Control Account scam???

A Little while ago, my In laws recieved a letter addressed to me. The letter was from control account plc, saying they were collecting £150 for Import/export/vat/tax on behalf of UPS.
Well I did have a guitar sent to their address as I was in the process of moving house.
Immediately I payed the money via their website using PayPal, there were other options to pay. After I payed, I decided to call UPS and complain as the letter had said that UPS had tried to contact me to pay the money I owed them and I had not responded. Well I never received any letter, phone calls or emails from UPS. So I called them to complain about not contacting me and handing it over to a debt collection agency.
After a very long phone called I was told by UPS that I dont owe them any money and that they never use control account.
So at this point I felt sick as I realised I had been scammed.
I talked to my bank and they suggested that I contacted paypal.
PayPal opened a claim on my behalf and said control account would have 10 days to reply.
Well I got my money back, since then control Account have called me, txt me, and sent more threatening letters to my in laws address, now adding late fees.

Has anyone else had any dealings with control account?
Any ideas on how I can get them to stop pestering me? I've blocked two different phone numbers they called me from so far but my in laws are worried about someone turning up at there house, although I doubt that will happen.
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Comments

  • Controlaccount absolutely do chase UPS debts.  Whoever told you they don't is wrong.  Most likely the reason why UPS see you as not owing anything is because the debt has been sold to... Controlaccount. Selling the debt would get it off their systems.

    The best way to stop them pestering you is to pay the debt.
  • Im happy to pay if I owe money, it just seems very suspicious. I Understand the selling of the debt, but why had I not heard anything from UPS before??? It was UPS themselves that told me they dont use control account.
    I have never had this before.
    Why did PayPal give me back my money? Also why wont control account give me any proof of me owing UPS???

  • Im happy to pay if I owe money, it just seems very suspicious. I Understand the selling of the debt, but why had I not heard anything from UPS before??? It was UPS themselves that told me they dont use control account.
    I have never had this before.
    Why did PayPal give me back my money? Also why wont control account give me any proof of me owing UPS???

    Maybe the UPS letter got lost in the post, maybe there was an error and it wasn't sent out.  Think about it, you sent a package by UPS, presumably from one country to another, and you happen to get a letter some time later saying you owe import VAT to UPS.  It's a hell of a fishing exercise to just send out letters at random hoping someone has received something by UPS internationally, and probably not a very lucrative one.

    You spoke to front line customer services at UPS who typically have very little knowledge of what other departments get up to.  Just search the forums to see many instances of Controlaccount chasing UPS debt, and a quick Google search for "controlaccount ups" shows many sites linking the two.

    I have no idea why PayPal gave you your money back, you were the one who made the complaint, presumably you know what you were complaining about.

    It does appear to be typical for Controlaccount to have essentially zero information from UPS regarding the specifics of the debt.  I have no idea why this is.  At the end of the day, if the declared value of your guitar was in the £600-£700 range, they're after import VAT for that. In fact, it's pretty obvious that's what they're after, you sent an item internationally and then a letter comes through asking for import VAT...
  • I appreciate that, thanks for the help.
    I am unsure of who delivered the guitar, it was just a shock as it was nearly 6 months after and previously if I've had anything sent internationally they usually hold the Item until tax/vat is paid. When I first googled control account I found a lot of people talking about scams and it was very confusing. I admit I panicked. Like I said If I owe money, than I will pay, I'd never try and dodge these kind of things, I just joined on here to see If anyone could help me as I was unsure how to proceed.
  • I'm facing a similar case with Controlaccount and DHL. I never received any letter from DHL and frankly have no idea if the sender used DHL in my most recent (6 months ago?) delivery from Italy. Like many I have deliveries every other day, so who knows if DHL was the one used un that specific occasion. And even if it was, I haven't received any note from DHL. Did they sell the credit to CA? Well, they should have told me, which they have no evidence of having done that in an era where everyone has a phone number and an email address and they stick to post that doesn't get traced nor delivered. And CA is not sharing any specific letter or invoice or whatever from DHL. So why anyone would have to pay what might be legit but it is not substantial and can well be a scam?
  • Juall said:
    I'm facing a similar case with Controlaccount and DHL. I never received any letter from DHL and frankly have no idea if the sender used DHL in my most recent (6 months ago?) delivery from Italy. Like many I have deliveries every other day, so who knows if DHL was the one used un that specific occasion. And even if it was, I haven't received any note from DHL. Did they sell the credit to CA? Well, they should have told me, which they have no evidence of having done that in an era where everyone has a phone number and an email address and they stick to post that doesn't get traced nor delivered. And CA is not sharing any specific letter or invoice or whatever from DHL. So why anyone would have to pay what might be legit but it is not substantial and can well be a scam?


    I've been trying to get to the bottom of this for weeks now and control account are relentless, yet wont show any evidence, talking further to UPS and they just told me to take it up with control account. I've seen so may people complaining about the exact same thing, how are they allowed to keep harassing and scamming people?
    Think it's time to take this to action fraud.
  • Pollycat
    Pollycat Posts: 34,471
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    edited 16 September 2021 at 7:19AM
    Juall said:
    I'm facing a similar case with Controlaccount and DHL. I never received any letter from DHL and frankly have no idea if the sender used DHL in my most recent (6 months ago?) delivery from Italy. Like many I have deliveries every other day, so who knows if DHL was the one used un that specific occasion. And even if it was, I haven't received any note from DHL. Did they sell the credit to CA? Well, they should have told me, which they have no evidence of having done that in an era where everyone has a phone number and an email address and they stick to post that doesn't get traced nor delivered. And CA is not sharing any specific letter or invoice or whatever from DHL. So why anyone would have to pay what might be legit but it is not substantial and can well be a scam?


    I've been trying to get to the bottom of this for weeks now and control account are relentless, yet wont show any evidence, talking further to UPS and they just told me to take it up with control account. I've seen so may people complaining about the exact same thing, how are they allowed to keep harassing and scamming people?
    Think it's time to take this to action fraud.
    As per the post from y3sitsm3, maybe they are harassing you because they really did buy the debt from UPS and want the money for that debt.

    In that case, it is not a scam and is not fraud.
  • In the UK, "credit management" (i.e. debt collection!) is a regulated activity and companies working within this financial activity have to comply with the Financial Conduct Authority's "Sourcebook", which sets out the appropriate rules.
    Such companies are perfectly entitled to enforce debts but have to keep to the rules.  So, first things first: request proof of any debt, and when presented with adequate proof, pay up or negotiate a payment arrangement.   If some of the debt is disputed, pay what you believe is owing and dispute the balance.  Where some or all of the debt is disputed, write (not telephone) and say so, politely inviting the alleged creditor to recover the debt in the County Court and point out that continuing to make contact with you by phone or otherwise about a disputed debt is against FCA rules that prohibit harassment.
    If the company nevertheless does continue to try to collect a disputed debt, complain to the FCA and send a copy of the complaint to the company.  And repeat as necessary! 
    NB - Of course, you only have yourself to blame if the company successfully enforces a claim against you in the County Court and you really did owe the debt!
  • In the UK, "credit management" (i.e. debt collection!) is a regulated activity and companies working within this financial activity have to comply with the Financial Conduct Authority's "Sourcebook", which sets out the appropriate rules.
    Such companies are perfectly entitled to enforce debts but have to keep to the rules.  So, first things first: request proof of any debt, and when presented with adequate proof, pay up or negotiate a payment arrangement.   If some of the debt is disputed, pay what you believe is owing and dispute the balance.  Where some or all of the debt is disputed, write (not telephone) and say so, politely inviting the alleged creditor to recover the debt in the County Court and point out that continuing to make contact with you by phone or otherwise about a disputed debt is against FCA rules that prohibit harassment.
    If the company nevertheless does continue to try to collect a disputed debt, complain to the FCA and send a copy of the complaint to the company.  And repeat as necessary! 
    NB - Of course, you only have yourself to blame if the company successfully enforces a claim against you in the County Court and you really did owe the debt!
    This only applies to debt collectors who are collecting debts from credit agreements, it's not a blanket rule for all debt collectors.

    As Controlaccount are not collecting these types of debts, they don't need to be FCA registered (and they're not) or follow the FCA's guidance on debt collectiion.
  • Is it possible that the ones called TS was scammers? Since I have read quite many similar schemes reported by people at some complaint boards like phonebook.ai. I think the best way to do is just to reconfirm with UPS and ask them to help verify whether the caller is a real Controlaccount.
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