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Hi All

 

I am looking for a bit of advise on what to do next with my claim against Citi.

 

Just a bit of background... I have sent my 14 day letter and received the following back from them.....

 

What should I do next? Is it worth contacting FSO? Any help/advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

 

I act on behalf of CitiFinancial Europe plc and I am writing to you in response to your complaint regarding the default charges applied to your account.

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Sorry for some reason when I copy and paste the letter it doesn't appear. I'll try again...

 

I act on behalf of CitiFinancial Europe plc and I am writing to you in response to your complaint regarding the default charges applied to your account.

I assume that your complaint was made as a result of the recent statement by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) on default fees charged by the UK credit card industry and is based on the huge media interest in such claims.

My client has adopted the same practices as the entire UK credit card industry and, with that industry, disagrees with the OFT’s interpretation of the law relating to default charges. Please note that the OFT recognises that its interpretation does not have the force of law, having never been decided by a court, and is therefore merely persuasive.

Moreover, the OFT did acknowledge that default fees are not themselves unlawful, but simply confined itself to stating that it believed that the level of default charges imposed by the UK credit card industry to be unfair. Therefore, if you breach your contract, we are and always were, entitled to levy a default fee, lust not one in excess of f12.00.

The OFT did not say in its statement that all such default charges are unfair; it merely set a recommended threshold of L12.00 to reflect the balance of information given to it by many of the banks that these charges are based on a number of factors and not lust, as is commonly supposed, the price of a stamp or the envelope etc.

You have written in requesting a refund of charges thus suggesting that my client owes you this money as a debt.However, having reviewed your account it is evident that your account charged off due to you failing to pay my client the sums due including charges, interest and principal.

Despite the fact that you may have paid default fees throughout the account’s life, the fact remains that you owed my client more than you have claimed back at the date of charge off. Earlier repayments do not warrant treating those monies paid as somehow a debt due to you, conveniently ignoring the later debt due to my client. As a result, to “refund” anything would allow you to profit from your own default. I am therefore unable to agree to refund any such monies. Furthermore, if you have paid any sums on a sold debt to a debt agency, it must be apparent that you have paid a third party and not my client, therefore you have no claim to recover sums paid to a third party from my client.

In the event that you are not satisfied with this and proceed to issue a claim for the full amount, CitiFinancial will defend this on the basis of the OFT’s own statement and analysis of the lawful level of default charges.

In over a two dozen recent court cases involving Citi, we have successfully argued the fairness of the above policy and the fairness of the P2 charges. The cases have all resulted in the claims being dismissed and the courts have implicitly held that the policy is fair and the charges reasonable, being in line with both the OFT guidance and common law principles of damage for breach of contract. Moreoever, the courts have also endorsed our view, expressed above, that you cannot claim as a debt monies you may have paid when these are edisped by a later more substantail and unpaid debt which charged off.

Any defence will also exercise the defendant’s nght to seek to have the claim transferred to its home court, i.e. Salford County Court. The legal presumption is that justice should be local to the defendant as the defendant is deemed innocent until proven guilty and ought not to be disadvantaged in defending itself.

I trust that my response is satisfactory however if you would like an independent review of your case you may contact the Financial Ombudsman Service. This must be done within six months from the date of this letter, I have enclosed their leaflet for you.

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I'll just cover what I can for you-my points in red

 

The OFT did not say in its statement that all such default charges are unfair; it merely set a recommended threshold of L12.00 to reflect the balance of information given to it by many of the banks that these charges are based on a number of factors and not lust, as is commonly supposed, the price of a stamp or the envelope etc.

 

OFT did nothing of the sort and they know it.If you get to court,ask for full disclosure-CITI have defaulted on every such request so far and lost the case

 

Furthermore, if you have paid any sums on a sold debt to a debt agency, it must be apparent that you have paid a third party and not my client, therefore you have no claim to recover sums paid to a third party from my client.

 

Again=not so-your original contract was with CITI who levied the charges,and a proportion of the debt that they sold off at a fraction of your debt amount was made up of charges

In over a two dozen recent court cases involving Citi, we have successfully argued the fairness of the above policy and the fairness of the P2 charges. The cases have all resulted in the claims being dismissed and the courts have implicitly held that the policy is fair and the charges reasonable, being in line with both the OFT guidance and common law principles of damage for breach of contract.

 

I refer to the above answer-they have now been rumbled and their tactics are in the open,and if you go for full disclosure and get it,CITI will most probably lose by default

 

Any defence will also exercise the defendant’s nght to seek to have the claim transferred to its home court, i.e. Salford County Court. The legal presumption is that justice should be local to the defendant as the defendant is deemed innocent until proven guilty and ought not to be disadvantaged in defending itself.

 

This is intimidation which is designed to put you off.You will not have to go to Salford as an individual taking on a large institution

 

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