Debt Collectors

I rented a place a couple of years back, and split up with the ex and moved out. I phoned the letting agency at the time to tell them I was no longer a tenant.

Anyway, I got a letter the other day from the letting agency's 'debt recovery department' stating I owe them money (which my now ex must have rung up). I don't think they can get hold of my ex so they are picking on the easier option (ie me!)

Anyway, what options do I have? Do they have the powers to send baliff's round or credit blacklist me, even though I'm not the one who rang up the debt? I could send them a reply letter, but I don't think they will listen :(

If you were both signed and named on the letting agreement. and she didnt sign a new one then you would be "severally and separately responsible" for the debt. If theyve found you and not her it would be up to you. You would the have to find her and try to get it off her.
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If the debt was in both names they can go after either of you. Be aware they may send pretend letters saying their will pass this to a solicitors, fake solicitor letters (illegal) advise that a doorstep colelction agent will call (illegal unless you agree). The only letter you need respond to is a registered/ recorded one from a Court. Tehy will not send bailiffs round without a court order.

Most debt collection agencies are staffed by pimply teenagers paid on commission. They may be told " Go after the male as he'll do the Decent thing eegad".

Do you have an address for your ex? They might like a note of it. Is ex as in legal ex - wife or shack job for a short while? If ex wife will the property be included in any settlement on divorce?

If you are in the mob be aware that these businesses may contact your DO. This is illegal. I am aware that you could be discharged for financial irresponsibility, but if you are sure that you are in the right advise your DO of the situation. "Protecting the Good Name of the Service and Doing the decent Thing by the Memsahb " may be suggested....

Have you a copy of the initial agreement? Is everything absolutely correct - every t crossed, every i dotted? Is your name and address (if on) absolutely correct? Witnessed if necessary? Dates agree/

If and DCA put a note on your credit ref file ensure you get a note on it saying This is disputed.

In addition, many credit agreements are unenforceable if unpaid after 6 years on no payment (5 years in Scotland). You CAN still get credit during this 6 year period, butit may be less than otherwise. Many peopel are paying debts which are unsecured and unenforceabale because they have been duped by pimply teenage nerds.

Good luck - No Surrender


War Hero
Book Reviewer
Letting agencies are not likely to have a "debt recovery department" but will usually farm this out to a third party company. Google/research the parent organisation (and its partner companies) to establish whether they are a legitimate debt recovery agency. It is not unheard of for questionable individuals to set themselves up in this field and contact people speculatively, in an attempt to obtain monies by deception (this includes attempts by them to get you to divulge personal/contact details of third party individuals and other occupants of the property. A real company would have legimate means of obtaining such information). If that is the case, a strongly worded 'shot across the bows' might have the desired effect; if they persist then remind them of your statutory rights and that their continued requests for funds or information could constitute harassment and a breach of data protection legislation. Many people who receive correspondence such as this often do not challenge it as they "want to do the right thing" and pay up - regardless of the legality of the company demanding it, who reply on people's overriding sense of honesty and shame of having a debt (real or otherwise).
Thanks for the replies everyone.

Thinking about it again, they sent a similar letter about 1½ years ago, threatening 'legal proceedings' if I did not pay within 7 days. I sent a reply at the time stating I had left the property and they should pursue my ex. (I received no response to this or 'legal proceedings' from them)

I think I will ignore this and not reply. I will only take action on legal/recorded letters from now on!

May be a mistake ignoring it. If you don't want to have defaults and potentially CCJ's against your name (dependant on outstanding amount), then you really ought to find out firstly if you are responsible for any of the debt and if you are you really need to get in touch with her to get her to pay her fair share.

As others have stated you signed into a tenancy agreement, you are liable for that tenancy until the end of it unless a new tenancy agreement was signed solely by her.

We had tenants in our house whom after the second month of their 6 month tenancy broke up, he left his property and moved out the area but nothing was changed or agreed with us, a month later she left breaking their tenancy, we went after both of them for the outstanding amount (up until we found new tenants which was only 1.5 months). We potentially could have served them both with a CCJ if that's the route we wanted to pursue.


War Hero
Book Reviewer
Halifax: In order for him to default and/or receive a CCJ, the matter has to go to Court. Let the debt collection agency summon him first... :thumbleft:
Halifax: In order for him to default and/or receive a CCJ, the matter has to go to Court. Let the debt collection agency summon him first... :thumbleft:
A default has naff all to do with the courts. CCJ he would have to be summoned yes.
Any point in delaying the inevitable, having come through debt (well not entirely just yet), one thing I have learnt is to play the system and when not to bury my head.

If it's a low amount and he's going for statute barred crack on.


War Hero
Tell them to get fucked, life's to short to wallow in shit.

Bugger being the nice guy, just makes you an easy target, if they want you make them work for it, it might make your ex seem an easier target.

P.s. .... Halifax... you really are a self righteous twat. Get over yourself.
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