of account. Fine.

 

In April I received a letter from BPF saying that my account is being transfered to Mercers Debt Collection Limited and saying that I need do nothing, "don't worry, any arrangements that you have with us either directly or through a third party on your behalf will not change." So I did nothing, and heard nothing more from BPF and nothing at all from Mercers.

 

Today, I get home and a little yellow card in a TNT envelope (clearly posted second class) dated 5 July 2010 is waiting for me. The card is marked "WARNING!" and states: "our client has informed us that under their terms and conditions, as Formal Demand has been made, payment of the full outstanding balance must be paid immediately.

 

I have not received a Formal Demand to my knowledge so I don't know where this has come from! Obviously I have defaulted on the account but I do not have the default notices.

 

Having read some threads on here I have no intention of phoning AIC - I will get a CCA request letter out as soon as I can by recorded delivery. Also, I have had no notice of assignment - as far as I'm aware AIC have no legal proof that they can collect the debt.

 

Presumably, if AIC don't send what I've requested, the agreement goes into default and the account into dispute.

 

My main question is, should I advise my DMP people not to pay BPF another penny or should I continue to make the minimal payments that BPF have accepted quite happily for nearly 2 years?? I am concerned that if I stop all payments they may move forward with legal action.

 

Also, do I need to send anything else to AIC, like a CPR18 or CPR31.14 at this stage?

 

Thanks for any advice received!

 

CM

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At the moment there is no need to panic. So far you have not been issued a claim against you over this in a County Court. Thus CPR requests are not yet in order until this happens.

 

You can make a S78 request (cost £1) to the original creditor for a copy of your original agreement.

 

Also you can submit a SAR for all documentation the original credit holds on you (£10).

 

Personally I would continue will the DMP. If you stop now you are giving them ammunition to use against you.

 

Before it gets to court you should get a Default Notice (unless you already have one) and receive a letter before action.

 

You are very wise not to speak to them on the phone. Should they catch you off guard either refuse to go through their security questions or tell them you will only deal with this matter in writing.

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Hi Wycombe, looks like I'll be getting another S98 request out then! Do I need to refer to their "correspondence" with requesting it so as they won't think I'm ignoring them?

 

Hi FS, DMP was originally with Debt Solution Services, then changed to Solace and Solace has now been sold to Astute Finance Limited!

 

Should I let Astute know about this? Presumably if they try and deal with it, it may put me on shakey terms if I start requesting S78s.

 

Also, I think I actually have a copy of the agreement I signed. I will check but if I do I won't be able to scan it up until Tuesday. If I do have the agreement should I still do the S78 to AIC? I guess it wouldn't do any harm, just in case I don't have it!

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Hello all,

 

Just when I think I've got one debtor sorted for the time being, I receive something I did not expect at all.

 

Barclays Partner Finance (BPF) have been included in my Debt Management Plan (DMP) since 2007. When I went on maternity leave I had no option but to reduce my payments to the DMP and this was put into effect. I have not been able to increase my repayments by much since returning to work as my partner lost his job a year ago and has not had any work since. All creditors except BPF accepted the reduced payments. BPF would phone me up and ask for more, without threatening, and I would explain the situation, saying I am paying as much as I can, and they would say ok, we'll call you back to discuss the matter next month.

 

These calls suddenly stopped about 8 months ago. BPF continue to accept my repayments through the DMP and would send me annual statements of account. Fine.

 

In April I received a letter from BPF saying that my account is being transfered to Mercers Debt Collection Limited and saying that I need do nothing, "don't worry, any arrangements that you have with us either directly or through a third party on your behalf will not change." So I did nothing, and heard nothing more from BPF and nothing at all from Mercers.

 

Today, I get home and a little yellow card in a TNT envelope (clearly posted second class) dated 5 July 2010 is waiting for me. The card is marked "WARNING!" and states: "our client has informed us that under their terms and conditions, as Formal Demand has been made, payment of the full outstanding balance must be paid immediately.

 

I have not received a Formal Demand to my knowledge so I don't know where this has come from! Obviously I have defaulted on the account but I do not have the default notices.

 

Having read some threads on here I have no intention of phoning AIC - I will get a CCA request letter out as soon as I can by recorded delivery. Also, I have had no notice of assignment - as far as I'm aware AIC have no legal proof that they can collect the debt.

 

Presumably, if AIC don't send what I've requested, the agreement goes into default and the account into dispute.

 

My main question is, should I advise my DMP people not to pay BPF another penny or should I continue to make the minimal payments that BPF have accepted quite happily for nearly 2 years?? I am concerned that if I stop all payments they may move forward with legal action.

 

Also, do I need to send anything else to AIC, like a CPR18 or CPR31.14 at this stage?

 

Thanks for any advice received!

 

CM

 

 

Righto, Mercers are actually part of Barclaycard. The set up is as follows:

 

 

Barclays Bank plc,

Barclays Bank plc t/as Barclaycard

Barclaycard t/as Mercers

Mercers t/as Calders..

 

Righto, well now .. Allied claim that Barclaycard has issued a Formal Demand.. have they ? If so, did you receive a Default Notice PRIOR to that Formal Demand, because if you didnt then they have screwed up big time.

 

If I were you, I would just write back to Allied saying something along the lines of....

 

Dear Sirs,

 

I am in receipt of your pretty yellow card. I notice that this communication is time sensitive yet you choose to send it via an inferior 2nd class mailing system.

 

I would advise you that no Formal Demand has been received, therefore you are either misinformed or you yourself are misinforming me. Either way, I am sure you will be aware that this is a breach of OFT Guidelines.

 

I also fail to see the reason for your intimadatory card as payments are being maintained via Debt Management Plan, agreed with your client.

 

I will be passing your communication on to the OFT as it is my understanding they are keen to have examples of breaches of their guidelines.

 

Yours faithfully,

 

etc, etc

 

 

 

AIC are purely DCAs. They refer to their client therefore no assignment has been made. :)

 

I would then suggest you get a request into Barclays for a copy of the CCA as soon as you can.

 

That way you will be part ways prepared for anything else.

 

If you can afford it then I strongly suggest you also do a Subject Access Request.

 

:)

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AGGGHHH!!! I just posted up a huge response and my rudy computer crashed - not impressed! :mad:

 

Here goes again - responses in red under quotation:

 

Righto, Mercers are actually part of Barclaycard. The set up is as follows:

 

 

Barclays Bank plc,

Barclays Bank plc t/as Barclaycard

Barclaycard t/as Mercers

Mercers t/as Calders..

 

Thought that was the case.

 

Righto, well now .. Allied claim that Barclaycard has issued a Formal Demand. have they ?

 

I have not received a formal demand in the recent months - presumably AIC's pretty yellow card will relate to a demand I should have received fairly recently?

 

The reason I say this is because when I set up my DMP back in 2007 I was really distressed about everything and I simply sent all correspondence to the DMP people without taking copies for myself. A formal demand may have been one of those documents - I don't recall, but it seems unlikely as they agreed to the initial terms of my DMP (not the modified one whilst I was on maternity leave and subsequently since my partner lost his job over a year ago).

 

If so, did you receive a Default Notice PRIOR to that Formal Demand, because if you didnt then they have screwed up big time.

 

Again, if I did receive a default notice, the DMP folk would probably have it. Can I contact Astute and ask for copies of all the original correspondence I sent them or will I have to CPR them?

 

If I were you, I would just write back to Allied saying something along the lines of....

 

Dear Sirs,

 

I am in receipt of your pretty yellow card. I notice that this communication is time sensitive yet you choose to send it via an inferior 2nd class mailing system.

 

I would advise you that no Formal Demand has been received, therefore you are either misinformed or you yourself are misinforming me. Either way, I am sure you will be aware that this is a breach of OFT Guidelines.

 

I also fail to see the reason for your intimadatory card as payments are being maintained via Debt Management Plan, agreed with your client.

As mentioned above, Barclays Partner Finance agreed my initial DMP. When my circumstances changed they phoned me once a month to say my new minimum payment was unacceptable and they required £x more per month to agree to the DMP, and I always told them I couldn't afford it and they said ok, we'll talk again next month to check your circumstances. That said, they have never returned my payments and the statements they send me show the minimum payments being credited against the outstanding balance. As I have been sending these payments for over 2 years now can this be deemed as their acceptance of the DMP?

 

I will be passing your communication on to the OFT as it is my understanding they are keen to have examples of breaches of their guidelines.

Do I actually have the do this or is this just to put the wind up them? If I do, is there a template available please?

 

Yours faithfully,

 

etc, etc

 

AIC are purely DCAs. They refer to their client therefore no assignment has been made. :)

Excellent!

 

I would then suggest you get a request into Barclays for a copy of the CCA as soon as you can.

I have a copy but I won't be able to scan it in until Tuesday morning when I return to the office.

 

That way you will be part ways prepared for anything else.

And I've learnt very quickly what anything else is!! :rolleyes:

 

If you can afford it then I strongly suggest you also do a Subject Access Request.

I'm sure I can cadge a tenner off someone... ;-)

 

:)

 

Hopefully Astute will have no problems returning my correspondence and there'll be no need to CPR them - after all this is paperwork I have given them!

 

In respect of Astute, would this be a good time to end my DMP with them and take it over myself? I know 3 out of 4 creditors are happy with the payments as I have written confirmation from them.

 

I would need Astute to confirm where and how they send the payments to make sure all carried on without interuption. My only fear is that they'll try to charge me if I terminate the DMP agreement. I know, I should never have set up an agreement where I had to pay for services, but I was so stressed at the time it was great to just be able to forward to paperwork and have someone else deal with it. *blush*

 

Incidently, my accounts were all in good order prior to entering the DMP - I was not in any arrears - it was only after I set up the DMP (around March 07) that I would have actually defaulted.

 

Oh, by the way, adding this bit is the reason for editing - I checked my home phone and discovered that AIC tried to call me on 7 July and 8 July. I didn't even get their wretched card until 9 July! I ask you! I have logged the dates and times of the calls and the fact that they were unanswered. No calls will be answered in CM's house unless we recognise the number!!

Edited by Chipmeister
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I see no reason why you cant just ask your DMP for the original documents back ? You can offer to pay for postage.

 

If they are uncooperative then you may have to Subject Acces them.

 

I would be very worried if any of the letters you sent to them were either Formal Demands or Default notices as they are statutory documents and need to be taken seriously (or they did till we started to discover that most of them were improperly formatted):rolleyes:

 

Plus, if you are in a DMP, why is Barclays or any of their DCAs phoning you ? They should be contacting the people dealing with your finances ?

 

In respect of them accepting the payments made.. I would think any court would think it a pretty poor show if they are accepting these payments yet still took court action ! Where are they in the grand scheme of things on your Creditor list. Do you owe another creditor more than them ?

 

Even so, via your DMP they would know they arent alone and therefore their attempts to prioritise their debt above others is pretty shoddy IMHO.

 

What kind of contract do you have with Astute ? Is there anything that says that you cant go it alone. or that they will charge you a leaving fee if you want to pull out. TBH, if you are still getting hassle from creditors, then you might just as well get hassle and do it yourself for free:)

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Replies below in red!

 

I see no reason why you cant just ask your DMP for the original documents back ? You can offer to pay for postage.

I will phone them Monday, and also put my request in writing.

 

If they are uncooperative then you may have to Subject Acces them.

 

I would be very worried if any of the letters you sent to them were either Formal Demands or Default notices as they are statutory documents and need to be taken seriously (or they did till we started to discover that most of them were improperly formatted):rolleyes:

I very much doubt I'd have sent the DMP something as serious as a formal demand - I truly believe that I have never received such a document. I can't remember whether I received a default notice or not to be honest.

 

Plus, if you are in a DMP, why is Barclays or any of their DCAs phoning you ? They should be contacting the people dealing with your finances ?

I always thought that, I signed a letter of authority to be provided where required and the other 3 all dealt with the DMP people, no problems. I suspect AIC don't know about the DMP (Barclays probably wouldn't have told them) and furthermore, I suspect they wouldn't care.

In respect of them accepting the payments made.. I would think any court would think it a pretty poor show if they are accepting these payments yet still took court action ! Where are they in the grand scheme of things on your Creditor list. Do you owe another creditor more than them ?

Barclays are the second highest creditor in my DMP. The difference between what the highest creditor is owed and what Barclays are owed is almost half, and the payment made via the DMP reflects this.

 

Even so, via your DMP they would know they arent alone and therefore their attempts to prioritise their debt above others is pretty shoddy IMHO.

That is true. Hopefully a court would recognise that too, if it comes to that.

What kind of contract do you have with Astute ? Is there anything that says that you cant go it alone. or that they will charge you a leaving fee if you want to pull out. TBH, if you are still getting hassle from creditors, then you might just as well get hassle and do it yourself for free:)

I've just been looking at the contract - there are no termination fees involved. The contract also says that all documentation I send is held securely on file and on completion of the DMP I have the choice to get it all back, or else they will destroy it in accordance with the Data Protection Act. I may as well look at ending the DMP, as they probably wouldn't want to get involved with the likes of AIC either! :eek:

 

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Good morning, CM,

 

Yes, that sounds like a good plan of action.

 

Will the money you save by not paying Astute amount to much ? Will you be able to increase even slightly, payments to those creditors who have accepted the situation and the reduced payment plan.

 

You will need to get the payment details for each creditor in order to maintain the payments. You can pay either by standing order or online banking. Do not sign any Direct debits.

 

So you should find out when the last payment was made to each creditor.

 

Just me being nosey, but why did you go with a DMP that charges rather than say, Natinal Debtline or CCCS who dont ?

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Morning citizenB (or afternoon now!) Replies in red below:

 

Good morning, CM,

 

Yes, that sounds like a good plan of action.

 

Will the money you save by not paying Astute amount to much ? Will you be able to increase even slightly, payments to those creditors who have accepted the situation and the reduced payment plan.

Yes, it will make a difference. While the charge isn't huge I think I can add at least another fiver a month to each creditor, that includes Barclays.

 

You will need to get the payment details for each creditor in order to maintain the payments. You can pay either by standing order or online banking. Do not sign any Direct debits.

OK, I will see if Astute will provide that information. I would rather pay by online banking as that way, I'm in control and I know it's done, plus it appears instantly on my on-line statement so there can be no confusion as to when payments were made / sent.

 

So you should find out when the last payment was made to each creditor.

I'm sure that will be fine, although I fear initially I'll be dealing with a call centre :roll:

 

Just me being nosey, but why did you go with a DMP that charges rather than say, Natinal Debtline or CCCS who dont ?

Simply because I was not aware of these options 3 years ago. A creditor recommended Debt Solution Services and because of that I went with them, thinking that at least one creditor would approve the DMP, having recommended the firm. So wet behind the ears was I... always doing things the hard way but always learning as I go!!

 

Added bit: By the way, if I do cease the DMP and increase my payments presumably I would have to include Barclays or I could be accused of prefering my other creditors, even though they have agreed to the DMP?

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I would be inclined to write to all the creditors rather than phoning them.

 

I would simply say that in view of the charge the DMP make, you feel that would be best used to reduce your debt.. include an updated I&E. That at all times you will be taking advice from National Debtline.. BTW, they do have a budget sheet which gives some ideas of what you should be allowing for in your budget.

 

Do not identify your other creditors to each other.. just put creditor 1, 2, etc identifying as a credit card or loan, whatever.

 

I would say yes, include Barclays in the list.. I would also suggest sending your letters to the registered offices of each creditor unless the DMP give you a dedicated person to contact.

 

If you need any help drafting a letter, just yell.

 

:D I guess in the situation you were at the time, you probably made the best choice. As you say, 3 of your creditors agreed, so that had to be a plus.

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Advice & opinions given by citizenb are personal, are not endorsed by Consumer Action Group or Bank Action Group, and are offered informally, without prejudice & without liability. Your decisions and actions are your own, and should you be in any doubt, you are advised to seek the opinion of a qualified professional.

 

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Replies below. I had another question to ask but my mind is going.. I'm sure it'll come back to me..!

 

I would be inclined to write to all the creditors rather than phoning them.

 

I would simply say that in view of the charge the DMP make, you feel that would be best used to reduce your debt.. include an updated I&E. That at all times you will be taking advice from National Debtline.. BTW, they do have a budget sheet which gives some ideas of what you should be allowing for in your budget.

Oh, I see, I was simply going to speak to Astute and ask THEM to provide the information, purely because the creditors who have agreed the monthly sum they've received will continue to receive it in a timely manner, only from me rather than the DMP.

I have been working with CCCS who have provided me with budget info, I&E etc.

 

Do not identify your other creditors to each other.. just put creditor 1, 2, etc identifying as a credit card or loan, whatever.

OK!

I would say yes, include Barclays in the list.. I would also suggest sending your letters to the registered offices of each creditor unless the DMP give you a dedicated person to contact.

 

If you need any help drafting a letter, just yell.

 

:D I guess in the situation you were at the time, you probably made the best choice. As you say, 3 of your creditors agreed, so that had to be a plus.

Even Barclays agreed at the offset, it was only the reduced payments they've not been happy with, which I've been making for the last 2 years!

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sorry, my fault, we ended up talking cross wise. :rolleyes:

 

Yes, speak to the DMP bodies. Find out from them if they will include all the payment details along with your paperwork, the days that payments are made, bank details, etc.

 

If they are going to be shirty and just send you your paperwork back, then you may have to contact your creditors to let them know that you are going to be dealing with things from now on. TBH as far as B/shark are concerned if they get any shirtier you can just say that because they werent prepared to deal with the third party as per OFT guidelines then they can now deal with you for real. Meanwhile keep any communication between you in writing. They have already stupidly shown their hand via Allied.

 

Yes, you will see the date of default from your credit file.. usually in the form of a "D" :rolleyes: It is suggested that you pay £2.00 and make the request by post rather than share even more information with the CRAs with their online version.

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3: Banking Conduct of Business Regulations - The Hidden Rules

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Advice & opinions given by citizenb are personal, are not endorsed by Consumer Action Group or Bank Action Group, and are offered informally, without prejudice & without liability. Your decisions and actions are your own, and should you be in any doubt, you are advised to seek the opinion of a qualified professional.

 

PLEASE DO NOT ASK ME TO GIVE ADVICE BY PM - IF YOU PROVIDE A LINK TO YOUR THREAD THEN I WILL BE HAPPY TO OFFER ADVICE THERE:D

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Thanks citizenB. I am actually already registered with Credit Expert, so I thought I'd take a look at the car crash that is my credit report. :(

 

According to the report, my Barclays account (referenced as Clydesdale) has payments that are up to 6 months' late. There is no default showing on the account, like there is for my MBNA accounts, for example. (In respect of my MBNA accounts please visit my MBNA thread for an update on what I discovered about them in my credit report).

 

So, from this, can I assume that Clydesdale / Barclays have never issued a default notice???

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I would be inclined to keep it in. TBH, they wont read the SAR anyway.. the will just recognise it for what it is and send out the usual rubbish. It will then be for you to go through and see what is missing.

 

Can I suggest that you disguise your signature in some way (and take a photocopy of it).. CAG do offer a signguard option... link at the top of the page.

 

However, you can do a grid of

 

XXXXXX

XXXXXX

XXXXXX

 

Change the colour to a light/mid colour and sign over the top that way you signature is protected.

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BCOBS

 

2: Does your Bank play fair - You can force your Bank to play Fair with you

3: Banking Conduct of Business Regulations - The Hidden Rules

4: BCOBS and Unfair Treatment - Common Examples of Banks Behaving Badly

5: Fair Treatment for Credit Card Holders and Borrowers - COBS

 

Advice & opinions given by citizenb are personal, are not endorsed by Consumer Action Group or Bank Action Group, and are offered informally, without prejudice & without liability. Your decisions and actions are your own, and should you be in any doubt, you are advised to seek the opinion of a qualified professional.

 

PLEASE DO NOT ASK ME TO GIVE ADVICE BY PM - IF YOU PROVIDE A LINK TO YOUR THREAD THEN I WILL BE HAPPY TO OFFER ADVICE THERE:D

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I must admit, I've not signed any of my SARs or CPR requests - just put yours faithfully and my typed name underneath. I hope they won't refuse to process the requests because of this?

 

Some Banks are being obstructive in respect of providing SARs. The fact that they have probably persecuted the hell out of you for months/years, you have written to them regularly without providing a signature or using a digital signature when it comes to providing information in response to a legal request.. they go all security concious and demand a signature :rolleyes:

 

As for CPR requests, TBH, their solicitors use digital or stamp signatures and very often sign in the name of the firm. I fail to see why they shouldnt respond to yours where you either use a digital or capitalised signature.

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BCOBS

 

2: Does your Bank play fair - You can force your Bank to play Fair with you

3: Banking Conduct of Business Regulations - The Hidden Rules

4: BCOBS and Unfair Treatment - Common Examples of Banks Behaving Badly

5: Fair Treatment for Credit Card Holders and Borrowers - COBS

 

Advice & opinions given by citizenb are personal, are not endorsed by Consumer Action Group or Bank Action Group, and are offered informally, without prejudice & without liability. Your decisions and actions are your own, and should you be in any doubt, you are advised to seek the opinion of a qualified professional.

 

PLEASE DO NOT ASK ME TO GIVE ADVICE BY PM - IF YOU PROVIDE A LINK TO YOUR THREAD THEN I WILL BE HAPPY TO OFFER ADVICE THERE:D

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Morning all,

 

Please find attached the following for review and comment:

 

1) Original Loan Agreement

2) Letter from BPF stating Mercers will now be dealing with account

3) Arrears notice from 24 May 10

4) Little Yellow Card from AIC

 

Actions today for me include:

 

1) SAR to BPF

2) Letter to AIC as per citizenB's advice

3) Letter to OFT enclosing copy of LYC

 

Look forward to receiving any guidance in respect of the attached (incidently, my credit record does not show that the BPF has defaulted, only that payments are in arrears.)

BPF Loan Agreement.pdf

BPF tfr to Mercers 23Apr10.pdf

Arrears Notice 24May10.pdf

Little Yellow Card.pdf

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DMP folk were fab, confirmed while I was on the phone that I hadn't been silly enough to forward them any final demand or default notices, and I'll have all my paperwork by the end of the week.

 

Post Office weren't quite as accommodating, but reassured me that my recorded SAR to BPF might get there within a week via first class recorded.

 

I ask you! :rolleyes:

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