The HALIFAX - " UNTRUTH or LIE " : LUSENET : Repossession : One Thread

If you have read my recent posting of the 8th October titled; The HALIFAX - Financing Court Action? you will have seen that I described how the Halifax had left 16 cubic yards of what can only be described as rubbish (The Halifax gave it a total value of #50) piled throughout the property during the whole phase of the marketing of the property.

I had written to the Halifax accusing them of negligence because of the obvious severe negative impact this would have had on the presentation of the property and its sale value. I also questioned how it could possibly have been cleaned properly in the circumstances.

I have now received the following explanation from the Halifax.

The property did contain a considerable amount of contents upon us taking possession. Our practice is not to dispose of borrowers possessions without first giving them an opportunity to remove them themselves. In this case efforts were made unsuccessfully to trace ********** in order to try and arrange for her to remove the contents. The contents were finally removed on the request of the purchasers who stated that they would reduce their offer by #1,000 if the contents were not cleared. I do not agree with your statement that we were negligent  I believe we showed due care in the manner that the contents were dealt with. Cleaning was understandably made more difficult by the fact that there were contents remaining but our surveyor confirmed that the contractors cleaned the property satisfactorily in the circumstances.

Well that's their explanation, these now are the documented facts:

1) I had informed the Halifax on the 12th March 2000 (A month before the possession hearing) that I had that day visited the property and that through the ground floor windows (I had no keys), I could see that the property was in a disgusting condition as when it had been vacated by **********, she had left considerable piles of rubbish in the property.

2) At the Possession Hearing on the 15th May 2000, **********s new address was disclosed to the Judge following a successful trace that I had initiated. Both the Judge and the Halifaxs agents noted this new address.An order for possession with 28 days notice was changed by the judge to forthwith in my favour (I wanted the possession to take place as the Halifax had refused a voluntary one).

3) I then received a letter from the Halifax (Sent in error to a previous address!) dated 18th May 2000 asking me to remove any belongings from the property before the enforcement of the warrant for possession. I had already informed them that I was aware that there were no belongings of mine in the property and that having not lived there for six years I didnt have a key to do so anyway. As they had once again got my address wrong I wrote to them on the 27th May 2000 to confirm that they had in fact been given my correct address by their agents, had they been informed by their agents of **********,s new address and were they now communicating with her there?

4) I received a reply to the above from the Halifax dated the 2nd June 2000 in which the Halifax confirmed that they had the wrong address for me and which also stated; I can also confirm that we are aware of **********s new address, and are corresponding with her there.

5) On the 12th June 2000 the possession warrant was executed. The Halifax's agents had not expedited the request for warrant so it had been delayed.

6) I then received a recorded delivery letter from the Halifax dated 19th June 2000 giving me 7 days to remove my belongings. I replied to the Halifax on the 22nd of June 2000 reminding them that I had already told them in previous letters that I had no belongings in the property. I also asked them to confirm that this same 7 day notice letter of 19th June 2000 had also been sent to **********. I also stated that when the contents were removed no charges should be levied to me as it all belonged to **********.

7) On the 20th June 2000, Estate Agents were instructed to market the property.

8) I then received on the 22nd June 2000 the now infamous Estimated Shortfall letter from the Halifax. After questioning this alleged debt, I received a reply dated the 30th June 2000, in which it was stated that it also referred to my letter of the 22nd June. It was confirmed by the Halifax in this letter that the same 7 day notice for removal of belongings had also been sent to **********.

9) On the 2nd July I again visited the property and noted that the piles of rubbish could still be seen through the ground floor windows and on the 8th July I wrote again to inform the Halifax of this fact., questioning how they could describe it as being fully marketed whilst this state existed.

10) On the 12th of July I received a letter from the Halifax with the two valuations enclosed. The Halifaxs own surveyor had stated on their valuation that the property should not be cleared of debris but sold in it's present condition. The Halifax nevertheless stated in this letter as a result of my questioning it, that they would be obtaining an estimate for clearance of the contents which had been stacked enabling viewers to inspect the property. (16 Cubic yards of it!)

11) I wrote again to the Halifax on the 14th July 2000 to state that the rubbish was not in stacks but in heaped piles as seen with my own eyes and again questioning this.

12) The Halifax then sent a reply dated 21st July 2000 stating that they would be inspecting the property.

13) I then received a letter from the Halifax dated 8th August 2000 which referred to my letter of the 14th July 2000 but did not even mention the piles of rubbish in the property but simply stated that the condition of the property was as described in the Halifaxs valuation. In this same letter they stated that they had accepted a final offer on the property. This offer ended up in the acual sale of the property on the 25th August 2000.

14) On the 12th August 2000 I wrote to ask the Halifax to explain why they still had not addressed the issue of the Halifax having marketed this property with piles of **********s unwanted belongings and rubbish lying around the property.

15) After continually pressing the Halifax to respond and give satisfactory replies to all issues I wrote to the Halifaxs chairman on the 11th September alleging 25 negligent actions by the Halifax during the Possession, Valuation and Marketing of this property. He then instigated an Internal Investigation.

16) I do not believe any of the allegations had been addressed properly during this investigation and in fact the issue of the 16 cubic yards of rubbish had not even been referred to.

17) I have now received documents proving that the piles of unsightly rubbish were only finally removed from the property on the 17th August 2000!

The Halifax concluded their internal investigation of my case by the 26th September 2000. They stated that all the elements of the sale process had been investigated. One would feel that it would then be only reasonable, based on this statement, to believe that they would have examined all the documentation that I also have in my possession. Would I be correct in that assumption? Nevertheless I have as always attempted to be fair to the Halifax (Contrary to how I feel they have frequently acted towards me) so I have only accused them of an untruth and not a lie.

If you read the Webster definition of an Untruth:

UNTRUTH: A man may state what is untrue from ignorance or misconception; hence, to impute an untruth to one is not necessarily the same as charging him with a lie. Every lie is an untruth, but not every untruth is a lie.

and compare it with the Webster definition of a Lie:

LIE: An untruth spoken with the intention to deceive. The proper notion of a lie is an endeavoring to deceive another by signifying that to him as true, which we ourselves think not to be so.

The first point here is, if the intention was to deceive then it raises the question, whom was it meant to deceive? Also just as importantly, why?

The second point I need an answer to is: Based on all the facts as stated above, would accusing the Halifax of an Untruth be correct or instead should they have been accused of Lying?

Lastly, Bearing in mind the sentiments expressed in the Halifax Chief Executive's quotes in yesterday's national newspaper do you think it would be worthwhile seeking his help in this matter?

His number one tip is after all; "If things aren't right, say so. It is foolish to pretend all is perfect when it isn't"

Please feel free to Email me privately on this matter if you feel it is neccessary.


-- Tony Hayter (, October 15, 2000


Three little words: Skipton versus Stott. Somewhat more tangentially, I also made a formal complain to my lender (Abbey) and received an assurance they they had carried out a full 'investigation', when it was clear that couldn't possibly have done so without some sort of exchange of documents, an exchange they never sought. They didn't contact me once during their 'invesigation' - some junior bod merely wrote saying that my contention X could not be upheld because either (a) they reckoned they had no evidence, or because (b) they chose to disagree with me; and that we were therefore in 'deadlock'; and could they have a wad of money off me now please? All I can say is, what an extraordinary way to run a major business.

-- Eleanor Scott (, October 15, 2000.

Hi Tony !

Surely from what is documented this would appear to be a perfect 'test case' to 'test the sincerity' and the 'actuality' of the Chief Executive's commnets ?

Are his comments genuine ? Fact or Fiction ? There's only way to prove it to the 'borrowing' nation ! Watch this space !!

The outcome could be the best, or the worst, ever advertisment for the Halifax ?

Best wishes Vic

-- Vic Harper (, October 15, 2000.

Thanks to everyone for the advice I've received! I have been advised that, I must be seen to have exhausted all possible means of encouraging the Halifax to address the issues in a fair manner before proceeding to any further stage. Therefore as suggested, the Chief Executive of the Halifax will shortly be receiving a letter outlining my case.


-- Tony Hayter (, October 16, 2000.

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