When does the 6 yr rule on claiming debts start.

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When does the 6 yr rule on claiming debts start.

Postby victor508 » Sat Nov 22, 2014 3:16 pm

Hi All,
If i am claiming unpaid rent from an estate agent, does the 6 yr start from when i noticed the underpayments and put it in writing or
from the date of the under payments.
Victor.
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Re: When does the 6 yr rule on claiming debts start.

Postby jdfi » Sat Nov 22, 2014 9:31 pm

In general, six years from last contact is your absolute limit.

Is the agent still trading?

I would advise you to take advice before wasting time on an old debt.
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Re: When does the 6 yr rule on claiming debts start.

Postby victor508 » Sun Nov 23, 2014 3:42 pm

Hi jdfi,
i have been fighting this on and off since dec 1st 2008.
Dragging their feet all the time, every time i mention The Small Claim Court they tell me i have to follow procedures before going to court, 3 weeks ago 1 went to their accountants office after a letter to them from the ombudsman, a letter was sent by the accountant saying that they checked their accounts and i was due £600 plus,we declined this offer as we were owed over £3000. We arranged a meeting and at that meeting it was discovered there was £500 from the tenant,s bond. The accountant wrote another letter stating they would pay £the 600 plus sum, the £500 bond, and £200 good will sum.
we wrote back saying we decline your offer, could you please send copies of the cash receipts from tenant, the receipt for the cash they supposedly gave me with
my signature on it and finally paperwork to confirm the moving out date, they say May we say July. My reply from agent was most of your payments are out of time so we advise you to accept our last offer, no further discussions will take place.
The three sticking points are.
1. A cheque for over £400 was cashed and they say you must have had it, refusing to produce my signature on a receipt.
2. The tenant moved out in July 2009 (in my van) They say tenant moved out may 2009, refuse to produce paperwork. (they rent the new property as well)
3. £1100 pound plus unpaid rent, tenant paid all by cash, we asked for copies of the cash receipts, refused.
I think what they have done is fraud, someone is stealing cash from the company.
victor.
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Re: When does the 6 yr rule on claiming debts start.

Postby ukmicky » Sun Nov 23, 2014 4:18 pm

Hi Victor

The limitations Act can only be use in certain circumstances. An agent cant keep stalling so it gets to 6 years and then say sorry ,limitations act now time bars your claim. Its meant for situations where there has been no contact between the 2 parties over the debt for 6 years plus, as it can then be seen as not fair to suddenly hit them with a demand for payment so long afterwards and expect them to be able to find any receipts etc .

As long as you have evidence you have not just popped up 6 years later with a demand for payment for a period more than 6 years ago they can forget about trying to use the limitations act as a way out.

As well as that you would still have a way forward even if they were to find a reason that allowed them to claim its was time barred. A Court has the power to extend the time period even when it does apply and If you could show correspondence chasing the debt dating back over the years you would have more than a very good reason to asking the court to use its discretion and would mostly likely gain the courts approval.

I would also be claiming interest, time or legal fees
Advice given is not legally qualified and you are advised to gain a professional opinion
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Re: When does the 6 yr rule on claiming debts start.

Postby ukmicky » Sun Nov 23, 2014 4:56 pm

If you do take them to court only claim for what you can 100 per cent prove because if they make an offer which you refuse and the court awards you the same amount or less you can under certain circumstances gain their legal fees.

Send them a proper Letter before action Demanding payment for the debt owed ,detailing what is owed for what periods .On the same demand for payment give them 28 days to make payment or action will then be instigated through the courts to recover the sum owed.




Or even better as they want things done properly with you following follow procedures

Send them a Late payment demand under the (Late Payment of Commercial Debts (Interest) Act 1998 regulation 2002). The Amended 2013 Regulations which brought us in line with the EU will most likely not apply but you are covered under the 2002 Regs I believe .

Which allows you to charge an annual interest at 8% above base rate for each day your debt is overdue and compensation.

That may scare them

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/s ... ective.pdf
Advice given is not legally qualified and you are advised to gain a professional opinion
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Re: When does the 6 yr rule on claiming debts start.

Postby victor508 » Sun Nov 23, 2014 6:08 pm

Hi ukmicky,
Thanks for your input, see below list of contacts to agent.

Ist contact Dec 1st 2008. letter
March 2009 office meeting (told verbally i was owed approx £1600)
Feb 22nd 2010 Phone call to office
Feb 26th 2010 Phone call to office
mar 3rd 2010 phone call to office
mar 10th 2010 letter
mar 12th 2010 phone call to office
mar 13th 2010 Email to office
oct 28th 2013 letter
letter from us to ombudsman
Letter from ombudsman to agent
5th mar 2014 letter from agent first offer of money
Meeting with accountant
April 1st 2014 letter from agent 2nd offer of money
4th nov 2014 sent letter of refusal to agent
19th non 2014 letter from agent saying about 6 yr limitation and no further discussion

any idea from this where the 6yr rule starts
Thanks for you input.
Victor.
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Re: When does the 6 yr rule on claiming debts start.

Postby jdfi » Sun Nov 23, 2014 10:10 pm

Ukmicky gives very good advice.

However - you've dilly-dallied for six years, and they won't believe a word you say.

Simple easy decision:
-forget the whole thing

-make a solicitors appointment for tomorrow, budget approx 1k for legal fees, and get proceedings issued.
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Re: When does the 6 yr rule on claiming debts start.

Postby mr sheen » Mon Nov 24, 2014 8:51 am

I'd take the money offered.
A court will frown upon the length of time this has taken especially in view of the amounts involved. Their defence will probably now be that you never issued proceedings within the time period considered appropriate for such cases and as a consequence the statute of limitations applies.....the judge will decide if statute applies. Dragging your feet to get to statute of limitations is a well-heeled tactic.

You need advice as to whether the debt is worth pursuing further now that it is more than 6 years after it was incurred....question is whether you want to throw good money after it????

Bird in the hand....there is still money on the table....and it's 50% of what you think youre owed so calculate what percentage it is of what you can outright PROVE in court (there's lots of talk of cash and missing receipts etc....suggesting your case may be difficult to prove 6 years on from the transactions) and money in the bank may look more attractive than the risks of pursuing this to court and the option of throwing more money at it

What was the outcome of the ombudsman investigation? He should've replied to you too. Is this worth pursuing further?
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Re: When does the 6 yr rule on claiming debts start.

Postby victor508 » Mon Nov 24, 2014 10:56 pm

Hi All,
A few different opinions, plenty to think about.
If you go to court to soon you are stuffed
If you wait until the agent has carried out his checks you are stuffed
Agent does what he likes when he likes and comes up smelling of roses .
Ombudsman says to agent he has a very weak case.
Ombudsman says to me agent dragged his feet that is fine.
Ombudsman says to me you dragged your feet that is not fine i can no longer help you
What is the ombudsman for, i thought they would have to be unbiased.
Appointment tomorrow with solicitor, if he says hopeless case i might hand the so called paperwork of the agent over to The revenue.
If all his accounts are like mine they might pay him a visit hopefully.
Victor. :twisted:
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Re: When does the 6 yr rule on claiming debts start.

Postby victor508 » Thu Jul 23, 2015 10:33 pm

Hi all,
Just an update. Given a court date in August 2015 , i was given until 21st july to present documents at court and to defendant.
I deposited mine to both.
Defendant presented not 1 document.
Where does that leave the court appearance.
I have given them all my evidence and got none in return.
Am i missing something here.
I have to wait 2 weeks now without knowing what is going on.
Anybody been in a similar situation.

Victor.
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Re: When does the 6 yr rule on claiming debts start.

Postby jdfi » Sat Aug 01, 2015 8:22 am

Make sure you pay your hearing fee. Usually due 14 days before.
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Re: When does the 6 yr rule on claiming debts start.

Postby victor508 » Mon Aug 03, 2015 6:56 am

Hi all,
Thanks jdfi, paid the fee , due in court this week.
I can only assume the defendant is going for statute barred debt.
as they have produced no evidence to the court or myself.
I am trying to get my head around the limitations act 1980 , it is a complicated read , has anybody found a limitations act for dummies version.
I have found some postings which state 6 years with no contact , i have received a letter within the period of 6 years stating that they acknowledge part of the claim and offered a payment . Also i read that if information is held back then the six years only start when that infomation is delivered.
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Re: When does the 6 yr rule on claiming debts start.

Postby mr sheen » Mon Aug 03, 2015 7:35 am

My reading of it is...for what it's worth....
If you don't get your act together and reclaim it within the 6 years, you can't be that bothered about it so tough luck.
6 years is the length of time deeded reasonable to recover and if you don't, you can't expect the debt to be held over the debtor ad infinitum so a cut off has to apply.

You need to show good reason and have evidence of good reason, debt, acceptance of debt...etc..and some luck on your side...and hope the Judge dislikes estate agents.

They don't need to submit anything, they have a good defence in itself...statute of limitations has expired - you should have recovered the debt in a timely manner since after this length of time can't be expected to have documents, memories have faded etc etc....

Let us know the outcome since this is an interesting case especially since you decided to take the chance on court.

Best of luck.
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Re: When does the 6 yr rule on claiming debts start.

Postby victor508 » Mon Aug 03, 2015 1:42 pm

Hi Mr Sheen,
Thanks for your input, the thing i am trying to establish is , the 6 year rule means six years no contact , i have the initial letter in dec 2008
there are emails and phone calls , feb 2013 acknowledging receipt of my letter and promising to reply in 21 days , mar 2014 letter received saying sorry for the delay and we have discovered we owe you £600 plus pounds with a cheque enclosed. april 2014 letter saying they have found another £500 they owe us ( took the bond off tenant and left it in their account for close on 5 years , we forgot it was there). Those 3 letters and an admission of a debt should halt the 6 years and it starts again from that admission.
I have seen this on various help sites but can't find it on the official limitations act. " the six years have to be no contact or admission (i have both) if there is admission the 6 yrs start from the day of admission.
Has anybody seen this quote on a government website, i have 2 days to find it.
Thanks,
Victor.
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Re: When does the 6 yr rule on claiming debts start.

Postby mr sheen » Mon Aug 03, 2015 2:22 pm

Have they submitted their defence?

It could be based on limitation period but could be that they have sent you all money due and therefore there is no debt anymore.

Do you have documentary evidence of what you claim they owe?
If their defence is based on statute, the burden of proof that statute doesn't apply is now yours and you have correspondence of admission of debt but they can come back to indicate that you should have made claim earlier since you disputed the amounts involved and therefore statute applies.
This will be a legal argument that they will allocate to a barrister no doubt.....but .???? they may still make an offer on the steps???!!???
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