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To not pay a debt I owe?

(61 Posts)
WaterSucksAnyway Fri 09-Feb-18 18:52:13

Because they don't seem to want to let me?
I was in debt with my water company and went onto a payment plan. At the time the plan was agreed I was £300 in arrears. I then built up further arrears and due to a miscalculation didn't pay it, as far as I'm aware this debt stands at circa £400 now.

I left the UK 10 months ago but the same month I left I rang the water company from abroad and said look I know I owe it can you tell me how to pay it? I'll need your IBN or another payment method but I'll pay it.
The person on the phone refused to give me it, citing they'd contact me by letter. I handed over my address but heard nothing so 6 weeks later I called again. The lady on the phone found no record of this call but did confirm I owe a debt but stated she'd send me a letter stating how much and how to pay.

I did then receive the letter citing I owe £411.
They offered 3 payment methods.

Direct debit (not possible, as I can't set up a DD to a foreign bank. I have tried.)
Cash at a post office. Not going to work for obvious reasons.
Online with my water card number. This may be possible as I still have a common card (MasterCard) only I do not have the number for the water card

Rang again and asked for it. They refused, but said they'd send me a new water card. I wanted to tell them that it was pointless as I'd never use it I just needed the number but I was so exhasperated I said thanks and bye. This was 6 months ago.

However I never received the card and every time I ring they're just rehashing it with me and nothing changes. I've tried ringing 7 times and emailed 3x and sent a recorded letter that was received and signed for since being told I would receive a new water card to my current address (ie, overseas). I even said if they weren't able to send it to me as I'm abroad they could have my mums address but this wasn't allowed.
I've made a huge effort to pay off all debts in the UK either before I left or within a month of leaving as the UK will always be my home so I do not want to leave any mess behind for me to walk in on when I get back.
But I'm at the point now where I want to give up. They don't appear to be pursuing it but if they do I have proof that I've tried chasing it including several emails. I may send a last email as a last ditch attempt and also proof if required in future that I really did try but it's just feeling pointless now as they don't seem to want me to pay!

Aibu and if you've experienced similar what did you do?

GlitterUnicornsAndAllThatJazz Fri 09-Feb-18 18:54:03

You should have paid your debt whilst in the UK.

WaterSucksAnyway Fri 09-Feb-18 18:54:55

If you happen to have a time machine, I'll go back in time and change that.
Until then though I can only do what I can in the here and now and I don't see what else I can do.

user764329056 Fri 09-Feb-18 18:55:13

Don’t worry about it, write it off

Bobbiepin Fri 09-Feb-18 18:56:29

Yeah you should have paid it before you went but maybe say you've moved to your mum's address and ask them to send it there. Not paying isn't ok.

MsHomeSlice Fri 09-Feb-18 18:56:31

Get your mother to pay it for you....transfer the money to her, she can go to the Post office

all very simple

Deshasafraisy Fri 09-Feb-18 18:57:32

I’d call them back and tell them what you’ve just written and offer to pay one last time and make it clear that this will be your last attempt.

FadedRed Fri 09-Feb-18 18:57:42

Can you send a cheque through the post? They are still legal, if somewhat rare. Your bank should be able to provide one, if you don't have a cheque book.

MatildaTheCat Fri 09-Feb-18 18:58:20

Could your mum or another third party not go to the PO and make the payment for you and you reimburse them. Agree it sounds fairly frustrating to be so difficult and I’m surprised there is no automated line or online option but it doesn’t sound completely impossible to resolve.

I would find a way because as you say, it could come back to haunt you at a later date. You could end up with a court summons and be unaware of it.

WaterSucksAnyway Fri 09-Feb-18 18:58:47

If I could go back and pay it I would but I can't - unfortunately I was dealing with 1000 different things while doing a move and things got missed the final payment on my internet contract and this, the former I took care of quickly and tried to do the same thing here. I'd never migrated before and had very little time to get everything sorted. Sorry no I'm not lying and saying I've moved to my mums address, particularly as she has her own water bill and I'd rather not mess with that. But I'm happy to pay honestly and have tried to do so. I'm just not sure what I can try (while remaining honest.)

StealthNinjaMum Fri 09-Feb-18 18:59:26

Can you not get a friend or relative to pay it and then pay them back? I can see you have gone to some effort to pay it but I couldn't sleep at night knowing I had a debt like that hanging over me.

SandAndSea Fri 09-Feb-18 18:59:35

I had a similar problem with a mobile phone company where their systems wouldn't let me leave and kept trying to bill me, threatening horrible things. Like you, I just couldn't resolve it using any normal methods. I ended up writing to the CEO begging him to help me, which he did immediately. It was a system error. It sounds to me like you might have to do the same if you want this resolved.

WaterSucksAnyway Fri 09-Feb-18 18:59:38

She can't pay at the post office without the card for the account anyway,
I hadn't considered cheque will get in touch with my bank about that. Thanks so much. I've never actually sent a cheque before blush

BifsWif Fri 09-Feb-18 19:00:09

You need to pay it. You’ll end up with a CCJ <bitter experience from my younger days>.

I would transfer it to your mum and ask her to pay it for you.

sinceyouask Fri 09-Feb-18 19:00:26

Email their chief exec and ask them why the company won't make it possible for you to pay your debts?
Although as a pp has suggested, the easiest way may be for you to transfer the money to your mum and she pays it at the PO for you.

LIZS Fri 09-Feb-18 19:00:37

Your family member could pay it over the counter or did you not keep a uk bank account. Surely your water number is on the letter.

BifsWif Fri 09-Feb-18 19:00:37

Oops just saw your update! Sending a cheque is a good idea.

Jenala Fri 09-Feb-18 19:01:17

Can your mum not go to the post office for you? Doesn't matter who physically pays it if they have the details does it.

curlii103 Fri 09-Feb-18 19:02:37

Can't imagine anyone getting too excited aboyt £400 in 20 years. You tried, id sit and wait for the water card. Sureky if they were taking you to court theyd have done it!

inthisdayandage Fri 09-Feb-18 19:02:40

Their loss. You have tried to pay. I’d give them a valid address to contact you and if they don’t its not your problem

BrandNewHouse Fri 09-Feb-18 19:04:15

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Bouledeneige Fri 09-Feb-18 19:04:26

It might be a problem for your credit rating in future.

BrandNewHouse Fri 09-Feb-18 19:04:53

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

JojoLapin Fri 09-Feb-18 19:10:23

Why making such an issue out of it? If you want to pay for it, as Matilda suggested: Transfer the money to a friend or family member so that they can pay it for you via the PO.

If you want to dodge it, continue with the excuses.

Fintress Fri 09-Feb-18 19:12:54

400 quid is a big debt to overlook. As people have said, you will end up owing more if you don't pay it and most likely your credit will be affected should you return to the UK.

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