What can I do about Currys mis-selling broadband to elderly vulnerable people??

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  • sheramber
    sheramber Posts: 19,096 Forumite
    First Anniversary I've been Money Tipped! First Post Name Dropper
    As a side note as the word 'vulnerable' seems to be very misunderstood, I was approaching that from a regulatory point of view, where there is very much a duty of care to identify and cater to vulnerable individuals.

    I understand many of the arguments are "I'm old and not vulnerable!" type statements, but, in the kindest possible way, you're wrong. It doesn't mean you're defenceless and unable to think and act for yourself, and you DO NOT need to have a protected characteristic to qualify as vulnerable.

    I can't post links, but for example, if you look at the FCA guidance on this you'll see this:

    In May 2022, 47% (or 24.9m) of UK adults showed 1 or more characteristics of vulnerability, unchanged from 48% (or 25.1m) in February 2020.

    It's also why I find that attitude very frustrating, and just because you specifically are an exception (and you are), we should still be pushing for companies to protect everyone and do their due diligence to identify vulnerabilities. Stop sticking up for them and their terrible actions just because you feel it might not apply to you!

    Howmany of the percentage were under70 and how many over 70?
    Having a vulnerable characteristic is not limited to over 70s
  • born_again
    born_again Posts: 14,410 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper
    As a side note as the word 'vulnerable' seems to be very misunderstood, I was approaching that from a regulatory point of view, where there is very much a duty of care to identify and cater to vulnerable individuals.

    I understand many of the arguments are "I'm old and not vulnerable!" type statements, but, in the kindest possible way, you're wrong. It doesn't mean you're defenceless and unable to think and act for yourself, and you DO NOT need to have a protected characteristic to qualify as vulnerable.

    I can't post links, but for example, if you look at the FCA guidance on this you'll see this:

    In May 2022, 47% (or 24.9m) of UK adults showed 1 or more characteristics of vulnerability, unchanged from 48% (or 25.1m) in February 2020.

    It's also why I find that attitude very frustrating, and just because you specifically are an exception (and you are), we should still be pushing for companies to protect everyone and do their due diligence to identify vulnerabilities. Stop sticking up for them and their terrible actions just because you feel it might not apply to you!

    FCA covers financial services, not the likes of currys.
    As such ANY person (no matter what age) is considered vulnerable, If they come into a large sum of money, could be inheritance, pension or have a major life event etc. As that is their definition.

    I was declared a 
    vulnerable person as I lost my mother & had a inheritance & also took a pension payout. Was quite amusing to have my department manager tell me that. Not that I did not know anyway 🤷‍♀️

    Sadly "vulnerable" is a word that gets banded around far to much, when there are problems.
    Life in the slow lane

  • Currys advised I have to make a complaint by telephone or by mail (?!?), which I am not happy about, either. 
    Thanks for sticking with the thread OP, front line customer services are likely unable to deal with this kind of thing, the CEO email is probably best for something that is off script. 

    Keep us updated if you can, it would in general be useful to others seeking help to hear how this goes :) 
  • James_Cater
    James_Cater Posts: 20 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    edited 21 December 2023 at 11:11PM

    Howmany of the percentage were under70 and how many over 70?
    Having a vulnerable characteristic is not limited to over 70s
    Pretty irrelevant, as I said in my OP that she's not tech-savvy in the slightest, and they would be able to tell that witin seconds of trying to sell her 'better' broadband. She could be 145 or 22.

    Don't get caught up on the vulnerability thing if you don't understand it - there are many other considerations. A better example of this is can someone surviving on a pension take the considerable financial losses and fees from their actions. That makes someone vulnerable. Or ask a legal or finance professional what they have to consider as a vulnerable client. It's not a choice either party makes to be 'vulnerable' - it's just a fact.

    In this case her vulnerability is a relatively minor issue, but that all adds up as aggravating factors to the overall complaint.

  • Howmany of the percentage were under70 and how many over 70?
    Having a vulnerable characteristic is not limited to over 70s
    Pretty irrelevant, as I said in my OP that she's not tech-savvy in the slightest, and they would be able to tell that witin seconds of trying to sell her 'better' broadband. She could be 145 or 22.

    Don't get caught up on the vulnerability thing if you don't understand it - there are many other considerations. A better example of this is can someone surviving on a pension take the considerable financial losses and fees from their actions. That makes someone vulnerable. Or ask a legal or finance professional what they have to consider as a vulnerable client. It's not a choice either party makes to be 'vulnerable' - it's just a fact.

    In this case her vulnerability is a relatively minor issue, but that all adds up as aggravating factors to the overall complaint.
    You keep getting caught up on the vulnerability aspect. I would just drop it - it adds nothing to your case and (as shown here) just muddies the water. 

    If the contract was missold because of false information, the focus on that. That doesn’t require a party to be vulnerable. 

    But, as I have asked before - why was the contract not cancelled within the 14 day cooling off period? If there’s a reason for it (like if not being in the terms/hidden) then it’s more likely that you can exit the contract freely. But if the customer did accept the terms, and then cancel their existing contract (and paid exit fees) you’ll be relying on the misselling aspect. 


  • But, as I have asked before - why was the contract not cancelled within the 14 day cooling off period?
    It was.
    Now she has no broadband or landline over Christmas. Imagine how much fun the family gatherings will be for the younger kids! Better find Buckaroo out of the loft...


  • But, as I have asked before - why was the contract not cancelled within the 14 day cooling off period?
    It was.
    Now she has no broadband or landline over Christmas. Imagine how much fun the family gatherings will be for the younger kids! Better find Buckaroo out of the loft...
    Probably a lot more fun than the grandchildren staring at devices all Christmas instead of talking and playing with granny.

    Or were Christmases never fun until broadband came along?
  • Murphybear
    Murphybear Posts: 7,274 Forumite
    First Anniversary Name Dropper Photogenic First Post
    edited 18 January at 9:20PM
    Is 70s elderly now ..... ? 🤨
    Certainly not  :D. My husband says “old is 20 years more than you are”.  He’s 75 now and I’m 71 
  • sheramber said:

    You were the one who used her age as being vulnerable. 
    No , it doesn’t matter what age a person is to be vulnerable but also, being in 70’s doesn’t automatically make a person vulnerable, which is what you post implied.
    Her AGE makes her elderly, as she is of pensionable age and over 65. By definition, that is 'elderly'. This CAN also be a vulnerability, but that doesn't matter, as she has several more vulnerability characteristics. Again, I'm not going to keep arguing these points with people who don't like the fact that they don't specifically apply in their own minds - this one isn't about you. Please look up the definitions of the words and have a look at professional websites giving their identifying characteristics.
    Even if you really do this I implied her age makes her vulnerable, what makes this wrong? What do you think elderly and vulnerable mean?  Please do the above because you are giving people wrong information by arguing against this/
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