Drydensfairfax demanding a financial review despite court agreement

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Those lovely people at Drydens Fairfax have sent a letter stating "It is important that we contact you regularly to understand whether there have been any changes in your personal situation and review your repayment arrangement" along with their own 5 page "Standard Financial Statement" for me to complete and return within 30 days, and that my account is "on hold" for 30 days while I "complete the review or contact us." The financial statement seems more intrusive than is standard and I'm reluctant to complete it unless it's legally necessary.

Case history - drydens fairfax are acting on behalf of Erudio student loans over my student loan from the 1990s. I've never earned above the threshold for repayment due to being a full time carer for my disabled child - I'm now a single mum on benefits, so I shouldn't have had to pay back anything, and as I'm 50 next year, the original debt would have been written off. However, following two house moves, domestic abuse and illness, (which Erudio/Drydensfairfax were informed of) I forgot to defer the loan and they obtained a CCJ. I'm not sure of the legality of the CCJ, given that I'd made an offer to Student Loans Company/Erudio to settle the original debt at a reduced rate which they never responded to - should a CCJ have been made (which I knew nothing about at the time) when there was an offer on the table? However, I proposed to pay £25 a month in 2019, which Drydensfairfax/Erudio accepted. 

I think they've carefully worded this letter to make it sound as if I MUST complete the financial statement, hoping to then tell me I need to increase my £25 payments - however, as the £25 was agreed in court, I don't believe that this is a legal requirement. Especially the wording of "Your account is on hold for 30 days to give you time to complete the review OR contact us." Am I within my rights to just contact them to confirm that my personal circumstances haven't changed and that the £25 agreement still stands?

They've tried bully boy tactics with me before and I tried to complain to the Financial Ombudsman about it, but as they're "Drydens Fairfax Solicitors" I was told I needed to complain to the Legal Ombudsman, who promptly told me to complain to the Financial Ombudsman... who still refused to look at my complaint... seems like they've found a nice way of avoiding compliance with the regulations! It's all left me feeling very suspicious about their tactics, so I'm guessing they're trying to trick me into a situation where I might end up paying more despite the court agreement?

Comments

  • Skintsquid
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    *** I've just realised the Court agreement to £25 was in 2020, not 2019, not sure if that makes a difference!
  • sourcrates
    sourcrates Posts: 28,999 Ambassador
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    If the court judgement is for £25 per month, then that is what you should pay.

    Its obvious Dryden`s want you to up your payments, by sending you this form, under the guise of it been a requirement, when in fact you are correct, in that you are not obliged to do anything they ask of you.

    Your only commitment to them is the amount the court ordered you to pay, no more, no less.

    If they wanted your payments to go up, they can ask you voluntarily, or otherwise would have to apply to the court once again, and the decision would be based on your budget.

    So a short letter or email stating "my circumstances remain the same" or words to that effect, would be my response to them.
    I’m a Forum Ambassador and I support the Forum Team on the Debt free wannabe, Credit file and ratings, and Bankruptcy and living with it boards. If you need any help on these boards, do let me know. Please note that Ambassadors are not moderators. Any posts you spot in breach of the Forum Rules should be reported via the report button, or by emailing forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com. All views are my own and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.For free non-judgemental debt advice, contact either Stepchange, National Debtline, or CitizensAdviceBureaux.Link to SOA Calculator- https://www.stoozing.com/soa.php The "provit letter" is here-https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/discussion/2607247/letter-when-you-know-nothing-about-about-the-debt-aka-prove-it-letter
  • PaulW922
    PaulW922 Posts: 1,037 Forumite
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    And.... do not miss any of the court mandated payments as it will give them an excuse to go back to court and ask for full enforcement. Currently you are in the best position you can be, with the court effectively protecting you. The only route for Drydens is to go to court themselves and ask the court to review your payments - which is highly unlikely
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