12 year debt chase period

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This may be a silly question but I am after some clarification on the 12 year period you can be chased for a mortgage shortfall. My partner is being chased for this debt and the 12 years was up in February 2004 however we are still being chased is this correct?

The debt they claim is for a shortfall and repairs that Abbey National claim needed doing to the property however they have provided no evidence of the spenditure or evidence of how the shortfall occured. If they cannot provide evidence of the debt can they still claim it?

-- Rachel (robnrach07@hotmail.com), September 09, 2004



It may be correct if your partner or someone acting on his behalf has inadvertently acknowledged the debt. If this was a joint mortgage then it's also possible that the other party/ies has/have acknowledged the debt. A lot has been said about this in previous postings, I suggest that you or your partner take a look at them.

I think the easiest course of action would be to reply stating that the debt is statute barred under the Limitation Act 1980 and see what they come up with. If you do contact the lender/creditor in writing you MUST always state that you do not acknowledge the debt, that you dispute it and deny liability. Failure to do this may restart the limitation period for another 12 years (depending on the wording). Telephone calls cannot acknowledge the debt.

Don't forget the limitation period also usually runs from the 2nd/3rd missed mortgage payment (subject to terms & conditions of mortgage). If it was an endowment mortgage and the default on the endowment policy was earlier than the mortgage repayments then the 12 year limitation period may start from the endowment policy default. There is case law to support this.

The other thing to bear in mind is that if the lender is in possession of a Money Judgment Order (MJO) then in theory they can chase your partner indefinitely, though I've never heard of this happening yet. If the MJO was issued more than 6 years ago the lender has to return to court to get leave to enforce and they must have a very very good reason to justify the delay, otherwise they won't get it.

If it results that the shortfall isn't statute barred then your partner should put the lender to strict proof of the debt (he could Sarn them to get info)., he could then (depending on circumstances and the strength of his case) fight the lender or try and reach a nominal settlement with the creditor, the latter usually being the best solution. Any negotiations should be made "Without Prejudice" and include the wording about not acknowledging the debt and denying liability.

Please remember that I'm not a professional advisor and all info on this site should be checked with one. Finding a good one though is another matter.

Good Luck and let us know how you get on. Don't forget lenders & debt collectors read this site.


-- M Amos (idgroms@hotmail.com), September 10, 2004.

I believe that you are free and clear on this oneunless as the other answer indicates that you have acknoledged the debt. Or if you have made a payment towards or negotiated. Every body should understand that from Oct 31st all mortgage business is going to be goverened by the FSA .This is not a toothless wimpy protect the leder org. like the useless MCCB. go to The FSA website and get all there rulings on this another good site is tlt solicitors in Bristol They act for lots of lenders but do have good advice if you look for it espescialy about lenders and possession.

-- roger watts (r.watts40@ntlworld.com), September 16, 2004.

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