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The First Anniversary


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5th April 2006


On this day OFT CEO John Singleton’s pronouncement that punitive credit card charges have always been unlawful fired the starting pistol for a popular movement. The early months were subdued. Those who had faith faced a sceptical audience -- how on earth could ordinary Joe and Jane beat super-rich banks? A forum posting captured the mood, “This small candle will splutter through the night keeping vigil for justice in the land. Justice for the poor, justice for the rich.”


ConsumerActionGroup working for free rallied the movement, aided by MoneySavingExpert, PenaltyCharges, Which Magazine, BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5, radio, broadsheets, tabloids, and many others. Twelve months later one small candle has lit roaring bonfires across the nation.


In January 2007 Declan Purcell, having obtained court judgement for refund of unlawful charges, found his noncompliant bank laughing in his face. Declan had the last laugh though, sending a team of bailiffs into RBS Camden Town branch to seize the bank’s goods for resale.



Are things better now?





Back in December we missed our monthly payment on the 23rd due to charges being taken from our Bank account (£1200 in 3 months - which we got back in full in Feb, without filing at court).


The payment to egg was less than £10.

Egg added charges of 2x £16 for unpaid D/D and £16 for a late charge.

The Bank charged us 2x £39.

So, for a payment of £9 odd we incurred charges of £126.





Banks laughing at the law


The shocking story above took place just 3 months ago, and the same continues to happen to others. Abbey Bank would not allow the account to go £9 overdrawn, instead they made it £78 overdrawn. Egg Card would not allow it to go £9 short, so they made it £48 short. Clearly banks and cards are laughing at the OFT, laughing at the law of England and Scotland.


While claimants are understandably euphoric when receiving 6 years refunds in one lump sum, reality is that Egg Card has merely lowered their punitive charges from £20 to £16 -- big deal. Lloyds TSB Card have lowered theirs from £20 to £12. Lloyds TSB Bank and many other banks have made no reduction whatsoever. Everybody can see that £126 charges levied to punish a £9 shortfall is insane and barbaric. Unfortunately since the Dunlop garage case in 1910 there has been no court verdict to define what level of charge would be illegal. Whereas Small Claims Court judgments will be noted by other judges they are not binding precedents. Meanwhile banks and cards shy away from the High Court like Dracula hiding from sunlight.



Unlawful is legal


Notwithstanding the OFT pronouncement, pending a High Court test case it remains legal for banks and cards to send out T&C inviting customer agreement to clauses like “If you pay us late or go overdrawn we can punish you with a £30 charge.” On the First Anniversary today, the onus still falls on victims to jump through legal hoops for months on end before retrieving their own money misappropriated in seconds.



5th April 2007


Punitive charges reclaimed in one year to date total less than 1% of the £27 billion unlawfully misappropriated at the rate of £4.5 billion per annum over 6 years. The Second Anniversay will see a big jump as a growing army of victims rise up nationwide. As well as information sharing CAG has offered members camaraderie and good cheer, for which thanks. The CAG’s founders deserve an M.B.E. each !



From John O’Groats to Lands End,

From Dover to Donegal,

Happy Anniversary to all !







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  • 1 year later...

5th April 2008.


Yes it is now two years to the day since the unlawful charges reclaim movement was kickstarted by the OFT pronouncement. Two years ago hardly anybody believed it was possible to confront the mighty banks, yet £20 million have now been reported as reclaimed on CAG, and probably £500 million in all nationwide.


The Second Anniversary is marked with some spring flowers from Sherwood Forest, home of an earlier unlawful charges reclaimant - Robin Hood.





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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi mm


I enjoyed your thread but here's hoping there won't be any more posts (ie it will all be over by 5/4/09 (doubt it though :()



Using CAG Toolbar will generate much needed income - Download Here


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My Wins

 GE Money Won unconditionally May 2007

NatWest Won unconditionally August 2007

Brighthouse Won unconditionally August 2007

Goldfish Won unconditionally April 2008 (including CI on the basis of Sempra)

Clydesdale Financial Services (now BPF) Won unconditionally February 2008


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