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Legal question regarding direct debits

(7 Posts)
JuniorH Thu 21-Aug-08 16:21:19

Hoping someone can help clarify a point Sky have made regarding setting up a direct debit over the phone.

They claim it is illegal (according to the data protection act) for them to take direct debit details over the phone from my partner.

The Sky account is in my name. The account we have direct debit's come out from is his, They say they can take mine over the phone but would be breaking the law if they took his. They will however allow him to do so by filling out a direct debit mandate and posting it.

Is this true or (as I suspect) a load of tosh?

They took his account details over the phone in the past, as have other companies.

I'd really appreciate if anyone could advise on the legalities if this.

Incidentally, they did allow him to pay the amount on a credit card which was not his, go figure... (we did have permission for that btw!!)

Thanks in advance!

hanaflower Thu 21-Aug-08 16:23:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

JuniorH Thu 21-Aug-08 16:27:33

No you don't. I know that much. They would take mine over the phone anyway hmm

Fizzylemonade Thu 21-Aug-08 17:53:40

They don't need a signature as you can do "paperless direct debit" but a letter is sent out to confirm that they have you details and they list them and the amount you have agreed to pay and the date (it covers their ass as they don't have anything signed by you to send to the bank)

As the bank account is your DP's name and the account is in yours I think they may be right in needing his signature to agree to pay your account.

Credit cards work differently as they are covered by different codes. You had access to the card etc and if the person whose card it was complained and said they didn't give you permission to use it, it could be argued that they hadn't taken reasonable care of the card blah blah blah and it was out of their possession.

Hope this makes sense.

fiodyl Thu 21-Aug-08 21:17:56

No idea if it is illegal, but TalkTalk took my direct debit details over the phone when the account is in DPs name and I never signed anything. I'm sure there have been other times when we have done this too.

Maybe its just Sky's policy rather than it being illegal?

JuniorH Fri 22-Aug-08 14:17:14

Thanks everyone

I agree fiodyl, I think they have changed their policy. It just annoys me when they haven't trained their staff properly and they say something is legal instead of company policy! The people on the phone get the grief but it's not their fault if they just haven't had thigs explained to them!

Thanks ladies

WideWebWitch Fri 22-Aug-08 14:29:31

It's not about legality, it's about complying with the direct debit guarantee and its terms, which are set by all the banks.

They are right not to allow an account in your name to have a dd set up from someone else's name. If they allowed it via paperless dd (eg not in writing) you could raise something called an indemnity claim against them and ask the bank to refund you immediately. The bank would do so and then re claim it from Sky.

So either sign up for paperless dd over the phone using your own account or fill in the form.

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