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Lowell/Hamptons Statutory demand *** Set a Side & Dismissed***

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Hi there,

 

I have been reading similar posts to this from people in a similar situation but wanted to ask advice please.

 

On the 5th November we returned home to a calling card left by a collector that had visited to discuss a lowells debt in my husbands name. My husband as supposed to ring him to ask what it was about but he never got around to it. Yesterday we had a letter in the post from the same collector stating that he had visited twice and he will be calling again next Monday to issue a statutory demand for a debt my husband has with lowell.

 

From experience we have had in the past with creditors we knew to request a copy of a credit agreement before we agree to any repayment etc so my husband called the collector to ask what the debt was for (we had thought all bad credit we had was sorted as we had sorted a lot of these things in 2006-2007 and have not really heard anything since). He told us the debt was with the Royal Bank of Scotland and was for the amount of £10,700. My husband told him he would be requesting a copy of the credit agreement but we had no reference number or address for the creditor. The guy told us the information would be on the SD and if we wait until that arrives we can request the information then.

 

We had a telephone call tonight from a woman from Hamptons who asked us to make a payment of the full amount and when we stated this was not possible she asked for a deposit of 35% of the full amount which obviously we could not do either. She then asked what we could get together and said she would phone us back. My husband at that point requested a copy of the original credit agreement which she eventually agreed to but asked us why we wanted it!!

 

She then proceeded to explain the full implications of bankruptcy which was the route they plan to pursue if the payment requested was not made and she would be phoning us back on Monday.

 

This really is the first correspondence we have had on this matter although the woman stated that they have been sending us 40 letters per year since 2007 when they bought the debt. My husband said he may have seen a couple of the usual type of letters these companies send but no way was there 40 per year!!

 

We did seek advice from CAB in 2006-2007 about our debts and it is possible we acknowledged this debt back then and paid the nominal £1 fee. I can't remember when we would have last paid anything though. From what I have read in other posts I see that we need to officially request a copy of the original credit agreement for £1 and a copy of other paperwork that costs £10 (can't remember the name).

 

Is there anything else we should be doing and can we avoid the bankruptcy route? If they can prove the debt is ours and we must pay will we have an opportunity to make a payment arrangement with them before they start bankruptcy proceedings? We have our own home (mortgaged) and my husband has his own building business (which is quite new so doesn't really earn us any money). We are quite worried at the prospect of loosing our home - can they do that with the debt being in his name only as our mortgage is in joint names. We also have children - can they make them homeless??

 

Thanks in advance for any help you can offer us on this.

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You need to know when the last payment was made for this debt. If Lowells have had it since 2007, the chances are that the last payment was before this. It is not unknown for Lowells to try for bankruptcy on statute barred debts. If it is statute barred, then you would set aside the SD on that basis.

 

Suggest that you send Hampton Legal a CCA request by recorded delivery and ask for details of the last payment made in regard to this RBS account.


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Hiya,

 

Thanks for that - we will do that ASAP.

 

Out of curiosity we decided to check equifax to see if there was any record of when any payment has been made to this company if ever - there is no record of it on the report. It is only a free report so could it be missing as it is not current? Is it relevant? Thanks

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Hiya,

 

Thanks for that - we will do that ASAP.

 

Out of curiosity we decided to check equifax to see if there was any record of when any payment has been made to this company if ever - there is no record of it on the report. It is only a free report so could it be missing as it is not current? Is it relevant? Thanks

No, not relevant. If the account defaulted more than 6 years ago then it will have dropped off your CRA file - even if you

were still paying it.

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Ah ok, thanks. :)

I have found a template for the CCA request now so have that ready for when we have the contact details. Is there anything else I can do to stop this SD being served on Monday or is there nothing I can do about it?

Thanks again :)

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You need to send that out today to Lowells.....then at least you can say that there was a dispute before the demand arrived.....it is also vital to know if indeed the debt is statute barred, be warned Lowells have been known to say that a 'mystery payment' has been made.


PLEASE NOTE - I am not a legal expert, what is stated is my own opinion and from what I have learnt from this forum and my own experiences.

 

DEBT COLLECTION LETTER/SAR/AGREEMENT TEMPLATES ARE HERE - http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/content.php?65-legislation

 

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Thanks 42man.

I would have liked to request this from them ASAP but we have got no contact details or reference numbers. The first we knew of this was when they sent us the letter warning us of the statutory demand. I am not saying it is not our debt as it is likely that it is but we have no reference numbers or address to send the request to as it was not on the letter. There was not even a reference number to lowell :(

My husband phoned the guy who is going to be issuing the SD on Monday and said he wanted to query what the debt was and the guy told him verbally that it was RBS. My husband asked for the details for us to request some more information but he just told him that it will all be on the letter on Monday.

We tried to look at our credit file to find the original debtors details but as it is more than 6 years old it wasn't on there.

I was also wondering about the whole process of setting this aside - I cannot 100% guarantee that we have not made any payments within the last 6 years - it may only be 5. Other than it being statute barred is it likely that we will have any other grounds to set aside? If we are refused, does the amount in full automatically become payable or will we have an option to enter into a payment plan to avoid them applying for bankruptcy? My husband has started his own business and has a business partner and although the business is quite new, they are starting to make a profit and they can't afford to lose it. We are getting very worried about this now. Thanks in advance for any replies

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If it is RBS, surely you have some details of what type of RBS account you had. If RBS were the only company that would have received payments, then contact RBS. They can probably tell you the last date of payment and send a copy of statements.

 

If you want to make a CCA request to Lowell, just send it to their address, with a note that the original creditor is RBS. I suspect that Lowell can find the debt details using the name and address details.

 

If you find that payments have been made within 6 years and you want to avoid bankruptcy, then you can just enter into a repayment arrangement based on current affordability. If you entered into payments, it does not mean you could not challenge the amount of the debt. e.g unfair charges, PPI .


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Hiya,

 

We don't have any record of the accounts as the only thing we can think of were a credit card and a loan that were applied for through another company name (Think it might have been over the internet or a magazine advert).

Husband is just saying now that he remembers them coming to the house. To me that suggests that he signed a credit agreement. Is it even worth us trying to have this set aside if it is likely that they have a credit agreement and it is possible that the debt has had payments made within the last 6 years?

We had so many debts back then that we made nominal £1 per month offers to them all but this tailed off after a while and we only really dealt with the ones that took us to court. A couple of catalogues went away after they couldn't produce a signed credit agreement. As the years have passed without any correspondence we have just binned all old paperwork (I know, not advisable).

I will take your advice though and get the CCA request sent to lowell in the meantime.

Thanks

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You could just wait for the statutory demand and then send the CCA rquest to Lowells. You have 18 days to set aside the SD and in most cases it is successful. I would suggest that you do this, as if you don't then at any time Lowells could issue a bankruptcy petition.

 

So no panic yet. Wait for the SD, request the CCA/ find out the last payment details and apply to set aside the SD within the 18 days allowed.


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Ok thanks.

We have sorted the CCA request tonight and are sending it to the Lowell Group address I found online. DH is going to the post office first thing to send it 1st class signed for. Hopefully they will have it on Monday then so by the time their 12 days are up we will still have 6 days remaining on the SD (which is being served on Monday) to file an application for setting it aside should the credit agreement not turn up.

If they do send a credit agreement in that time should we just agree with it and make an arrangement to pay or do you think we might still be able to apply to have it set aside? What is the best way to find out when the last payment was made on the account?

With the threat of bankruptcy hanging over our heads during a time we had felt our bad credit was behind us it is difficult not to panic. I have 4 children and I worry about losing our home :(

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Would it be worth sending a subject access request to Lowell at this stage? Just to help build up a bit of a portfolio to help us decide how to proceed as we have NO paperwork on this at all up to now.

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I would not trust Lowell with the last payment information. Ask them for details of the last payment, but I would suggest that you also find out from the original creditor (RBS) who should be able to provide a statement of account fairly quickly. I doubt Lowells have the CCA. You should apply for the set aside anyway, as there is no cost for doing so. As and when you need any help with the set aside form info, just post back. There are plenty of threads on here with details of what forms to use and what to write.

 

No panic yet. You can definitely avoid bankruptcy from this, but at some point you may need to enter into an affordable payment arrangement if Lowells come up with all the information that prove the debt is properly payable to them.


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Would it be worth sending a subject access request to Lowell at this stage? Just to help build up a bit of a portfolio to help us decide how to proceed as we have NO paperwork on this at all up to now.

 

An SAR to Lowells is a waste of time, as these companies don't often hold much information. An SAR is generally only useful to the original creditor to obtain all the statements, copy of original CCA, default notice etc.

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No panic yet. You can definitely avoid bankruptcy from this, but at some point you may need to enter into an affordable payment arrangement if Lowells come up with all the information that prove the debt is properly payable to them.

 

Thanks - so if I go for the set aside and it gets dismissed then they can't go straight to bankruptcy proceedings. We can say ok, fair enough please accept £x per month towards this debt?

 

Thanks ever so much for this, really appreciate all help x

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Should we send a SAR to RBS then do you think? Will my husbands name, address and date of birth be enough for them to access any account details do you think? If not, where might we find account details? Thanks again :)

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Thanks - so if I go for the set aside and it gets dismissed then they can't go straight to bankruptcy proceedings. We can say ok, fair enough please accept £x per month towards this debt?

 

Thanks ever so much for this, really appreciate all help x

 

Sometimes the debt companies don't bother to contest any set aside. If the SD is set aside, then the bankruptcy threat is then over for the time being. They could issue another SD at some point, but they should really apply for a CCJ using normal court processes, if they can't get payment for a debt that is legally payable.

 

With these things, you just have to deal with one thing at a time. Just make sure that once you have the SD, you make sure you get the set aside into the court within the 18 days required.


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Ok. So just to clarify then - I should wait until they have had their statutory time limit to produce the CCA and then send in the set aside forms as that will be the grounds? Or can I do it beforehand under other grounds?

Or should I stop my stressing until Monday and then ask for help from here on applying for a setting aside ? ;)

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Ok. So just to clarify then - I should wait until they have had their statutory time limit to produce the CCA and then send in the set aside forms as that will be the grounds? Or can I do it beforehand under other grounds?

Or should I stop my stressing until Monday and then ask for help from here on applying for a setting aside ? ;)

 

Yes wait to see if Lowells reply to the CCA request. I would give it say 14 days for Lowells to respond and in 14 days time get the set side submitted to the court. There is no need to do it now.


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Some great advice from Unclebulgaria.....I think if it was me then I would send a SAR to the original creditor too (as it seems the 40 calendar days to respond to a SAR may be within the time frame for a potential hearing too). bereft of any directions ordered by a judge you have to be seen to be making more than a reasonable effort to gain information. Although a SAR will cost £10, it could be £10 well spent, and if you want to be doubly efficient then a CCA request to the original creditor may be good too. Don't forget to sign the SAR, but put crosses through it. Send all by recorded delivery too. The SAR will need to go to the Data Protection Manager at RBS.


PLEASE NOTE - I am not a legal expert, what is stated is my own opinion and from what I have learnt from this forum and my own experiences.

 

DEBT COLLECTION LETTER/SAR/AGREEMENT TEMPLATES ARE HERE - http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/content.php?65-legislation

 

IF WE HAVE BEEN HELPFUL -PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE GIVE A DONATION TO HELP US TO CONTINUE HELPING YOU

 

I AM HAPPY TO RECEIVE PM's AND I WILL RESPOND IF I FEEL I CAN ASSIST BUT WHEN YOU DO CAN YOU PLEASE PROVIDE A LINK TO YOUR THREAD ON WHICH YOU WOULD LIKE ME TO COMMENT - THANK YOU

 

IMPORTANT - If you are sent a private message directing you for advice or support with your issues to another website,this is your choice.

Before you decide,consider the users here who have already offered help and support.

Private message facilities are offered for users to communicate issues that are/or could be seen to be inappropriate for posting on the main forum.Site rules explain this in more detail.

If you are approached by private message with a view to asking you to visit another website,please inform the site team via the report icon.

 

Forum rules - http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/forum-rules-please-read/9-forum-rules-please-read.html

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Great advice from all - thankyou so much. I will get onto that this weekend then 42man. Thanks again :)

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Thanks for that. We have just sorted the SAR and will send it out first class recorded tomorrow. We are starting to feel very nervous now that the SD is almost here :(

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Please do try not to be nervous. Use the time you have to understand that Lowells, who bought an old debt for penny/ies in the pound, are using Insolvency Law to scare and bully people into earning them a massive profit. If your debt isn't statute barred, it will most likely include unlawful penalty charges &/or PPI, and that is assuming the Credit Agreement is lawful and contains all the prescribed terms.

 

They have just chosen, while the OFT allows them to continue, to issue SDs instead of N1 Claim forms. In the numbers game that their seedy business is, this must be a more profitable route for them. It's a battle. Their bully boy scare tactics vs. you and the Law.

 

So time to read the similar threads and understand what will become your Witness Statement (court form 6.5). See them in court and claim your costs.

 

You've had the benefit of warning a SD will be served. The first most of us here became aware was when this thing arrived. Lowells have done worse - one of the Site Team on here, who is assisting us, had been made bankrupt by these leeches; he was completely unaware of anything beforehand.

 

Anyway, good luck, read, understand, go to court, claim your costs, and then complain to the OFT. I was in your shoes 3 weeks ago; my hearing is this Thursday and I reckon I'm fully prepared for it.

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Hiya all,

Just got home from work to find the SD has been served as promised. The date on it is 29th October!!!!!! We have got the original calling card that the guy left dated the 5th November and DH is currently tipping the house upside-down searching for the letter saying the SD would be served today (he lost it as soon as he read it but the bins have not been emptied since then so it is here SOMEWHERE). What should we do now?

Also the letterhead on this is Hamptons although I am aware that they are the same group as Lowell. It states that they bought the debt on 29/06/07 and they served a notice of assignment to us on the 10/07/07. We sent the SAR off to HBOS over the weekend so hoping they can track some information down for us as the whole HBOS and RBS is totally confusing to me.

Thanks for your message downsouth - very reassuring when I read it at work on my phone! Panicking again now the paperwork is here though!!!!

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DH has just told me that he has forgotten to sign the SAR when he took it to the post office this morning. Will that mean they will return it to us? That may mean we won't have the relevant info back in time though??

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