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Update on - Debtwizard gets a shock! last posted , 19 June 2009

Remember the 64 year old gentleman living in sheltered accommodation and who was on disability benefit and had his house repossessed 20 years ago after a business venture went wrong. Well I was generally shocked that he was still paying for the debt after all this time.

The gentleman called me yesterday and stated that he was not well because he has recently undergone a kidney operation but was now worried as the firm chasing this 20 year old debt has said they want him to increase the payment from the £10 per month and intend to send someone to his home address and review his circumstances. I am in receipt of this letter threatening the action and hope to do things next week to help resolve the situation, will keep you posted on this one.

Read more: End of week blog Friday 17 July 2009

 

Uk debt numbers, Tax credit renewals date, Credit reforms, Major changes in bankruptcy procedure & Moneywise most trusted awards

UK debt numbers

These figures just illustrate how bad it is for consumers with on average 7,423 individuals going to the Citizens Advice Bureau, CAB, every working day and these are new cases!

Tax credit renewals date

It’s simple, you have until 31st July 2009 to get your claim in, I have detailed the government’s very helpful website direct.gov.uk no excuses if you fail to claim what is being offered. Just remind your friends and family if you feel they may be able to qualify.

Read more: End of week blog Friday 3rd July 2009

 

The week’s events, 

Major upheaval in the court looms if MoJ goes ahead with changes in civil debt

So the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) is considering reducing the statute of limitations for civil debt from six years to three.  If they decide to push this through and don’t phase it in then there will be massive upheaval in the courts as many lenders and debt recovery firms will have to commence proceedings overnight. Some estimates have been put at 50,000 new cases immediately to get in within any proposed new time limit.

The Limitations Act 1980 outlines the time limit within which a creditor can pursue a debtor for outstanding debts and only applies when no contact has been made between the creditor and debtor within the given time limit. This Act applies to residents of England and Wales.

Read more: Changes in civil debt and bank charges latest news

 

I don't get shocked often but just spoke to a 64 year old gentleman living in sheltered accommodation on disability benefit. His house was repossessed 20 years ago after a business venture went wrong. Unbelievably he's still paying for the house after all this time ... albeit at just £10 a month. 

The debt has remained static at £23,000 despite the payments, but every time they can't manage the £10 at the end of the month the recovery firm (who purchased the debt) chase them for more money. Because payment has been made without a twelve year break the debt is still recoverable. 

How the debt will come back to haunt you

Read more: Debtwizard gets a shock!

 

Loan sharks - BBC Essex Wednesday 17th 6pm

Just finished off planning for tonight's show on BBC Essex 6pm with John Hayes, this week's topic will be on 'loan sharks' and how they are making a comeback with a vengeance.

The hidden cost of the unemployed

The first thing that the 271,000 people who have been made unemployed in the last three months must do is deal with their sudden debt problem. Many of them will have large mortgages, overstretched credit cards, overdrafts and cars on hire purchase. And without an income they won't be able to keep up with the payments. 

Read more: Loan sharks and the 'hidden cost of the unemployed'

 

I am asking the PM to take decisive action in helping consumers that cannot afford the consumer bankruptcy fee.

As from 6th April 2009 the government have increased the cost to self petition for bankruptcy to £510.

The  PM's office just passed my request to The Insolvency Service and their response is very disappointing and unhelpful.

With a predicted 50% hike in bankruptcies, I feel that more should be done to address this looming problem. Whilst the government has bailed out most of the UK banks and now the car industry, little is being done to help the consumer caught up in debt problems brought about by the current economic crisis. 

Read more: Debtwizard's response, new letter sent to the Insolvency Service

 

The Office of Fair Trading, OFT, has stepped in twice over the past few days to sort out first Link Financial Limited and now yesterday on another ten firms, this is six debt management companies and four 'cold calling' companies.                        

Creditors must remember that when they instruct debt recovery firms or agents to act on their behalf then they are also responsible for that recovery/agent's conduct. Most lenders get round this by selling the debt to third parties, often with no previous correspondence between the lender and the consumer. The lender will then claim that they are no longer involved.

The debt collection industry in my view stinks as it is preying on the consumer's desperation and lack of awareness of their Debt Solutions Explained & Debt Solutions Comparison Table. Some of these individuals are vulnerable as they lack the knowledge and confidence to challenge debt recovery tactics and actions.

Read more: Debt collection industry stinks

 

Police Welfare Conference 

Been quiet on the blog as I have been away for three days at the National Association of Police Welfare Officers AGM and training event. Really informative and rewarding and such a worthwhile event, did a presentation to around 70 Police Welfare officers on the Debt Solutions Explained & Debt Solutions Comparison Table on getting out of debt and advised on consumer bankruptcy and whether a Police Officer can go bankrupt and still keep his/her job. In majority of cases they do but they need to follow a certain procedure within their force.

Read more: Police Welfare Conference - BBA Banking Code - BBC Essex

 

House repossession figures up 50%

The rise in home repossessions are worrying  through a lot of reasons, one is that the CML only record first charge holders, they do not include secured loan companies that are second or third charge holders, they also have no idea how many homes have been sold on the sale and rent back scheme.

Sale and rent back is where the current property owner sells the property to another person or firm to prevent the home being repossessed. After the sale the seller then usually remains in the property, albeit being owned by someone else, and pays rent, so in effect becomes a tenant.

It is estimated by the Financial Services Authority (FSA) that some 50,000 of these homes have been sold under this scheme over the past 'few' years and I believe that about 20,000 to 25,000 of these have been sold during 2008 alone.

Read more: Worrying times for home owners - update re bankruptcy fees

 

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