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Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you have any legal concerns we suggest you consult a solicitor. being fined unreasonably what can i do?

(21 Posts)
camberwellred Thu 03-Apr-14 12:22:38

If anyone could help with this i'd be hugely appreciative1 Okay, so...I phoned up very in Jan & said i wanted to pay all
outstanding money on my acc & close it. A rep guided me
through this, said i'd incurred a fee for late payment
(around £18) gave me the total & I paid over the phone
via card. I asked her to confirm that this was all
settled which she did - I even asked her again to assure
me that nothing else was outstanding which again she
confirmed. A month later I received a call from very
stating I was overdue with a payment & had incurred a
fine.When i specified that this couldn't be the case due
to the fact that i had settled my acc & relayed my
conversation in jan with the very rep, i was told that
this call would be investigated as all calls were
recorded and very would get back to me, but not to
worry. Under the impression that this was being looked
into, i awaited a call/e-mail from very explaining that
there was a mistake and expressing apologies, however
the next call i received was from a debt collecting
company asking me to make immediate payment, this was is
late feb i believe. I stated that there must be a
mistake as this matter was being investigated as there
cannot be an outstanding amount on my account as it had
been paid fully.. The debt company said they couldn't do
anything but to speak to very. I phoned up very and was
told that they would chase this with the last rep i
spoke to & get back to me. I received no call so a few
days later yet again I called to find out what was going
wrong, the rep had no idea but said they would pass this
on to their manager to review and they would call me
within 24 hrs, I received no call so phoned again.
another rep promised that their manager would get back
to me & they would track the original call, which
neither did. I phoned back again & a rep told me that i
hadn't paid it fully and had to pay everything now,
including incurred charges for late payment. I decided
to e-mail the company hoping that I may be able to get
through to someone who could shed light on a) whether my
calls had been investigated as promised b) why no one
was getting back to me as promised c) why i was being
charged for very's failure to rectify the situation & d)
why was I the one chasing to sort this out & being
charged whilst very continually failed to get back to
me. I receieved an automated e-mail saying someone will
get back to me within 6 hours, no one did. I emailed
again & received the same automated message, no one got
back to me either. I kept emailing with no response
until finally a rep replied answering none of the q's
but simply saying i must pay it. I then decided to phone
as a final attempt (this is now in march) to sort it out
as the whole situation was becoming extremely stressful.
The rep explained that he would credit me with £15 for
the calls I was having to make but was not authorised to
do any more and my best bet was to e-mail hq, however he
failed to pass on the contact info. So this is what I'm
doing, it's been an utterly stressful situation, where
the debt I now owe is I believe well over £100. I called
to settle my account on 13 Jan and explained that if
there were any charges before this period which were
unpaid (even though the rep said I'd paid this) i was
willing to pay this but incurring gross charges whilst
awaiting/chasing an outcome/explanation is absolutely
disgusting. It's been an utterly stressful experience &
also due to the fact that I already called to settle my
account & was told this had been settled i have
absolutely no faith that if I was to make this payment
that this would happen all over again.This is my last
attempt to contact you before seeking legal action, I
have attempted so many times to sort this out & am
absolutely appalled by the service I have received & how
these actions are damaging my credit rating. Any advice greatly appreciated! Thank you in advance!

tb Thu 03-Apr-14 14:34:44

Contact the financial problem pages in one of the broadsheets. I know that the Daily Telegraph has one. You could also try the CAB for advice on how to proceed.

Perhaps an idea might be to write to them stating what has happened and asking them to look into it. Writing is always better than a phone call as you then have proof as to what's been said.

ilovepowerhoop Thu 03-Apr-14 14:40:43

could you contact them via twitter/facebook as that may spur them into action if it in a public forum

camberwellred Thu 03-Apr-14 17:53:17

Thanks a lot for the suggestions, My background is in PR so should be helpful in escalating this, I'm just hoping it needn't get to this stage as I'm trying to balance a new job & f/t childcare so strapped for time & whilst this continues my fines are getting bigger and bigger.

I e-mailed the above to hq and am awaiting a reply, however as I've tried this approach several times before (luckily have e-mail trail) I have absolutely no faith that this will be sorted.

Will go to CAB next week, fingers crossed they can help, will also try facebook & twitter. Will update you -just whoever reads this, never never use them - so so dodgy.

LavenderGreen14 Thu 03-Apr-14 18:03:01

I would go to twitter and facebook - shame them into sorting it out publicly. Also money saving expert can be helpful too.

camberwellred Thu 03-Apr-14 18:21:54

Hi there, can't find a facebook account, how do I compress this into a twitter message?!

ilovepowerhoop Thu 03-Apr-14 18:26:30

ilovepowerhoop Thu 03-Apr-14 18:29:11

is this the email address you used: - seems to be what they quote on facebook

ilovepowerhoop Thu 03-Apr-14 18:29:50

dont know why I made that a link, sorry blush

VanitasVanitatum Thu 03-Apr-14 18:34:30

Just tweet them about being harassed by bailiffs even though you have contacted X number of times and paid in full etc.. You can use more than one tweet!!

camberwellred Thu 03-Apr-14 18:37:09

Thank you! No didn't e-mail them on this - have just filled out an online complaint form (basically with the above pasted) and received a message back saying they are getting a specialist team to look into it, but, again stating all charges owed. Since I've been told it would be investigated since early Feb, I don't feel entirely confident that they will do this, and meanwhile they continue to fine me! Do you think I should e-mail the hq too - any other things I can do? Not sure how I can compress this into a twitter message!

ilovepowerhoop Thu 03-Apr-14 18:43:07

Cant hurt to email the HQ email address. Havent really used twitter so cant help there.

GlaikitFizzog Thu 03-Apr-14 18:43:34

Link to this thread on twitter?

WeAreEternal Thu 03-Apr-14 18:58:26

So the balance on the account was cleared in jan and they are just chasing you for a charge that was incurred before then but not added to the balance, and charged that have incurred as a result of not making payments on the 1st charge, is that right?

Or was there a mistake and the balance was not paid off in jan?

I think your best bet is to call and demand to speak to a manager, explain that you are willing to pay the original charge immidiatly but as you were told that the balance was cleared in jan you can not be held responsible for the additional charges.

Although I don't understand why you didn't just pay it straight away when they contacted you in feb, they will probably not let this go easily as all the charges since then have been incurred with your knowledge of their being an unpaid outstanding balance.

ilovepowerhoop Thu 03-Apr-14 19:06:47

why should she have paid money in February if she was under the impression that her balance and all charges had been paid in January? How could she have an unpaid outstanding balance if the account was paid off?

camberwellred Thu 03-Apr-14 19:19:39

I didn't pay it because I was told that I had paid it, in full. Therefore the fine & charges (£50) was not only in my opinion immoral & v expensive ! but if I had paid it I had no confidence that this would have settled it either.

sisterofmercy Thu 03-Apr-14 19:31:46

Other things to try:

Get CAB to contact them. It is surprising how companies will listen to them instead of you, in my experience.

Write an actual paper letter to their CEO as well as e-mail so you maximise different contact routes. Very is owned by Shop Direct. Alex Baldock is the group chief exec. He's on Linked-in, I note. His address is Skyways House L70 1AB. The email is floating around on the net. Hopefully there's enough there for you to do enough googling to find contact details - dead tree-mail, phone and e-mail.

Posts on facebook and twitter sometimes wake companies up but if you look at the facebook page of Very you'll see it full of complaints (and compliments, to be fair) and their replies to ring or email them which doesn't get you very far forward.

Get written confirmation of every decision and keep checking the Your Account section on the website, if it is still activated. It shouldn't be but it sounds like the procedures haven't been done properly.

It might be less grief to pay the money and then try and get it back but I would take proper advice on that.

Good luck.

sisterofmercy Thu 03-Apr-14 19:33:42

There are services like twitlonger which allow you to write longer tweets.

ilovepowerhoop Thu 03-Apr-14 19:45:28

Shop Direct Finance Company Limited is a member of The Finance & Leasing Association (FLA), and subscribes to The FLA Lending Code. For more information on the Lending Code please visit - you could make a complaint via the FLA website

Credit provided subject to status by Shop Direct Finance Company Limited. Registered number 4660974. Registered office: Aintree Innovation Centre, Park Lane, Netherton, Bootle, L30 1SL. 4660974 is Authorised and Regulated by The Financial Conduct Authority - you could always refer to the FCA as well (or threaten to)

Nappaholic Thu 03-Apr-14 23:47:21

Just to chip in with a few thoughts....

1. Credit record will already be affected, albeit to a very minor extent.

2. Debt collection does NOT mean bailiffs unless and until there is a court order - ie Very have sued you for the debt and had a successful judgment - a CCJ. Debt collectors can do no more than call/write/visit and remind you of the liability. They cannot harass you though - that would constitute a criminal offence!

3. If Very were to bring a small claim to recover the £100 odd, they would have to explain their claim to the court, and you would have an opportunity to put your side. You could insist on their producing documents, and recordings, within the proceedings. Once you put in a defence, the case should be transferred to YOUR local court, and costs are not automatically awarded in the small claims court, so you have almost nothing to lose.

4. If the court finds against you, you have 28 days (I believe) to pay the order before it becomes a proper CCJ and appears on your credit record. If you pay in time, nothing can be registered.

5. You can contact Experian etc and ask them to put a note on your record indicating that the liability is in dispute, or if the court finds for you in proceedings, get a direction that Very confirms to Experian etc the liability was an error and to remove it from your file.

Nappaholic Thu 03-Apr-14 23:49:26

Sorry..ought to say in summary, if you feel robust enough, ignore them unless and until they actually issue a claim against you.

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