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First Direct driving me insane!

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this is my first post so be gentle with me, please :)


I've been poking around the site for a while and have learned a lot (I'm the guest you keep saying hello to on some posts, but how you knew I was watching is beyond me) , but until now have been a bit embarrassed to post. I can't get to grips with this problem with First Direct and they're talking in circles is confusing me.


I had a credit card and current account and overdraft with FD I ran into problems with both (and a few others :oops:) last year when my husband and my mother were both taken ill suddenly. Without husbands income, we struggled, and with extra travel costs and reducing my hours to visit mum and look after the 2 of them, we got behind seriously.


Eventually, FD seemed to close the accounts but they didn't tell me. I only noticed something was up when I started getting debt collector letters that used a different account number. Eventually, FD told me they closed both accounts and added the balance together for 'ease of administration'. Their ease obviously, and they weren't concerned about the time I wasted trying to find letters explaining why the account numbers were changed.


Anyway, through reading on here, I knew they had to do certain things and I had some rights. So I made a CCA request to them. They sent stuff for the credit card, but said the current account wasn't covered by the legislation, so they didn't need to do it.


I read that the defaulters letters they send must also be correct, so I studied the one sent for the credit card, and found they didn't add on the postage time to the time allowed to fix the breech (is it 12 days?) So, the letter was dodgy, then the closed the account. I read that that was unlawful rescission. But what does that mean?


But what about the current account and overdraft? I've read a few things here that seem contradictory. I've read that overdrafts are not covered by any legislation, but elsewhere that they are covered by the same legislation as cards but with a few exceptions. What overdrafts are exceptions? If it isnt excepted, do they still need an agreement for a overdraft? Do they still have to supply a defaulters letter? There seems some confusion about this, and the bank definitely says they don't need an agreement, nor a defaulters letter. They also said that the letter they sent about the credit card was also correct and I owe all the money. So, I'm going round in circles. Please help if you can, I've done as much on my own as I can at the moment, and the constant phone calls and the letters everyday are getting me down. As soon as I know what the correct position is, I can deal with them and may be able to get them off my back.

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Hello and welcome


Lets deal with the Credit Card first, they cannot just amalgate the 2 accounts together, if they insist or the DCA of the moments says they are just one account under a completely different number, then unless you were given a new account document to sign with this new number, and agreed to the amalgamation then it is game over because you never signed and agreed to this new account and they would have no paperwork on which to arrange collection.


They are correct that only certain parts of the CCA cover the overdraft, so the best route foreward would be to look for and claim back all of their charges on that.


If you can post up, after removing identifyiers what they sent you, then we can have a look and advise further.


There are certain steps with regard to unlawfully terminating an Agreement, but will let us help there as I am not too sure on that.

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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Guest HeftyHippo

Hello Tina

I had an account with FD. They were a great bank to start with (if any bank can be called great) but in later years got more and more awkward and less communicative, and more like the others.


HSBC of which FD are a part, seem to have this thing about amalgamating account balances. They did it with me - they also forgot to inform me as well, and like you, only found out when I said the credit card balance they were claiming was wrong.


Now, my opinion of the situation is different from the one above. Adding the account balances together has been reported several times on here. In my opinion, if the accounts are closed, and the agreements ended, then can add the balances together, because once closed, the accounts are not regulated by the CCA, and as they are not adding interest or charges, there is no difference between the debt that used to be the credit card, and the debt that used to be the overdraft. 'Used' is a key term, because when the accounts are closed, they are not a credit account or overdraft any more in terms of the CCA, it is simply money owed.


So, if they have ended the accounts, it means they can't add interest or charges. They can't merge accounts that are open because credit cards and overdrafts have different rules about them under the CCA and the interest rates and charges are different.


In terms of what else they've done. They've sent a 'Default Notice' (is that what you mean by 'defaulters letter'?). The most common fault with these is not adding postage time. The CCA states you must be allowed 12 days in which to remedy the breach. That time does not include postage time. So if they don't allow for postage, then the DN isn't valid.


If they then go on to close the account, they have repudiated the agreement, or committed unlawful rescission as it is commonly know on here. What that means, simply, is that they themselves have broken the agreement with you. As a result of breaking that agreement, they are only entitled to the arrears at the time they break the agreement (when they close the account). All the rest, is gone and they are not entitled to it, though they will say they are. Make totally sure that the account is closed before you tell them that, as they can issue a correct DN, then close the account.


For the overdraft, yes, it IS covered by parts of the CCA. I am not sure what you mean by the account being exempted from the CCA. Could you explain?


I think the parts of the CCA that are different for an overdraft is that they don't have a written agreement like a loan or credit card, but they must supply a letter detailing the terms of the overdraft. I don't know what happens if the don't have that letter though, I assume its the same as not having an agreement for other debts.


As for a DN for an overdraft, yes, I believe they should supply one just the same as for a credit card, but overdrafts are usually repayable on demand so on that point I am not positive.

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Thanks for the replies.


Harrassed senior, what do you mean by "If you can post up, after removing identifyiers"?


HeftyHippo, what do you mean by DN?


sorry, the terminology is still a bit hard for me.


But you two are contradictory about merging the accounts. Who is right?


If I understand, because the defaulters letter was wrong with the dates, they made a mistake, and cannot claim the total balance, only what was in arrears at the time?


But what about the overdraft? They've supplied nothing for that,and say they don't have to. Do they have to do a defaulters letter like the credit card?

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iDENTIFIERS=(ooh caps lock sorry) er Identifiers = ANYTHING which could be used by them to Identify you on here, so all names addresses, bar code and especially reference numbers, you need to remove, cover or blank out.


DN= Default Notice, normally telling you that your account is in default and in order to rectify this, you must pay the arrears by DD/MM/YYY and give you a clear 14 days in which to rectify the account.


An overdraft and a credit card, come under completely different sections of the consumer credit act, so if they have put the two of them together making one lump sum and giving it a different account or reference number, then this will be unenforceable as you wouldn't be able to request a copy of the agreement under the consumer credit act (CCA)


Overdrafts, typically are not bound by the usual CCA, they have certain exemption from it, so typically a CCA request for an OD will go unanswered.

Who ever heard of someone getting a job at the Jobcentre? The unemployed are sent there as penance for their sins, not to help them find work!



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Tina, scan and post it up on here, this might take a while..:p

But use a program such as http://photobucket.com/ OR http://tinypic.com/


Ensure you remove ALL ID, you can use blurring tools on both of these sites to blur names addresses bar codes etc

Who ever heard of someone getting a job at the Jobcentre? The unemployed are sent there as penance for their sins, not to help them find work!



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Guest HeftyHippo

Tina, you might want to look at a similar thread about overdrafts here



In terms of who is right about adding account balances together, obviously I think I am right, and Bazooka thinks he is right. After the accounts are closed, they are not regulated by the CCA so a bank does not have to comply with any rules about them, and as no interest or charges are made to a closed account, there is no reason why they can't be added. Don't think of the account, because that locks you into thinking about the particular account number. The account number is a short hand way of referring to the rules and terms of each account. When the account is closed, the agreement you had with them is ended, hence they cannot add interest or charges (which are defined in the agreement). With no agreement covering your former OD and CC, both sums of money can be treated the same way. They close the original accounts and allocate a new number to the merged balance, as a way of keeping their accounts up to date and showing that the OD and CC are not active, and not regulated.


Obviously, because ODs and CCs are regulated by the CCA in different ways, and each account has different rules and interest rates, they cannot add them together whilst they are active. What they will do (did with me anyway) is offer me the chance to end the interest and charges by closing them and merging them. Luckily I declined their kind offer, and they subsequently went on to repudiate the CC agreement.


Your understanding is correct, if they closed the CC account without issuing a proper Default Notice, then they are only entitled to the arrears when they closed it, NOT the full balance, whatever they may say.

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Aha, so it was you HH that I was arguing with about this? I don't want to go back down that road, as it hurt my head last time so much, that even now I am still trying to get a definitive answer to that dilemma, anyhow, when you say 'closed' do you mean 'terminated'?


Hows the scanning coming of Tina?

Who ever heard of someone getting a job at the Jobcentre? The unemployed are sent there as penance for their sins, not to help them find work!



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