I'm having a mid-afternoon brain freeze (could be something to do with my last client!)
She was very confused about a company that has taken over £1000 from her but couldn't explain to me what it was for. After looking up the company online it appears that it is one of those PPI reclaiming companies only it seems they've just taken the money from her and done nothing. It's caused her hardship because not only have they taken the money but it also took her over her credit card limit so she's been hit with charges.
Anyway- I'm going to write to them to see what they're up to but do you think I can claim this under legal aid? I'm working under a debt contract. If she could get any of this money back it would help a lot with her other debts.
Post by Mr Fiona T. Wardle on Feb 7, 2011 20:53:32 GMT
Good hello, Heather
It is not clear from what you have said exactly what it might be that you are challenging (and I suspect from what you have said that you are not certain either yet!) You could help the client with her credit card debt, and any others she has.
I had a brief look at these PPI Claims Management companies a little recently myself - a client with english as a second language had been contacted by one of the by a very circuitous and mistaken route, and she turned out not to have been sold any PPI at all, never mind mistakenly! Anyway, it appears, unsurprisingly, that the company your client has probably been in touch with will be an agent, and only when they have collected your client's fee will they then forward documents on to a solicitor firm to look at. I have seen on at least one forum that some people did get compo for mis-sold PPI - but many more were complaining about charges, lack of communication, mis-selling of the service generally - the agent company appears not to do much, if any, checking of likelihood of there being a winnable claim, until after sometimes hefty fees are collected. You could advise your client that if she beleives she was mis-sold PPI (was it PPI an the same credit card account, or hopefully a pre-April 2007 CCA agreement) you can have a look at her paperwork for her and discuss the circumstances of taking out the PPI with her, and you can give her free-to-her advice on her chances of a successful claim - if you are looking at her credit card and any other debts it would initially at least be in the single matter start.
And supposedly some of these claims management companies can take over what was legally aided funded work in the future...if Ken Clarke and the Legal Eagles get their way.
Post by Richard Wilkinson on Feb 8, 2011 15:20:08 GMT
I agree with Fiona- it would appear that you could open a NMS anyway for dealing with the debts- so maybe your question is whether you can open a second nms for this? There is a brief discussion about the client being a creditor here
My bet would no to a second NMS unless the multiple proceedings rule kicked in, but i would think you can claim the costs for pursuit against your single NMS that would have been open anyway, thus helping your ave case costs.
Unfortunately after a long discussion she did not want help from us for her debt problems- have a sneaking suspicion that someone in her family is actually taking the debt out in her name because she was very keen to sort things out when she came to our drop-in and then she did a 180 at the appointment.
Anyway- I didn't open it as an NMS but I'm determined to get somewhere against this company so doing it 'pro bono'. I've looked them up on the internet and it seems a few people have been scammed by them.
They seem to operate under several names, the overall company is 'Ocean Communication' and the subsidiary that deals with the PPI mis-selling is called 'Total Refund'. The Mirror carried out an investigation into them back in 2008, why they are still trading is a mystery. If anyone else comes across them and find they haven't done what they've promised I urge you to social policy it (for CABx).
I haven't had a crusade for a while, this should do nicely!