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Level 1: Joiner
wrightm
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎21-08-2012

disconnection and debt

Ok so O2 disconnected me for not paying my bill, fine, been disconnected before, in error I might add. Advisor after advisor said yes just pay the £100 u owe and you'll be re connected. Finances stabilised, bill paid. Days later, still not re connected. Contacted o2, referred to payments, was informed to to 3 d/c's they cud not reconnect. Still liable for a years line rental w VAT around £280. Said i'll be in contact to make arrangements to pay. Month later o2 refers the £280 to a credit agency who put a charge of £30 on it and harass me over the phone to the effect of its a large bill so we will not take payment plan and send letter threatening court proceedings. To be clear I dispute the validity of my liability to the charge given it was put in place by a system rule not a persons decision, I was a happy o2 customer for around 8-10 years and am financially stable enough to support a contract which I had just reduced. O2 payments will not discuss this with me in a reasonable manner. I said I would be in contact in a matter of weeks from 5th July and at that time was told I could pay the remaining line rental off to o2 with no effect to my credit. Now they wont do that, and it will effect my credit and they have barred me from opening a new account for a year. Over money I have agreed to pay them. In the matter of a few weeks I have gone from an unfortunate case of we're sorry we can't help to you deserve harassment and a permanent mark on your credit. Oh and i did try to contact the debt agency as Payments told me to; was on hold so long I ran out of pay as you go credit. So confused and stressed by this and O2 just will not help.
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perksie
Posts: 24,748
Topics: 229
Solutions: 1,536
Registered: ‎29-07-2008

Re: disconnection and debt

I don't really see what advice we can give you here, you seem to owe them money and they're chasing you for it, that isn't harassment, it's trying to get the money that's owed to you.

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Level 1: Joiner
wrightm
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎21-08-2012

Re: disconnection and debt

Apologies was posted while still in rant mode. "Owed" is a subjective term in this context. I only owe the money due to the computer system having a 3 d/c limit on reconnections. I had told O2 that I would pay it off to them and due to the northern bank fiaso it took a while to get my finances rebalanced. The harassment was on the part of the debt collection agency who (first call from them, I was not informed by O2 debt was being passed) flat out demanded payment of the whole amount and wouldn't consider re payments. I explained im on the way to work I'll call you back to told if i didn't make arrangements to pay on that call charges would be applied. Yes not O2s fault, apart from not notifying me they were selling the debt. Now O2 can reclaim debts, I know this for a fact, but on the phone to O2 C.S. (payments just gave the advisor a stock statement) I felt like I was being treated like it was all my fault and O2 washed their hands. I mean its line rental for the next year, I only "owe" it due to their system. And due to having to take a pay as you phone its difficult if not impossible to call expensive debt numbers and get an answer. I want to sort this out, with O2, now but am not being listened to.
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perksie
Posts: 24,748
Topics: 229
Solutions: 1,536
Registered: ‎29-07-2008

Re: disconnection and debt

[ Edited ]

I can sympathise with the problem and I'm sorry you are having a tough time of it, don't know what else to suggest though, perhaps a word with your local Citizen's Advice Bureau might help.

 

It's difficult to get O2 involved once it's been passed to a debt collection agency, as it's no longer their concern, legally.

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Level 1: Joiner
wrightm
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎21-08-2012

Re: disconnection and debt

Thanks perksie, considering that. All I needed was a bit of sympathy on the phone and i wouldn't be here, grumping about something I know I bear at least some responsibility for, cos I do want to sort it. Lol *sigh*
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jonsie
Posts: 21,701
Topics: 179
Solutions: 1,903
Registered: ‎04-01-2009

Re: disconnection and debt

Once the debt is in the hands of the collection agency it is very difficult to deal with. They usually demand full payment and charges are continually added and can spiral to a ridiculous extent. Obviously you need to try and get this settled as quickly as possible before that happens.

 

As above, I would contact Citizens Advice to see exactly what your options are. Sorry for your problems and hope you get it resolved quickly.

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Level 1: Joiner
nidO
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎01-08-2012

Re: disconnection and debt

[ Edited ]

Just to be sure I understand this, O2 disconnected your line due to an unpaid bill, which you settled in full, and O2 are now demanding an up-front payment for your next 12 months' worth of line rental in order to reconnect it?

 

If so and if that's what the "debt" is then you can feel free to kindly tell the debt collection agency chasing you to bugger off, as it's not a debt you owe, at least not in advance. O2 are free under their terms of service to charge you a reconnection fee and require you to setup a direct debit for future payments but they have no right to decide to charge you in advance for line rental midway through your contract, and them claiming it as being an unpaid debt for a service you haven't received yet is absurd (to be clear though, to remain legitimately debt-free you do need to still be making any monthly payments as and when they are due, there's just no requirement to be paying these in advance).

As suggested above you may wish to talk to CAB but I would also follow this up with contact to Experian/Equifax telling them you're disputing the default as it isnt a valid debt, and copy in the debt collectors who're chasing you.

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adamtemp64
Posts: 13,396
Topics: 222
Kudos: 951
Solutions: 1,018
Registered: ‎13-08-2008

Re: disconnection and debt

the op still had 12 months of minimum term left and that was why it was passed to the collection agency as the system will not allow reconnection of the account therefore the minimum terms still has to be paid (this is not to get reconnected) and is immediatly due due to breach of contract by the op. look at t&c 8.1 and 8.3

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Level 1: Joiner
nidO
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎01-08-2012

Re: disconnection and debt

[ Edited ]

Except O2 invalidated that by only telling him retroactively that his service couldn't be reconnected. If he was told that paying his bill in full would get his line reconnected, which he subsequently did promptly, O2 have no grounds to terminate his contract under 8.1, which negates 8.3 requiring payment of the entire bill in return for no service.

Notwithstanding the above, clause 8.3 does *not* give O2 the right to demand the entire sum in a single advance payment, the clause states that you must simply continue making the line rental payments each month until the end of the agreement (although it's intentionally ambiguous to make this non obvious). This is why the clause specifically states that *IF* you pay the fee in a single payment (ie you are under no obligation to), they may give you a discount.

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Level 1: Joiner
wrightm
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎21-08-2012

Re: disconnection and debt

O2 were understanding with me, and even the woman who was telling me I couldn't be reconnected at end june/start july from payments apologized and said we would be happy keeping you on as a customer but the system will not let the number be reconnected. They then offered to discuss a payment plan on the remaining line rental but I was standing in a shop and didn't want to discuss my personal finances in public. I have made an arrangement with the debt agency as I had no other choice. Re reading my original post I come off like an ungrateful brat who's throwing a stop over something that happens to lots of people who don't manage their finances properly. I've got a GiffGaff SIM so hopefully it should work well, its just a shame as i been on O2 monthly for many years and feel like I've been pushed out for a stupid reason. And then got my head chewed off for calling up after an online adviser told me he was re connecting the phone, which puts me off contacting o2 again to dispute the issue. So, in conclusion, thanks to all replies esp those that gave me some legal understanding of my situation. I should be having a chat with CAB to see if I actually have a dispute lol.
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