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Debenhams/Santander Cards-Viking Collection Services LTD

Last post Fri, Jan 22 2010, 12:34 AM by gr8mohawk2. 7 replies.
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  •  Fri, Jan 22 2010, 12:34 AM

    Re: Debenhams/Santander Cards-Viking Collection Services LTD

    I work for Santander Cards on collections and I'm quite happy to let people in on our system. Heres advice and tips.

    Basically Viking is the last chance you get before we sell your debt on to a debt collection company. We pretend we've already sold it on and call ourselves Viking. Santander/Viking will not take you to court, send balifs round etc, that make us look bad. Instead it get sold on to another company at a discounted price, we swallow the loss and let them chase you for it.

    All credit agreements under Santander Cards are legally enforcable. I'm affraid unless we've not got a copy of the application (ie we've lost it), which happens every now and then (but it's rare), your legaly obliged to pay.

    If you want to set up an arrangment then just call us and say you can't afford the minimum payment and we'll sent you an income and expenditure form. We'll need proof too, basically a bank statment. We won't just believe what your telling us, if we think your lying about how much you spend on food or whatever we'll not accept the arrangment......

    However, if you go through a debt managment company like the CAB or CCCS the we don't need proof as we'll just accept that the debt managment company has checked it over. You can even pick up the inc/exp form from CAB/CCCS fill it in and send it to us yourself.

    When we call you and you scream down the phone to stop calling that doesn't work. Instead, go through security and tell us to remove the numbers and we will.

    When you call us, be nice. You'd be surprised at the number of people who scream at us expecting us to remove late fees and thing becasue they're angry. Usually no means we can't, but sometimes we just don't like your attitude. Sometimes I've taken a dislike to customers within seconds of taking their call, and you just decide your not going to take the charge off before they've asked. You catch more bees with honey.

    If your make a payment with a card over the phone to us you can call in about 2 days later, get it refunded and then pay us the same amount again. It'll count as paying us twice the amount.

    example; your monthly payment if £30, your a month behide so owe us £60. Call in and pay £30, then have it refunded and pay us the same amount again. You'll still only have reduced your balance by £30, but you'll have brought the account up to date with the previous months payment, and then covered your curret payment.

    This is a very good trick if your in the situation where you can afford the monthly payments but can't pay the arrears up to date. YOU CAN'T TELL US THIS IS WHY YOU WANT A REFUND. JUST SAY YOU DIDN'T MEAN TO PAY THIS ACCOUNT AND IT WAS AN ACCIDENT.

    If your asking for a charge to be removed then tell us you've been in hospital or something you;ll have a better chance, but don't give us a full sob story. Not recieving a statment is not a valid reason.

    • Post Points: 5
  •  Fri, Jan 08 2010, 1:33 PM

    Re: Debenhams/Santander Cards-Viking Collection Services LTD

    Hiya

    I am having the same problems with them, have you managed to sort anything out,

    Al
    • Post Points: 20
  •  Sat, Dec 05 2009, 12:20 AM

    Re: Debenhams/Santander Cards-Viking Collection Services LTD

    Nicola

    I missed you previous post.

    Unfortunately I cannot tell from the photobucket images whether enforceable or not.

    What they have provided only appears to be part of the information. There must have been other information including the full terms and condition when you signed up to the agreement.

    Read through all they have sent you, as I cannot read the images. Does it contain the following.

    The amount of credit (or credit limit)

    The credit charges

    The rate of interest and whether it will vary throughout the course of the agreement

    A notice of cancellation (if it is a cancellable agreement)

    Details of the repayment schedule

    If the agreement is not in accordance with the above requirements then it is unenforceable.

    If it definately does not contain some of this information, then post back. There may be some example letters on this stite to send them to challenge them about what they have sent.

    Huckster

    • Post Points: 35
  •  Fri, Dec 04 2009, 10:10 PM

    Re: Debenhams/Santander Cards-Viking Collection Services LTD

    Hi Nicola85,

    How did you get on with the advice ? Was the CA enforceable after all ?

    regards

    CC

    • Post Points: 5
  •  Mon, Nov 23 2009, 4:49 PM

    Re: Debenhams/Santander Cards-Viking Collection Services LTD

    Thanks for all your help. I really appreciate it. I've managed to get a hold of a relatives LG Viewty wich has macro mode. Could you tell me if you think it's enforceable I signed it on june 2005? and It does say just above my signature by signing this application form you confirm that it has been completed and signed by you in a Debenhams store.

    http://i129.photobucket.com/albums/p220/SkinnyCow_21/CreditAct1974.jpg

    http://i129.photobucket.com/albums/p220/SkinnyCow_21/Details.jpg

    http://i129.photobucket.com/albums/p220/SkinnyCow_21/FinancialDetails.jpg

    http://i129.photobucket.com/albums/p220/SkinnyCow_21/Signature.jpg

    • Post Points: 35
  •  Mon, Oct 19 2009, 9:58 PM

    Re: Debenhams/Santander Cards-Viking Collection Services LTD

    Hi

    In response to the various points.

    I never received the letter. - Following your call to Santander advising that you were having problems with payment, the task of sending you a letter was probably placed in a workflow of hundreds ( if not thousands) of other work needing to be completed. In the meantime, the outstanding account would be appearing on outstanding accounts reports, hence the letter from Viking Collections.

    Viking Collections Services Limited - This is just a 'trading style' of Santander I would expect. They are probably just the Santander accounts team, sending letters out in another name. A lot of financial services companies adopt this approach.

    Pursuant to my rights under Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 USC 1692g Sec. 809 (b) - This is US legislation and not UK. The UK act is the Consumer Credit Act 1974. There are Debt collection guidelines issued by the OFT, who have legal powers to monitor and apply sanctions against companies acting unfairly with consumers.

    I did ask for debt validation from Viking Collection Services LTD. I got a reply from Santander Cards instead. - Same company, different branding used on letters.


    What I would like to know is: Is the copy of the agreement legally enforceable? I only have a tiny photocopied piece of paper with what looks like the front of the Original Credit Agreement, signed by myself. I have not been provided with any T&C’S. - If they wanted to take you to court they would have to provide the original signed agreement, together with all the other documents including the original terms and conditions of your agreement.

    I have no Idea who Viking Collection Services are. Which is why I sent out a debt validation letter to see if they legally own the debt and I legally have to pay them I can do so. If yes/no what should I take for my next step?

    Your next step is to challenge what they have sent you. As you have stated in your following post, for the agreement to be enforceable, it has to contain certain information.

    Does the agreement not have to include:

    A term stating the rate of any interest on the credit to be provided under the agreement and A term stating how the debtor is to discharge his obligations under the agreement to make the repayments which may be expressed by reference to a combination of any of the following:-

    (a) Number of repayments
    (b) Amount of repayments
    (c) Frequency and timing of repayments
    (d) Dates of repayments
    (e) The manner in which any of the above may be determined or in any other way and any power of the creditor to vary what is payable.

    There is no reference to any of those terms on the agreement.

    It is a statutory requirement that CCA-regulated agreements should be in writing and signed by the borrower and that they contain the following information:

    The amount of credit (or credit limit)

    The credit charges

    The rate of interest and whether it will vary throughout the course of the agreement

    A notice of cancellation (if it is a cancellable agreement)

    Details of the repayment schedule

    If the agreement is not in accordance with the above requirements then it is unenforceable.

    Am I correct in thinking in absence of those terms will render the agreement unenforceable in court under s60 Consumer Credit Act 1974? Yes, so draft a letter to them in response, pointing out that what they have sent you, does not constitute an enforceable agreement, as it does not contain - list the missing information.

    In the letter you could say something along the lines of. Whilst I am not in possession of details of an enforceable agreement I am not in a position to acknowledge owing any debt to you. If you wish to continue to communicate with me regarding the account, I require full information to be provided. Send letter to Santander by recorded delivery.

    Hope this helps.

    Huckster

    • Post Points: 20
  •  Mon, Oct 19 2009, 5:16 PM

    Re: Debenhams/Santander Cards-Viking Collection Services LTD

    Would it be of any help if I told you that I signed the CA on 09/06/05?

    I've been doing a lot of reading lately and I've come across certain information that states: An agreement that is not properly executed and was signed before 2006 is not enforceable unless it has the debtor's signature and the prescribed terms in the same document.

    Well, the agreement has what looks like my signature.
    I'm unsure of what the prescribed terms are for a store card. I can only find them for a credit card.
    In the agreement it has the credit limit, the total charge for credit and the APR.

    Does the agreement not have to include:

    A term stating the rate of any interest on the credit to be provided under the agreement and A term stating how the debtor is to discharge his obligations under the agreement to make the repayments which may be expressed by reference to a combination of any of the following:-

    (a) Number of repayments
    (b) Amount of repayments
    (c) Frequency and timing of repayments
    (d) Dates of repayments
    (e) The manner in which any of the above may be determined or in any other way and any power of the creditor to vary what is payable.

    There is no reference to any of those terms on the agreement.

    Am I correct in thinking in absence of those terms will render the agreement unenforceable in court under s60 Consumer Credit Act 1974?

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    • Post Points: 5
  •  Mon, Oct 19 2009, 5:14 PM

    Debenhams/Santander Cards-Viking Collection Services LTD

    I'm having trouble with a Debenhams Storecard,

    I called Santander Cards and I told them I was having trouble paying my bills at that moment in time. They were understanding about my troubles. I was told that they would send a letter on which I could tell them about my income and my outgoings so they could reduce my monthly payment. I gave them 10 days to do so. I never received the letter. Instead I received the letter below.


    DEBT ENFORCEMENT

    VIKING COLLECTION SERVICES LTD

    P.O. Box 800
    Leeds
    LS99 2AE
    22/09/09

    Dear Miss

    Santander Cards UK Limited

    DEBENHAMS STORECARD Account Number:

    Outstanding Balance:

    Your above Santander Cards UK Limited account has been transferred to Viking Collections Services Limited. This has happened due to your failure to make the acquired payments on your account.

    To avoid further action, which will include further contact by telephone and letter and administration fees. You are now required to pay the full outstanding balance of £ within the next 7 days. Please contact us on 0870 513 4601 to make this payment by debit card.

    If you are unable to pay the full balance you should still contact us to discuss your payment options.

    Yours sincerely
    Viking Collections Manager


    I wrote back with a Debt Validation letter.

    Viking Collection Services LTD
    P.O. Box 800
    Leeds
    LS99 2AE

    Saturday 26th September 2009

    Regarding: Debenhams Storecard Account Number:

    I am writing in response to the letter received from you on date 26/09/09. Pursuant to my rights under Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 USC 1692g Sec. 809 (b).

    I am requesting that you provide validation of this debt. Note this is not a refusal to pay, but a request that you provide me with evidence that I have a legal obligation to pay you.

    I am not requesting "verification" or proof of my mailing address, but a request for VALIDATION made pursuant to the above named Title and Section. I respectfully request that you provide me with competent evidence that I have any legal obligation to pay you.

    Please provide me with the following:

    The amount of money you say I owe.

    What the money you say I owe is for.

    Explain and show me a break down of how you calculated this amount you say I owe.

    Identify the original creditor's name, address and phone number.

    Prove the Statute of Limitations has not expired on this alleged account.

    Provide me with a copy of the agreement between you and the original creditor that allows you to collect this debt for the original creditor.

    Provide me with a copy of the original contract with my signature.

    Provide me with your license number and any registered agents.

    If you are able to provide me with all of the proper documentation as I have requested. I will require at least 30 days to review and investigate this information and during such time any collection activity must cease and desist.

    Also, during this validation period, if any action is taken which could be considered detrimental to any of my credit reports, I will consult with my legal counsel for suit. This includes any listing of any information to a credit reporting agency that could be inaccurate or invalidated or by verifying an alleged account as accurate when in fact there is no provided proof that it is.

    If you fail to respond to this validation request within 30 days from the date of your receipt, or do not provide me with the proper validation, all references to this account must be deleted and completely removed from my credit file and a copy of such deletion request shall be sent to me immediately.

    I would also like to request, in writing, that no telephone contact be made by you to my home, cell phone, work place, to any family members, friends, neighbors or co-workers. If you attempt telephone communication with me, including but not limited to computer generated calls and calls or correspondence sent to or with any third parties, it will be considered harassment and I will have no choice but to file suit. All future communications with me MUST be done in writing and sent to the address noted in this letter by Royal Mail.

    Yours Sincerely,

    I received a reply to my letter:

    Santander Cards

    16 October 2009

    Dear Miss

    Debenhams Account Number:

    Thank you for your letter dated 26 September 2009, received on 30 September 2009, regarding the above account. This has been passed to us by Viking Collection Services to respond. Please accept my apologies for the delay.

    I have enclosed a copy of the agreement that you signed to open the account and can confirm that this is the legally binding contract between you and Santander Cards. You will see that the agreement contains your title, name, address, telephone number and signature.

    If you require a full breakdown of the account copy statements can be provided. However, to cover administration costs a charge of £3.00 is payable for each copy statement. If you request more than three statements at any one time this charge will be capped at £10.00. Should you require copies, please send a cheque payable to Santander Cards to the following address stating your requirements.

    Credit Data Management
    Santander Cards
    P.O. Box 700
    Leeds
    LS99 2BD

    Viking Collection Services whose registration number is 508834 are part of the Santander group of companies. As such, we have instructed them to collect the outstanding debt on our behalf and we are entitled to do so.

    Action will continue to be taken to recover the outstanding balance, which is currently £, if payments are not maintained according to the terms and conditions of the agreement. We will also continue to report the details of the account to the Credit Reference Agencies and any information already recorded will not be removed.

    If you are experiencing financial difficulties, please contact our Financial Solutions Unit on 0845 6000025, who may be able to agree a suitable payment arrangement with you.


    I trust this clarifies the situation.

    Yours sincerely

    Enc: Copy of agreement

    Santander Cards, P.O. Box 700, Leeds, LS99 2BD 

    *The reply was not from Viking Collection Services LTD it was from Credit Data Management, Santander Cards, P.O. Box 700, Leeds. LS99 2BD.
    I did ask for debt validation from Viking Collection Services LTD. I got a reply from Santander Cards instead.

    What I would like to know is: Is the copy of the agreement legally enforceable? I only have a tiny photocopied piece of paper with what looks like the front of the Original Credit Agreement, signed by myself. I have not been provided with any T&C’S.

    I’m not trying to get out of paying my debts. I’m just annoyed that I did not get to sort out paying my debt to the original creditor Santander Cards.

    I have no Idea who Viking Collection Services are. Which is why I sent out a debt validation letter to see if they legally own the debt and I legally have to pay them I can do so.

    If yes/no what should I take for my next step?

    Thank you in advance for you help.
    Nicola.
    • Post Points: 35