Advice needed in re po case : LUSENET : Repossession : One Thread

In May 1990, my Wife & I purchased a property valued at 75,000 with a 100% Mortgage. The Lender, Citi-Bank insisted in us taking out a MIGP. On March 22nd 1991, Due to redundancy we returned the keys to our Solicitor and moved out. At that time we had approx 5 Months Arrears. We understand from Lawsmiths that Citi-Bank Repossesed the property on June 6th 1991.But we received nothing off them. I am struggling to find proof of this as our Court only hold records for 3-5 years. We moved to another house in the same poistal town where we still live. We heard nothing off anyone until PCP1 contacted us in 1998 demanding settlement. I asked for proof of the debt and we heard nothing else. In March 2003 we received a letter of Lawsmiths Solicitors stating we owed 45,000 in shortfall and 39,000 in interest. We have since been issued with County Court Papers for the total sum. I wrote to Lawsmiths asking why we were being pursued after so long and why the lender did not activate the MIG. About 1 week later a Debt collection firm FTS rang me and I spoke to a Mr Andy Jefferson over the next 3 days. I had to send the Court confirmation that I was going to defend this action by Friday June 14th 2003. My conversations with FTS did not reach a completion but I was informed by Mr Andy Jefferson not to send my Defence notification into the COurts as we were in negotiation and he would fax the Court on The Morning of June 13th 2003 to notify them of this. Mr Jefferson also said he would phone me back on Thursday June 13th 2003. I sent my Papers to the Court in Time. Mr Jefferson did not and has since not contacted me. My Solicitor appears a little "wet" and does not make me feel confident. My current Property is valued at 95,000 approx. I have a Mortgage for 50,500 and 5 cautions at about 12,000. Anyone know what my options are? I am currently in receipt of Family Credit and the new working family Tax Credit.

-- Steve Pittaway (, July 12, 2003


Because court action is involved I hope Mark, guy or someone knowledgeable will advise you. But the last thing you need is a wet lawyer.

I might be wrong but as it was 5 years after the repo that that they contacted you, the matter might be time barred....again hopefully someone else will confirm this or put me right. This might depend on whether or not you have acknowledged the debt in any way. You should let us know if you have and if so when.

Have you SARN'd the Lender and all its' cronies...if not it would I think be a good idea to do so NOW and by Recorded Delivery. You MUST read all the Do's and Don'ts on the Options. It's a lot to take in but having a better understanding of the processes will give you the confidence to tackle this and not give in to their threats, until they have proven the debt.

I'm sure you will get good advice from some of the others and keep us all posted. Contact direct if you wish.

Take care

M ar k bel

-- moira (, July 12, 2003.

Hi Steve,

First dont panic. - easier said than done and it's always easy for us to tell you what to do but when in same shoes...

If you are not confident of your solicitors ability tell him to (or you) check out 'who helps' on this site - some of them are free of charge organisations and charities and are very good. - contact them.

Points to note when speaking to any of the above or 'helping' your solicitor

Have you a copy of the letter you sent asking for proof in 1998? - This will help you as you are showing that the lender avoided evidencing the debt when you asked - they chose to ignore your request for proof and sit on it for 5 years! the court will be appalled at this as its a tremendous stress in your life and not professional behaviour - this should have been highlighted in your defence (hopefully)

How many letters did they send to you between march 2003 and the court papers arriving - if only one or two then that is demonstrating to a court that the lender and their collector are not following the spirit of lord justice woolfes report. - this should be used as defence.

If still going to court request full disclosure and request an adjourment for receipt of the information in addition to allowing time for the papers to be reviewed - need to check the deed and assignment papers - PLEASE NOTE: CHECK THAT THE ASSIGNMENT DATES AND DETAILS ARE CORRECT WITH THIS CASE (It maybe that CITIBANK do not own this debt anymore so why would they be the claimant) - DISPUTE CLAIM.

I doubt that the 6 year CML undertaking is a possibility on your case. This is because if Citibank are the original lender and the legally entitled claimant they are not a member of the CML and therefore will not honour their undertaking. - companies house is not online whilst typing this - make sure they havent changed their name by checking at If they have changed their name is this new name registered as a member of the CML (list at this web link) cml/cml/live/en/cml/about_member_directory?dbcml=

If this new name is on the list then this could ripp into their claim if you did not acknowledge that you owed the money in your letter to them in 1998. - see previous posts regarding cml

Also In June 1991 when the property was repossessed you were already 8 months in arrears - this suggest that if no more payments from you were made and your letter of 1998 disputes the claim (i.e. did not acknowledge the debt) this could cause their claim to be time statued barred.

The way FTS are handling 'negotiations' rises concern and maybe you should check the day before the court hearing to see if FTS have phoned the court to cancel. If you dont get written confirmation from FTS or the court prior informing you otherwise attend at court on day of hearing and explain the situation with help from your solicitor to the judge (DISPUTE CLAIM AND THAT YOU BELIEVE THAT ASSIGNMENT PAPERS COULD BE INCORRECT.)

If you goto into court - you must defend - as 45,000 of your mortgage is uncharged (cautions are not the same)

I believe that if this case is examined there will be holes. The way they have now agreed to enter into negotiations suggest that court action was simply a quick and cheap way of dragging you into making an offer.

Normally I suggest that you do things yourself from the fantastic resources on this website but for this one go straight to Who helps?

Good luck, let us know how you get on and if I can be of any further assistance email me.

Good luck

-- fairer financial world (, July 12, 2003.


Not much to add to the above. As has been stated already the alleged shortfall may be statute barred if no acknowledgement or part payment has been made. The 12 year limitation period usually commences from the 2nd or 3rd missed mortgage payment (subject to terms and conditions in your mortgage) see Bristol & West v Bartlett. doc=/ew/cases/EWCA/Civ/2002/1181.html&query=bristol%20&%20west%20v% 20bartlett

Any acknowledgement made after the expiry of the 12 year period won't restart the limitation period I believe. I'd also check out the CML angle as already suggested. Another point to bear in mind given that they are claiming a huge lump of interest is the following:

"Is the lender claiming statutory interest? If so, liability for any such interest that relates to more than 6 years ago should be denied - as it is statutory interest, it comes under LA s9, a sum recoverable under a statute, and is limited to the last 6 years."

Have a look at my posting under skipton...can anyone help,mortgage shortfall(interest) you will find more info here.

People that can help:

You could contact Ahmed Bhutt (who I am told is an exceptional advice worker) at the Mary Ward Legal Centre 26-27 Boswell Street, London WC1N 3JZ Tel : (020) 7831 7079. Another possibility is Derek McConnell He is at South West Law Services (Legal Services in the Community) Ltd, 1 hide Market, West St, Old Market, Bristol BS2 0BH (0117 314 6400).

Another person you could try is Mike at Mike Thomas Michael Thomas Consultancy Ltd 01376 563365. He works on a no win no fee basis. There is the NAMV and of course the CAB.

Hope this helps,


-- M Amos (, July 13, 2003.

Steve, I am sure there is an issue here over the transfer between Citibank and PSPC No1 Ltd. If I understand it correctly the transfer between the two companies was not completed in such a way that gave PSPC No 1 ownership of the "debt". You need specialist help. Contact NAMV before you do anything, as they may put you in touch with Ahmad Butt who has experience in these cases. NAMV can be contacted on 01889 507394 If you are in receipt of public funding (legal aid) to defend the action then your solicitor can directly contact Ahmad Butt at the Mary Ward Legal Centre in London. Email me for his number.

Hope this helps Jane

-- Jane (, July 16, 2003.

Steve, I forgot to mention that NAMV (National Association of Mortgage Victims) also assists solicitors and other advisers with these types of cases.

Hope this helps Jane

-- Jane (, July 16, 2003.

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