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  • FIRST POST
    • fallen2k8
    • By fallen2k8 17th Oct 18, 8:40 PM
    • 11Posts
    • 1Thanks
    fallen2k8
    F&F offers, DEALING WITH REPLIES
    • #1
    • 17th Oct 18, 8:40 PM
    F&F offers, DEALING WITH REPLIES 17th Oct 18 at 8:40 PM
    Hi there,
    New to the forum, forgive me if I've posted into the wrong place.

    I found an abundance of useful information here on the MSE forums, really appreciate this community and a shout-out to sourcrates for his knowledge.

    Background info
    I and my wife have managed to rack up approx. £32k debt over 11 lenders, these date pre-2008, so they're quite old now. All of the debts are unsecured and have been sold on to DCA's. I'm on a DMP with MoneyPlus, whom charge fees for managing our debt management plan. They also charge ridiculous fees to settle debts through them. Long story short, enough was enough and I have managed to get a family friend who is willing to clear off our debts but at 25% of the current amount owed. I chose this figure because Cabot sent me an offer of clearing the debt at 30% previously, which I could not accept. So I know they're willing to go low (especially because they buy the debt for dirt cheap). For the most part of the last decade I have been paying token payments to these creditors (a few pounds a month) and I am not in any position to remortgage/sell because of my age/health and financial situation.

    I sent off 11 F&F's in total, each with a budget sheet (made my MoneyPlus) and a list of all my creditors. This was done last week and so far have only received 2 replies.

    Cabot has replied with the same offer (70% reduction) - it's as if they just reprinted the offer they sent me last time and sent it to me again, should I negotiate for a 75% reduction? since its one of my larger debts.

    PRA group have come back to me saying they cannot accept my offer of 75% reduction and can offer only a 30% reduction valid until next month. We have limited capital available to clear off all the debts, so I cannot accept a 30% reduction. I do not know where to go from here because Ideally, I was hoping for at least a 70% reduction to make things work. Any advice with PRA?

    I was thinking of sending CCA requests to all my creditors (mainly PRA) to put myself in a better negotiating position and then telling MoneyPlus to stop payments until this request is satisfied, however I do not know if that is the best course of action as I don't want to mess up the 'balance', shall we say.

    I would be grateful if anyone with experience here can advise. Cheers!
Page 1
    • January2015
    • By January2015 17th Oct 18, 8:52 PM
    • 2,298 Posts
    • 5,477 Thanks
    January2015
    • #2
    • 17th Oct 18, 8:52 PM
    • #2
    • 17th Oct 18, 8:52 PM
    Definitely CCA all your debts.

    Regarding responses to F&Fs these can take several weeks sometimes. Frustrating, but that's how it goes. You just need to be patient.

    I don't have any other advice, except to say ditch the fee paying DMP provider asap - probably not what you want to hear, but I shudder at the thought of how much you've already paid them.... money that could have gone towards clearing your debts.
    DFW Nerd No. 1484 LBM 07/01/15 Debt was £95k I'm driving it down
    £1k emergency fund (member #84) £1k/£1k
    • fatbelly
    • By fatbelly 17th Oct 18, 8:58 PM
    • 12,973 Posts
    • 10,043 Thanks
    fatbelly
    • #3
    • 17th Oct 18, 8:58 PM
    • #3
    • 17th Oct 18, 8:58 PM
    Totally agree with the above.

    We will charge you a monthly, fee being the lower of £44.50 or 49% of your monthly payment, from your first month until your DMP completes or is cancelled...

    ...we will charge you a one-off arrangement fee of £299
    I'm even wondering about a complaint re their fees...
    • fallen2k8
    • By fallen2k8 17th Oct 18, 9:38 PM
    • 11 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    fallen2k8
    • #4
    • 17th Oct 18, 9:38 PM
    • #4
    • 17th Oct 18, 9:38 PM
    Thanks for the responses. I'm not too sure how to go about the CCA route.

    Do I send off the CCA requests, then tell Money Plus to hold off payments to them until further notice? just in case some of the CCA requests are satisfied I can then resume the token payments until I re-adjust my F&F and get it accepted. Please advise.

    Cheers!
    Last edited by fallen2k8; 17-10-2018 at 9:59 PM.
    • Suseka97
    • By Suseka97 18th Oct 18, 10:20 AM
    • 472 Posts
    • 595 Thanks
    Suseka97
    • #5
    • 18th Oct 18, 10:20 AM
    • #5
    • 18th Oct 18, 10:20 AM
    Okay, firstly you need to ditch Money Plus - that's a must do and take control of your DMP yourself. Do you have to give them notice? If so do that, if not then tell them you'll be handling things from now on or after the next payment run. Whatever works for you.

    Whilst you're doing that, send off your CCA requests - don't expect them to respond quickly, lots of us experience several months in delays. But that's good, because during that time you can just stop all payments (but you can probably only do that if you are self-managing). I can't see MP letting you or wanting you to stop payments (they then don't get their monthly fee).

    Wait to see what the responses are from the CCAs and then come back for more advice. Do pop over to the DMP Mutual Support Thread and search on CCA requests. Lots of us have gone down that route with varying success, but you'll get a sense of what to expect and how to handle those responses.
    LBM Apr13: 14 Creditors / £85k+ owed / £11k outstanding (3 x UE / 3 x outstanding) DMP on hold
    • fallen2k8
    • By fallen2k8 18th Oct 18, 9:15 PM
    • 11 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    fallen2k8
    • #6
    • 18th Oct 18, 9:15 PM
    • #6
    • 18th Oct 18, 9:15 PM
    The issue is that I have already sent off the f&f's, maybe I should have sent the CCA requests first :/

    I have had 3 responses so far and it has been just over a week since I sent over the letters, received a response from IDEM today and they have accepted my offer for a 75% reduction!

    I was thinking if any DCA that responds back with a ridiculous counter offer (e.g. PRA group), I will then resend another letter asking them to reconsider that offer and provide an expiry date of the offer etc along with a CCA request in the same envelope! How does that sound?

    As for MoneyPlus, I'll keep it going until I've got more offers coming through so that I can cancel it and the get the debts settled.
    • sourcrates
    • By sourcrates 18th Oct 18, 10:13 PM
    • 15,716 Posts
    • 14,777 Thanks
    sourcrates
    • #7
    • 18th Oct 18, 10:13 PM
    • #7
    • 18th Oct 18, 10:13 PM
    Hi,

    You appear to of gone about this in the wrong order, however, if you are happy to settle at the amount agreed, then that’s fine.

    All is not lost with regard to the rest though, just because you make an offer to settle, it doesn’t mean you have to follow through with it.

    In your position, this is what I would do, you no longer need money plus, end your relationship with them straight away, clear the decks so to speak.

    Then, get your CCA requests sent off, all accounts automatically go on hold, all accounts go temporarily unenforceable, see what comes back from your creditors.

    Law of averages says some of them may be unable to comply with your requests, those that can supply compliant paperwork, reiterate your offer to them, usually they will still be willing to do a deal.

    Any that cannot comply, well.......it’s up to you how you deal with them.
    Last edited by sourcrates; 18-10-2018 at 10:15 PM.
    I'm a Board Guide on the Debt-Free Wannabe, Credit File And Ratings, and
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    • fallen2k8
    • By fallen2k8 19th Oct 18, 12:56 AM
    • 11 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    fallen2k8
    • #8
    • 19th Oct 18, 12:56 AM
    • #8
    • 19th Oct 18, 12:56 AM
    Much appreciated for the info Sourcrates, ill take that route from now on.

    I have prepared a "reconsider my F&F offer" letter for when it may be needed, can anyone please check it and maybe give some tips & improvements:

    "Dear Sir/Madam

    Account No: xxxxxxx

    We are writing in regards to the money which you are claiming on the above account.

    We can confirm we had received your letter requesting a settlement of £xxxx on the (Date of receiving the letter).

    We acknowledge this offer, however, we are not in the position to accept this offer.

    Enclosed is a copy of our audited financial statement completed by our DMP Practioner, MoneyPlus as proof of insufficient funds. It clearly shows that it will take approximately xxx years to repay the owed amount based on our current financial situation.

    As a result of this, we can only put forward a set amount of £xxxx which will be raised through a family friend. We would like to make it clear that this is a fixed amount and is not subject to negotiation.
    As you may know, we have 11 debts in total with 7 creditors amounting to a total debt of £xx,xxx. Our family friend is willing to offer a fixed amount of £8,000 which is to be split equally amongst the 11 debts. This value of £8,000 is unnegotiable. Of the 7 creditors, two have recently accepted our settlement offer.

    Once again, we are able to only offer you specifically a fixed amount of £xxxx. This offer will be withdrawn by our family friend on the 5th of November 2018 and will not be available again. If you choose to reject this offer then we will continue to proceed with our monthly instalments of £x through MoneyPlus. And as mentioned previously this means it would take approximately xxx years to repay the owed amount based on our current financial situation.

    We need to know the outcome of your decision as soon as possible, as reiterated before this offer is very time-limited and our friend will not make payments unless the offer is accepted.

    If you accept this offer, please confirm that you will mark our credit reference agency files to show that the above account has been paid and closed.

    We look forward to hearing from you.

    Yours faithfully,"
    Last edited by fallen2k8; 19-10-2018 at 2:48 PM.
    • redux
    • By redux 19th Oct 18, 2:59 AM
    • 18,638 Posts
    • 24,897 Thanks
    redux
    • #9
    • 19th Oct 18, 2:59 AM
    • #9
    • 19th Oct 18, 2:59 AM
    I'd say either shorten that to about a third of its length, or don't bother with it for now.

    Maybe a quick phone call to say thank you for the offer, and tru to explore whether they can go down any more.

    But anyway, there isn't much difference between 25 and 30%, only a couple of hundred quid on that one.

    And stop talking, either on here or in the letter, about continuing with MoneyPlus. That's a steep set of charges fatbelly quoted, taking potentially half the money themselves.
    • fatbelly
    • By fatbelly 19th Oct 18, 5:31 AM
    • 12,973 Posts
    • 10,043 Thanks
    fatbelly
    I agree with the above completely.

    If you send that letter you will just annoy them unnecessarily as you are telling them that your creditors will not be treated equally, and that you will not necessarily be paying offers that you make.

    You say that you 'received a response from IDEM today and they have accepted my offer for a 75% reduction!' If you offered them 25% and they accepted it, you must pay that. It's a good deal.

    As for the others if you have chosen to go in at 25% then you either stick to that or go up. Do not tell creditors that you are offering others better deals, even if you are.

    You can, however play one off against another - 'IDEM have accepted 25%. We'd like you to do the same'

    You say you have 32k debt and 8k to play with. You've gone in at your top offer and so left nothing to negotiate. But that's 25% and you should see this round of offers out now.

    Ditch moneyplus. I think there are grounds to complain, even though you signed up for their terms. They will not want you to refer them to FOS, even though FOS may well side with them. CAB has outline guidance here

    https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/debt-and-money/debt-solutions/debt-management-plans/complaints-about-debt-management-plans/complaining-about-debt-management-plan-providers/
    • fatbelly
    • By fatbelly 19th Oct 18, 5:39 AM
    • 12,973 Posts
    • 10,043 Thanks
    fatbelly
    These are the fees charged by Gregory Pennington (still bad but better than yours)

    A management fee will be charged of 18.5% of your regular payment to the Debt Management Plan (DMP) (this could be every four weeks or monthly depending what suits you best and when you receive your regular income), and is subject to a minimum of £38.50
    Work out the difference between the two and ask for a refund
    • StokieBecks
    • By StokieBecks 19th Oct 18, 7:19 AM
    • 4,621 Posts
    • 28,116 Thanks
    StokieBecks
    Definitely get rid of the fee charging debt management company. Pretty much half of what you pay every month goes to their pocket and not your debt. If you don't feel comfortable managing it for yourself then get a plan set up as soon as possible with the free providers (stepchange/payplan/CAP) - this in itself will help you as you will see your balances coming down quicker.
    • redux
    • By redux 19th Oct 18, 9:17 AM
    • 18,638 Posts
    • 24,897 Thanks
    redux
    These are the fees charged by Gregory Pennington (still bad but better than yours)



    Work out the difference between the two and ask for a refund
    Originally posted by fatbelly
    Actually, though the percentage rate is lower, that firm's £38.50 stated monthly minimum (if they stick to it) would work out higher on modest amounts.

    Going by what you found for M+, and derived from some numbers in this thread, the OP would be paying about £45 a month, of which 49% i.e. about £22 is fees
    • fallen2k8
    • By fallen2k8 19th Oct 18, 2:43 PM
    • 11 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    fallen2k8
    MoneyPlus will definitely be ditched as soon as possible - I'm paying £25 a month for their 'management' at this moment, will move onto StepChange as per advice. I simply kept MoneyPlus in the letter as a persuasion tactic to imply that if the offer isn't accepted then, the current situation will not change and resume as normal - hence accepting the offer is in their best interest.

    The "reconsider our full and final offer" letter was drafted in the event that I send the CCA's and creditors such as PRA actually manage to comply with the request. The aim of that letter is to inform creditors there is a limited amount of capital available and it must be distributed equally (hence I cannot offer more than a 75% reduction).

    Perhaps I should have mentioned, but I can stretch that £8k to £10k - so it isn't my theoretical maximum offer that I gave them, it has just been made to appear that way for my own benefit.

    PRA got back to me with only a 30% reduction (as mentioned), so my next steps with them are to send a CCA request, then depending on whether they can or cannot comply I will alter the figures accordingly. And I'll definitely play them off against each other, that's a good idea.

    IDEM did accept my offer for a 75% reduction - which I will accept. I have got 3 with IDEM in total but only got a reply on one of the accounts? don't really understand that because according to RM tracking they all got signed for at the same time by the same guy. Have they forgotten?
    • fallen2k8
    • By fallen2k8 10th Nov 18, 10:39 PM
    • 11 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    fallen2k8
    Hello all,

    I have received a reply from PRA after sending out my CCA request:

    "I refer to your request for copy documentation regarding the above account.

    Please find enclosed documentation received to date; we are awaiting further documents in order to complete your request. We have currently deemed this debt unenforceable which means we are not able to take court or further enforcement action against you to recover the outstanding balance.

    Please be advised this does not mean that the debt has been written off, despite being unenforceable, we are still legally entitled to:

    - Contact you and ask you to repay what you owe
    - Pass your details onto a third party collection agency
    - Continue to report your account with the credit reference bureaux

    If we obtain this information in the future we will, of course, provide this to you immediately"


    So basically the debt is unenforceable. Do I just stop paying them or now write a letter informing them that payments will cease as they cannot produce the correct documentation?

    Any help is appreciated
    • January2015
    • By January2015 10th Nov 18, 11:05 PM
    • 2,298 Posts
    • 5,477 Thanks
    January2015
    Hello all,

    I have received a reply from PRA after sending out my CCA request:

    "I refer to your request for copy documentation regarding the above account.

    Please find enclosed documentation received to date; we are awaiting further documents in order to complete your request. We have currently deemed this debt unenforceable which means we are not able to take court or further enforcement action against you to recover the outstanding balance.

    Please be advised this does not mean that the debt has been written off, despite being unenforceable, we are still legally entitled to:

    - Contact you and ask you to repay what you owe
    - Pass your details onto a third party collection agency
    - Continue to report your account with the credit reference bureaux

    If we obtain this information in the future we will, of course, provide this to you immediately"


    So basically the debt is unenforceable. Do I just stop paying them or now write a letter informing them that payments will cease as they cannot produce the correct documentation?

    Any help is appreciated
    Originally posted by fallen2k8
    The debt is 'currently unenforceable' as they haven't yet provided all required compliant documents. That does not mean it is permanently unenforceable. Don't make the mistake of thinking it is permanently unenforceable because they have not yet complied.

    I would just stop paying and ignore them until they provide all required documentation and have it checked over by experts for compliance.

    Edit: I meant to add that I completely ignored PRA for about a year. They kept writing and asking me to pay, and they gradually increased the discount offered to settle our debt. I ignored every letter and did not respond until eventually they got down to 10% of the balance to settle it, so I wrote back and accepted and paid. I could have ignored it because it was definitely unenforceable but I chose to pay as I just wanted it marked as satisfied on our credit reports.
    Last edited by January2015; 10-11-2018 at 11:08 PM.
    DFW Nerd No. 1484 LBM 07/01/15 Debt was £95k I'm driving it down
    £1k emergency fund (member #84) £1k/£1k
    • fallen2k8
    • By fallen2k8 11th Nov 18, 1:17 PM
    • 11 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    fallen2k8
    Hi,

    thanks for the reply.

    Are you sure that they actually have additional searching to do? Because I feel like its a scare tactic used by them to get me to keep paying/offer a settlement (basically keep me on my toes). I might be wrong though.

    In a previous letter they acknowledged that they received my request for a credit agreement and even returned the £1 postal order 'as a gesture of goodwill'. They also wrote in addition to this:

    "PRA cannot secure a County Court Judgment (CCJ) against you"

    So what power do they now have?

    I just want to ignore them confidently knowing that the debt is unenforceable.

    EDIT: January2015 Did you get a similar letter to mine when you found out the debt was unenforceable?
    • January2015
    • By January2015 11th Nov 18, 2:27 PM
    • 2,298 Posts
    • 5,477 Thanks
    January2015
    Hi,

    thanks for the reply.

    Are you sure that they actually have additional searching to do? Because I feel like its a scare tactic used by them to get me to keep paying/offer a settlement (basically keep me on my toes). I might be wrong though.

    In a previous letter they acknowledged that they received my request for a credit agreement and even returned the £1 postal order 'as a gesture of goodwill'. They also wrote in addition to this:

    "PRA cannot secure a County Court Judgment (CCJ) against you"

    So what power do they now have?

    I just want to ignore them confidently knowing that the debt is unenforceable.

    EDIT: January2015 Did you get a similar letter to mine when you found out the debt was unenforceable?
    Originally posted by fallen2k8
    Hi

    Yes - I've been through the same processes as you. They sent me some bits, and then other bits. All the time they had not sent everything the debt was 'currently unenforceable' etc. etc. The can only send what the original creditor supplies them with and they are stuck until they have everything. In my case they did eventually send everything, including a photocopy of the original application slip signed by my husband (it was his account). They sent the original T&Cs and everything and I thought we were stuffed. However, I had it all checked out on the All About Debt website and I was advised it was definitely UE and they explained the reasons why to me.

    You are completely safe to ignore them at this time as they have told you they have not complied with your CCA request and confirmed the debt is currently unenforceable. Just ignore it and don't stress over it. The ball is firmly in their court at the moment. I would not even acknowledge receipt of their letters. The reason for this is that the statute barred clock starts ticking. Yes that takes six years, but if it takes them that long to find compliant CCA documentation you then have another legal argument to counter with. I have had DCAs waiting on sending me compliant CCA stuff. They have eventually, but well over two years after asking for it. I ignored and did not pay until they provided it.

    I seriously consider this like a game of strategy - and it's a case of who will fold first. Know your rights and stand your ground. The law is currently on your side and they know that.... but they hope that you don't!
    DFW Nerd No. 1484 LBM 07/01/15 Debt was £95k I'm driving it down
    £1k emergency fund (member #84) £1k/£1k
    • fallen2k8
    • By fallen2k8 11th Nov 18, 6:17 PM
    • 11 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    fallen2k8
    Hi,

    Oh wow, so after 2 years they managed to find the correct documentation? But you also said that it was still definitely unenforceable, was there a reason for that?

    Ideally, I would have loved to strike out the PRA debt completely from my remaining amount, but it seems it's not possible because the account is only temporarily unenforceable and they might come back months/years down the line. The last thing I want is to think I'm debt free, to then have PRA rain on my parade.

    If they have admitted in previous correspondence that they can't get a CCJ on me then surely the debt is 100% unenforceable already, how else would they make me pay up?

    Lastly, the original creditor of the PRA debt had given me the credit back in 2003 and defaulted in 2008, quite far back - how old was your one if you don't mind me asking?
    Last edited by fallen2k8; 11-11-2018 at 6:32 PM.
    • January2015
    • By January2015 11th Nov 18, 8:15 PM
    • 2,298 Posts
    • 5,477 Thanks
    January2015
    Hi,

    Oh wow, so after 2 years they managed to find the correct documentation? But you also said that it was still definitely unenforceable, was there a reason for that?

    Ideally, I would have loved to strike out the PRA debt completely from my remaining amount, but it seems it's not possible because the account is only temporarily unenforceable and they might come back months/years down the line. The last thing I want is to think I'm debt free, to then have PRA rain on my parade.

    If they have admitted in previous correspondence that they can't get a CCJ on me then surely the debt is 100% unenforceable already, how else would they make me pay up?

    Lastly, the original creditor of the PRA debt had given me the credit back in 2003 and defaulted in 2008, quite far back - how old was your one if you don't mind me asking?
    Originally posted by fallen2k8
    Our MBNA debt was from 2002 if I remember correctly. We owed £12k and settled for approx £1.2k - but as stated before I could have completely ignored it and not paid anything. It was our choice to settle and get it marked as such on our credit files.

    Although they found the documentation and it all looked enforceable when originally received, it was unenforceable as the tear off slip my hubby had signed stated "Before you sign the agreement you must read Condition 11 in the Terms and Conditions." The only thing he had to sign was a little slip. They never provided any other T&Cs before signing and so it was impossible that he could have even had the chance to read Condition 11. It was something to do with this - that was how it was explained to us anyway.

    They cannot get a CCJ against you whilst they do not have documentation and they are admitting this. As I said before, that doesn't mean they won't eventually get the documentation, but even if they do it is highly likely it will not be enforceable anyway.

    You need to just put this debt to one side and ignore it until such time as PRA make their next move - if they ever do.
    DFW Nerd No. 1484 LBM 07/01/15 Debt was £95k I'm driving it down
    £1k emergency fund (member #84) £1k/£1k
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