MSE News: 'Halifax, Lloyds TSB and NatWest's fake letters as bad as Wonga's'

in Debt-Free Wannabe
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"MoneySavingExpert.com has compiled a 'fake' letter ranking based on the debt collection letters we've received "...
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'Halifax, Lloyds TSB and NatWest's fake letters as bad as Wonga's'

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  • PincherPincher
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    Oh really, try these:




    Dear Creature,


    This is God, Father of Adam. I am very wrathful, because you are behind on your payments.


    My Vengence is Mighty.


    yours faithfully,


    God








    Dear Johnny,


    Please be advised that you have been put on my Naughty list. Until you pay back what you owe, your stocking will be empty from now on.



    Merry Christmas

    Father Christmas,
  • VT82VT82 Forumite
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    "The fact that so many banks have been caught pressurising customers into paying debt by sending letters..."'

    Are you for real?!?!

    1) Customers should repay debt.

    2) Customers should therefore feel some pressure to repay their debt.

    3) Institutions that have lent people money should be allowed to take reasonable (non-criminal) measures to make people feel some pressure to repay their debts.

    I don't think that many people reading your story think that what these companies are doing is unreasonable. Criminal would be pretending to be a solicitor when you're not (Wonga?), or threatening violence (loan sharks). Everyone else is just doing what needs to be done.
  • harveybobblesharveybobbles Forumite
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    So is there any compensation going to be paid to customers who have rec'd letters from the outfits listed in the link?
  • ElkyElkyElkyElky Forumite
    2.5K Posts
    VT82 wrote: »
    "The fact that so many banks have been caught pressurising customers into paying debt by sending letters..."'

    Are you for real?!?!

    1) Customers should repay debt.

    2) Customers should therefore feel some pressure to repay their debt.

    3) Institutions that have lent people money should be allowed to take reasonable (non-criminal) measures to make people feel some pressure to repay their debts.

    I don't think that many people reading your story think that what these companies are doing is unreasonable. Criminal would be pretending to be a solicitor when you're not (Wonga?), or threatening violence (loan sharks). Everyone else is just doing what needs to be done.

    Comment of the day!

    What they're doing seems perfectly reasonable to me. Yeah, I guess it would suck to be on the receiving end of these letters but they should rightfully pursue what they're owed within the boundaries of the law.

    I've always expected banks to have in-house teams that try and deal with non-payers before the last resort of selling the debt on for peanuts.
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  • What about the student loans company? Surely this is one of the worse kind, preying on the naivety of young adults post education!
  • moohoundmoohound Forumite
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    Many people who received these letters were in debt management plans and were UNABLE to pay their contractual amounts due to changes in circumstances.

    I agree that customers should pay their commitments if they can but sometimes life throws you a curve ball and you simply cannot meet your commitments, me included, at age 40 I had to go into debt management because my dad had cancer and was unable to care for my son while I worked, so I had to find £500 a month to pay for childcare, and I was unable to do this and meet my obligations to my creditors as well, I did not choose to not pay up because I didn't want to or couldn't be bothered, I lived very frugally while in debt management, I had clothes with holes in and I paid as much as I possibly could the creditors were getting about half of what I used to pay, but I still got letters like those in the article threatening me with court action, every single week, and it becomes very stressful and upsetting when you are doing your best and it goes on for months and months. So before you judge or make it into a joke, take a moment to think about what it would be like to be in that position.
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  • corbyboycorbyboy Forumite
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    Perhaps MSE could give us their view on what steps these companies should be permitted to take in order to recover debts? Could they perhaps send a bunch of flowers with a note attached kindly requesting their money back?

    Bear in mind that these letters are sent to people who refuse to engage with lenders and have ignored many previous letters that have been sent.
  • VT82 wrote: »
    "The fact that so many banks have been caught pressurising customers into paying debt by sending letters..."'

    Are you for real?!?!

    1) Customers should repay debt.

    2) Customers should therefore feel some pressure to repay their debt.

    3) Institutions that have lent people money should be allowed to take reasonable (non-criminal) measures to make people feel some pressure to repay their debts.

    I don't think that many people reading your story think that what these companies are doing is unreasonable. Criminal would be pretending to be a solicitor when you're not (Wonga?), or threatening violence (loan sharks). Everyone else is just doing what needs to be done.


    I have no problem with banks putting a little bit of pressure on customers who owe money. (When I say little, I mean little. Not endless phone calls and letters harassing people).
    What I have a problem with is banks add charges to the debt for passing the debt to an "external" collection agency. How is that legal!?


    I believe that the banks should refund these additional charges plus interest and put right what they have done wrong.
  • moohound wrote: »
    Some people who received these letters were in debt management plans and were UNABLE to pay their contractual amounts due to changes in circumstances.

    I agree that customers should pay their commitments if they can but sometimes life throws you a curve ball and you simply cannot meet your commitments, me included, at age 40 I had to go into debt management because my dad had cancer and was unable to care for my son while I worked, so I had to find £500 a month to pay for childcare, and I was unable to do this and meet my obligations to my creditors as well, I did not choose to not pay up because I didn't want to or couldn't be bothered, I lived very frugally while in debt management, I had clothes with holes in and I paid as much as I possibly could the creditors were getting about half of what I used to pay, but I still got letters like those in the article threatening me with court action, every single week, and it becomes very stressful and upsetting when you are doing your best and it goes on for months and months. So before you judge or make it into a joke, take a moment to think about what it would be like to be in that position.

    FTFY - sure some do but most letters go out because the lender isn't hearing back from the borrower.

    Also in your case it is appropriate that they continued to write to you as your arrears were getting worse every month - you could easily argue that it was their responsibility to inform you of this. Unfortunately when arrears continue to get worse with no real end in sight then there is little option for the lender other than to escalate the action taken. Finally people's circumstances change, they might be in a position to pay the full payment now, it's usually the lender who barks loudest that gets paid first.
  • sourcratessourcrates Forumite
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    You are ALL missing the point here.


    The companies concerned were writing letters purporting to be from fictitious law firms, at the very least this is mis-representation, at worst, it may be illegal.


    In any event, it is poor business practice, and would be frowned upon where similar tactics used in any other industry.
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