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Link Financial (MBNA) - County Court Claim Form Received - Please help if you can?


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Can anyone please advise me on this?

 

I got a phone call today from Link Financial DCA to whom my husband is paying £1 per month towards a debt he had with MBNA.

 

We are heavily in debt and have 15 creditors (total debts of £52,000). The Citizens Advice Bureau have been helping us for 2 years. They sent an up to date financial statement to Link at their request on 9th Jan this year which still shows we can still only afford the token repayment of £1 per month, as we are paying all of the creditors.

 

The woman who phoned said first of all "oh I can speak to you" when I said my husband was not available (unusual because they normally quote the Data Protection Act! and refuse to speak to anyone other than the accountholder) :confused: and then said that Link have changed their policy and will now only accept a minimum payment of £5 per month from homeowners (which we are, with a mortgage).

 

I told her that we are not in a position to pay them more than £1. Yes we are homeowners but the mortgage along with gas, electric, water etc are our priority debts and if she looks at the financial statement she will see that after all priority debts are paid we only have £16 a month spare to pay between all the creditors!

 

I then asked her whether this was a requirement by law, or just "their in house policy" to hassle homeowners for the minimum of £5 per month!

 

She went very quiet and said she did not think it was a requirement by law, but it was now the new policy of Link Financial !

 

She then got a bit flustered and said "I am new to this" and that she had "had someone speaking to her in her earpiece" :eek:

 

She went quiet (listening to her earpiece no doubt :rolleyes: ) then followed up by saying "do you realise we can take out a charging order on your property if you don't agree a minimum of £5". I told her that we can only afford £1 a month not five pounds, and will continue to pay this regularly as we have been doing. I told her that all our creditors are getting £1 each as this is how the CAB have worked it out and if she looks at the financial statement in front of her she will see that and how it is all broken down (silly mare :mad: )

 

She went very quiet and did not seem to know what to say at this point. She said she would put it all in writing and I told her we would respond accordingly.

 

If they go for a charging order, can we have our say in court and prove the situation we are in??? Will it cost them to take us to court? Surely they are not so stupid that they can't see the genuine situation we are in and they can't get blood from a stone???

 

Do you think this is just scare tactics???

 

Spiritgirl x

Please note I am not legally qualified, I am offering advice based on my own personal experience in the hope that it may be of help to others in a similar situation.

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Be very careful with Link.

 

They will, if they can, get a charging order on your home. From their point of view it locks in the massive profit they make by buying the debt cheap and then chasing you for the whole nominal balance. They may have to wait a while to get their money but it makes sense for them.

 

The other thing to bear in mind is that they know the court system and they will use it to their best advantage. They have a very close relationship with Lambeth county court and if they get a judgement against you they will go for the charging order as soon as they possibly can.

 

I don't want to scare you but you need to be aware of the tactics that this odious company uses and be prepared to defend yourselves against them.

 

Now, thinking about how to respond, have you sent them the CCA letter asking for a copy of the original signed agreement. It's worth doing just to make sure that they have an agreement that they could actually enforce in court.

 

If they choose to issue proceedings against you, there are a couple of things that you should do. Firstly, make sure that you acknowledge the claim (this gives you an extra 14 days) and ask for it to be transferred to your local county court. This will at least get it out of the Lambeth court. If a copy of the signed agreement is provided following the CCA request and you accept that the claim is valid then you should admit it and complete the income and expenditure statement that came with the court pack. Be absolutely truthful and, in a covering note refer to the advice you have had from the CAB and enclose any documentation you have had from them. Your objective is to ask the court to set your payments under any judgement at a level you can afford. The court will protect you in this but you may have to go to a hearing to get it agreed.

 

If the court says that you can only afford £1 per month and you pay it, then Link can do nothing further. They cannot apply for a charging order unless you default on the court ordered payments.

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Hi seminole

 

Thank you so much for this valuable advice and for getting back to me so quickly :)

 

At least I now know what to expect from this agency.

 

I will certainly follow your advice.

 

Spiritgirl x

Please note I am not legally qualified, I am offering advice based on my own personal experience in the hope that it may be of help to others in a similar situation.

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HI Spiritgirl,

 

Just to re-itterate, do exactly as Seminole advises, and do it VERY quickly, Link WILL move very fast once they start the ball rolling, and they WILL go for a charging order..... DEFINATELY :-x

 

I know, I've been fighting now for 2 years to get these people off my back, they raised a debt from just over £2000 to well over £5000 in the time it took to get it through court, and they litterally railroaded it through Lambeth.

 

I can't state my suspicions about Lambeth CC and Link's cosy relationship in a public forum :-x , though amongst other things, it did seem a bit odd that the exact same judge dealt with every single one of the hearings, and refused all my applications and defences :rolleyes: You must be prepared to fight tooth and nail to get any action moved away from Lambeth straight away, as they do not like passing on jurisdiction, at least that way you'll stand a "fairer" chance of success.

Nil Illigitimus Carborundum

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  • 1 month later...

Thanks guys x

 

At the moment they are all (including Link) prepared to accept the £1 per month token offer after seeing our financial statement.

 

However I know they will keep on pushing, and we are going to see the CAB again soon for some advice.

 

My dad passed away in November and I am due to receive quite a substantial sum of money, enough to pay off our mortgage (which is what dad wanted me to do because we have an interest only one and would have to find a lump sum in 2013 which we just would not have - bad advice from a Financial Adviser, but that's another story) and we should have some left over so I will then need to get advice about making bigger offers to all these people, and possibly paying some of the smaller ones off altogether.

 

I don't suppose there is anyone here on site who has a good idea about how much is the minimum to offer these creditors which they will be likely to accept by way of "settlement" is there? I'm certainly not paying full amounts as they have all added interest. One in particular the debt has almost doubled because of the interest they carried on adding :o

 

One wrote to us recently and offered to accept 70% of the debt in final settlement (which we don't have right now of course) but I still think 70% is a bit steep to be honest, again especially with the interest added over the years.

 

If someone could point me towards some templates or advise me how to go about starting to offer settlement and what to offer by a percentage etc., I should be very grateful.

 

Bearing in mind there are 15 creditors, I don't want to offer too much to one and have the others jumping up and down if you know what I mean, so its going to be a delicate operation and I know I will need some help with it all.

 

Thanks again

Spiritgirl :D

Please note I am not legally qualified, I am offering advice based on my own personal experience in the hope that it may be of help to others in a similar situation.

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Thanks guys x

 

At the moment they are all (including Link) prepared to accept the £1 per month token offer after seeing our financial statement.

 

However I know they will keep on pushing, and we are going to see the CAB again soon for some advice.

 

My dad passed away in November and I am due to receive quite a substantial sum of money, enough to pay off our mortgage (which is what dad wanted me to do because we have an interest only one and would have to find a lump sum in 2013 which we just would not have - bad advice from a Financial Adviser, but that's another story) and we should have some left over so I will then need to get advice about making bigger offers to all these people, and possibly paying some of the smaller ones off altogether.

 

I don't suppose there is anyone here on site who has a good idea about how much is the minimum to offer these creditors which they will be likely to accept by way of "settlement" is there? I'm certainly not paying full amounts as they have all added interest. One in particular the debt has almost doubled because of the interest they carried on adding :o

 

One wrote to us recently and offered to accept 70% of the debt in final settlement (which we don't have right now of course) but I still think 70% is a bit steep to be honest, again especially with the interest added over the years.

 

If someone could point me towards some templates or advise me how to go about starting to offer settlement and what to offer by a percentage etc., I should be very grateful.

 

Bearing in mind there are 15 creditors, I don't want to offer too much to one and have the others jumping up and down if you know what I mean, so its going to be a delicate operation and I know I will need some help with it all.

 

Thanks again

Spiritgirl :D

 

I think it's time to be clever... CCA all of them, wait to see which one of them come back with Original Agreements. The one's with Original Agreements, offer them 40% and work your way up (if you have to) to no more than 60%. One's without original agreements, start your offer at 10% and go no higher than 15%.

I know some will say, well if no Agreement then technically no debt, that maybe so but, the debt still 'exists'...If you can pay them off (the one's without agreements) at 10 - 15% then the debt goes forever and youve saved a few quid into the bargain....That's just my humble opinion.

Just hate every DCA out there

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i would say no CCA tell them to go take a flying one of them!

 

but yes CCA the lot of them, this will help narrow down the people who can actually PROVE you owe money too.

 

Send them all recorded delivery, and do not hesitate to contact anyone for anymore information, i know with your current financial difficulties, you might want to skip paying recorded delivery, BUT DONT! its your proof (obtain proof of postage too which is free) that they recieved your request!

 

After 12 working days (from reciept of the CCA), if they still have not produced a CCA they are in default and cannot legally ask for money.

 

use the knowledge of people here, im relatively new to this forum but its amazing how much you learn!

Me Vs AA/Blair Oliver - Defaulted on CCA, Committed Criminal Offence, started chasing payment

 

Me Vs Great Universal - Wrote off the 2k balance, couldnt supply docs

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/debt-collectors-debt-collection/74209-me-littlewoods-catalogue.html

 

My Friend Vs Lowell Portfolio - Balance written off, all action stopped!

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/debt-collectors-debt-collection/75075-my-friend-lowell-victory.html

 

My Friend Vs Empire Catalogue - Balance Cleared

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/debt-collectors-debt-collection/75713-my-friend-empire-droyds.html

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If the court says that you can only afford £1 per month and you pay it, then Link can do nothing further. They cannot apply for a charging order unless you default on the court ordered payments.

 

it could be worth trying to transfer the hearing away from lambeth county court to your local one. you can do this by filling in an n244. you can do this if you wish to oppose the order or if you wish to have conditions attached to it (such as no order for sale if instalments are kept to)

 

obviously the above advice is only relevant if they do go for a charging order. let's hope they stay ok with the £1 :)

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Hi again friends

 

Thanks for all your valuable advice, I appreciate it so much x

 

I definitely want to CCA all of them, but feel I need to use the right wording, so can one of the Mods please let me know where to find the template for the letter???

 

I've spent a while searching the forums for the template but I'm sorry, I can't find it.

 

I think a CCA letter is bound to put the wind up some of them, especially the DCAs for MBNA and Goldfish as judging by their correspondence, their left hand doesn't seem to know what their right hand is doing.? :rolleyes:

 

Once again, sorry to such a pest and thanks in advance for your help.

 

Spiritgirl :)

Please note I am not legally qualified, I am offering advice based on my own personal experience in the hope that it may be of help to others in a similar situation.

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Hello spiritgirl,

 

A hearing for a charging order, or other enforcement hearing, should be automatically transfered to your home court. But you can still fill the form in to be on the safe side.

 

Definately send CCA's, especially MBNA/Link, as they only seem to be able to come up with application forms.

 

Good luck, Jeff.

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When you have the money - work out how much you owe and how much you can afford to spare on the debts and then work it out pro rata amongst your creditors - somewhere around 60% should clear them.

 

Do not let the creditors know that you are in a position to clear your mortgage.

 

And beware of any early redemption fees you may have on your mortgage.

Consumer Health Forums - where you can discuss any health or relationship matters.

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Thanks again friends x Knowing you're supporting me means a lot right now x

 

Just having a bit of a moan here to get it off my chest...

 

Must admit I'm a bit uptight at the moment :Cry: I've not been too well again with severe Depression and have got the Crisis Team coming in daily right now as it did all get a bit much a couple of weeks ago and I had some thoughts about throwing the towel in. Its all due to money worries and I'm sure once this financial mess is sorted out as best it can be, it will be like a weight lifted off my shoulders.

 

Thank goodness they have all accepted the £1 for the time being because I don't think I could cope right now with any more stress. The Crisis Team did say that if anyone gets stroppy they will write on my behalf and warn them off due to the state of my health right now, but I'm praying it doesn't come to that.

 

Gizmo thank you, I'll bear in mind what you say. I want the money in and out quickly (for paying off the mortgage) so it doesn't show up on any credit file as if we are loaded, because we won't be, and I certainly don't want creditors knowing about that lump sum and the fact we've paid off our mortgage until its done and dusted either. We did ask the CAB about whether it was the best thing to do (pay the mortgage off first) and they said yes, as its interest only and there is no way we could find that sort of capital repayment in 2013 :| Gizmo I already spoke to the Building Society and they gave me an estimated resettlement figure, there were no early redemption charges because (they said) we had had the mortgage with them so long.

 

I've opened an account with a building society to put the repayment monies in so the bank can't get their grubby paws on it either!

 

As for the remainder that dad left me in his Will bless his heart, it would only be enough pay off half the debts as they stand right now, but if we are canny about this, and can do the CCA and be tough with some of these DCAs, I think we may be lucky and get away with paying a lot lot less, and I am praying very hard, be in a position where we have got rid of most of it.

 

For instance, the one I have with Goldfish which began at £5,000 and is now (due to interest added) over £7,500 :shock: .... I reckon I am in a position to tell their DCA there is no way will I pay that figure since Goldfish insisted on adding extortionate interest on every month before they passed it to the DCA.

 

This same situation applies to most of them, and I do feel such disgust with them all about these added charges.

 

Does the same apply with those charges as with the bank??? We got all those charges back and I feel really proud that I managed that with all else I had going on back then, and the help of this site.

 

Joneshousehold thanks so much for the link to the CCA letter. I will keep posting on here and I'll let you know when I get started. Just waiting for the completion of the sale on dad's house now.

 

Spiritgirl x

Please note I am not legally qualified, I am offering advice based on my own personal experience in the hope that it may be of help to others in a similar situation.

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Good luck Spiritgirl, fingers crossed something good comes out of this. If you start feeling empowered it may even have a positive effect on your medical problems.

 

A word of advice though when posting, watch what you say. Don't put anything in that may identify you in case any DCA is reading this site. If you are in need of specific advice, send a private message to someone with the specifics. I don't want to worry you, it's just a pecaution really.

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Does the same apply with those charges as with the bank??? We got all those charges back and I feel really proud that I managed that with all else I had going on back then, and the help of this site.

 

Yes the process is the same with the charges for credit cards as with bank accounts. Well done on seeing it through when you had so much going on. I suggest you get all your CC paperwork together and see what you can claim there - this will help reduce your debt figure more.

Consumer Health Forums - where you can discuss any health or relationship matters.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hello again guys

 

Am totally confused now and really need your advice :confused:

 

I wrote to Link with a CCA letter and the £1 postal order.

 

Have had a letter back (they replied within 2 days) returning the postal order which states the following:-

 

"There is often considerable confusion as to the information our customers may request from us and the fees we may charge for providing that information."

 

They then go on to say :-

 

1. That Sections 77 and 78 of the CCA 1974 do not apply to my account because these sections only apply to "matters arising during the currency of agreements". Since my agreement has been terminated (for non payment) the agreement is no longer "current"

 

2. That under Section 7 of the DPA 1998, if I wish to receive a copy of data they hold about me I have to notify them in writing and include a cheque or p.o. in the sum of £5! and an s.a.e.

 

3. A copy of my agreement may be available from my "original lender". They (Link) are prepared to obtain a copy for me but this will involve administrative time on their part and may involve them paying fees so if I wish to obtain a copy of my agreement I have to notify them in writing and include a cheque or p.o. made payable to Link for £5! and an s.a.e.

 

4. If I wish to obtain a copy of my statements a fee of £5 per month will be charged to me!! I must write to them clearly stating whatever period I require statements for and they will contact me with the cost once they have verified that the information is available. I will then need to make a payment in advance of the statements being forwarded to me.

 

Meantime they are constantly harrassing me by phone, and leaving messages for me to phone back, which I am deliberately ignoring since I told them in the last call that I will only deal with them by letter :mad:

 

So what do I do next please friends???

 

Have not CCA'd the rest of the creditors yet as I've not been well again, but they are not hassling me whereas this lot are.

 

Spiritgirl ;)

Please note I am not legally qualified, I am offering advice based on my own personal experience in the hope that it may be of help to others in a similar situation.

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That Sections 77 and 78 of the CCA 1974 do not apply to my account because these sections only apply to "matters arising during the currency of agreements". Since my agreement has been terminated (for non payment) the agreement is no longer "current"

 

Oh dear... Link are getting to be a bit monotonous with this angle. The agreement is current until it is settled or barred by statute. This has been established by people here researching the subject and has been confirmed by the OFT. It seems to be just another piece of misinformation bandied about by these people.

 

If they are harassing you by phone, I would suggest getting their number/s barred. Also, why not inform TS and the OFT of Link's shinanigans. Both have an interest in Link Financial.

 

I think the ICO would like to hear of their lack of understanding (I thought I'd be polite) of the their duties under the DPA.

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Hello again guys

 

Am totally confused now and really need your advice :confused:

 

I wrote to Link with a CCA letter and the £1 postal order.

 

Have had a letter back (they replied within 2 days) returning the postal order which states the following:-

 

"There is often considerable confusion as to the information our customers may request from us and the fees we may charge for providing that information."

 

They then go on to say :-

 

1. That Sections 77 and 78 of the CCA 1974 do not apply to my account because these sections only apply to "matters arising during the currency of agreements". Since my agreement has been terminated (for non payment) the agreement is no longer "current"

 

2. That under Section 7 of the DPA 1998, if I wish to receive a copy of data they hold about me I have to notify them in writing and include a cheque or p.o. in the sum of £5! and an s.a.e.

 

3. A copy of my agreement may be available from my "original lender". They (Link) are prepared to obtain a copy for me but this will involve administrative time on their part and may involve them paying fees so if I wish to obtain a copy of my agreement I have to notify them in writing and include a cheque or p.o. made payable to Link for £5! and an s.a.e.

 

4. If I wish to obtain a copy of my statements a fee of £5 per month will be charged to me!! I must write to them clearly stating whatever period I require statements for and they will contact me with the cost once they have verified that the information is available. I will then need to make a payment in advance of the statements being forwarded to me.

 

Meantime they are constantly harrassing me by phone, and leaving messages for me to phone back, which I am deliberately ignoring since I told them in the last call that I will only deal with them by letter :mad:

 

So what do I do next please friends???

 

Have not CCA'd the rest of the creditors yet as I've not been well again, but they are not hassling me whereas this lot are.

 

Spiritgirl ;)

 

:D what a load of crap they spout...If 77-79 doesn't apply to your account because there's no agreement then you don't owe them a penny..If you do, then where's the proof? Christ, who have they got thinking up these sorts of letters? I hope they're not paying them too much for these template letters cos they is wasting their money!!! You should write to them and say that if there is no agreement then you can't prove I owe you a penny...THey do talk sh**... sheesh

Just hate every DCA out there

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After 12 working days (from reciept of the CCA), if they still have not produced a CCA they are in default and cannot legally ask for money.

 

 

Hi again guys, so does this now mean (in light of their letter back detailed above) that they now won't be able to take me to Court ?? .... or will they find a way round this?? :-|

Please note I am not legally qualified, I am offering advice based on my own personal experience in the hope that it may be of help to others in a similar situation.

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spiritgirl - IMHO you really do need to get a copy of your agreement(s) especially the MBNA one - the link to the template letter was posted above somewhere. As Kenny said, if after 12 days you haven't got it, then the debt becomes UNENFORCEABLE - it's still a debt - but it cannot be enforced. If after a further calendar month they still haven't supplied it, then they have committed a criminal offence. If the agrement never appears, only a court could make the debt enforceable- difficult if there's no agreement.

You must then complain to ICO, TS and Uncle Tom Cobbley & all.

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. If the agrement never appears, only a court could make the debt enforceable- difficult if there's no agreement.

 

Even if the OA appears then they'll still need to get a judge to rule that the payments restart..

Just hate every DCA out there

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Hiya friends

 

I'll send off all the CCAs as you've suggested, see who comes back with agreements, and take it one step at a time. I guess I'm trying to run before I can walk with all this.

 

Sometimes you feel so alone with debt problems though don't you, as if its only happening to you, and its very very scarey, I don't know where I would be without you guys right now (((thank you))).

 

Am still confused about Link though, because despite the fact they won't send me the agreement, they are saying in their reply to my CCA request that they could obtain one for me (if I pay £5) - but if this is just their bull**** then its no worry, however what if they then CAN actually get the original agreement themselves, they get it, and then they take me to court ?

 

Sorry to be so negative and to sound so thick but do I carry on paying them the token £1 to be on the safe side? Surely then if they tried to take me to court I can at least let the Judge see I've TRIED to get the CCA but they haven't come up with it, and despite that I have continued with my side of the bargain of paying what I can afford albeit the £1.

 

I need to calm down a little and take it one step at a time, as I know I'm getting too worked up about the whole situation. It doesn't help with not being well with Depression, I did feel again earlier like throwing the towel in because this financial mess is all too much for me now :(

 

Spiritgirl x

Please note I am not legally qualified, I am offering advice based on my own personal experience in the hope that it may be of help to others in a similar situation.

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Am still confused about Link though, because despite the fact they won't send me the agreement, they are saying in their reply to my CCA request that they could obtain one for me (if I pay £5) - but if this is just their bull**** then its no worry, however what if they then CAN actually get the original agreement themselves, they get it, and then they take me to court ?

 

The law states that the cost of an Agreement is £1, so ignore these attempts to confuse you.

 

Sorry to be so negative and to sound so thick but do I carry on paying them the token £1 to be on the safe side? Surely then if they tried to take me to court I can at least let the Judge see I've TRIED to get the CCA but they haven't come up with it, and despite that I have continued with my side of the bargain of paying what I can afford albeit the £1.

 

If they have defaulted by going past the 12 working days allowed for compliance with your request, you are within your rights to withhold any further payments. :) Non-compliance with a CCA request is a complete defence in any court claim that is issued against you.... so Link would be very stupid to proceed with this. As long as you have kept your proof that a request was made (rec. delivery receipt) you should be ok.... but you are right, a judge would look upon your regular payments favourably if they did try to do that.

I need to calm down a little and take it one step at a time, as I know I'm getting too worked up about the whole situation. It doesn't help with not being well with Depression, I did feel again earlier like throwing the towel in because this financial mess is all too much for me now :(

 

We have all been there... some of us are still there... and we will all try and help you, so please do not think that your situation is hopeless. The future is bright.... :)

 

Spiritgirl x

 

:)

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