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Received a letter stating that STBXH has died...

(38 Posts)
SteadyHand Tue 27-Oct-15 09:28:37

I have received a letter from a debt collection agency stating that my STBXH has died and can I please forward his death certificate to update their records.

The thing is, he is very much still alive.

He left in May, has moved in with the OW and has been struggling for money ever since, as he hasn't been working up until this week. He hasn't been reliable in paying maintenance and I had received letters about other debts in his name, stating that he's stopped paying them all.

Am I to assume that he's told this company that he has died, to avoid paying? If so, should I ring the company and tell them, or is this a matter for the police? (Not sure if it is, as he hasn't exactly faked his own death, just lied about it).

Any advice would be appreciated, thanks.

TheOnlyColditz Tue 27-Oct-15 09:30:54

I wouldn't get involved with this at all. Involving yourself in an ex's debt can make the companies try to pursue you for them. If you want them to stop contactingyou, ring them and say you don't have any association with him, don't know where he is etc

kimlo Tue 27-Oct-15 09:31:54

I would just ring them and tell them you cant give them the death certificate because hes not dead and give them his new adress. Its up to them what they do after that.

Im not sure how he thinks he was going to get away with it to be honest.

MummaGiles Tue 27-Oct-15 09:32:04

I would correct the error and tell them his current address. If they want to pursue the fact he fraudulently tried to get out of paying that's up to them.

MumOnTheRunAgain Tue 27-Oct-15 09:32:04

Could it be a debt collectors 'tactic' to get you to pay it? Very immoral if so, but I'm suspicious of debt collectors anyway!

suzannecaravaggio Tue 27-Oct-15 09:35:14

Any thing from a debt collection agency I'd just ignore, they use under hand tactics to get people to engage, sounds like a fishing or even phishing trick to me!

WhoTheFuckIsSimon Tue 27-Oct-15 09:37:04

I would want to tell them the truth. Because who has "written" to them to inform them of his death. Obviously he hasn't written the letter. If the company are writing to you I would assume he's forged your signature and thst "you've" actually written to them to inform them of his death. You don't want to get caught up in some fraud thing.

AnchorDownDeepBreath Tue 27-Oct-15 09:37:44

Hmm... If you reply at all, I'd just say that you are not aware of his death and do not have his death certificate. Say you cannot help, and you would like them to stop contacting you on his behalf as you have no association with him.

Morally it's probably right to give his new address and say that he is alive, but they know that you've got a current connection to him then, so you'll probably make them contact you more then.

AnyoneButAndre Tue 27-Oct-15 09:40:01

Wow, the sooner you get your divorce finalised the better. And then notify all the credit agencies that you are not connected.

VimFuego101 Tue 27-Oct-15 09:40:44

Is he really that sneaky that he would actually do this - or do you think it's a tactic the agency might use to get you to call? If the former - make sure you send him a sympathy card grin not sure I'd be inclined to contact the agency though, other than to say you have no association with him. It would probably open the floodgates and they'd contact you constantly.

VoyageOfDad Tue 27-Oct-15 09:40:50

If he was dead, and you were still married, wouldn't you then be liable for all his debts ?

But as he's not dead, and there is no certificate , there's not much the debt company can do....

I'd just tell them the truth.

WhoKnowsWhereTheTimeG0es Tue 27-Oct-15 09:40:51

I agree with Anchor, just say you have no association with him and cannot provide a death certificate. Don't get involved any further.

Whoknewitcouldbeso Tue 27-Oct-15 09:42:06

I wouldn't engage either. The only caveat to that tactic would be if you could now be held liable for the debt as you are still married and he is supposedly dead confused

IsabellaofFrance Tue 27-Oct-15 09:44:55

I wouldn't get involved with this at all. Involving yourself in an ex's debt can make the companies try to pursue you for them

Not unless they are join debts.

suzannecaravaggio Tue 27-Oct-15 09:48:37

These agencies are all as dodgy as fuck
This is probably just a new tactic
Most of the debts they buy aren't legally enforceable anyway

AnchorDownDeepBreath Tue 27-Oct-15 09:49:20

You do need to let them know that you don't have his death certificate. It doesn't matter who informed them of the death - there's no reason to believe that you signature was plagiarized at this point - they'd ask you for the certificate as you are his wife.

You need to let them know that you don't have it, and that you are not associated. That's it. Make sure you ask them to stop contacting you in writing.

There's a small risk that if you ignore it, they'll continue to keep the debt on hold and keep writing to you asking for the certificate, rather than pursuing him for the debt. Things are a lot simpler if they are pursuing him when you divorce, rather than you.

suzannecaravaggio Tue 27-Oct-15 09:52:20

Don't forget the statute barred thing, if you acknowledge the debt that means they can Pursue it for another's six years

Floundering Tue 27-Oct-15 09:53:26

You can also apply to the credit reference agencies with a letter of disassociation to ensure your financial records are kept seperate in future even if registered at your current home. Your credit status may be lowered if he's using your joint accounts for running up huge debts. Get that divorce through ASAP & get your name off any joint accounts.

Oliversmumsarmy Tue 27-Oct-15 10:00:45

Tell the DCA that you have had no association with him for xx years/months and had no idea that he had died and you are in shock to find out by letter of his death. Then leave it up to them to pursue.

DelphiniumBlue Tue 27-Oct-15 10:07:18

If you are going to reply at all, don't lie. So don't say you don't know where he is if you do. You can say that he's moved out from yours and that you can't give his address, you can say that as far as you know he's not dead.
Have you spoken to him about it? Then at least you'd know if he's pulling a scam or if the debt collectors are.

TTTatty Tue 27-Oct-15 10:13:56

If debts are in joint names you are both liable, if they are in his sole name then you are not liable, if he were to die you would STILL NOT be liable for his debt in his name. His estate would be liable - just to clear up any confusion!

Call them and tell them he is not dead and give his address if you know it - they may try to 'encourage' you to pay it - ignore all that as it is bollocks!

ohtheholidays Tue 27-Oct-15 10:17:14

Like others have said I would'nt want to contact the debt collectors myself as if the debts not yours but your not quite divorced yet you don't want them coming back to you,I don't for one minute believe that it's a tactic by the debt collection agency's as they could be done for lying about the death of somebody.

But I would ring the Police,non emergency number as they can get involved as if your ex has informed companies that he owes money to that he's died then that is fraud OP,especially if there's a chance that he's wrote corrospondence as if it's from you or he's signed anything as if it's from you.

I'd ring them today,tell them what's happened and who contacted you and what it said,make sure to take the full name of who you talk to at the Police Station.I promise you they will take it seriously,I had something similar happen with both of my ex's.It's best to inform the Police so that you have proof that you had nothing to do with your ex's attempted fraud as it's a very serious matter.

My ex's got into a lot of trouble and the Police were disgusted with them both and were completely on my side.

If your having problems with maintanance as well the fact that my 2 exs had got caught via the Police ment that the CSA made sure they did they're job properly for once and I actually started getting money for our children for the first time ever.

PigletJohn Tue 27-Oct-15 10:22:34

The debt agency could have ordered a death cert themselves, it would have been quicker and more reliable.

ObsidianBlackbirdMcNight Tue 27-Oct-15 10:22:55

Just to clarify the 6 years statutes barred 'thing'

You don't need to acknowledge the debt for them to be allowed to pursue it. The company just needs to evidence that they have made reasonable efforts to contact you. So if they wrote to you on an address you were living at and you couldn't prove you were living elsewhere that would be enough in court to prove efforts to contact you. It's not as simple as just ignoring debts and hoping they go away.

Mind you, debt recovery agencies almost never take people to court. I supported someone with 10s of thousands of debt with recovery companies, they had over ten years of letters threatening to take them to court and it never happened. But nor did the companies give up.

Personally, I'd write to them recorded delivery and state you are no longer connected in any way and do nt have the death certificate. Not lying but not getting too involved either.

SteadyHand Tue 27-Oct-15 10:26:16

Thanks so much for all the advice. I will ring them and tell them that we are divorcing, he is still alive and give them his new address.

I believe he or his new partner must have informed them. I believe this because he went into my drawers one day and took my wedding and engagement rings which I was keeping to give to my daughters when they are older- the rings are no longer where I left them. Another smaller thing is that he has spent our joint Clubcard points that I was saving to buy our son's Christmas presents with. My fault for not spending them sooner, as I know they belonged to him too, it's just anothe thing that shows that he does what he likes without remorse sad

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