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Should i accept this from Lowell


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Hi All

 

Sorry to worry you but ignoring it may not be enough with this ****. I had the same issues with Lowlife and decided to ignore it until they stuck a default on my credit file. I have been trying for the last two years to get it removed and to get redress. In Jan 2014 they finally admitted it was not my debt. I expected they would do the decent thing and just remove the default. NOPE in June 2015 I received a CCJ for it from Bryants solicitors acting on behalf of lowlife.

 

My defence was obviously the letter from lowlife stating the debt was not mine. I heard nothing from them even though the case was apparently dropped. I involved the FOS and they have been next to useless. I am still fighting to get the default removed still to this day.

 

I have now advised the ICO and they have opened a case. The letters keep coming from other debt collectors still and the nightmare never ends.

 

The FOS stated the following.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

my findings

 

Lowell has confirmed that they accept that the account that they were contacting you about, is not yours.

 

As per my email dated 19 August 2015, Lowell has told me that they have taken the necessary actions to prevent further contact being made to you by telephone/ text.

 

Lowell has also confirmed that they have no debts that they are holding you responsible for.

After Lowell received a letter from our service dated 23 July 2015, they wrote to your directly – the letter was dated 29 July 2015.

Within their letter, they have said that the account that they had been contacting you about had been passed to ‘ Fredrickson International Ltd’ in March 2015. It would appear that it was this company who were pursuing a court claim.

 

Lowell contacted Frederickson International Ltd, who has confirmed that the court claim was discontinued on 17 June 2015.

 

You have told me that you have been in contact with the credit reference agencies for some time, in regards to clearing up your credit file. You have told me that you made the necessary actions to remove the information associated with another xxx xxxx.

Unfortunately there is no permanent way to prevent lenders or debt collection agencies tracing your details, in the place of someone with the same name. All you can do is contact any company that you receive letters from to advise them of the situation.

 

The credit reference agencies will be able to ensure that the information recorded on your credit file is accurate and may be able to offer you further advice in regards to what you can do.

 

I appreciate that being linked to someone with the same name and bring contacted about their debt is inconvenient. However, as Lowell has taken the necessary actions to prevent further contact regarding this debt, I do not feel that there is anything further that I can ask Lowell to do.

 

However, if when you check your credit file, there is anything relating to this debt (registered by Lowell) please let me know.

Lowell accepts that they may have caused you distress and inconvenience when contacting you. Therefore, in their final response letter dated 29 July 2015 – they have offered you £250 compensation.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

SO with this details I tried to get the default of my Credit file.

to which the response was

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I'm writing in relation to your recent query with:

 

*Lowell Portfolio I Ltd (Account Started 22/09/2008)

 

They have provided following details,

 

"Our Complaints team are investigating this account and are in communication with the Financial Ombudsman. The case summary was forwarded to to the, on the 12/08/15 and we are awaiting their response. Once an outcome is known, if an amendment is needed we will action this in due course."

 

They've confirmed that this information is accurate, so I'm afraid I can't make any changes to it.

 

I understand that this may not be the outcome you were hoping for. If you'd like to discuss their decision, you should contact them directly.

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Seriously.....:faint2:

 

I've only just broad brushed over your post, but from what you're saying is that the debt doesn't exist or rather it isn't yours, but the DJ has awarded you a CCJ anyway?

 

Come on......

If you this has been marked on your CRF and you've got a CCJ, then why the ruddy hell have you not taken them to the cleaners and demanded compo for defamation?

 

If you can post a link to your particular predicament then I'll be only too happy to help out, if I can. :thumb:

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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Hi Bazook Boo,

 

The CCJ court papers were sent to me (after lowlife had said 18 months earlier that it was not my debt) and after I submitted a defence including the letters they had sent me in Jan 14 they dropped the case. However, the default is still there.

 

I want to take them to the cleaners but don't know how, I have involved the Financial Ombudsman thinking they would do it for m but they have been less than useless and seem to be on there side. to the point where they seem to accept Lowlifes excuse that they had not ordered the CCJ but a company called Fredrisksons which turns out to be part of Lowell. Lowell offered be a measly £250. the FOS said to pay another £200. considering I have had to get a loan at a stupid rate and had my security clearance at my job was suspended because of the default I think £450 is extracting the urine

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Have you got a link to your thread SP?

 

If not start a new thread and post a link to it on here, then it won't hijack the OP's thread, and others will advise you how to proceed.

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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  • 2 months later...

I have been in dispute with Lowell for a long time now regarding a default on my CRA files

that is not mine and has been proven by the FOS not to be mine

 

I received the final decision (below) from the adjudicator but still feel that it is not enough

and really want Lowell to pay for what they have done.

 

£500 seems a small amount.

I just wished I was in US as a woman their sued one for $83 million and won for the same thing.

 

Should I accept it?

 

-------------------------------------------------------

 

final decision

complaint by:

complaint about: Lowell Financial Ltd

complaint reference:

date of decision: 15 November 2015

 

complaint

Mr C complains about court action by Lowell Financial Ltd for a debt that isn’t his.

 

background

Mr C’s address was first linked to a person of the same name in 2009.

This affected his credit file with several credit reference agencies.

 

 

Mr C believed the issue had been resolved in 2014 after he first complained to Lowell.

 

In April 2015 Mr C received court papers from Lowell relating to a different debt which doesn’t belong to him.

 

Mr C complained again and Lowell investigated.

Lowell accepted that a mistake had been made.

 

 

Lowell explained that it had put procedures in place in 2014

to stop Mr C being connected to their customer of the same name.

 

 

However, Lowell had passed this debt to one of its sister companies which wasn’t aware of the history.

 

The legal action was later discontinued and Lowell offered Mr C £250 compensation

for the distress and inconvenience he’d been caused.

But, Lowell said it couldn’t remove the link to its customer on Mr C’s credit file.

 

 

It said this could only be done by the business which had created the link in the first place.

 

Mr C wasn’t happy with the compensation offered by Lowell.

He has also continued to get texts from them.

 

Our adjudicator recommended that the complaint should be upheld.

As Lowell accepts Mr C isn’t connected to any of its accounts,

she said Lowell should remove the record from Mr C’s credit file.

 

 

She also recommended £450 compensation for the inconvenience and upset caused to Mr C.

Mr C was still unhappy with the compensation recommendation.

 

 

He says it doesn’t take into account the financial impact this has had on him.

Mr C says he has been forced to take a loan at an exaggerated rate

and he would like the cost to be taken into account.

 

He also says he hasn’t been able to get a mortgage and has been denied credit.

 

Finally he says he’s been denied the opportunity to earn a higher salary

because the default prevented him from getting security clearance.

 

my findings

I’ve considered all the available evidence and arguments to decide what’s fair and reasonable in the circumstances of this complaint.

 

I have taken into account the information sent to us by credit reference agencies

and by the business which first created the link.

 

The lender which created the link between Mr C and its former customer

with the same name has explained that its customer’s account defaulted in March 2010.

 

 

The lender then passed the debt to an outside debt collection agent.

This is when the mistaken link to Mr C’s address seems to have been made.

It’s not clear how this happened as the debt collector is no longer trading.

 

 

The lender thinks there might have been a ‘mis-trace’.

 

The lender says it then updated its records with Mr C’s address

before selling the account to Lowell in January 2013.

At this point it deleted its entry with credit reference agencies.

 

 

As Lowell is now the owner of the debt the default is registered by Lowell.

 

The credit reference agencies also say Lowell is the data controller for the account

and is responsible for sharing the information with them.

As the data belongs to Lowell, the agencies say they can’t independently remove or change the information.

 

One of the agencies has also told us that Mr C made contact in July 2014 to challenge the record.

The agency says it contacted Lowell but Lowell wouldn’t agree to delete the link.

 

Lowell said the information was correctly registered because the address details had come from the original lender.

The agency says it will remove the link if Lowell confirms the information is wrong.

 

It’s clear that Lowell wasn’t responsible for creating the link.

But, I’m satisfied that Lowell is now responsible for maintaining the entry on Mr C’s credit file,

which it knows to be wrong.

 

Lowell knew in January 2014

– when it dealt with Mr C’s first complaint - that Mr C wasn’t connected to its customer.

Therefore, when the credit reference agency contacted Lowell in July 2014,

it should have authorised correction of Mr C’s credit file.

Similarly, when it passed the debt to its sister company it should have known that the address was wrong.

 

I don’t agree that it’s Mr C’s responsibility to contact the credit reference agencies.

He’s already tried this unsuccessfully.

 

Lowell’s response is surprising and unhelpful, particularly as it’s accepted all along that Mr C

and its customer are unconnected.

 

For these reasons,

Lowell must now instruct all credit reference agencies to delete its account altogether from Mr C’s credit file.

 

Lowell must also pay Mr C compensation for the upset and inconvenience it’s caused him.

I consider an award of £500 to be fair in all the circumstances.

 

Mr C says Lowell’s mistake has caused him financial loss as well so he’s entitled to more compensation.

But, having taken everything he’s said and provided into account, I don’t agree.

 

I have noted that Mr C has taken a loan at 16% APR.

But he hasn’t shown that a similar type of loan was available at a lower rate from a different provider.

If Mr C had been denied cheaper credit

I would have expected to see searches on his credit file from those creditors.

But there are none

 

In fact, Mr C says his partner took out loans for home improvement

and furniture in her name because she had a better credit rating.

I accept this might have been inconvenient, but it isn’t evidence of financial loss.

 

Mr C also claims he wasn’t able to apply for a number of jobs

because his security clearance was suspended until Lowell removed the default.

He says the suspension was lifted when Lowell confirmed there’d been a mistake in February 2014.

 

Mr C has forwarded an email from a colleague threatening suspension of his security clearance.

This email was sent in March 2014.

Therefore it implies Mr C had security clearance until then.

Also, the email is not specific about the information Mr C needed to provide

to prevent his security clearance being lapsed or suspended.

 

In any event, I’d also have to consider that Mr C’s job applications might have been unsuccessful for other reasons.

Therefore, I can’t award compensation for loss of salary expectation.

 

my final decision

For the reasons given, my final decision is that I uphold Mr C’s complaint against Lowell Financial Ltd.

 

I direct Lowell to instruct all credit reference agencies to delete its account from Mr C’s credit file.

 

Lowell must also pay Mr C £500 compensation for distress and inconvenience caused.

 

Under the rules of the Financial Ombudsman Service,

I’m required to ask Mr C to accept or reject my decision before 15 January 2016.

 

Athena Pavlou

ombudsman

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I would accept... Its your money. If its gone to the Ombudsman, I dont think you can go legal with it.

But not fully 100% sure... I would just accept and get it over and done with :)... You got a ruling against a DCA :) Thats a good thing! ¬_¬

 

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Hi,

As it stands, the FOS ruling is up to you to accept or reject. If you accept, that is the end of the matter however if you reject it, you can take legal action in your own right and use the FOS decision as evidence. I have to say I am no legal expert so my knowledge is limited.

 

If you can get more proof of the financial loss then the courts may award more. It is a risk of course.

 

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Thanks.

 

there is no deterrent at all for these low lives to stop impacting peoples lives in such a way.

They simply do not care what damage they do.

The CRAs are just as bad.

The issues all started in 2009 when EGG linked my addresses to someone of the same name.

since then I have had many letters demanding money for debts that are not mine.

 

Lowell is the only one though that took it to a default and CCJ,

The rest just keep sending letters and ringing me.

 

 

The real problem now is not with my file (apart from the incorrect default)

it is with the other person or persons that I was linked to in 2009.

 

 

I have cleaned my files up but I am betting anything the others have not.

My old addresses and possibility my new ones are on THEIR files

and so when a DCA does a search they get mine and it all starts all over again.

 

 

I tried to get the CRA to do something but they just said only the owner of the files can change it.

Even though it is my address details they can see and that they know are incorrect.

 

running out of energy for it all now.

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Unfortunately, a lot of DCAs state that only the original creditor can alter or remove defaults. Where a DCA is collecting on behalf of the creditor, that is true however, when they have bought the debt (as in your case) the DCA can and must remove erroneous data.

 

Regarding the CRAs, you have notified them of this incorrect data. They know it is wrong so they should ensure that your file (s) are correct and place a marker to ensure that the data they hold is accurate.

 

I have done a little reading. There was a case where an individual accepted the FOS ruling then sued the trader, won but then lost on appeal.

 

To take court action, you must reject the FOS decision before beginning court action. You will need to quantify any loss

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I have noted that Mr C has taken a loan at 16% APR. But he hasn’t shown that a similar type

of loan was available at a lower rate from a different provider. If Mr C had been denied

cheaper credit I would have expected to see searches on his credit file from those creditors.

But there are none

 

 

If you could have provided proof or had there been searches on your file to show you had attempted to take out credit at a cheaper rate, then I doubt the FOS will change their minds.

 

IMHO, you should accept the award and keep an eye on your credit file to ensure that Lowell have removed all the adverse data.

 

You could reject and issue your own claim - however, you will still have to evidence that your employment and credit were damaged in order to obtain a higher award.

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I'd be inclined to accept the offer, though I understand completely that it doesn't really meet your expectation. However, I think that it would be unrealistic to expect a court to award more if FOS says that £500 is reasonable in the circumstances.

 

I do know something about security clearances, not least because I have one, and have been involved in assisting staff who needed to be cleared but who had financial difficulties. In my experience DBS NSV are usually quite helpful if they have all the information; I'd be surprised if they saw this as a problem if they had all the facts (except for DV, when they'd probably want to investigate further), and the individual rather than the employer/sponsor was dealing with them direct. What is clear is that FOS obviously don't know how security vetting works, in that once granted (at least up to and including SC), it's not usual for it to be reviewed until renewal, so it's normal for someone to have a valid clearance whilst a DCA is busy trashing their credit file; it only becomes an issue at renewal.

 

What makes me angry about cases like this is that for companies like Lowell, £500 is small change, and will do nothing to make them change their ways. Sloppy administration has long been one of the hallmarks of the debt industry, and FOS should be taking action to make them remedy their shortcomings.

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Thanks Scarlet.,

 

My SC was granted with a review date as at the time they granted it I was in the process of cleaning up the mess that EGG had created by linking other peoples addresses and accounts to my CRA files.

(and presume my genuine addresses to other peoples CRA files).

 

 

The MOD accepted that the details on my CRA was incorrect so granted me SC with a review date.

 

 

This is when my SC was suspended as I could not account for the default and could not supply details as it was not mine.

 

 

Only when Lowell admitted in writing in the Jan 14 was I able to supply this to MOD

and they then granted me the SC again.

 

 

In the time between suspension and it being granted again there were a number of internal roles

that I wanted to apply for but they needed VALID SC.

 

With regard to the loan.

I did not want to risk lowering my score any further so used websites that stated if you would be accepted

without leave markers on your files. The only one I could get was 16%.

 

I agree that the deterrent is just not there.

I thought that the authorities would have taken a view that even though Lowell knew

the details were incorrect they still refused to grant permission for the CRA to remove it

and hence breaching data protection. I know FOS don't really deal with DPA.

 

If I was in US I could have got $83 million dollars instead of an insulting £500.

the money is not really the issue. I just wanted Lowell to feel some of the pain I have.

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Thanks Scarlet.,

 

My SC was granted with a review date as at the time they granted it I was in the process of cleaning up the mess that EGG had created by linking other peoples addresses and accounts to my CRA files. (and presume my genuine addresses to other peoples CRA files). The MOD accepted that the details on my CRA was incorrect so granted me SC with a review date. This is when my SC was suspended as I could not account for the default and could not supply details as it was not mine. Only when Lowell admitted in writing in the Jan 14 was I able to supply this to MOD and they then granted me the SC again. In the time between suspension and it being granted again there were a number of internal roles that I wanted to apply for but they needed VALID SC.

 

With regard to the loan. I did not want to risk lowering my score any further so used websites that stated if you would be accepted without leave markers on your files. The only one I could get was 16%.

 

I agree that the deterrent is just not there. I thought that the authorities would have taken a view that even though Lowell knew the details were incorrect they still refused to grant permission for the CRA to remove it and hence breaching data protection. I know FOS don't really deal with DPA.

 

If I was in US I could have got $83 million dollars instead of an insulting £500. the money is not really the issue. I just wanted Lowell to feel some of the pain I have.

 

There is nothing stopping you accepting £500, subject to making clear that you will pursue Lowell and others who falsely reported information to CRA's under Data Protection Act. Then start the ball rolling in making complaints to Lowell and other companies involved. Then either get the ICO involved or issue court claims.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I have accepted the £500 from the FSA/Lowell. I have now opened a new complaint with Co-op seeing as they sold my address to Lowell without carrying out any basic checks to see if I was indeed the original debtor.

 

see where that takes me.

 

I also have to see if I can get the CRA;s to remove any links to my addresses from any other persons of the same name. That is going to be very difficult as I have spent the last 7 years trying to sort it out and I am still getting letters about debts that are not mine but the DCA quote the CRA as the source of their information.

 

Very tired of it all now.

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In my opinion CRAs should be held liable for erroneous data that they pass on the DCAs

 

Most CRAs use an algorithm to trace people that have 'gone away' and it is not up to scratch. If they only manage to get an 80% certainty that you are the debtor the DCA are after, they will still pass this on.

 

The CRAs will tell you that they have followed their clients instructions and as such the DCA is responsible. I disagree .

 

I suggest a formal complaint to each CRA that has the wrong info laying out where the data is wrong and demand they amend the data. They supplied it, they should amend it.

 

No doubt they will write back and state that you must contact the creditor of each disputed name however, as you are not the customer of the company, you will not be able to get them to do much without involving the ICO and the Ombudsman or the courts.

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there was a bit in the Daily Mail about this and what the CRA's do is sell the DCA a list of likely names with a score of the probability of them being the sought after person. Some DCA's dont read the provisios or just dont give a stuff.

I believe that the CRA's shouldnt be able to sell on a list as they know that it is always going to be the wrong person's details except at most 1 person so the information is going to be 99-100% wrong. That should ring a bell about accurcay with the ICO but I doubt if any change will come.

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The CRA's should be investigated by ICO as they are too powerful and unaccountable. Even social housing providers are now using them to check the credit score of existing, new and prospective tenants, so some unscrupulous Councils or Housing Associations may refuse a tenancy to a family in B & B due to a repossession, and defaulted credit card when a job was lost.

This article is three years old but the problems still exist

 

http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/cardsloans/article-2324451/Credit-spies-making-millions-watching-move.html

 

 

Might be worth following silverfox's line on the complaints.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I am starting to regret accepting the FOS decision. I sent the acceptance form back on the 14Jan and I still have not had any contact from Lowell about payment and even worse they are still refusing to let the CRA remove the default that they have already agreed is not mine.

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No, they found in your favour so if lowells dont remove the link

they have no defence when you take them to court for their continued damage to your credit file.

 

 

As for the part where the ombudsman is not convinced a different loan could be make

then just punch a few numbers into a comparison site and see what comes up as a guide.

 

 

If a loan for the same purpose is available at a lower interest rate than you one you have

then you have lost out so you can quantify this.

 

 

there are a couple of bits of case law that set the precedents here

so if you are up for it Lowells can really only argue about the amount of money rather than the principle.

 

 

Not shure how you call a company like them to account for a contemopt of court though,

I would presume the person who turns up on your day will have to sign off any court order

so will be personally responsible.

 

Send a LBA

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Would I be able to send a letter to Lowell stating that for everyday after the proposed cut off date by FOS that I will charge them £50 a day.

is that enforceable?

 

Thanks

 

No! Lowell will never agree to pay you £50 per day so the only way to get it is through the courts and that is a serious risk

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I still have not received the £500 payment

 

 

I sent Lowell an email stating that they are late in paying

and that I have added a late payment charge to them of £200 plus interest.

 

 

They replied by saying the below.

 

 

In that case can I take them to the small claims court as they have put in writing they will not pay.

 

As previously outlined,

you will receive no further monetary value from the Lowell Group of Companies

and any further contact in this respect will not receive a response, including any letters we may receive.

 

Any action you may instigate will be defended.

 

This is the last response you will receive.

 

I trust that this clarifies our position.

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