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Debt in UK. What happens now?


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Hello,

 

I was a student in the U.K. for a short period of time. I decided to leave right before the second semester started, and notified the University befor the semester started.

 

A couple of months after I left, I got an invoice stating that i owed them around £3000 in unpaid tuituon fees. I didn't agree with that, since I quit, and notified them by telephone. After this happened, I did not hear anything more. This was in the beginning of 2008. I live in Norway now, and have not lived in U.K. since january '08.

 

The other day, I got a letter from a British debt collection agency, threatening to take me to court if I don't pay within 14 days.

 

I understand that they can take legal action against me because of the Lugano(?) convention, but what will the course of action here be?

 

I also found an article from OFT on this forum, stating that they should not threaten me with legal proceedings when I live in another country. I can't post the link because of my post count, but you may find it.

 

What is the limit for when a claim is too old to be followed in the U.K. I think it's three years in Norway, but is it the Norwegian or the British rules that apply here?

 

I appreciate all help that I can get on this matter.

 

Best regards.

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The other day, I got a letter from a British debt collection agency, threatening to take me to court if I don't pay within 14 days.
They cannot take you to court in the UK because you are a non-resident here. They could try in Norway but the cost would be prohibitive for them in reality.
What is the limit for when a claim is too old to be followed in the U.K.
Six years (five in Scotland).
it's three years in Norway
If they tried to pursue in Norway it will soon be Statute Barred then.

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Thank you very much!

 

But how should I respond to this letter?

Should I just put it in a folder and forget about it, or should I contact them?

 

They obviously know that I'm in Norway, since they sent the letter to my adress here.

 

I know the fees for a court order in Norway (about £300 total), but can they add thousands of pounds in solicitor charges if they proceed to pursue the claim here?

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but can they add thousands of pounds in solicitor charges if they proceed to pursue the claim here?
Technically yes when they apply for costs if they win, but they have to win first.

 

Did you sign any agreement when you started the course?

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Vir prudens non contra ventum mingit

 

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17 Port & Maritime Regiment RCT

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Not that I remember, but it may be that it said something about payment when I signed up.

 

But they will have to present this in order to have a case at all?

 

And if it is like I think, that the claims are too old after three years, they will have to do that before january? What are the chances that they will take me to court in Norway before that?

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There are many factors a creditor or debt collector has to consider if they wish to pursue a claim in another country... not least the cost involved. They would need to be certain that they would be successful otherwise they would have to bear your costs too. Then they have to determine whether they would be paid if they did win, it's all very well going to the time and expense of bringing an action but at the end of the day if you have little or no income or assets they will have thrown good money after bad.

Anthrax alert at debt collectors caused by box of doughnuts

 

Make sure you do not post anything which identifies you. Although we can remove certain things from the site unless it's done in a timely manner everything you post will appear in Google cache & we do not have any control over that.

 

Vir prudens non contra ventum mingit

 

[sIGPIC][/sIGPIC]

17 Port & Maritime Regiment RCT

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Not that I remember, but it may be that it said something about payment when I signed up.
They would need documentary evidence of any agreement you entered wihich would include all the terms and conditions. You can ignore them for now or send them the following letter challenging them to prove a debt exists and they have the right to collect.

 

Date:

 

Dear Sir/Madam

 

You have contacted me/us regarding the account with the above reference number, which you claim is owed by myself/ourselves.

 

I/we would point out that I/we have no knowledge of any such debt being owed to (insert company name).

 

I am/we are familiar with the CPUTR 2008 and the Office of Fair Trading's Guidance on debt collection, which states that it unfair to send demands for payment to an individual when it is uncertain that they are the debtor in question.

 

I/we would also point out that the OFT say under the Guidance that it is unfair to pursue third parties for payment when they are not liable. AND in not ceasing collection activity whilst investigating a reasonably queried or disputed debt you are using deceptive/and or unfair methods.

 

Furthermore ignoring and/or disregarding claims that debts have been settled or are disputed and continuing to make unjustified demands for payment amounts to physical/psychological harassment.

 

I/we would ask that no further contact be made concerning the above account unless you can provide evidence as to my/our liability for the debt in question.

 

I/we await your written confirmation that this matter is now closed. Otherwise I will have no option but to make a complaint to Trading Standards and also inform the Office Of Fair Trading of your actions.

 

I/we look forward to your reply.

 

Yours faithfully Print name do not sign.

Anthrax alert at debt collectors caused by box of doughnuts

 

Make sure you do not post anything which identifies you. Although we can remove certain things from the site unless it's done in a timely manner everything you post will appear in Google cache & we do not have any control over that.

 

Vir prudens non contra ventum mingit

 

[sIGPIC][/sIGPIC]

17 Port & Maritime Regiment RCT

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Thank you very much. I will send them the letter and see what happens.

 

I have now read the law regarding when a claim is too old.

 

It states that as long as I have not acknowledged the debt it will be statute barred three years after the first invoice should have been paid.

 

What do you think the chances of them taking me to court here in Norway before March '11 (to be on the safe side) are?

 

I do have income (about £30.000/year), but do not own anything woth mentioning.

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What do you think the chances of them taking me to court here in Norway before March '11 (to be on the safe side) are?
I doubt very much that they will for that amount. They will have no idea of your circumstances so will be skating on very thin ice, particularly if there is no documentation.

Anthrax alert at debt collectors caused by box of doughnuts

 

Make sure you do not post anything which identifies you. Although we can remove certain things from the site unless it's done in a timely manner everything you post will appear in Google cache & we do not have any control over that.

 

Vir prudens non contra ventum mingit

 

[sIGPIC][/sIGPIC]

17 Port & Maritime Regiment RCT

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