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    • I suggest you start reading around this forum about the steps involved in taking a small claim in the County Court. It's very straightforward but you should understand the steps before embarking on it so that you are confident. We will help you all the way. Once you have done this basic reading then come back here and we can begin the process if you are happy to go ahead. On the basis of what you say, I expect that your chances are better than 90%. I also expect that West Cheshire Facilities Management will want to put their hands up before it goes to court and get a judgement against them. We would want to see your letter of claim before it sent off but I suggest that it is made clear that Social Security's have already been informed and that when you get a judgement against West Cheshire Facilities Management, you will make sure that social services and the health service generally are all circulated with copies of the judgement. If West Cheshire Facilities Management really want to take that risk with all of the reputational and business risk that accompanies it, then they are being extremely shortsighted.
    • So who cleaned it and are they prepared to give a report of the state of the place as they found it?
    • Yes, it has been cleaned now - it had to be, he came out of hospital at the end of December, and Friend has secured the services of a local cleaning company to come in once a week.  
    • Following the issue of a Liability Order the Council must obtain a warrant of control to try to collect the debt. If they fail their only option is to return the matter to court and you will be asked to attend.   At that hearing the court must be satisfied that:   • A liability order was imposed in relation to the debt. • You have failed to pay; and • The council tried to collect the sum using a warrant of control, and failed.   They must then go on to conduct a "means enquiry" into your financial circumstances. The principle aim of that is firstly to establish whether you had demonstrated either a wilful refusal to pay (i.e. you had sufficient funds but simply refused to pay) or "culpable neglect" (i.e. you had the funds but chose to spend them on something else). Only if they find one of those two can commitment to prison (either immediate or postponed) be considered. Also, only if they find one of those two can they order payments to meet the debt. The usual combination is an order to make payments coupled with a postponed commitment. But, the payment rate must be realistic in terms of your financial circumstances and it should normally mean that the debt is paid within three years. If a realistic payment rate will not see the debt paid in that period then the court should consider remitting (i.e. writing off) some or all of the debt. Similarly, if they find neither wilful refusal to pay nor culpable neglect (and by default find that you simply did not have the ability to pay) they should also consider remitting some or all of the debt.   You should note that at these commitment proceedings, as the matters you face could result in custody, you are entitled to have the services of the duty solicitor. In your circumstances I would say the chances of you being committed to prison are slightly less than zero. From your very brief description of your finances you simply have no spare money (though a means enquiry will delve more deeply into your affairs, especially the debts for which the DWP are making deductions from your benefits). There is no point in delaying any of this. The sooner it gets sorted the better as your circumstances seem unlikely to change any time soon. One thing you must bear in mind is that these proceedings will only deal with the debt covered by the Liability Order. If you have any Council Tax arrears that have accrued since then they will have to be dealt with separately. I'm also assuming you live in England. Since April 2019 commitment to prison has not been an option in Wales.    
    • good issued the default after you turned 50 when any payment is not longer required on the loans and they should be written off.   it's fast becoming clear that they solely refused your SLC forms as a mode of deferring to create this whole falsehood.   the case your refer to about the new forms is detailed in this form in many SLC erudio threads.   if you could go get a USB converter lead to make your old HDD drives readable from amazon or somewhere , cheap as chips and <£5.
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    • I sent in the bailiffs to the BBC. They collected £350. It made me smile.
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    • Hi @BankFodder
      Sorry for only updating you now, but after your guidance with submitting the claim it was pretty straight forward and I didn't want to unnecessarily waste your time. Especially with this guide you wrote here, so many thanks for that
      So I issued the claim on day 15 and they requested more time to respond.
      They took until the last day to respond and denied the claim, unsurprisingly saying my contract was with Packlink and not with them.
       
      I opted for mediation, and it played out very similarly to other people's experiences.
       
      In the first call I outlined my case, and I referred to the Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999 as the reason to why I do in fact have a contract with them. 
       
      In the second call the mediator came back with an offer of the full amount of the phone and postage £146.93, but not the court costs. I said I was not willing to accept this and the mediator came across as a bit irritated that I would not accept this and said I should be flexible. I insisted that the law was on my side and I was willing to take them to court. The mediator went back to Hermes with what I said.
       
      In the third call the mediator said that they would offer the full amount. However, he said that Hermes still thought that I should have taken the case against Packlink instead, and that they would try to recover the court costs themselves from Packlink.
       
      To be fair to them, if Packlink wasn't based in Spain I would've made the claim against them instead. But since they are overseas and the law lets me take action against Hermes directly, it's the best way of trying to recover the money.
       
      So this is a great win. Thank you so much for your help and all of the resources available on this site. It has helped me so much especially as someone who does not know anything about making money claims.
       
      Many thanks, stay safe and have a good Christmas!
       
       
        • Thanks
    • Hermes and mediation hints. https://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/topic/428981-hermes-and-mediation-hints/&do=findComment&comment=5080003
      • 1 reply
    • Natwest Bank Transfer Fraud Call HMRC Please help. https://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/topic/428951-natwest-bank-transfer-fraud-call-hmrc-please-help/&do=findComment&comment=5079786
      • 33 replies

My very own, very specific, RBOS thread... SETTLED


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My sad story:

 

I opened an account with RBOS when I was a very young (for a free money box I think!) and I haven't used this account at all since I was about 15, (switching to HBOS with whom I've had no problems) but have never gotten around to closing it as I'm away from home at university and just use my other student account. So it was sitting there with 80pence in it, getting about a penny interest a year, and then last month I received a statement saying that I have gone over my overdraft limit and am now being charged a 'Maintenance Charge' of £28.00 a month. This is without me using my account for seven years!

 

Then I discover that the RBS have upgraded my account without my permission to a 'Royalties' one with a subscription of £6.00, something I never signed up for. Since my account did not have sufficient funds to pay for this subscription they are levying me with these monthly charges. I've been to my bank to complain but they're refusing to give me a refund and are insisting that I pay the penalties.

 

I've just written a letter to the head office, and I really hope it gets resolved. I'm a student at Glasgow Uni, and the SRC there seem to be getting pretty involved in dealing with unlawful bank charges for students so I'll see if they can advise me if RBOS make things difficult. I'd appreciate any feedback on whether you guys think this is a legitimate claim on my part. Thanks!

 

p.s. sorry for my previous hijacking by the way, this is a great site, very useful!

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I'm racking my brains now but as you opened your account when you were a minor, you must normally ratify the contract when you reach majority. The only question in my mind is whether this applies to bank accounts? I can't imagine why not but then I am not very uptodate on this area of law. Looks like we need to add a book on contract law to our wish list.

 

Do you have the T&Cs which you agreed to when the account was opened? Importantly did you use the account at all - even once after you attained your majority? If you did then this would probably be seen as adopting or ratifying the contract by your behaviour.

 

You also need to find out from the bank on what basis they took it upon themselves to change your account - especially when it was clearly unused.

 

It looks valid from the point of view that you are dealing with penalty charges. But it also has amusing spin offs if the contract wasn't ratified and also the fact that they changed the contract without your agreeement.

 

Time for some sport.

 

Don't bother about the letter you sent to the bank. Unless you are very lucky it will produce no result.

 

Serve a DPA request from the library but modified to ask for ALL data, notes etc relating to your account business since XXXDATE you opened itXXX including the contract, and also including the new contract which they opened for you unilaterally.

have they defaulted you?

You don't say how much is at stake? The small claim limit is Scotland is £750

Get this info and come back here. Keep on following the forum and learn about what you are doing.

 

What is your subject?

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Then I discover that the RBS have upgraded my account without my permission to a 'Royalties' one with a subscription of £6.00, something I never signed up for.

Surely no one can alter the terms of a contract unilaterally (particularly not one imposing on one of the parties a heavier financial obligation)?

 

Might they have given you notice which you may not have responded to, thus - perhaps - entitling them to argue some form of acquiescence to the change? (Although I'd still find such a unilateral alteration of terms hard to swallow.)

 

Yup - sounds like a new contract book may be on the cards, BankFodder!

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I'm pretty positive I don't have the T&Cs as it was so long ago and I tend to just keep the statements and throw out all the rest of the bumpf banks send out! Plus I was very young and too busy admiring my shiny new money box. I definitely haven't used my account since I was at least fifteen, I don't even know where my card is, never mind what my pin number is.

 

My local branch told me yesterday that they updated my account because I was now too old for their 'Route 21' account so they automatically put me onto 'Royalties'. I remember getting the leaflet a while ago and glancing at all the fabulous deals and offers that came with this account, but since I wasn't using it I just put it in a drawer and thought that I should get around to closing it some day. I never signed anything, never spoke to anyone or had any dealings whatsoever with RBOS but they still seem to think that it's perfectly acceptable to put me from a young person's free account to an account with a £6.00 monthly fee without asking whether this is ok!

 

I turned 22 last July and this apparently is when I was upgraded. The first few months are free, my local branch told me, so that's why it is only now that I have been hit with these charges. They have previously upgraded my account in the past from 'Route 15' to 'Route 17' and then 'Route 21': all free accounts for young people. This is why when I received the leaflet about the Royalties account, I thought nothing of it.

 

Ariel - I'm pretty sure they didn't give me any notice, I read through all the letters I'm sent, but I certainly could have missed something. If this is the case could they argue that I could have cancelled the account during the few months of grace before the subscription applied? I just don't understand why a bank is able switch my account from a free one to one with a standing fee without my express permission.

 

My current 'Service Charge' is £34.00, although it will go up to £62.00 on 7 March, as the 'Maintenance Charge' of £28.00 is a monthly one. I know it's not a huge amount of money, but I really feel that I've been unfairly treated here.

 

I'm not sure if they've defaulted me, would they let me know? I guess I'll wait the two weeks I allowed them to respond in my letter (sent to the nameless 'Customer Service Manager' and my bank manager by registered post today) and then serve a DPA request.

 

Thanks for your advice!

 

p.s. I'm an English Literature student, avoiding imminent essay deadlines by writing strongly worded letters to banks and posting endless complaints on websites! If only there were sonnets on contractual law...

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Don't wait the two weeks. Send the DPA letter now. There is a 40 day deadline - too long in my opinon. You may as well get the clock ticking now.

 

Don't hang around. Set the pace. It won't matter that ther is a DPA request in as well. It might even concentrate their minds a little.

 

Have you closed the account?

 

Do so. There must be no evidence that you might have accepted the account. You should close it on the basis that you have just become aware of it and that you are acting with alacrity.

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But can I close the account without paying the charges they've levied against me? You see I literally had just £0.88 in my account meaning that because of these charges I'm now -£33.12 into my overdraft, which is increasing by £28.00 each month. I did tell my local branch that I wanted to close my account and I made this clear in the letter I sent out today. But shouldn't I wait until I've given them a chance to refund these charges to my account? Otherwise I'll have to give them the cash up front, without any guarantee that I'll get it back.

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Put the DPA in now. Tell them the amount is in dispute and that as far as you are concerned the account was never agreed to - and if they say that it was then you want a copy of your signature on the contract for your information.

 

 

I think that there is no doubt that you will get your money back.

on the basis of what you have said here they have made very bad mistakes which you can exploit.

 

I haven't noticed that you have said how much is at stake here. What is the present overdraft on the account?

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According to my last statement the overdraft was -5.12, but they said that they would take the charges off my account so I assume that will bring it to -£61.12. So, thus far they will have charged me £62.

 

I'll send the DPA letter off tomorrow, but I'll have to phone my bank to find out the date that my account was opened, as I just have a vague idea. Thanks for your help!

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Well I know that you are a student and all that but I would be tempted to find £61 or whatever it is and to send it to them under protest to close the account to mitigate loss and that they should understand that you are preparing to take action against them for the return of your money with interest.

 

I am quite certain you will get it back - although read the dsiclaimers at the bottom of my post.

 

If you bring a cliam, I would suggest that you claim about £400 to compensate you for the trouble to which you have been put for the negligent and unconscionable way they have handled your account.

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I'm recovering from an illness and am trying to get my head back into gear.

Have you made your DPA request as I suggested above - for ALL info?

It may cost you £10 but you will put a claim in which will cover that.

 

Have you managed to scrape £62 to pay off the acount?

 

Another question occurs to me - is there any other account that they could have changed you to which wouldn't have incurred the £6 monthly subscription charge?

Do try to dind this out. Thi sculc be very important if you could show that they had a range of possible transfer options includng some which would have cost nothing and yet they moved you to an account which cost money.

This would be a fantastic piece of bad faith. Find this out as soon as possible.

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A happy ending!

 

RBOS got back to me today and are going to refund all the charges! Scary letters with legal jargon actually work! Thanks for your all your help and good luck to everyone.

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make sure you close down the account

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Yeah, the manager just phoned to say she's going to refund the charges tomorrow so I'm going to close it right after that. So glad this got resolved quickly.

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  • 12 years later...

This topic was closed on 03/06/19.

If you have a problem which is similar to the issues raised in this topic, then please start a new thread and you will get help and support their.

If you would like to post up some information which is relevant to this particular topic then please flag the issue up to the site team and the thread will be reopened.

- Consumer Action Group

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Please note that this topic has not had any new posts for the last 5471 days.

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Thank you

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