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  • FIRST POST
    • Citizen-Erased
    • By Citizen-Erased 7th Nov 17, 11:18 AM
    • 5Posts
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    Citizen-Erased
    Incorrect default damaged my rating, can I recover interest costs?
    • #1
    • 7th Nov 17, 11:18 AM
    Incorrect default damaged my rating, can I recover interest costs? 7th Nov 17 at 11:18 AM
    Hi All, Long time lurker and I now have a bit of an interesting question to ask.


    Is it possible to claim costs / damages / defamation / missed opportunity for an incorrectly recorded default on a credit report?


    I have recently won a fight against Lowell Portfolio / 02 to have an alleged debt written off. This debt was recorded on a default on my credit file with call credit. I have been monitoring my credit report with Equifax since about 2014 as I noticed I was able to get credit but never seemed to get better deals. However it appears this company Lowell only reports to Callcredit. As a result I was unaware of any default on my profile. Furthermore 02 did show up as a creditor on my report with all payments up to date and no history of missed payments.


    I therefore simply accepted that it was simply a case of having too little credit and a £500 credit card default settled in 2010 that was the reason for my credit "worthiness" and accepted deals with cards like Vanquis Bank and Barclaycard Initial - Not the best deals but credit none the less. Over the years from 2013 onwards I have got better deals, but still not what Id expect with a reasonable score. I have had cars on credit in this time with sub-prime lenders at higher interest rates of over 20%, higher rate prime credit cards and currently two small personal loans at higher rates with a prime lender. Any adverse credit history dropped off my report in early 2016, which helped a little but I still couldn't get the better rates or deals....


    I now believe that the default recorded from Lowell is the reason why. This will have cost me thousands in the 4 years its been on my report in additional interest charges.


    To cut a very long story short I was contacted by Lowell for a "pre-legal assessment" at my current address in mid summer and the account referenced 02. I called 02 and they informed me I had no debt and was in good standing. Indeed I have upgraded several times with them over the years. I contacted Lowell and asked them a series of questions they were unable to answer and would "investigate". They came back a few weeks later with answers from 02 that made no sense based on my own paperwork and payment history.


    I had a 30 day SIM only contract with 02 back in 2011. Then later 2012 or early 2013 I took out a contract for a handset and have been an 02 customer since, until yesterday. It has since emerged that 02 set me up as a new contract customer and switched my mobile number over to a new 02 account, giving me two account numbers. This was done without my knowledge and as a former 02 contractor I know there is no good reason to do this, at all.


    The old account then somehow ended up with over £850 bill a few weeks later, though 02 never contacted me to resolve this nor sent me a letter regarding the debt. The large bill, I have been told by Lowell was disconnection charges for a contract. They were unable to tell me what the contract was for. insisting it was for an iphone 3GS, a handset that was my own owned handset bought for cash from a third party. I never had more than 30 days of contract on the "old" 02 account so this is not possible.


    I informed Lowell of this and sent them proof 02 supplied no handset to me on the "old" account number they were using. Lowell wrote to me last week to confirm they have closed the account and will remove the default. They will not confirm if they will "sell on" the debt. They didnt seem to understand that question?


    So, would I have reasonable grounds to claim damages and who would that be against, 02 or Lowell?
Page 1
    • zx81
    • By zx81 7th Nov 17, 11:30 AM
    • 14,403 Posts
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    zx81
    • #2
    • 7th Nov 17, 11:30 AM
    • #2
    • 7th Nov 17, 11:30 AM
    You would need to evidence how much you think extra you have been paying in interest.

    If the default was only on Call Credit, then the majority of lenders may not have seen it. You also wouldn't be able to claim anything for the credit card interest, as it would have been your choice to revolve a balance.

    The fact you had additional defaults makes it much less clear cut than you may think.

    I'd suggest it's easier to keep it simple and ask for a couple of hundred pounds in goodwill. You may get lucky.
    • spadoosh
    • By spadoosh 7th Nov 17, 11:40 AM
    • 4,693 Posts
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    spadoosh
    • #3
    • 7th Nov 17, 11:40 AM
    • #3
    • 7th Nov 17, 11:40 AM
    I'd agree with the above. Ask for a goodwill payment and hope for the best.

    Really all they need to say is 'we never made you take out credit' and youve suddenly got a weak argument. They never made you agree to the higher rates. That was your choice.
    Don't be angry!
    • cjmillsnun
    • By cjmillsnun 7th Nov 17, 1:11 PM
    • 355 Posts
    • 226 Thanks
    cjmillsnun
    • #4
    • 7th Nov 17, 1:11 PM
    • #4
    • 7th Nov 17, 1:11 PM
    Lowell definite report to all three CRAs. I have 2 defaults (both satisfied) with Lowell and all my credit reports show them.
    • Citizen-Erased
    • By Citizen-Erased 7th Nov 17, 1:34 PM
    • 5 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    Citizen-Erased
    • #5
    • 7th Nov 17, 1:34 PM
    • #5
    • 7th Nov 17, 1:34 PM
    Lowell definite report to all three CRAs. I have 2 defaults (both satisfied) with Lowell and all my credit reports show them.
    Originally posted by cjmillsnun
    Lowell have told me they do not report to Equifax, my clearscore and Equifax accounts show nothing from them. Neither does my Checkmyfile account I just setup .


    The fact you had additional defaults makes it much less clear cut than you may think.
    Originally posted by zx81
    I defaulted on a credit card in December 2009 - Silly student days. Debt was paid off in January 2010 and the defualt dropped off 6 years later. As of December 2015 there has been no "negative" mark on my profile since then and I have not missed a payment on a card since 2014 - which was a 1 month late payment.

    Im aware debt levels, income, postcode, age etc. all play a role. I was exposed to some of the inner calculation workings for a large banking group back in 2011 so Im aware many, many factors are in play - but an active default is like a killswitch to the majority of lenders.
    Last edited by Citizen-Erased; 07-11-2017 at 1:37 PM.
    • magyar
    • By magyar 1st Dec 17, 4:14 PM
    • 18,376 Posts
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    magyar
    • #6
    • 1st Dec 17, 4:14 PM
    • #6
    • 1st Dec 17, 4:14 PM
    Lowell definitely do report to Equifax because there is an erroneous report on my file which is not on Call Credit or Experian. Otherwise, I am in exactly the same situation as you - except I have failed to get them to remove the default.

    Legally I'd agree it's hard to make a claim against them. As you have no contractual relationship you'd have to claim loss under common law and as per above post, you didn't have to take those more expensive loans out. I sympathise, because I'm in the same situation and was only offered a more expensive loan as well, but in my case didn't take it out.
    Says James, in my opinion, there's nothing in this world
    Beats a '52 Vincent and a red headed girl
    • nic_c
    • By nic_c 1st Dec 17, 9:08 PM
    • 1,127 Posts
    • 641 Thanks
    nic_c
    • #7
    • 1st Dec 17, 9:08 PM
    • #7
    • 1st Dec 17, 9:08 PM
    Would you claim just from Lowell, after all O2 did the original default. When did Lowell buy it from O2 - before or after you got credit that costs more?
    • magyar
    • By magyar 4th Dec 17, 9:25 PM
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    magyar
    • #8
    • 4th Dec 17, 9:25 PM
    • #8
    • 4th Dec 17, 9:25 PM
    I'd agree with the above. Ask for a goodwill payment and hope for the best.

    Really all they need to say is 'we never made you take out credit' and youve suddenly got a weak argument. They never made you agree to the higher rates. That was your choice.
    Originally posted by spadoosh
    Out of interest discussed this with a lawyer friend of mine and he reckoned there is a reasonable case for compensation here because whilst the company didn't make you agree to the higher rates, the OP was not made aware of why they were being charged them (since CRAs don't go out their way to make it known to people they have a default on their file).

    I do agree in the OP's case the other defaults make it more complicated but the principle of claiming damages against someone who has caused you loss in this way is reasonably sound.
    Says James, in my opinion, there's nothing in this world
    Beats a '52 Vincent and a red headed girl
    • Arleen
    • By Arleen 4th Dec 17, 9:49 PM
    • 1,040 Posts
    • 769 Thanks
    Arleen
    • #9
    • 4th Dec 17, 9:49 PM
    • #9
    • 4th Dec 17, 9:49 PM
    Out of interest discussed this with a lawyer friend of mine and he reckoned there is a reasonable case for compensation here because whilst the company didn't make you agree to the higher rates, the OP was not made aware of why they were being charged them (since CRAs don't go out their way to make it known to people they have a default on their file).

    I do agree in the OP's case the other defaults make it more complicated but the principle of claiming damages against someone who has caused you loss in this way is reasonably sound.
    Originally posted by magyar
    What sort of lawyer told you that, or what facts did you rely to him?
    You will need to PROVE (not claim) how much moe interest exactly you were paying, and that it was only because of the wrong default, and that it was unreasonable for you to be aware of it (aka it was unreasonable to check the other credit files long ago). Just because OP had other defaults this automatically shoots the idea of proving anything out of the window. But even without it how exactly are you going to prove that you were paying any higher interest at all?
    • magyar
    • By magyar 5th Dec 17, 10:55 AM
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    magyar
    Well he’s actually a construction lawyer but knows a lot about claims.

    I don’t disagree the burden on proof would be on the OP but if you had records that eg company 1 would have charged 3% interest but turned you down and company 2 accepted you at 6% then - provided a judge agreed this was a reasonable link.
    Says James, in my opinion, there's nothing in this world
    Beats a '52 Vincent and a red headed girl
    • Arleen
    • By Arleen 5th Dec 17, 11:06 AM
    • 1,040 Posts
    • 769 Thanks
    Arleen
    Well he’s actually a construction lawyer but knows a lot about claims.

    I don’t disagree the burden on proof would be on the OP but if you had records that eg company 1 would have charged 3% interest but turned you down and company 2 accepted you at 6% then - provided a judge agreed this was a reasonable link.
    Originally posted by magyar
    I'm not disagreeing that he is a lawyer, but likely have limited knowledge of how credit business works. And just your example wouldn't really prove anything, if you will go now and get a quota for loan from 3 companies you will get different APRs, even if they all will offer the same representative APR. And that is because system behind deciding if to give credit, and at what APR is so extremely complex that it may even vary literally between times of day within the same company as some of them also a considerable amount of loans given at any given rate already.
    The only way you could prove that it's that one default which caused any interest hikes would be letter from the lender stating so, and that just doesn't happen because the employees generally don't know either why - they just put data into the model and get a result.

    Legally this idea is very sound, you have a loss, someone is at fault, but proving it is borderline impossible, especially for small loans. Something size of mortgage may be worth a budge, but rest is a small fish.
    • magyar
    • By magyar 5th Dec 17, 11:08 AM
    • 18,376 Posts
    • 30,437 Thanks
    magyar
    I appreciate the complexity - and to be clear I am not suggesting the OP actually pursue a claim.

    I was just trying to say that the argument ‘you didn’t have take out the loan’ wouldn’t necessarily wash if you could provide sufficient evidence.
    Says James, in my opinion, there's nothing in this world
    Beats a '52 Vincent and a red headed girl
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