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the_thin_man

Mobiles.co.uk, Orange and the distance selling regulations

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Hi,

 

Would appreciate advice anyone can give on this issue.

 

I purchased an HTC desire from Mobiles.co.uk which arrived Monday 5th July. I straight away realised that I had made a mistake in ordering the phone as my housemate has the same handset and contract and has had loads of problems. Therefore I did not open the phone or the simcard and called mobiles.co.uk on Saturday 10th July, well within the 7 day returns period which ran until Wednesday 14th, stating my intention to return the phone under the distance selling regulations. They advised that I should return the phone within 48 working hours (by Tuesday 13th) and I duly posted it by Special Delivery on Monday afternoon. I emailed mobiles.co.uk asking them to confirm that they had received my return and that they had informed Orange of my decision to cancel - they emailed back advising that they had and that they had contacted Orange on 15th to advise of my contract cancellation.

 

On 15th July I also received my first bill from Orange, but assumed that this was because it had been sent before my cancellation was received by them, so I did not act on it.

 

On 23rd of July, imagine my surprise when £36.51 left my account! I contacted Orange and the advisor seemed to know little about what he was trying to tell me and eventually passed on a message from his supervisor that I would receive a credit note for the refund in 2nd months bill, which I should ring up and claim on receipt.

 

Imagine my surprise again when my 2nd bill arrived with a refund for only £24.49! I contacted Orange again, and the advisor this time told me that I would only receive a refund for the period after they had received notification of my cancellation.

 

I am under the firm impression that, if cancelling under the distance selling act, a full refund should be provided? Am I right in this belief?

 

I feel it is poor that Orange charged me in the first place to be honest, as they had notice of my cancellation a full 7 working days before the dd was due to be taken.

 

Apologies for the length of what I have written above, but I wanted to provide the full picture!

 

Thanks again for any advice.

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You are completely in the right. You have made life a lot easier for yourself too because you have their email confirmation. Don't lose it. Back it up. Print it out. on't suffer a disk failure and lose this evidence.

 

Cancel the direct debit with the bank and invoke the direct debit guarantee to get your money back. The bnk won't like it but insist and threaten them with complaints to FOS and TS if they cause any problems.

 

Write to Orange and send them a copy of the email and tell them that their problem is with mobiles.co.uk and that you want their help.

 

Contact Mobiles.co.uk by email ad let them know hat has happened and what steps you have taken. Tell Mobiles.co.uk that you have posted an account of what has happened on this sitge and send them a link. They won't be happy about that and they will take notice. They may even complain to us about the story. Make sure that you keep all of your evidence because if we get threats from Mobile.co.uk we will need a copy of your evidence in order to justify the publication of your story on the forum.

 

 

Be very careful to keep this under control. Keep records of everythng and confirm everything in writing. Don't just accept people's word on the phone.

 

A possible scenario is that someone decides that you are merely trying to avoid your debts, thery default you, put a negative entry on the credit register, pass the debt to debt collectors - a very common unstopable chain of events.

 

You need to try and interrupt this sequence as quickly as possible.

 

You shouldn't have to go to this trouble. It is very unfair - but there you are. These companies can wreck lives through their own mistakes and dinosaur procedures.


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Very well said BF. Just to add, as this is with Orange, you could also try following this advice taken from another thread:-

Hi SULLY79,

 

I work for Orange and would like to offer my assistance.

 

Please contact me via customer.services@orange.co.uk, including your contact number.

 

So the mail can be picked up quickly, please add 'Jonathan Orange Response' in the first line.

 

Hope this helps

 

Jonathan

Orange Response Team


If in doubt, contact a qualified insured legal professional (or my wife... she knows EVERYTHING)

 

Or send a cheque or postal order payable to Reclaim the Right Ltd.

to

923 Finchley Road London NW11 7PE

 

 

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Mobiles.co.uk are a company to be avoided as they lie to you. Funny enough I also had problems with orange becasue of the lies I was told by mobiles.co.uk. Avoid them at all costs. I was left with a £700 debt and a default because of these monkeys. It is a wonder that Trading Standards has not given them a fomal warning yet.

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You may find your dealer has actually done nothing, and the issues snowballed as a result. You are in an excellent position to resolve the problem, but it's going to take some effort.

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I would have no hesistation in thinking that the dealer mobiles.co.uk are at fault as they will deceive and lie to you to get your business.

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Thanks to all of you for your responses.

 

I thought the best course of action would be to email the contact Locutus provided and see if he could resolve the situation. I'll update here with the outcome of that.

 

In the meantime there are a few things that I could do with clarifying, and was hoping I could get further advice from the forum.

 

Firstly, I can’t work out whether it is mobiles.co.uk's fault or Orange's fault that this situation occurred. The replies above all seem to be coming from the viewpoint that it is mobiles.co.uk acting dishonestly, but they seem to have done everything I have asked of them, i.e. provided me with all the details I needed to return, replied to my emails promptly and with the info I requested, cancelled the contract with Orange, etc. It seems on face value that Orange have first of all failed to cancel my direct debit, and then only provided a refund under their 14 day cooling off period rather than the full refund under the DSRs.

 

However, I can see circumstances where mobiles.co.uk could have been at fault - for instance they didn't notify Orange of my intention to cancel until the day after the 7 day return period expired (although does this matter if I have cancelled within the period with mobiles.co.uk?), or they may not have told Orange I was cancelling under DSR. I can also see that if they work on a commission basis then this could be deliberate to make sure they get their agents fee, etc. Although, to reply to buzby's post, I do not think mobiles.co.uk are lying about advising Orange of my intention to cancel as they told me this happened on the 15th, and the 2nd Orange bill processed the refund from the 15th. Also, Orange would not have known about my intention to cancel were it not for mobiles.co.uk telling them.

 

It would be interesting to get your takes on all of the above? From other threads on CAG, it seems that mobiles.co.uk certainly are not whiter than white (although have they improved since the carphone warehouse takover?), but then there are plenty of threads describing Orange as having the worst customer services of the mobile service providers.

 

Secondly, I have been reading around the DSRs more today and there is a clause that says that for the provision of services, if the performance of the contract has begun with the consumer's consent before the end of the usual cancellation period and the supplier has provided the written confirmation and additional information before commencing performance of the services (including information that the cancellation rights will end as soon as performance of the contract begins), then the consumer will not have the right to cancel.

 

Does this apply in this case? I cannot find any advice on the web as to whether it applies to mobile phone contracts. The date of the contract start with Orange was 3rd July on my bill (despite the phone being delivered on the 5th!) so my contract certainly started before the cancellation period was passed, but also before I received any terms and conditions including the DSR right to cancel. The email confirmation of my order had some blurb on the bottom about the right to cancel in 7 days, but was certainly not a full explanation of the DSR right to cancel. When I did receive this with my phone, it was on the rear of my invoice which I had to return to mobiles.co.uk so no longer have (is this compliant with DSR?). Also, I did not charge the phone, put the SIM card in, or even snap the sim out of the plastic card it is held in, so I certainly did not 'activate' the contract my end, or provide my 'consent' by doing this, if that makes any difference?

Finally, I have not recieved any contract details or terms and conditions at any point from Orange, just the invoice from mobiles.co.uk with basic details of the contract I had signed up for. The terms and conditions I received were mobiles.co.uk's.

 

 

Distance selling regulations certainly get confusing when you are essentially signing up for a product AND a service at the same time! :confused:

 

 

Thanks again for any help.

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Guest Orange Response

Hi the_thin_man.

 

I work for Orange and would like to offer my assistance.

 

I understand that you have already emailed Jonathan but we have changed our process slightly and the email will not reach us without a unique code.

 

If you could resend the email for the attention of myself or Jonathan and include the code ORT1025 in the subject field, I will have a look at this for you.

 

Regards

 

Andy

Orange Response Team

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