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Low income, 6 year old debts and worrying about the possibility of future court action

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Hi all,

 

I have been trawling this site for a while hoping to find an answer to my issue,

but nothing with the exact specifics and was looking for some advice.

 

Over 6 years ago now, I was forced to leave my job (long story that is out of the scope of this query!),

meaning I was no longer able to afford the lifestyle that I had bought into.

 

Hence, credits cards, loan and car were the victims, and I unfortunately defaulted on all (5 debts in total, to the tune of approx. £20k).

The job market being the way it was, I found no further work, and decided to try and enhance my future by returning to education.

 

I informed all creditors that my income had vastly reduced to that of a student,

and hence came to the agreement that I could make token payments of £1 to each individual one, and that was that.

 

Since, I have not even attempted to apply for a single bit of credit, and lived with a basic bank account, which has served me well

- one thing I have certainly learnt how to do is not to live up to the limit of my means!!

 

since the defaults,

I have moved house twice, and have lost track of the debt collection agencies that were involved (I believe the debts were sold on),

although I have maintained the token payments as they were simply standing orders set to go out automatically.

Hence, I have no idea of any communication that may have been made.

 

This week, I checked my Equifax and Experian history out of interest to see if the old defaults had fallen off,

and all looks good, the last two due to go by March.

 

However, I have come to realise that despite this, the creditors may still decide to take enforcement action against me at any point, which is rather disconcerting;

 

I have just begun my PhD, which is due to last for another 4 years, hence a total of 10ish years on a poor income!!!

 

Of course, I have the full intention of settling this money when I finally graduate and get employment

(prospects look quite good for future salaries in my field), so don't want/need advice on how to dodge,

 

however, what I want is to break the hold of them being able to take action against me on their terms,

as this hanging over my head is a bit worrying.

 

What advice would you give?

 

I have thought of two things, but not sure of there true implications:

 

Cancel the token payments and hope that enough time passes for the limitations act to apply and then repay when I can? Or, make contact and offer lower full and final settlements (family may be able to help with lump sums)?

 

Any other thoughts?

 

Regards

AM

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Hello and welcome to CAG.

 

Firstly check your credit file and ensure that your current address and any previous addresses are on there.

 

Secondly can you name all of these creditors, the current amount or last known amount you owed, and exactly what these debts are, credit cards, loans etc.

 

Are your SO's still being paid out by your bank? If so who are the payments going to?


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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Also you may now Want to consider sending a CCA request to all of your creditors.

That would be a good start.

 

 

They only cost £1 each and worth every penny... click on the link for details...


If I have been of any help, please click on my star and leave a note to let me know, thank you.

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Thanks for the replies.

 

Hello and welcome to CAG.

 

Firstly check your credit file and ensure that your current address and any previous addresses are on there.

 

Secondly can you name all of these creditors, the current amount or last known amount you owed, and exactly what these debts are, credit cards, loans etc.

 

Are your SO's still being paid out by your bank? If so who are the payments going to?

 

My credit file shows all addresses as I have had either phone bills, or basic bank accounts linked to all, so that box is ticked.

 

I have dug out some old paperwork for the original defaults/arrangements, but the details between then and now are a little hazy as I have lost track of who owns what (perhaps some of the debts were sold on to other agencies since???!!):

 

Personal loan from First Direct - £7k

Credit card from First Direct - £2.7k

Credit card from Halifax - £3.5k

Credit card from Egg - £2.8k

Northridge Car finance (after handing car back voluntarily) - £5.6k

 

I'm not sure of the exact process flow of these debts, as aside from the original creditors, I have kept various letters from solicitors and debt collectors who were either acting on their behalf, or who had purchased the debt, however ultimately, my token standing order payments ended up with the following, and this has not been changed since:

 

Metropolitan Collection Services Ltd - both First Direct accounts

Robinson Way Ltd - Halifax

Direct Legal and Collections - Egg

Iqor - Northridge

 

Also you may now Wang to consider sending a CCA request to all of your creditors. That would be a good start. They only cost £2 each and worth every penny... click on the link for details...

 

I have read about the CCA thing, although from what I can gather, there seems to be conflicting information out there as to whether that would be a defence (most likely I have misunderstood!). From what I have seen, this would only be useful in the case of a pre- April 2007 agreement - I think this applies to only 2 of the creditors (Egg and the First Direct loan) - is there a way of finding out as I no longer have all that paperwork. . There also seems to be a suggestion that case law governs (???). Also, would the CCA thing come across as a little "passive-aggressive" so to speak? Would it get the backs up of the creditors and make them want to pursue me through the courts?

 

As a side note, I am a little baffled as to why no action has yet been taken by any of the creditors. These are quite substantial amounts, which I arranged to pay token payments for, which were supposed to be regularly reviewed, but nobody has really chased me for 6 years (I imagine that if they wanted, they could have found my current address easily from my credit file/electoral roll etc as I have not been trying to hide). Why would there have been such little done? I've read about people having court action for a few hundred pounds, let alone thousands!

 

Thanks in advance

AM

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There has been so little done because you're a good source of income for them, cash cowing as it's called.

 

They don't want to rock the boat because you're an easy stream of regular profit for them.

 

Pre 07 CCA's will require the 'original' agreement to enforce in court yes, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't send CCA requests to ALL the DCA's you're paying, they cost £1 not two, and you should send a blank postal order with your request, they have 12=2 days in which to send you a copy of the CCA, failing which, you can stop paying until they do.

 

Credit cards are likely to be loaded with charges, which can be reclaimed reducing the total owing, and if any of them have PPI on them, then that too should be reclaimed.

 

If you've not got the complete history of these accounts then send a SAR (£10) to each of the creditors for the information.

 

The car finance, how long into it did you VT the car?


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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I took the car out in Nov 2007, and defaulted in about April 2009 (approx.). At this point, I handed back the car, which was auctioned, and the sale price offset against what was owed. How does this affect things?

 

Would they take this cash cow attitude with someone like me who is only paying £1 a month as a token gesture?? I imagine the hassle, paperwork and admin would cost more than that! I like the idea of the CCA route though, what is the likelihood that they will still be able to produce those documents??

 

Based on the advice, my thought process is this:

 

Send out the CCA request to the last known companies dealing with the account, and if any write back stating that they have no longer any dealings with it, or cannot produce it, cancel the token payments and sleep easy at night until I am ready? If I am presented with the CCA, then what do you think is the likelihood of them accepting a very low F&F? I'm thinking that in light of the age of the debt (I assume a debt this old is not worth much to sell on?) and how little has been paid off, they will accept a low F & F as there is a very real risk to them that if they may not get much return if I continue to make such small payments, or worse, go bankrupt (this is just my understanding from a logical point of view, but maybe these companies don't think this way!).

 

Am I thinking this through properly?!

 

Thanks again

AM

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IMO, I would CCA all those you are currently paying, enclose a £1 postal order, leave it blank, http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?387435-CCA-Request-Consumer-Credit-Act-1974-**Updated-January-2015**

 

They have 12+2 days (working) in which to respond with the CCA, when they don't you can stop payments until such time that they do produce the agreement.

 

They should be sending you a statement of account annually, have you been receiving these at all?

 

As for offering a F&F settlement, this should be done carefully, as they will almost always take your money, then sell the remainder of the debt on to another fleecing DCA who will harass you for the rest.


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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I may have been sent those statements, but as I have moved twice, I have lost track completely of what has/has not been sent. With regards to the F&F, I was under the impression that as long as I received written documentation from the current DCA of the settlement being "Full and Final" as opposed to "Partial", then whether they sell the debt on or not is irrelevant as it will not be enforceable by any subsequent DCAs. Is this not correct? - I am not bothered about receiving letters asking for money if I know they can do little else!

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This is the rotten to the core financial industry we're talking about here.

 

They will say one thing and do the complete opposite.

 

I wouldn't worry about F&F offers just yet, leave that for a later date, start at the beginning first and see what they have.


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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Haha! Point taken!

 

I will get the CCA letters sent out and then progress from there. Thanks. A couple more questions, if you don't mind:

 

I have checked my credit report on Experian and Equifax and all is pretty much as expected there. Is it worth bothering with Call Credit?

 

With respect to the CCAs, I guess the car finance, being HP would come under section 79? (just checking to be sure!) When I defaulted on the loan and credit card payments from First Direct, they closed my current account also, which had an overdraft attached (which I was in). They then lumped the balance of my overdraft and credit card together under one. Which section would this apply to, as I have read that overdrafts don't have CCAs attached.

 

Thanks again

AM

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Hi,

 

Just wondering if anyone had an answer to the above post before I send my CCA requests?

 

Also, I have just come across this statement from doing some research on CCAs etc and wondered if it were true:

 

"There is and has never been a requirement to give a copy of the original signed agreement. CCA requests are to provide you with information of what agreement you signed not proof that you signed an agreement. Carey v HSBC is a key case which clarified what they need to provide."

 

Any responses would be much appreciated.

 

Thanks

AM

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You need to stop believing the rubbish off DCA's websites, of course they're going to attempt to mitigate and sew a seed of doubt in the debtors minds.

 

I doubt you need to check Call credit either, if the others have it on there, then that will be good enough.

 

HP come under s.79 correct yes.

 

The two separate accounts that where lumped together are the banks problem, they know that they can't do this as you quite rightly said, they fall under two completely separate parts of the CCA, with different T&C's, different interest rates, penalties etc etc etc.

 

However, either the ban or clueless DCA will have sent a reference number for this 'account' (which doesn't exist) so you should use that reference number to request the CCA, which they won't have, because there never was an agreement in the first place that combined an overdraft & credit card.

 

So until they separate both accounts, you won't pay a penny, and even then you will be reclaiming all of the late payment charges levied on the overdraft, and all of the charges levied on the credit card.

 

What that little paragraph doesn't & won't tell you is that ALL agreements pre 2007 MUST have a signature for them to enforce in court, and if they had a copy of the 'true signed' agreement, why wouldn't they send it when requested? Wouldn't be because they act like spoilt little children would it and are intent on frustrating the legal process?


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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The paragraph was actually not from a DCA site, but rather from another consumer type forum that came up in the search engine when I typed in "CCA" (I won't say which, but probably wouldn't be too hard to find out!!). I'm convinced there are some pro-DCA people roaming around on some of those sites! Thanks for clearing stuff up for me. I will now get onto the CCA request process and see what happens............ wish me luck!

 

I will post my progress as I go!

 

Thanks

AM

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might be an idea you start a thread for each debt in the named bank forum of the OC.

 

from the top left main forum tab...

 

two things...

first

the car finance...you say you handed the car back

I assume you got done over and they robbed you blind by accepting it as a voluntary surrender - which means you owe the lot

rather than voluntary Termination whereby yo only owe 50% .....and charged you repo fees too?

 

second ...

first direct are HSBC...of that era HSBC had a nasty tactic of merging stuff and calling it a managed loan or managed whatever.

 

they got a very big telling off I believe for doing that too 10'000 of people

merging a non regulated debt with a regulated debt and lumping them together under a regulated loan

 

I bet you've £1000's to reclaim

in unlawful fees , PPI, various useless insurance across all your debts.

 

sar time to each original creditor too

get all the statements.

 

as for paying anything off.

it wont improve your credit rating

and if the debts have already dropped off

they cant comeback up.

just be wary of sneaky CCJ's to previous addresses esp if the debts have been sold to a fleecing DCA

 

a CCJ will kill your future for another 6yrs

 

dx


please don't hit Quote...just type we know what we said earlier..

 

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That is a good idea, when I start getting responses through, I will create the appropriate threads...... I'm expecting this all to be a bit of a saga!

 

What I did wonder is, since I'm pretty sure none of them have me current address, am I required to state any previous addresses in my CCA requests, or just my current?

 

With regards to the VT of the car, I've looked over some old paperwork, and to be fair, it does look like they abided by the 50% rule.

 

Do you know what the outcome was with regards to the merged HSBC debts?

Does this put me into a better position?

 

I'm not so sure about the PPI charges as I was always too tight to take out anything other than the basic money, but to be honest, I can't remember, it being so long ago...

 

 

.... is there a way to find out whether I am due any PPI refunds?

 

I have read a bit about the SAR thing,

but am wondering what extra ammunition this would give me?

 

AM

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The merged HSBC debts are a no no, you just cannot do it, but they're hoping you won't realise that.

 

Amongst other things, they will have different %rates, T&C's and one might have PPI the other not,

it's a tried & tested trick by the corrupt financial industry, to basically flog off debts they know are riddled with reclaimable fees and charges, hence why they wrap them all up in one and flog them to the most docile of buyers.

 

A SAR will get you ALL of the information relating too that account and anything other that you specifically request from them, so this will tell you if you had PPI, and what charges they have levied on your account, it can also flag up any phone calls you made, or they made, the content of those calls and any correspondence between you and them.

 

As for the CCA request, if you were at a particular address when you took out the agreement, and you ask them to send it to your new address, then quite rightly they're going to ask questions, it is best to ensure that all of your addresses are showing on your CRF's so they have NO excuse for obtaining a CCJ by default.


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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Do this. Cancel all those standing orders now through telephone or online banking. Then wait for whoever is chasing you to send a letter. Then you CCA them.


Any advice i give is my own and is based solely on personal experience. If in any doubt about a situation , please contact a certified legal representative or debt counsellor..

 

 

If my advice helps you, click the star icon at the bottom of my post and feel free to say thanks

:D

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As for the CCA request, if you were at a particular address when you took out the agreement, and you ask them to send it to your new address, then quite rightly they're going to ask questions, it is best to ensure that all of your addresses are showing on your CRF's so they have NO excuse for obtaining a CCJ by default.

 

Ok, so as long as my current address is on my CFR, then I'm covered? Or do I explicitly have to write to them and tell them?

 

Do this. Cancel all those standing orders now through telephone or online banking. Then wait for whoever is chasing you to send a letter. Then you CCA them.

 

I understand what you're saying, my wife said the same, but would this not delay the inevitable? What would the advantage of this be over just CCAing them now?

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just CCA request each debt

and use your new address.

 

that will serve two purposes

it will put then on notice you are no longer a mug

and put them to strict proof to prove they have the necessary legal paperwork to be allowed to mug you.

 

second

it will give them all you new address in written format

then if they try the backdoor CCA you can get it set aside.

 

as for the car loan.

 

you have the VT paperwork or are just guessing at present?

so anything you had to pay is solely upto the 50% mark.

 

dx


please don't hit Quote...just type we know what we said earlier..

 

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Ok, so as long as my current address is on my CFR, then I'm covered? Or do I explicitly have to write to them and tell them?

 

I understand what you're saying, my wife said the same, but would this not delay the inevitable? What would the advantage of this be over just CCAing them now?

 

What inevitable.

 

If they cannot provide a compliant CCA, then they cant collect,

they cant do court,

they cant take any action to recover the debt.

 

If they can produce a complaint agreement, then you SAR the original creditor and get the full background on the debt and the reason its sold. 99% of debts are sold to DCA's because theres something wrong with them.

 

With your debts, the OC would have taken you to court themselves for the amounts that are there.

They didnt. Instead, they wrote it off against tax or insurance and then sold it on for pennies to a DCA.


Any advice i give is my own and is based solely on personal experience. If in any doubt about a situation , please contact a certified legal representative or debt counsellor..

 

 

If my advice helps you, click the star icon at the bottom of my post and feel free to say thanks

:D

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I have actually been wondering whether the debts have been sold at all,

and thinking that maybe they are still with the OCs and that the DCAs that I have been paying are just acting on their behalf.

 

None of the historical letters I have received explicitly say "we have bought the debt".

 

In fact, most of the wording seems to refer to the OC as "their client".

 

Is this just a smoke screen for "the debt is now ours"??!!

 

Having been doing some research, I would have thought that I would have received a notice of assignment if the debt had been sold on.

 

So unless this has been send out since I changed address, then perhaps none have been sold?????

 

AM

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who are the players please

list your debts

type of debt

who the OC was

who you pay


please don't hit Quote...just type we know what we said earlier..

 

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Debts as follows:

 

Personal loan from First Direct - £7k

Credit card from First Direct - £2.7k

Credit card from halifaxicon - £3.5k

Credit card from Eggicon - £2.8k

Northridge Car finance (after handing car back voluntarily) - £5.6k

 

I pay £1 token payments to the following:

 

Metropolitan Collection Services Ltd - both First Direct accounts

Robinson Way Ltd - Halifax

Direct Legal and Collections - Egg

Iqor - Northridge

 

Before settling on the token payments (over 6 years ago) I also received communication from various solicitors as well as the DCAs, not sure how significant this is?

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Yep. Most of them have been sold on


Any advice i give is my own and is based solely on personal experience. If in any doubt about a situation , please contact a certified legal representative or debt counsellor..

 

 

If my advice helps you, click the star icon at the bottom of my post and feel free to say thanks

:D

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all been sold on

CCA request to each DCA now

 

 

I beginning to smells a cash cow here me thinks


please don't hit Quote...just type we know what we said earlier..

 

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