back to article Littlewoods bombards man by phone. Big mistake

A Manchester man has received £150 compensation from Littlewoods Shop Direct Group after he was repeatedly subjected to misdirected telephone marketing calls. Dave King received the money in an out-of-court settlement from Everyday Financial Solutions, Littlewoods' financial services business. He had threatened court action …

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£150 is an insignificant amount

£150 doesn't seem very much after all the trouble he had to go to to make Littlewoods abide by the law.

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Anonymous Coward

Powergen

Reminds me of the time I received a bill for Gas at a house that I had sold some years before. The bill was sent to my parents address. I informed the said company of the situation and they agreed it had been a mistake and would never happen again. A month later my parents received a letter from some lawyers demanding replayment of the outstanding monies (that Powergen had agreed was an error on their behalf). A phone call to Powergen gave further promises that such activity would never happen again, and my informing them of legal consequences if it did.

Needless to say that Powergen duly obliged, with a letter to my elderly parents from a bad debts organisation in Scotland saying that my name was now on the list of bad debtors. Further phone call to Powergen ... I asked for £40 as compensation for upsetting my elderly parents and for their action, and asking them to remove me from this bad debtors list. They paid up, and gave them the promise that any subsequent incidents will incur a similar £40 "charge".

Yes, it happened again 2 months later ... and a further £40 was provided by Powergen. Fortunately that was the end of it ... and the end to me ever using Powergen's services ;-)

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That reminds me...

Of a story I read some time ago of a company who sent numerous letters threatening to take a woman to court over a trivial sum they said they were owed and only discovered their mistake when they actually took action and was directed to the local cemetary. It seems the woman had died many, many years back and NOBODY took her name off that company's database and she had kept accumulating use-fees for services she could NOT possibly have used !!

Come back, Sales Ledger clerks ! All are forgiven !!

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Homechoice

Video Network Ltd., owner of the Homechoice brand, kept sending me reminders for £1.41 even after I had disconnected the service and paid disconnections charges. They also attempted to debit the amount from my bank account but that kept failing because I had cancelled the direct debit. Eight months after the disconnection, I recieved multiple letters threatening legal action and possibility of adding my name to bad debtors list. When I called up their call centre ( a premium line number which cost me around £4 due to all the wait ), I was told that the amount was insignificant and they would waive it. Since then I have recieved two more letters demanding the payment...

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Anonymous Coward

i want to see the correspondence

please can you upload the correspondence so i can have a look at it. cheers

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County Court action works like magic

This has become an increasing problem of late. I have found that it is a waste of time to keep calling the companies. The best policy, from my experience, is to write to them outlining exactly what you will do if the do not correct the situation. For me this means, two letters, a final reminder and then county court action. And if you are really feed up, don't accept a settlement at anything less than a figure that repairs the damage - that is, not just break-even, but puts a smile back on your face. I calculate my costs at what I charge my customers.

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Dan

All to common unfortunately.

I've had Thames Water hound me for an outstanding bill, (ok in this case it was actually outstanding but I did honestly think it had been paid,) for a property I live in 6 years ago for about 5 months. Initially they tried to charge me for 6 years worth of service at the property. I corrected them on the dates, even having to send them every single Tenancy Agreement I'd had since leaving the property and disputed the claim. They said no problem and went away.

They came back 6 months later claiming I owed them for the property I had lived in after leaving the first property. I checked the date and found they were trying to charge me for 1 years service for a period 1.5 years after leaving that second property. (All places I'd informed them when I had moved in, and when I'd moved out.) I resent them all the Tenancy Agreements again to prove we hadn't lived there then.

They came back several months later trying to claim for the correct date this time except it was a claim for 8 months not 6. (Bearing in mind I still thought I had paid the account in full......it was 6 years ago afterall.)

Eventually I got the Water Boards Commission in to look in to it. They came down hard on Thames Water and got them to provide their accounts and correct the information and finally we got an accurate picture. The WBC also got Thames to remove all the charges that Thames kept slapping on. So in the end I paid off a £90 debt that they were trying to charge over £1000 for initially.

I had a similar thing with Nationwide. I swapped my Bank Account to Natwest but kept my Nationwide account open. A bill tried to come out which knocked my account in to the red by 50pence. Nationwide never sent any letters, or statements and I knew nothing of it until a year later when some Credit Collection Agency tried to claim over £700 from me for the account. Nationwide tried to bully me in to paying until I pointed out that they were in breach of the law as they had not provided statements as they were supposed to, and that they had failed to adhere to the law by informing of the fact that the account was over its limit. They buckled and wiped the account clear and apologised.

Don't buckle to these companies. Argue, and if needs be go over their head. Best thing to do is find out a little bit about the law so you can argue with them. The average staff member at these places hasn't got a clue, so if you get no luck with the average Customer Service monkey, demand to speak to their supervisor or manager !!

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Cease and desist

In the US, a single C&D letter with penalties outlined has worked for me. I received several very threatening phone calls from a collection agency because of a common (well, not very common) last name. I also reported them to the Texas AG's office.

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Try this organisation

I used to get bombarded by marketing firms when I got a new phone line and they kept calling about someone else with a different address for months, several times a day. I registered on the below website which puts you on a list of people who dont want to be cold called. It was setup to stop the government bringing out legislation against these companies. After a week the calls stopped and everthing has been fine for several years now.

http://www.tpsonline.org.uk/tps/

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Learning Tree

Anyone made the mistake to request a brochure online and be honest enough to provide their telephone number.

Don't try this at home or at work unless you want them calling you very very regularly.

In the end I called them up to ask them to remove them from their database.

"Sure, it's been done"

I asked them to double-check.

"Yes, you're off our database. I can see here... your name have been greyed out in our system, so yes."

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Anonymous Coward

Orange

Orange tried to charge me £20 for transferring to a different network. I was out of contract with them, and there is no charge for requesting a PAC number. Well, there is... they say they charge it so that it appears on the bill, but that they immediately refund it so you don't actually get charged. Only problem was, they forgot to refund it for six months.

Numerous calls to their pathetic call centre staff in India and they finally admitted it was their mistake, but it took them a further two months to sort it out. Oh, and I had to swear down the phone a few times before they would put their script down:

10: IF customer has problem THEN ignore customer rant

20: repeat pointless question

30: GOTO 10

In that time I had received a red letter from some bailiffs saying they had purchased the debt. Remember, this was a paltry 20 quid that shouldn't have been charged to me, but Orange still managed to ignore my calls and to send it off to a third party debt recovery agency (read: scum).

Rubbish. Orange suck.

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Bronze badge

I got bill

I got a bill once from Telstra (Australia's wonderful equivalent to BT).

Had my busines name wrong, was for $0.00, and to top it off, I've never, ever been a Telstra customer.

When I emailed them and demanded to know what the heck they were thinking, they refused to tell me anything because I wasn't a customer. Even though I had quoted the customer number from the bill.

Isn't it wonderful that large corporations trust the computer is right...

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