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  • FIRST POST
    • CrazeeCurlee
    • By CrazeeCurlee 9th Jul 18, 9:09 PM
    • 29Posts
    • 3Thanks
    CrazeeCurlee
    Oldest friend took 1400, moved house, changed contact details without paying me back, what do I do?
    • #1
    • 9th Jul 18, 9:09 PM
    Oldest friend took 1400, moved house, changed contact details without paying me back, what do I do? 9th Jul 18 at 9:09 PM
    EDIT: Thank you to everyone who has responded, I really appreciate all your time in reading and posting. However... I have got the message that it is unlikely I will get the money back! I still want to take it to court, so I would be grateful for responses on how much the process is likely to cost, where I can send court documents to and if I can't send them to her mum or her nan, how much it would cost to trace her. Thans.

    THE STORY: Sadly I've seen a few similar cases on here... she agreed to hold onto some money for me (so I wouldn't spend it on stupid stuff) and transfer it on a certain date. She never did, there were always excuses as to why she couldn't, until she sent a dodgy screenshot which she claimed showed the money coming out of her account, changed her contact details and then never responded to anything I sent. The week before she went AWOL she moved into a new address, but did not give me it. I never received the money, and have all the proof of this. Additionally, her screenshot only showed 900 so even by her own evidence 500 is missing.

    I'm wondering what I can do now? My understanding is I need to send a letter before action (I have a good template for this) and offer mediation (I have found a good place) but since I don't know her address, or who exactly it is she works for, is it enough to send a letter before action via email, or to her Mum's or Nan's or previous living address? If not, I've seen Monkey Finder recommended on here, any idea how much they would cost? How about the whole process - realistically, how much am I going to have to spend?
    Last edited by CrazeeCurlee; 10-07-2018 at 9:28 AM.
Page 2
    • poppasmurf_bewdley
    • By poppasmurf_bewdley 10th Jul 18, 9:59 AM
    • 5,258 Posts
    • 5,360 Thanks
    poppasmurf_bewdley
    You might not be able to get hold of her at the moment, but she will surface at some time, probably in the not too distant future.

    When she does, then that will be your opportunity to take the opportunity to take her to court and ruin her credit rating.

    I don't blame you for doing this. In the same boat, I would too.
    "There are not enough superlatives in the English language to describe a 'Princess Coronation' locomotive in full cry. We shall never see their like again". O S Nock
    • bertiewhite
    • By bertiewhite 10th Jul 18, 10:21 AM
    • 1,224 Posts
    • 1,367 Thanks
    bertiewhite
    I'm with Poppasmurf - she'll slip up at some time - some people can't help themselves, especially on social media.

    So get yourself back on it - you don't have to post everything about yourself, just watch & wait.

    Are her Mum & Nan near to you? I bet she'll visit at sometime and one day you'll just happen to be driving past
    • gycraig
    • By gycraig 10th Jul 18, 10:26 AM
    • 469 Posts
    • 370 Thanks
    gycraig
    Do you know where she works ?
    • Boohoo
    • By Boohoo 10th Jul 18, 10:58 AM
    • 574 Posts
    • 67 Thanks
    Boohoo
    EDIT: Thank you to everyone who has responded, I really appreciate all your time in reading and posting. However... I have got the message that it is unlikely I will get the money back! I still want to take it to court, so I would be grateful for responses on how much the process is likely to cost, where I can send court documents to and if I can't send them to her mum or her nan, how much it would cost to trace her. Thans.

    THE STORY: Sadly I've seen a few similar cases on here... she agreed to hold onto some money for me (so I wouldn't spend it on stupid stuff) and transfer it on a certain date. She never did, there were always excuses as to why she couldn't, until she sent a dodgy screenshot which she claimed showed the money coming out of her account, changed her contact details and then never responded to anything I sent. The week before she went AWOL she moved into a new address, but did not give me it. I never received the money, and have all the proof of this. Additionally, her screenshot only showed 900 so even by her own evidence 500 is missing.

    I'm wondering what I can do now? My understanding is I need to send a letter before action (I have a good template for this) and offer mediation (I have found a good place) but since I don't know her address, or who exactly it is she works for, is it enough to send a letter before action via email, or to her Mum's or Nan's or previous living address? If not, I've seen Monkey Finder recommended on here, any idea how much they would cost? How about the whole process - realistically, how much am I going to have to spend?
    Originally posted by CrazeeCurlee
    If you do take your "friend" to court and let's say you win and you get the money how will that effect your bankruptcy?
    If you win will you have to give all the money to OR?
    If the loan to your friend was before you went bankrupt would that of been included with it and then the OR should chase your friend for the outstanding balance i think.
    If your "friend" had your money just before you went bankrupt or very soon after then if you take your "friend" to court and OR finds out about the 1400 not having been declared to the OR before you went bust i dont think they will be very impressed do you?
    Also maybe your "friend" knows this about your money and is hoping you don't want to chase it incase it comes out in court and looks bad for you.
    I hope it all works out in the end for you.
    • madvicker
    • By madvicker 10th Jul 18, 11:12 AM
    • 144 Posts
    • 99 Thanks
    madvicker
    The main reason you are unlikely to win this in the small claims court is there doesn't appear to be any written agreement or contract between you and your friend. At least, not that I can tell in what you've written. The courts will want to see evidence that you can prove the money was yours, lent to your friend, to be returned on a specified date. Unfortunately it appears all those agreements were verbal, which you cannot prove unless she herself tells a judge that you gave her the money with the intent to pay it back. All she has to do in court is deny that fact - there is nothing in writing to prove otherwise.

    Get yourself some evidence in writing - otherwise you are relying on your friend's admittance in court. Without evidence you are just going to be throwing money away into a black hole.
    • tacpot12
    • By tacpot12 10th Jul 18, 11:18 AM
    • 1,367 Posts
    • 1,175 Thanks
    tacpot12
    Given you have some evidence that your friend accepts that she owes you some money (900 if not 1400) in the form of screenshots, you should be able to take her to the small claims court. Your best course of action is to ask a solicitor to send a letter before action and hope that the prospect off being taken to court will cause her to start paying you back. Your letter might offer payment terms e.g. 100 per month to help her return the money.

    Many sure you have all the evidence assembled in one place; texts, emails, screenshots etc. all need to be ready to court. The solicitor should only charge a small amount to write a letter, if you make it clear that you will not need them in court.
    • Paul_DNAP
    • By Paul_DNAP 10th Jul 18, 11:22 AM
    • 256 Posts
    • 324 Thanks
    Paul_DNAP
    @Paul, In my initial post I said she had sent a screenshot of her bank account which she argued showed the money had left her account and been sent to me (it didn't show that at all and I didn't receive any money) which is evidence of her acknowledging that she needed to give me back money. In addition to this I have reams of emails and FB conversations, texts, evidence of the transfer initially going into her bank etc. etc. It's clearly very straightforward (which is why I'm so shocked she'd do this)... However I'd prefer not to go into details of the case as I'm more interested in answers to the questions previously posted.
    Originally posted by CrazeeCurlee

    That might be enough to get Judge Rinder declaring in your favour, but even then he could come out with not having a clear contract in place. I think a real court may want to see more, but it could be worth a try, you may get some of your money back.
    But it's going to be a long, arduous and stressful task, first of all there's a question of if you can find her, and then if she shows up to court, and then if you win you will have to wait to see if she pays up the judgement, if not you'll have to escalate it through several steps all the way up to high court enforcement, and even then it will depends if the bailiffs can find her, and then if she has anything worth taking when they do.
    (Although I could be wrong, I often am.)
    • foxy-stoat
    • By foxy-stoat 10th Jul 18, 11:27 AM
    • 2,642 Posts
    • 1,523 Thanks
    foxy-stoat
    Everyone is saying it's gone, you won't get it back, don't even bother: there must be a reason small claims courts exist? Could I not get an attachment of earnings? Why is the chances of getting the money back so small that I shouldn't even attempt it?
    Originally posted by CrazeeCurlee
    Due to money you have to spend, additional stress and it will impact on your life negatively and you may not get a result at the end of it.

    By all means pay for a tracing agent, get her address and start a small claim and see where you get with it. If your paperwork is not 100% then the courts may just rule there is no debt and than will be that. If they side with you they get a CCJ - then you have to collect or enforce it. Blood from a stone or you may get 5 a week - good luck.
    • Candyapple
    • By Candyapple 10th Jul 18, 11:30 AM
    • 2,943 Posts
    • 2,288 Thanks
    Candyapple
    EDIT: Thank you to everyone who has responded, I really appreciate all your time in reading and posting. However... I have got the message that it is unlikely I will get the money back! I still want to take it to court, so I would be grateful for responses on how much the process is likely to cost, where I can send court documents to and if I can't send them to her mum or her nan, how much it would cost to trace her. Thans.
    Originally posted by CrazeeCurlee
    It will cost you 70 online to start a claim.

    It doesn't matter if she claims not to have received it, as long as you send it to her last known address then the claim has been served on her. Up to you whether you want to send it to her actual last address (she may have a mail forwarding in place) or her mum's address. You could also use her work address, the court allows it:
    https://www.moneyclaimsuk.co.uk/creditor-and-claimant-questions-and-answers/can-I-make-a-claim-using-the-debtors-work-address.aspx

    Once you have done this, if she does not respond in time then you can claim judgement in default. In other words, you win automatically. At this point the other side may well apply to have the judgement set aside and be relisted, claiming that they never received the claim form. All this means is that they can no longer just bury their head in the sand and have got to deal with the issue. However, a lot of people don't do this - largely as they are unaware that they can - and just pay up at this stage.

    One thing to be aware of with county court claims, if the debtor doesn't pay off their own back then it's up to you to actually get your money.

    Order to obtain information from a debtor:
    To issue an application for an order for a debtor or other person to attend court to provide information fees order 8.3
    55

    To request Bailiff service of an order for a debtor to attend court for
    questioning fees order 8A.1
    110

    Attachment of earnings fees order 8.7
    Application for an attachment of earnings order (a fee is payable
    for each defendant against whom the order is requested). 110
    https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/722533/EX50-eng-0718.pdf

    Regarding tracing her, Google is your friend. I have no idea whether these companies are legit or not, but here is one I found from Google:
    http://www.mcatracing.co.uk/tracing-agents.htm

    https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/reclaim/small-claims-court/
    I'm a Board Guide on the Credit Cards, Loans, Credit Files & Ratings boards. I'm a volunteer to help the boards run smoothly, and I can move and merge threads there. Any views are mine and not the official line of moneysavingexpert.com
    • Herzlos
    • By Herzlos 10th Jul 18, 4:46 PM
    • 7,826 Posts
    • 7,180 Thanks
    Herzlos
    Do you know where she works ?
    Originally posted by gycraig

    That's what I was thinking; whilst it's reasonable to change address (rental ending or whatever), it's unlikely she's changed job as well. If she's got a car and you know where she works it should be easy enough to establish if she's still there even if it's just to serve papers.


    But realistically, the money is gone. Unless you can embarrass/shame her into giving it up then you're going to get nothing but expenses and stress.


    Talking to parents / mutual friends is worth the shot, but remember she's likely told them some completely different story about why they shouldn't listen to you.
    • CrazeeCurlee
    • By CrazeeCurlee 10th Jul 18, 7:07 PM
    • 29 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    CrazeeCurlee
    If you do take your "friend" to court and let's say you win and you get the money how will that effect your bankruptcy?
    If you win will you have to give all the money to OR?
    If the loan to your friend was before you went bankrupt would that of been included with it and then the OR should chase your friend for the outstanding balance i think.
    If your "friend" had your money just before you went bankrupt or very soon after then if you take your "friend" to court and OR finds out about the 1400 not having been declared to the OR before you went bust i dont think they will be very impressed do you?
    Also maybe your "friend" knows this about your money and is hoping you don't want to chase it incase it comes out in court and looks bad for you.
    I hope it all works out in the end for you.
    Originally posted by Boohoo
    It wasn't a loan. This money was declared on the bankruptcy form under 'who owes you money' or something similar, so the OR already knows about it. We spoke about it during the interview too, both the amount, the circumstances and the fact I would like to take her to court but don't know her address. I had heard that the OR sometimes chases money owed but in this case they elected not to (not sure if it's because I don't know her address or what). When I explained what I had planned to spend the money on, the OR said that if I got the money back she would try to arrange for at least some of it to come back to me. I reckon you're probably right that ex-friend thinks that it might look bad if I go to court and thinks that I won't want to, but I'm not concerned about that for the reasons above. Thanks for your concern though.
    • CrazeeCurlee
    • By CrazeeCurlee 10th Jul 18, 7:09 PM
    • 29 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    CrazeeCurlee
    That's what I was thinking; whilst it's reasonable to change address (rental ending or whatever), it's unlikely she's changed job as well. If she's got a car and you know where she works it should be easy enough to establish if she's still there even if it's just to serve papers.


    But realistically, the money is gone. Unless you can embarrass/shame her into giving it up then you're going to get nothing but expenses and stress.


    Talking to parents / mutual friends is worth the shot, but remember she's likely told them some completely different story about why they shouldn't listen to you.
    Originally posted by Herzlos
    I don't know where she works, she doesn't have a car, and I've spoken to her family and friends that know us both. Again, I don't understand why it's soooo incredibly unlikely I will get anything back?
    Last edited by CrazeeCurlee; 10-07-2018 at 7:23 PM.
    • DCFC79
    • By DCFC79 10th Jul 18, 7:24 PM
    • 32,543 Posts
    • 20,475 Thanks
    DCFC79
    I don't know where she works, she doesn't have a car, and I've spoken to her family and friends that know us both. Again, I don't understand why taking her taking her to court isn't an option?
    Originally posted by CrazeeCurlee

    Was there an agreement in place as post number 25 asks ?
    I take it all the texts etc mention it isnt a gift for her ?


    You need her address first to do anything, I don't know if sending the letter to her mums/nans address would work (you would need to find that bit out.)
    • CrazeeCurlee
    • By CrazeeCurlee 10th Jul 18, 7:29 PM
    • 29 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    CrazeeCurlee
    The main reason you are unlikely to win this in the small claims court is there doesn't appear to be any written agreement or contract between you and your friend. At least, not that I can tell in what you've written. The courts will want to see evidence that you can prove the money was yours, lent to your friend, to be returned on a specified date. Unfortunately it appears all those agreements were verbal, which you cannot prove unless she herself tells a judge that you gave her the money with the intent to pay it back. All she has to do in court is deny that fact - there is nothing in writing to prove otherwise.

    Get yourself some evidence in writing - otherwise you are relying on your friend's admittance in court. Without evidence you are just going to be throwing money away into a black hole.
    Originally posted by madvicker
    I have absolutely no idea where you got that everything was verbal as that was not written or implied in my post at all. In fact, everything was in writing as we were too busy to meet much in the weeks surrounding all this. As I mentioned in up thread, there is actually loads in writing but I have elected not to go into too much detail as this is not the point of the thread.
    • CrazeeCurlee
    • By CrazeeCurlee 10th Jul 18, 7:33 PM
    • 29 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    CrazeeCurlee
    That might be enough to get Judge Rinder declaring in your favour, but even then he could come out with not having a clear contract in place. I think a real court may want to see more, but it could be worth a try, you may get some of your money back.
    But it's going to be a long, arduous and stressful task, first of all there's a question of if you can find her, and then if she shows up to court, and then if you win you will have to wait to see if she pays up the judgement, if not you'll have to escalate it through several steps all the way up to high court enforcement, and even then it will depends if the bailiffs can find her, and then if she has anything worth taking when they do.
    Originally posted by Paul_DNAP
    I have more evidence, I'm just choosing not to go into it here. Yes I know it's going to be long and hard, I'm looking for advice on how to navigate all this. If you have any practical advice on how to initiate court proceedings in the circumstances I have described that would be great.
    • CrazeeCurlee
    • By CrazeeCurlee 10th Jul 18, 7:36 PM
    • 29 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    CrazeeCurlee
    Given you have some evidence that your friend accepts that she owes you some money (900 if not 1400) in the form of screenshots, you should be able to take her to the small claims court. Your best course of action is to ask a solicitor to send a letter before action and hope that the prospect off being taken to court will cause her to start paying you back. Your letter might offer payment terms e.g. 100 per month to help her return the money.

    Many sure you have all the evidence assembled in one place; texts, emails, screenshots etc. all need to be ready to court. The solicitor should only charge a small amount to write a letter, if you make it clear that you will not need them in court.
    Originally posted by tacpot12
    Thanks for this. Do I need a solicitor or can I do it myself? Or is it just that sending it via solicitor might scare her more? Also, where do I send the letter?
    • CrazeeCurlee
    • By CrazeeCurlee 10th Jul 18, 7:41 PM
    • 29 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    CrazeeCurlee
    Due to money you have to spend, additional stress and it will impact on your life negatively and you may not get a result at the end of it.

    By all means pay for a tracing agent, get her address and start a small claim and see where you get with it. If your paperwork is not 100% then the courts may just rule there is no debt and than will be that. If they side with you they get a CCJ - then you have to collect or enforce it. Blood from a stone or you may get 5 a week - good luck.
    Originally posted by foxy-stoat
    OK thanks for at least trying to explain, I know the process is likely to be quite long and hard and there are no guarantees but people must get their money back or they wouldn't bother with the process? The whole point of this post is to see whether or not I should be getting a tracing agent, what the paperwork should look like, how to collect etc. If you have any solid advice on that I'd love to hear it.
    • CrazeeCurlee
    • By CrazeeCurlee 10th Jul 18, 7:44 PM
    • 29 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    CrazeeCurlee
    Was there an agreement in place as post number 25 asks ?
    I take it all the texts etc mention it isnt a gift for her ?


    You need her address first to do anything, I don't know if sending the letter to her mums/nans address would work (you would need to find that bit out.)
    Originally posted by DCFC79
    YES! The agreement is clearly in writing and nowhere is it even possible it was a gift. I had already responded to post #25 before you even commented with this post. Honestly how many times do I have to go over this, I'm really not interested in hashing out the particulars of this case, I want to know how to go about making a claim. The second part of your post acknowledges that you can't really help me with that.
    • CrazeeCurlee
    • By CrazeeCurlee 10th Jul 18, 7:47 PM
    • 29 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    CrazeeCurlee
    It will cost you 70 online to start a claim.

    It doesn't matter if she claims not to have received it, as long as you send it to her last known address then the claim has been served on her. Up to you whether you want to send it to her actual last address (she may have a mail forwarding in place) or her mum's address. You could also use her work address, the court allows it:
    https://www.moneyclaimsuk.co.uk/creditor-and-claimant-questions-and-answers/can-I-make-a-claim-using-the-debtors-work-address.aspx

    Once you have done this, if she does not respond in time then you can claim judgement in default. In other words, you win automatically. At this point the other side may well apply to have the judgement set aside and be relisted, claiming that they never received the claim form. All this means is that they can no longer just bury their head in the sand and have got to deal with the issue. However, a lot of people don't do this - largely as they are unaware that they can - and just pay up at this stage.

    One thing to be aware of with county court claims, if the debtor doesn't pay off their own back then it's up to you to actually get your money.


    https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/722533/EX50-eng-0718.pdf

    Regarding tracing her, Google is your friend. I have no idea whether these companies are legit or not, but here is one I found from Google:
    http://www.mcatracing.co.uk/tracing-agents.htm

    https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/reclaim/small-claims-court/
    Originally posted by Candyapple
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    This is exactly what I was looking for
    • CrazeeCurlee
    • By CrazeeCurlee 10th Jul 18, 7:49 PM
    • 29 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    CrazeeCurlee
    Thanks everyone for responding, I have appreciated the goodwill of most posters even if all the advice wasn't what I was looking for. I now have an answer to the question that I asked, will update this thread with how it goes :-)
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