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  • A stranger returns ...

    Greetings to all from a long lost member ! Good to see some familiar names amongst the many new ones ! Whilst I have not posted for a long time, I have dropped by as a visitor from time to time but I now need assistance / advice again ! I realise that I thought that I would not need advice again after getting debt free previously but things happen ... in my case, marriage to a South east Asian lady ... who I'm still married to ... and two unexpected children entailing expensive private hospitals and hence credit cards. I was working and on a reasonable income, so much so that I paid for her visa and flight to UK where she stayed from 2010 to 2012 until she had to go back to take care of her terminally ill father ... the rules changed, her visa expired and I have not been able to see her or the children for five years now as unemployment makes it a non starter ... I am now on ESA with severe depression and have been for two years now.
    So, I have three cards ...
    1) High street bank who I don't bank with ... £4.5k, paid for one hospital birth, they have been brilliant ... spoke to them two years ago when first on ESA and they basically said they would terminate my account and not chase me or go for a ccj and for me to contact them if my situation improved ... it is well over a year since I contacted them and I have not heard anything from them since ... so far, so good.
    2) High street bank who I actually bank with, £1.5k, payments up to date and will continue to be kept up to date for reasons I will explain further on in ...
    3) Sub prime card, £4.5k, two year account freeze insurance running out in the near future ... this is the one I'm concerned about ... I will not contact them until I have taken onboard advice given here !
    I haven't named the accounts as I am suspicious that these banks keep an eye on all forums in the hope of gleaning snippets of information that may help them.
    The fly in the ointment is something that I will explain ...
    Basically, my late mother was getting more and more ill as she reached old age and I had decided that when the inheritance arrived as always promised, I would clear the cards and buy a cheap property abroad as I did not want to see out my life in a bedsit paying dead money to a landlord forever more ... however, I had not bargained for my sister and her husband to actively conspire behind my back and bully my mother into changing her will during the last month of her lifr in a hospice. I got a solicitor involved and he got a barrister involved and they agreed that there were anomalies and it was clear to see what had taken place. It went to mediation and I finally got the original £7.5k I was left increased to £26.5k of which the legal fees were £10k. I was advised not to go to court due to another case running at the time that if it didn't go as expected, the rules would change and I would have nothing to take her to court with ... so I reluctantly settled for the £26.5k and walked away with the £16.5k. As it turned out, I made the right decision ... if I had been greedy, I would have had nothing to take her to court over ... the supreme court ruled in favour of the charity and the rules did indeed change ... my delighted sister walked away with my late mothers house and bank accounts and added it to the two houses her and her husband already owned ... so I had £16.5k instead of £125k ... such is life !
    So ... the choice was clear my cards, dwindle the rest to below £6k to claim benefits and live out my life in a bedsit or buy a cheap property in Europe for my retirement in five years and worry about the cards later ... for me, it was a no brainer ... I bought the cheap property in Europe ... and that is the fly in the ointment and why I keep my one card up to date as I paid for the house through the bank.
    I appreciate some may think I took the wrong decision but it is what it is and I would do the same again.
    I realise it is unlikely that the sub prime card in question would have any inkling that I have this property but I worry that there may be a remote possibility of them taking it ... although it would not be much use for them to do so as there are many empty properties for sale there ... mine was empty for twenty years until I paid over the odds for it (I paid £12k not including all of the extra fees and taxes ) but a neighbour says a local would not have paid more than £8k or so ... but foreigners always pay more !!
    it also means that I could not go down the bankruptcy route and wouldn't want to for the sake of £4.5k ... so what to do initially ... maybe try to make a minimum offer to them of £5 a month ... they know I am on ESA and the reasons why and I'm aware they can't sell the debt on due to my mental health ... and they had a bank statement every three months so they no I only get £50 a week ( I was honest and declared my house to the DWP, hence they take £20 a week off my benefit) ...
    Any advice gratefully received ....

  • #2
    Welcome back stranger

    I've taken a quick peek at your original Diary thread where I can see that all those debts may be Statute Barred. Is that correct?

    So are these three debts which are troubling you now ‘new’ i.e. not on your original thread?

    Di
    Legal Disclaimer

    I am a Litigation Executive at Joanna Connolly Solicitors a firm which specialises in consumer credit. If you need to contact me you can send a message by clicking on my username or by emailing me at di@joannaconnollysolicitors.co.uk or by telephoning 0330 053 9340. My Direct Line is 0151 254 6986 Our initial advice is always free.

    Any posts I make on the AAD Consumer Forum are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as legal advice. Any advice I provide on the forum is without liability. If you are unsure please seek formal legal guidance or contact your local citizens advice bureau at https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk

    Comment


    • #3
      Hi Di ... yes, all of the original debts are long gone and SB ... these three are the new ones and were a bit unavoidable under the circumstances. I'm just trying to get advice in advance of the sub prime card account hassle starting ... I have already had a computer generated email saying that the two year insurance freeze is nearly over and I will need to start paying the minimum amount again ... obviously it would not have been sent if a real person had looked at the background as it's pretty obvious that due to my circumstances that there is no chance of me paying the minimum amount ... I do not even have a valid card with them anymore !

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by thatnamestaken View Post
        Hi Di ... yes, all of the original debts are long gone and SB ... these three are the new ones and were a bit unavoidable under the circumstances. I'm just trying to get advice in advance of the sub prime card account hassle starting ... I have already had a computer generated email saying that the two year insurance freeze is nearly over and I will need to start paying the minimum amount again ... obviously it would not have been sent if a real person had looked at the background as it's pretty obvious that due to my circumstances that there is no chance of me paying the minimum amount ... I do not even have a valid card with them anymore !

        It’s difficult to make suggestions without knowing who the Creditors for each of them (they can behave in different ways) and how much is the balance outstanding on each one.

        What was the insurance which you say was frozen for two years - perhaps a claim on your PPI policy following health or redundancy etc? Or something else?

        Also are you living abroad now or is it a property you own but is not occupied?

        A little more background would be helpful, ideally for all three debts.

        Di
        Legal Disclaimer

        I am a Litigation Executive at Joanna Connolly Solicitors a firm which specialises in consumer credit. If you need to contact me you can send a message by clicking on my username or by emailing me at di@joannaconnollysolicitors.co.uk or by telephoning 0330 053 9340. My Direct Line is 0151 254 6986 Our initial advice is always free.

        Any posts I make on the AAD Consumer Forum are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as legal advice. Any advice I provide on the forum is without liability. If you are unsure please seek formal legal guidance or contact your local citizens advice bureau at https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk

        Comment


        • #5
          It's only the sub prime card I'm concerned about ... Vanquis ... and the balance is around the £4.5k mark.
          I took out the optional insurance against being sick or unemployed but that only runs for two years and is now nearing the end.
          I don't live full time in the house but visit and stay there as often as I can ... I have no address in the UK and stay with various friends here.
          I am concerned that they may not accept a token offer and I obviously do not want to put my house at any risk although I realise that it is a bit of a process to turn a non secured debt into a secure debt that would make that a possibility ....

          Comment


          • #6
            They are not hanging about ... I hope this isn't a sign of things to come.
            A few days ago I received an email saying that my account freeze was coming to an end.
            The following day I received a text saying they haven't received my payment ???? I haven't received a statement from them .... and the number didn't appear on their website or communications from before so I Googled the number and it came up with multiple fraud warnings but I guess it was genuine.
            Today I received an email from them saying I have missed my payment swiftly followed by a text saying that my account has gone over my credit limit !!!
            I guess I am going to have to call them ?
            Last edited by thatnamestaken; 16th July 2020, 10:11. Reason: Detail added

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by thatnamestaken View Post
              It's only the sub prime card I'm concerned about ... Vanquis ... and the balance is around the £4.5k mark.
              I took out the optional insurance against being sick or unemployed but that only runs for two years and is now nearing the end.
              I don't live full time in the house but visit and stay there as often as I can ... I have no address in the UK and stay with various friends here.
              I am concerned that they may not accept a token offer and I obviously do not want to put my house at any risk although I realise that it is a bit of a process to turn a non secured debt into a secure debt that would make that a possibility ....

              May I just clarify one thing with you so I don't misunderstand your situation.

              You are currently living abroad only staying with friends when you visit the UK. If that is the case does Vanquis have a UK address for you or are they aware of your overseas' status?

              I ask in case there are any legal proceedings issued in the UK which you may not receive.

              Is the house you worry may be at risk of a charging order abroad?

              Di
              Legal Disclaimer

              I am a Litigation Executive at Joanna Connolly Solicitors a firm which specialises in consumer credit. If you need to contact me you can send a message by clicking on my username or by emailing me at di@joannaconnollysolicitors.co.uk or by telephoning 0330 053 9340. My Direct Line is 0151 254 6986 Our initial advice is always free.

              Any posts I make on the AAD Consumer Forum are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as legal advice. Any advice I provide on the forum is without liability. If you are unsure please seek formal legal guidance or contact your local citizens advice bureau at https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk

              Comment


              • #8
                I spend more time in the UK and "couch surf" as I don't have a UK address ... I had to give up my bedsit as my benefit payment wasn't enough to top up my rent ... as my benefit is reduced by £20 a week for having a house in Europe which they class as an asset ... but will not allow me to live in because it's not in the UK ! That is why I can only go to my house for the short periods allowed by them. It's odd that they can stop me £20 per week as their website states that nothing will be stopped for your primary address ... which it is given that I don't have any other address !
                Vanquis are well aware that I have not had a UK address for two years and they have my care of postal address ... and they confirmed this when I called them six months or so ago to ask if they had sent out a new card as my old one had expired ... they confirmed that they had still sent it to my old address despite knowing that I had not lived there for a year and a half ! They then said the couldn't issue a new card as I only had a care of postal address and not a permanent address !
                I doubt it would get that far but it is difficult to get information on the internet ... I am aware that if a lender is signed up to the standards of lending practice, they shouldn't sell a debt on if the borrower has mental issues ... but it doesn't appear that Vanquis is signed up to it ?
                If they were to discover I had a property abroad, I'm not sure if they would be able to get a charging order on it as it is not in the UK ? If they were allowed to sell the debt on, they may sell it on to a DC in the country my house is in ... that's the big worry ....

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by thatnamestaken View Post
                  I spend more time in the UK and "couch surf" as I don't have a UK address . . . It's odd that they can stop me £20 per week as their website states that nothing will be stopped for your primary address ... which it is given that I don't have any other address !
                  Vanquis are well aware that I have not had a UK address for two years and they have my care of postal address ... and they confirmed this when I called them six months or so ago to ask if they had sent out a new card as my old one had expired ... they confirmed that they had still sent it to my old address despite knowing that I had not lived there for a year and a half ! They then said the couldn't issue a new card as I only had a care of postal address and not a permanent address !
                  I doubt it would get that far but it is difficult to get information on the internet ... I am aware that if a lender is signed up to the standards of lending practice, they shouldn't sell a debt on if the borrower has mental issues ... but it doesn't appear that Vanquis is signed up to it ?
                  If they were to discover I had a property abroad, I'm not sure if they would be able to get a charging order on it as it is not in the UK ? If they were allowed to sell the debt on, they may sell it on to a DC in the country my house is in ... that's the big worry ....

                  Do you have access to mail sent to your UK 'care of postal address'?

                  Have you sought advice on whether you can appeal the DWP decision to reduce your benefits due to you owning a property overseas?

                  Vanquis has a team which deals with Vulnerable customers so maybe approach them to see if your mental health issues would be something they can accommodate once they are made aware of this and the fact that you are in receipt of ESA.

                  There's some information about how to go about this here > https://www.vanquis.co.uk/credit-car...qCategory=6165

                  Di
                  Legal Disclaimer

                  I am a Litigation Executive at Joanna Connolly Solicitors a firm which specialises in consumer credit. If you need to contact me you can send a message by clicking on my username or by emailing me at di@joannaconnollysolicitors.co.uk or by telephoning 0330 053 9340. My Direct Line is 0151 254 6986 Our initial advice is always free.

                  Any posts I make on the AAD Consumer Forum are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as legal advice. Any advice I provide on the forum is without liability. If you are unsure please seek formal legal guidance or contact your local citizens advice bureau at https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I think contacting the specialist team there is the first thing I need to do ... the monthly missed payment amount they have quoted me is not as high as I was expecting but still more than I can realistically afford ... I'm struggling as it is.
                    Yes, my care of postal address is a friend's house and he lets me know as soon as I receive mail and I go and collect it ... during the lockdown he has been scanning it and emailing it to me.
                    The DWP ... impossible to deal with unfortunately !
                    Ten years ago, they reduced my benefits due to a pension ... which i never had ... two years of letter writing including a letter from the pension company saying that I had never had a pension with them and they still wouldn't listen ... eventually the job centre manager stepped in and it took him just one single day to discover that someone had made a keying error when inputting a national insurance number which was my national insurance number ... then I was refunded.
                    I am now also paying for crisis loans that are not mine ... I only ever had six of them and they were all paid off ... they are the only six that the DWP can provide copies of the agreements with my signature on ... obviously as the others are not mine ! I have proved to them that the amount they are saying I owe in crisis loans is actually more than they were legally allowed to lend me ... but it makes no difference so I gave up after four years. The last time I spoke to someone at the DWP, she asked me why I wasn't claiming for my disabled child ... erm ... because I don't have a disabled child ? She admitted that it all looked a mess and would be looked into but of course it never was ... no boxes to tick under those circumstances ! It may well be worth me writing it all out in a letter to the minister in charge but from what I have read, she doesn't appear to be the most sympathetic person around !!
                    I'm still not sure how to find out about the possibility of a charging order against my house abroad or wether the debt can be sold on to a dca abroad if Vanquis do find out and they refuse to be helpful ...

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      May I ask why you fear a debt purchaser more than the original creditor?

                      Sometimes (I don’t know whether this is one of those times) it can be a good thing if a debt purchaser has bought the debt for a modest amount.

                      And it could be an even better thing if the original creditor hasn’t done what they should have done legally speaking prior to any assignment/sale.

                      Di
                      Last edited by Diana Mayhew; 16th July 2020, 21:35.
                      Legal Disclaimer

                      I am a Litigation Executive at Joanna Connolly Solicitors a firm which specialises in consumer credit. If you need to contact me you can send a message by clicking on my username or by emailing me at di@joannaconnollysolicitors.co.uk or by telephoning 0330 053 9340. My Direct Line is 0151 254 6986 Our initial advice is always free.

                      Any posts I make on the AAD Consumer Forum are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as legal advice. Any advice I provide on the forum is without liability. If you are unsure please seek formal legal guidance or contact your local citizens advice bureau at https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I don't "fear" either one any more than the other ... I fear that if things do not go well then my house may be at risk. I have no idea what Vanquis are like to deal with during hard times or how helpful they are likely to be ... I guess I will find out when I call them. I am trying to find out what future possibilities may be but am not getting very far. I'm having to guess that a charge can't be put onto a foreign property but I don't know for sure. I do know that I want to avoid the debt being sold to a debt purchaser in the country where my house is as that would be hard to deal with given that the rules are completely different and I am not there for much of the time ... I am hopeful it will not come to that ... if Vanquis prove to not be helpful, I will have to pay the minimum amount and go without essentials until I can get help from citizens advice ....

                        Comment

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