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  • FIRST POST
    • Superdragonsmum
    • By Superdragonsmum 15th Sep 18, 6:59 PM
    • 14Posts
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    Superdragonsmum
    Being Fobbed Off?
    • #1
    • 15th Sep 18, 6:59 PM
    Being Fobbed Off? 15th Sep 18 at 6:59 PM
    Hello

    On 22nd July, I received a text message from the swimming school my son had an intensive course of 1:1 lessons with. In it, the schoolís owner said she would give me a refund the the two final lessons which my son did not have. This was because her teachers were ill and there had previously been some problems with the venues. She herself offered the refund and I accepted as the lessons were no longer needed being that we needed them for a holiday. I have contacted on several occasions via text as she refuses to answer the phone (always has even prior to this). One excuse was she was in holiday and would refund on return, another she Ďlostí her phone (lies as she was selling things on Facebook), some messages ignores, all always taking days or weeks to reply, prompted only by by ringing her number. I am really starting to angry. My question is, do you think she is trying to get away with it? She runs a very well known school with her husband and has three young children so Iím trying hard to give her the benefit of the doubt that maybe her life is a bit chaotic and that she seems to be disorganised by nature but Iím starting to think it may be deliberate. I can be a bit of a hot head so Iím trying to avoid being confrontational in case she shuts off completely. Your thoughts would be much welcome! Thank you!
Page 1
    • Les79
    • By Les79 15th Sep 18, 7:44 PM
    • 435 Posts
    • 540 Thanks
    Les79
    • #2
    • 15th Sep 18, 7:44 PM
    • #2
    • 15th Sep 18, 7:44 PM
    Assuming you have the text evidence, I would go the small claims court route.

    Firstly, send a "letter before action" directly to their address. In it, state what you expect and when you want it (usually 14 days). Provide them with a printout of the evidence you have. Advise that, if the refund is not processed within 14 days, you will be claiming in court (MCOL/small claims) and obtaining a judgement against them.
    • Superdragonsmum
    • By Superdragonsmum 15th Sep 18, 8:16 PM
    • 14 Posts
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    Superdragonsmum
    • #3
    • 15th Sep 18, 8:16 PM
    • #3
    • 15th Sep 18, 8:16 PM
    Thatís what I was hoping not to have to do Les, itís a lot of hassle. I know thatís ultimately what Iíll have to do though if she continues to not pay. Do you consider that she is deliberately trying to avoid paying or just that she is just not getting round to it? The last correspondence was Monday when she said sheíd pay by the end of the week. She had not replied to a text the previous Friday or Sunday and only texted (immediately) after I tried ringing her on Monday then nothing since.

    Thank you!
    • Les79
    • By Les79 15th Sep 18, 8:34 PM
    • 435 Posts
    • 540 Thanks
    Les79
    • #4
    • 15th Sep 18, 8:34 PM
    • #4
    • 15th Sep 18, 8:34 PM
    Thatís what I was hoping not to have to do Les, itís a lot of hassle. I know thatís ultimately what Iíll have to do though if she continues to not pay. Do you consider that she is deliberately trying to avoid paying or just that she is just not getting round to it? The last correspondence was Monday when she said sheíd pay by the end of the week. She had not replied to a text the previous Friday or Sunday and only texted (immediately) after I tried ringing her on Monday then nothing since.

    Thank you!
    Originally posted by Superdragonsmum
    I think it is more hassle chasing a debt continuously for weeks and getting to a point where you are considering the possibiliy that you are being "fobbed off".

    Just send the Letter Before Action (use a template if you want) which should take no longer than 30-60 minutes to write up and post. Wait 2 weeks and hopefully they'll resolve it.

    If not, go to MCOL website and put in a claim. Should take only 30-60 mins for that as well.
    • Rainbowgirl84
    • By Rainbowgirl84 15th Sep 18, 8:38 PM
    • 545 Posts
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    Rainbowgirl84
    • #5
    • 15th Sep 18, 8:38 PM
    • #5
    • 15th Sep 18, 8:38 PM
    How much money is involved?
    • Superdragonsmum
    • By Superdragonsmum 15th Sep 18, 9:01 PM
    • 14 Posts
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    Superdragonsmum
    • #6
    • 15th Sep 18, 9:01 PM
    • #6
    • 15th Sep 18, 9:01 PM
    Thank you Les, is this going to cost me?

    Rainbow girl itís only for £36 (£18 per lesson).
    • Rainbowgirl84
    • By Rainbowgirl84 15th Sep 18, 9:20 PM
    • 545 Posts
    • 939 Thanks
    Rainbowgirl84
    • #7
    • 15th Sep 18, 9:20 PM
    • #7
    • 15th Sep 18, 9:20 PM
    For £36 I'd not get too wound up. I know it's annoying. Are they on any Social Media that you can use to post a reminder to them? That often focuses peoples minds.
    • Superdragonsmum
    • By Superdragonsmum 16th Sep 18, 7:08 AM
    • 14 Posts
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    Superdragonsmum
    • #8
    • 16th Sep 18, 7:08 AM
    • #8
    • 16th Sep 18, 7:08 AM
    Yes, her swimming school is on Facebook and the web and she has a Facebook account too. What would be the benefit of reminding her via social media over text (which I have been doing)? I was planning on ringing her tomorrow (while she won’t answer but it will prompt her to text and remind her I am not going to go away). I was going to suggest I could pop down to her house to collect the money as I’m not far away (found her address online) hoping that might spur her into action. It’s not much money but it’s still mine and I’m a single parent so every penny matters.
    • Superdragonsmum
    • By Superdragonsmum 16th Sep 18, 7:13 AM
    • 14 Posts
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    Superdragonsmum
    • #9
    • 16th Sep 18, 7:13 AM
    • #9
    • 16th Sep 18, 7:13 AM
    By social media do you mean a public page? In which case I’ve thought of posting something like “ Hello, I’m having some d.......” And right on queue a message has just popped up from her saying “This was done last night”. An apology and gratitude for my patience might have been nice but I am so relieved! I’d better check just incase but thanks ever so much for all of your input!
    • Les79
    • By Les79 16th Sep 18, 1:09 PM
    • 435 Posts
    • 540 Thanks
    Les79
    Thank you Les, is this going to cost me?

    Rainbow girl it’s only for £36 (£18 per lesson).
    Originally posted by Superdragonsmum
    Well, MCOL may cost you to be fair (refundable if you win). But if you send the LBA then hopefully it will scare them enough to make payment If it doesn't, you can consider whether you want to go small claims (as the other poster said it may not be worth the hassle at THAT STAGE).

    Something like this:

    (date at top of letter)

    Dear XXX,

    I am writing to you regarding the non payment of 2x £18 lessons which were promised as refund due non completion of them. Please find enclosed a photo/screenshot of the text message which confirms this arrangement.

    I am seeking the full payment of this (£36 total) within 14 days of the date on this letter, so by XXX.

    My preferred refund method is: MMMM (if you are ok with it then put your bank account + sort code, that should be enough I think. Otherwise, make a reasonable arrangement such as meeting up for cash payment etc).

    If the balance is not settled within 14 days (XXX) then I will be issuing small claims court action (MCOL) to recover the debt owed, including the cost of undertaking the action. I will be seeking a court judgement to allow enforcement of payment.

    I appreciate your help in resolving this matter.

    Regards,

    XXX
    by LBA
    That being said, that's the heavy-handed "burn your bridges" approach so firstly consider whether you may come into contact with this person/company in the future. You could play it a different way and ask for credit against a future lesson, they'll probably be happier with that especially if this is simply a cashflow issue.
    Last edited by Les79; 16-09-2018 at 1:24 PM.
    • DoaM
    • By DoaM 16th Sep 18, 5:49 PM
    • 4,740 Posts
    • 4,725 Thanks
    DoaM
    And right on queue a message has just popped up from her saying ďThis was done last nightĒ.
    Originally posted by Superdragonsmum
    What was done? The refund?

    By what means? Direct payment via bank account?

    If yes, have you checked that the refund is in your account?
    Diary of a madman
    Walk the line again today
    Entries of confusion
    Dear diary, I'm here to stay
    • Superdragonsmum
    • By Superdragonsmum 19th Sep 18, 6:29 PM
    • 14 Posts
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    Superdragonsmum
    DoaM - dammit, I just checked my account and it has NOT been paid in. Will it only show up in my account after 3 working days? She alleged it was paid in Saturday evening. Les - thank you for all that you have written, I don’t want the credit though, we only needed the lessons for our holiday so I felt confident my son would be safe in the deep end. If this woman is trying to get away with it I am going to give her negative feedback on all her pages.
    • Superdragonsmum
    • By Superdragonsmum 19th Sep 18, 6:32 PM
    • 14 Posts
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    Superdragonsmum
    DoaM - just reread your message - I had previously reminded her of my bank details for her to pay the money in so it would have been a bank transfer Saturday evening. Surely that would show up immediately? Isn’t it cheques which take three days to clear??
    • Superdragonsmum
    • By Superdragonsmum 19th Sep 18, 6:34 PM
    • 14 Posts
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    Superdragonsmum
    I can feel myself getting very angry, I think I need to calm down. It’s my bday tomorrow too, I can see this souring it.
    • Superdragonsmum
    • By Superdragonsmum 19th Sep 18, 6:39 PM
    • 14 Posts
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    Superdragonsmum
    I just got a message from her saying she paid it in on Saturday night and surely it must be in there, she said she will check when she gets home. I have no idea what to believe any more!!
    • waamo
    • By waamo 19th Sep 18, 6:42 PM
    • 4,199 Posts
    • 5,508 Thanks
    waamo
    You could try a Letter Before Action, as previously suggested, but frankly for £36 it's not really worth following through on any threat to issue proceedings.

    The potential costs would easily outweigh the value of the claim and there is the potential that even if you did get a ccj against her she would ignore it.

    Negative feedback on Facebook etc is probably going to be the most effective thing to do but do it with a clear, calm head and stick to facts. Leave emotions to one side and don't get drawn into arguments or mud slinging.
    This space for hire.
    • Superdragonsmum
    • By Superdragonsmum 19th Sep 18, 6:54 PM
    • 14 Posts
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    Superdragonsmum
    Thank you Waamo, do you think she is deliberately leading me on a goose chase with no intention of paying or that I am overthinking things and she is just disorganised but well-intentioned? I mean how can a bank transfer not go through..?!
    • waamo
    • By waamo 19th Sep 18, 8:32 PM
    • 4,199 Posts
    • 5,508 Thanks
    waamo
    A bank transfer, in my experience, is pretty instant. A cheque only takes 3 days to show.

    Have your birthday, relax enjoy it (certainly don't let £36 spoil it) and then decide what you want to do. A small bit of thinking time will allow you to think calmly.
    This space for hire.
    • MothballsWallet
    • By MothballsWallet 19th Sep 18, 9:08 PM
    • 12,487 Posts
    • 16,899 Thanks
    MothballsWallet
    DoaM - dammit, I just checked my account and it has NOT been paid in. Will it only show up in my account after 3 working days? She alleged it was paid in Saturday evening. Les - thank you for all that you have written, I donít want the credit though, we only needed the lessons for our holiday so I felt confident my son would be safe in the deep end. If this woman is trying to get away with it I am going to give her negative feedback on all her pages.
    Originally posted by Superdragonsmum
    If her bank and yours support Faster Payments (most should now), a transfer up to £2,000 can be done in no more than 2 hours, and it's often much faster than that.
    Always ask yourself one question: What would Gibbs do?

    I live in the UK City of Culture 2021

    I had to put mothballs in my wallet - the moths had learned the PINs to my cards...
    • Superdragonsmum
    • By Superdragonsmum 19th Sep 18, 9:34 PM
    • 14 Posts
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    Superdragonsmum
    Thank you both. She is therefore clearly stalling or trying to get away with it altogether. I am make no that assumption based on her pattern of avoidance and the unlikelihood of her inputting the wrong bank details. What are your thoughts on why someone with an established swimming school would act this way over £36? Cash flow..? Hmm she’s signing up enough new customers on Facebook and they all have to pay upfront. What’s her game? Doesn’t like giving money up once she’s got it? Thanks, I will enjoy my bday, I’m just frustrated because I can’t understand her actions.
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