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My direct debit applied to ex husband's account in error and without consent

(26 Posts)
fleshmarketclose Mon 11-Dec-17 18:47:13

I set up a brand new phone contract online through Carphone Warehouse. I paid the up front payment with my visa debit account and obviously believed that the direct debit would be applied to the card I gave.
Exh contacted me ranting because a direct debit had been set up on his bank account and accused me of doing so fraudulently. He doesn't have a contract with EE/T mobile that the direct debit is from but my new phone is with EE and the amount on the direct debit is correct.
I contacted EE today to check the details of the direct debit, they gave me the sort code (which isn't mine) which is exh's (I asked him).
I asked where they had got those bank details from as they weren't mine and they said I must have given them. But I couldn't have given them because I didn't know them at the time and still only know exh's sort code, his name, address and dob obviously.
They can only have got those details from an old phone contract that ended at least five years ago.
How can it be legal to hold onto those details and how did a dd be set up on an account in a different name and address without any consent.
I have been passed from pillar to post today with no answers.
Today exh has been pretty reasonable but on a different day if the mood is wrong this could have caused real unpleasantness for me and there seems to be no understanding of this.
Please advise who I should contact and what I need to be raising with them as I have been told repeatedly I must have given them the wrong details when it isn't possible for me to do so.
I have advised exh to contact them and the bank regarding the direct debit that has been applied without his agreement as well.

Decorhate Mon 11-Dec-17 18:55:35

You always have to fill out a form if you are setting up a new direct debit. Did you do that when you got your new phone? If not, it does look like they have treated it as an existing account. I would ask them for a copy of the direct debit mandate if they still insist you gave them the details.

fleshmarketclose Mon 11-Dec-17 19:05:45

No I've had nothing through the post at all yet. I wasn't expecting payment to be taken yet tbh. The old contract was never mine and not in my name so they have linked me to exh old contract rather than any old contract of mine as I haven't had one with them previously.

Migraleve Mon 11-Dec-17 19:15:46

Just change the direct debit to your account. There isn't really any harm done or am I missing something major?

dementedpixie Mon 11-Dec-17 19:24:34

Your ex should contact his bank to get the payment refunded under the direct debit guarantee. Direct debits are set up on sort code and account number so Carphone warehouse wouldn't have been able to use the card details to set up the direct debit. Did they not ask for bank details on the online application?

If they have used details from an old account then sounds like they have gone against the data protection act especially as your ex is not even part of the contract

Migraleve Mon 11-Dec-17 19:35:00

Your ex should contact his bank to get the payment refunded under the direct debit guarantee.

Surely it would be easier if the OP just gives him the money (I assumed she already had tbh) then change the DD details with CPW

dementedpixie Mon 11-Dec-17 19:43:56

He would still have to cancel the direct debit on his account as it was set up without permission.

Migraleve Mon 11-Dec-17 20:12:38

Of course. I would have done that straight away. It's take seconds to cancel a DD with online banking. If he doesn't have that he could do by phone or in branch. I just don't see why there would be any need to complicate matters. Change the DD, refund EX, make sure he cancels it from his bank (although as soon as OP changes the details to hers they wouldn't present for his anyway).

fleshmarketclose Mon 11-Dec-17 22:35:10

Yes he has cancelled the direct debit and of course he will be refunded the payment. My concern is more that they have linked my contract to an account five or six years old and no longer active and not even mine. They have alerted ex h to my financial transactions which I do my utmost to keep from him because of past financial and emotional abuse and they refuse to give any explanation as to how this happened.

Migraleve Mon 11-Dec-17 22:42:38

You are unlikely to get any answers from them tbh. My only concern would be to take action to ensure the DD comes from your ac. I think you need to have a look at both your account details online and your emails which will no doubt have information or link to information when you took the contract out. The direct debit information will have been on some paperwork somewhere.

fleshmarketclose Mon 11-Dec-17 22:52:44

@Migraleve there is no direct debit information on any of the communication because I expected to set that up, on receipt of the phone, with EE. I paid the up front sum to Carphone Warehouse with my debit card and have the receipt for that transaction but there was never any direct debit set up. Even if I had set it up I couldn't have given them exh's bank details because I don't know them now or then which exh would confirm. EE had his details years ago and must have held onto them in order to set up a direct debit.

Migraleve Mon 11-Dec-17 23:21:18

They won't have set it without DD info. And they haven't. They have used your ExH's. It will be on The paperwork somewhere

Mxyzptlk Mon 11-Dec-17 23:34:06

If that info is on the paperwork that OP got, then DH has even more right to be annoyed as his bank info has been given to OP.

If it was me, I'd cancel the whole thing and start again with another phone provider, even if it was inconvenient for me to do that.

fleshmarketclose Tue 12-Dec-17 07:21:31

That's just it Migraleve I don't have any paperwork at all, I only have emails as I placed the order online. I'm obviously going to get paperwork at some point but we haven't had post delivered here since last Thursday because of the snow. If I'd had the paperwork and seen the wrong bank account I could have prevented exh knowing anything about it.
Seriously considering cancelling the phone and contract altogether particularly as they don't even acknowledge that there has been a mistake made.

DameFanny Tue 12-Dec-17 07:41:39

I would report them to both offcom and the Information Commissioner - they've bungled the opening of a phone account for offcom; and used data for a job-agreed purpose for the Information Commissioner.

Give them hell - with your ex this could have been dangerous, which is why data protection is supposed to be followed. And you might get a few tenners in apology.

Also, companies that hook you to a man's account without your express instructions can fuck off to the 1850s

Mxyzptlk Tue 12-Dec-17 09:04:54

Do none of the emails say anything about the direct debit?

(Sorry, should have said exH, not DH, in previous post)

Migraleve Tue 12-Dec-17 09:38:22

They will do, or there will be a link or info to set up an online account to check. Not to mention when you buy a phone online from CPW you have to input your direct debit information before making any upfront debit card payment.

misscph1973 Tue 12-Dec-17 10:01:04

It sounds very strange. I don't understand how they could get info from your current debit card about your XHs account? Most debit cards expire after 2 years, so whatever card your XH used 5 years ago doesn't exist anymore. Do you have the same address as you had 5 years ago?

Hopefully it will all make sense when you get your paper work.

Migraleve Tue 12-Dec-17 10:05:38

Debit card has nothing to do with direct debit. Direct debit comes from bank account number and sort code (sometimes shown on debit card) but the upfront payment is made by debit card (long number)

The bank account details don't expire. However you have to give them to get past the screen to make an upfront payment.

Mxyzptlk Tue 12-Dec-17 10:14:30

Either way, Migraleve, the direct debit should have come from the OP's account and should have had nothing to do with her exH.

Even if the address (and maybe surname) are the same, it could be any relative living there, or even a new resident with the same surname.

The phone company has definitely messed up here.

Migraleve Tue 12-Dec-17 10:16:51

That's correct they should have. However I'm struggling to see how this can be CPW at fault. You HAVE to give them your bank details to set up a new contracts. You can't do it without giving this. Unless it's an old contract being upgraded, which according to the OP; it is not.

AnnieOH1 Tue 12-Dec-17 10:17:39

Complaints then I would be looking at the financial services ombudsman and whichever is in charge of telecoms. Absolutely appalling.

dementedpixie Tue 12-Dec-17 12:10:36

How could op give his bank details if she didn't know them? I bet they have selected his details from the system rather than hers (maybe he had same surname and postcode for the other contract). It must be their fault if she hasn't given over the information

fleshmarketclose Tue 12-Dec-17 12:47:34

Yes exh has had that bank account for years and years and when we were together that was his bank account and we had a joint one as well. A contract back then for his phone would have been taken out of his bank account so they would have had those details.The surname is the same as mine now and I live in the family home so the address at the time would tally. But exh's account they have taken money from is in his sole name at his address.
I don't have the details for that account and never have had. Exh is pretty secretive ( he royally shafted me when we split but I can't prove it) so much so that when I need to transfer money to him (rarely) or he needs to transfer money to me (for the dc) he transfers it via our adult ds and I have to do the same.
I wasn't asked for any direct debit details I foolishly assumed they would tag them onto the debit card that I made the upfront payment with, I didn't give my bank details and couldn't have given exh's because even now I don't know it.
I have tried to setup the online account view but I think they are now investigating because it just keeps flagging that there is a problem and to contact them.
Exh was pretty reasonable yesterday but they weren't to know that and on a different day he can be incredibly unreasonable. EE put me in a position that they shouldn't have and so far don't seem to recognise the seriousness of that much less offer an apology or explanation.

Oblomov17 Tue 12-Dec-17 12:52:16

I believe you.
Recent credit card application had my bank details, for the DD, without me having given them. I was shocked.

I was actually phoning to set up the DD. But knew that I hadn't given them verbally or online yet. Eventually this got past to a senior manager and he agreed that they had not been given and he was mystified as to how they had been recorded.

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