Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. Free legal advice is available from a Citizen's Advice Bureau, and the Law Society can supply a list of local solicitors.
My sister reopened my mum's Next account, spent over £300 & now my mum is liable(26 Posts)
My sister has been doing stuff like this for years, stealing my parents' credit cards, using their accounts, using blackmail for them to give her money/get her out of trouble etc.
The latest is that my mum's just found out my sister had reopened a Next account my mum had, which was closed back in July. She managed to reopen it, obviously by pretending to be her, and spent over £300 on clothes for her DD on there. The parcels went to my mum's house, but as my mum works during the day, didn't see them. My brother had to sign for two of these parcels, but didn't think anything of it as he just assumed she had ordered something. My sister spent two other days sitting round there waiting for two more parcels. My mum only realised something was up when she received a text message from Next saying that the last parcel is due to be dispatched. She hadn't received a message for any of the previous four parcels though.
My mum spoke to Next who confirmed that the account had been closed but reopened. They said as my mum hadn't blocked the account, it isn't their fault that it was reopened but surely if it's closed, it's closed right? Or if it needed to be blocked, why didn't they explain that to her at the time it was closed?
My brother spoke to my sister on my mum's behalf as my mum is very upset and angry as to her doing this. She wouldn't have minded if my sister had just asked, but it's going behind her back, and this isn't the first time. This has happened repeatedly in the past. My sister has got my mum into a lot of debt. My brother demanded she returned the stuff. He had a go at her and said she was selfish and that mum's very upset. My sister then texted my mum, not to apologise but to say she was not happy with how brother has threatened her and doesn't want her DD round him...
I have now texted her to say she needs to return the stuff, so either she can bring it all round to me or I can pick it up so she doesn't have to see my mum or brother, or she can drop it off at my mum's tomorrow when both of them are out. Not surprisingly, I haven't heard from her.
We have the details to make a complaint to Next, as they shouldn't have reopened that account. Surely they would have needed some kind of proof that she was who she said she was? And why did they only send a text message for the last parcel and not the previous four? My mum could have just returned them if she knew about them in the first place. But now as the account is in her name, she is liable to pay. What can she do?
To be fair, that's fraud and I'll be calling the police.
Call the police. This is all your sister's fault- she is a thief. No point just blaming Next tbh.
I didn't mean for it to come across that Next is the one to blame. I know she is the one to blame, and she needs to be dealt with and something has to be done. I hadn't thought of it as fraud, so thank you for that.
I'd tell her to give the stuff back or next will involve police.. Bloody nightmare your poor mum.
I'm a little surprised that Next could brush this off so easily. If your mum told them to close it, then it should be just that - closed! I would try posting on the moneysavingexpert website and see if they agree that your mum is liable for the charges.
Unless your mum reports it as fraud to the police she isn't going to get anywhere with next.
She's done it again because she knows she can.
The thing is though yes I agree, but if they refuse to pay next will surely involve police and try and recoup from sister?
Personally I would let them but if you want to sort it out between yourselves you might not?
If she has a history of doing stuff like this, she isn't going to learn from just having to return the goods. I think your mum should go to the police and report it - at the very least they will investigate, and will talk to your sister, and that might put the fear of god into her and prevent her doing this again.
Has anyone actually told her that she is stealing from her own family, and the fact that she has apparently been forgiven in the past doesn't make her any less of a thief? I was this blunt with ds3 when he stole money from my purse.
I would involve the police. It is fraud.
Thanks everyone for such quick responses.
It is awful, and I know that her returning the stuff won't stop this happening again in the future. I will speak to my mum about it, I know she probably wouldn't want to get the police involved, although I do think it'd be a good idea, as it would scare the crap out of her and possibly make her think twice in the future. Unfortunately my parents have always bailed her out in the past with problems. For example, a couple of weeks ago, her tax disc was due. She waited til the day it was due before she asked my mum for the money for it. My mum refused, so my sister then went to my dad who gave her the money. My parents are divorced and my dad isn't aware of the situation at the moment, but it's just an example of how she expects them to bail her out and doesn't stand up to her own responsibilities. It's very frustrating!
The reopening of the account is impersonation fraud. The police could charge her. Even if your mom doesn't want to involve the police she should tell next this much and advise she did not make the order.
Tbh bear I have an Aunt who treated my granny like this for years. I just went on and on.
Things like ordering from catalogue's and not paying to stealing money because she felt entitled to live a certain lifestyle.
When my granny died we received bills for things in her name, ordered by my aunt which she never paid for, granny was a proud women who never owed a penny in her life. My mum paid my aunts bill to keep grannies name clear
If granny had phoned the police the first time this cycle might have been nipped in the bud.
Fwiw my aunts house was repossessed 18months after granny's death. Very telling.
If your sister won't pay it back then the only way is to call the police. This is fraud. Maybe it would be better to do this to stop your sister. As she may go on to do goodness know what if she thinks she keeps getting away with it.
Call the police , she's stealing from your mum ...or committing fraud as others have said . Either way , why should your mum have to put up with this ? .
Don't let people away with treating you like shit because they are family . It's actually worse than stealing from a stranger ( and thats scummy ) IMO , family are supposed to treat you with love and kindness, not rob you in a sneaky underhanded way and expect to get away with it because you were unlucky enough to have them in the same gene-pool .
Thanks everyone. I will discuss this with my mum tomorrow when I see her. I agree with what has been said, and half tempted to report her myself but that needs to be my mum's decision.
oohnewshoes I'm so sorry to hear about how your aunt treated your gran. That's terrible
Your mum should probably do a credit check as well to make sure you sister hasn't done anything else in your mums name.
If you reported and got a crime number, Next might be more inclined to waive the debt? Or maybe not - but I'd have thought it would help.
wheredidiputit I have suggested to my mum she does, so will help her do that.
My sister had texted her a while ago saying that she's organising for the items to be returned (my mum has put a password on the account so she can ring up next week and double check that this has happened). She also went on to say how she feels that my mum doesn't care about her or her DD, as she doesn't go round to visit them any more (my mum has my niece every Thursday overnight, every other Saturday during the day and overnight, and the odd Tuesday whilst sister works so she sees both sister and niece weekly), that she is struggling for money and needed to buy niece clothes (why £300+ worth at Next I don't know... but seems to have money to go to Malta for 5 days with her DP whilst my mum looked after niece during that time as sister and DP didn't want to take niece with her, as well as to a few weddings that have been at least 1.5 hours drive away), and that she doesn't want my brother anywhere near niece as when he spoke to her on my mum's behalf, he shouted and swore at her (niece wasn't there I'd like to add). Tbh he reacted the way I would have.
I feel really sorry for my mum as she does a lot for my sister and I know my sister is trying to make her feel guilty to try and justify her own actions. She does this every time. I'm so angry with her. My mum is suppose to have niece on Saturday, but sister had said she doesn't want niece near brother who will be at home on Saturday. I've told mum she should just say that brother is in so she's better off taking niece elsewhere.
I think everyone needs to stop texting and get in a room together and talk. That's everyone in the family preferably - including divorced father - because everyone has to be on the same page as to how to deal with the thief so that she can't play one of you off against the other. If she is in debt or she's short of cash and needs help she has to take responsibility herself and understand that others are not there to be exploited.
Don't feel too sorry for your mum. If she knows her DD is a thief then she has to secure her finances and her papers much more carefully.
She sounds bloody awful . Good luck . I can't see her suddenly being remorseful about her actions if things like this keep happening
Christ your sister sounds like a right horror.
Good post from Cogito above. Your sister needs to learn a few lessons that most of us where taught as children. Get the family together for a united front.
I would definately call the police, regardless whether she returns the clothes or not. Let sister know that you are all on to her behaviour and find it utterly unacceptable.
I also had an aunt who was like this - not criminal but constantly bailed out by her parents. She is the most spoilt and chaotic person I have ever met. Trust me, your parents will be doing your sister a HUGE favour to get this behaviour to stop.
I think you should contact the police as well.
Your whole family, including your DF needs to sort this out once and for all, otherwise it will never stop.
People like your sister manipulate those they preport to love and like the emotional, or other, blackmail. If your Mum can do it, ie tough love, then she should report her to the Police and let your sister know in no uncertain terms that this behaviour cant go on. If she cant, she can demand payment from her over the time of the loan or else has to shoulder the debt herself.
Your sister is also using her daughter as a pawn in this game so she gets what she wants, in whatever unreasonable world she inhabits. If your niece is of an age when she can come and go to her Nans by herself then tell her what is happening and remind her that she will always be welcome at your familys homes. If she is not of such an age, then the risk is that it may be some time before she comes calling, but I suspect your sister will need your support way before that day.
As for Next, or any other store or bank, unless the Company receives in writing the request to close the account then it just remains open, without a credit to it, ie dormant. It is the same with credit cards. A zero balance and not using it doesnt mean its closed. If your Mum has written proof she asked for it to be closed then they may accept liability and could go after your sister themselves. I suspect your sister wont return anything. Most kids wear new things immediately so I doubt they would be in a position to be returned as new with tags on.
Some hard choices but she will continue to do this sort of thing Im afraid.
Join the discussion
Please login first.