The letters are coming quicker now - any help please.

greenspun.com : LUSENET : Repossession : One Thread

I am using a lot of the arguements on this site in my dealing with, firstly a debt recovery agent and now a solicitor but am concerned that as IT IS NOT THE LENDER who is chasing me but the MIG company things may be different(Solicitors acting for a Debt Collection agency who are, in turn, acting for the Royal and Sun Alliance who were the MIG company).

Does this change things at all or am I safe in using the same arguements?

The solicitor has admitted that they do not have a money order judgement as no court proceedings ever took place. Does this mean that there is no debt and shown in one of the newsletter pages on this site? I have tried to speak to Carol Riley again but as yet she has not contacted me and do not know how far to take this in correspondence.

Two other areas of concern to me are that I was never notified of repossession by the Halifax and only learnt of it through a friend who was still in contact with my ex partner. The Halifax had my forwarding address and phone number and had been in contact with me. Surely, in accordance with Statutory Limitations as I have read on this site, they were obliged by law to inform me of the repossession. Any thoughts/help on this on.

Anything I might be ale to do to help, ask and I will try. I am only at the start of what is likely to be a long saga but am willing to use what I learn (lots of surfing at the moment to get my ammunition) to help as many other people as possible.

-- Matt (mattyc@ntlworld.com), November 17, 2000

Answers

Hello Matty

In my opinion I don't think you can use the same arguments with Royal Sun Alliance as you would with a lender, because the Halifax seems to be out of the picture as it were. They've repossessed and sold your house, and had a payout from their insurance company to cover the loss, end of story as far as they're concerned.

Something I have thought of though is, if for example you made a claim on your house insurance, you are usually asked to supply 2 or 3 quotes for the item or work which needs doing, so that the insurance company can be sure what you're claiming is reasonable, an insurance company would not consider paying out 1000 for a 100 item.

Would the RSA or any other MIG company make sure that their lenders got the best price for their repossessed properties? I think the insurance company has a duty to make sure that the lender did before paying out.

I'm assuming that your home was sold below its true value, so if you can prove this and provide proof of what the value should have been, or value of similiar properties, then you could use the arguement that RSA paid out an unnecessary sum and therefore you're not obliged to pay the full amount claimed.

You said in your posting that you were not informed of the repossession. Write to the Halifax and ask them for the case number and court where they served proceedings and for a copy of the summons which was issued. Failing that you could try your local county court and seek their advice. RSA probably wouldn't have such information.

Hope this helps.

Pendle

-- pendle (pendle@amun-ra.demon.co.uk), November 17, 2000.


Pendle's answer above is extremely valuable, particularly the point (new to me) that the insurance company has a duty to make sure the property is sold for the best price.

Something else relevant to MIGs. I read that there was an interesting 'case' recently. Apparently Royal and Sun Alliance were suing Maxine and Stuart Carey from Essex for the amount that it paid out on their MIG after repossession. The Careys used Concept Management run by Peter Walker (see HRP for further info.) On Sept 5th 2000, 3 days before the county court hearing, th insurer dropped its claim and wrote off the 'debt'. I understand that this was after the judge insisted that the insurer produce full documentation to prove the claim.

Could this be because the insurer didn't want to produce the MIG policy? Does this suggest that older MIG policies are ambiguously worded, as Peter Walker has suggested before? Anyone else got any thoughts on this?

It is perhaps significant that so many people in our position are refused a copy of the MIG policy they paid for. I would like to know just how to see a copy of my MIG. My lender Abbey refuses to let me see it. They say it is 'confidential'. Hmm.

-- Eleanor Scott (eleanor.scott@btinternet.com), November 18, 2000.


There is some material on the HRP about the lender's requirement to notify you properly about the impending sale and the actual sale. (The 'Statutory Instruments of Notification.)

-- Eleanor Scott (eleanor.scott@btinternet.com), November 18, 2000.

What I've said about the MIG insurer having a duty to make sure to the house is sold at its proper value, is my opinion only, but to me it seems to make sense. If we, as consumers, have to justify what we claim from an insurance company, surely the same applies to lenders and other commercial entities? Or am I being hopelessly optimistic here?!?

Eleanor's information regarding RSA and the Carey's is very interesting. I'm wondering apart from the possibily ambiguously worded MIG document, is that RSA couldn't actually prove that there was a contract between them and the Carey's?

We pay a MIG with our mortgage to the lender's, but we never see any paperwork. We now know that the MIG is an insurance policy between the lender and the insurer, its none of our business, so we're told.

Perhaps then the best way to approach the MIG insurer, is to say prove that we owe them the money. And where does it say that they have a right to chase us?

Pendle

-- pendle (pendle@amun-ra.demon.co.uk), November 18, 2000.


Many thanks for your words of wisdom.

A Thought - if the RSA or whoever is acting for them decides to take you to court then surely you or whoever is representing you has to be shown ALL documentation involved in the case including the MIG document. Therefore logic says that if the MIG document is asked for and refused that, unless the company changes its mind and sends a copy then no court proceedings would be able to take place. Or is my logic off beam?

-- Matt (mattyc@ntlworld.com), November 18, 2000.



Interesting, given that the RSA held/hold the MIG I paid for. Incidentally, Peter Walker was one of the directors of Union Finance, a "debt counselling" company in Southend who advertised extensively in the mid nineties. This company took my money as well as hundreds of other people's and ended up causing me more grief (by revelaing my address) than anything. They were eventually lambasted in the press for sailing close to the wind in terms of [allegedly fraudulent]claims of success. They certainly failed to resolve our claim and were(last I heard)wound up after being pursued for thousands of pounds of debts. Hardly an endorsement in my opinion. My guess is that RSA had other reasons for settling, not remotely related to Mr.Walker and his cronies.

-- Too scared to say (iwasduped@yahoo.com), November 18, 2000.

In answer to Pendle's question: RSA have the right to pursue us under their "rights of subrogation".. This allows them to substitute one creditor (ie the lender) for another (you). It is detailed in the MIG (oh yes it is..don't let them tell you otherwise) and guess what? You are still not allowed to see it. That is the key legal issue as far as I am concerned.

-- Too scared to say (iwasduped@yahoo.com), November 18, 2000.

If there is a clause within the MIG agreement which says that the insurer can swap the lender's name for yours, then when they pursue a claim through the courts, then I would have thought that the MIG document would have to be provided during the discovery process. If that document is the proof that you are liable for the debt, then they're going to have to provide it. Any court will require a claimant to prove how they are owed the money.

If you did receive a summons then you could put in a defence saying that as far as you are aware there is no contract between you and the insurer and that you have not been provided with any evidence that you are liable for the debt.

-- pendle (pendle@amun-ra.demon.co.uk), November 19, 2000.


'TooScared ToSay@IWasDuped' writes:

"It is detailed in the MIG (oh yes it is..don't let them tell you otherwise) and guess what? You are still not allowed to see it".

If people are not allowed to see their MIGs, how do you know what is detailed in them? Did you manage to see yours? How so?

-- Eleanor Scott (eleanor.scott@btinternet.com), November 24, 2000.


No, I wish I had, but it was confirmed in writing to my solicitors that the Rights of Subrogation under which I was been hounded were detailed in the MIG. This would make sense, given that most mortgage Terms & Conditions do not detail Rights of Subrogation and it is a legal enactment which requires contractual Law to back it up.

-- Too scared to say (iwasduped@yahoo.com), November 24, 2000.


You are fully entitled to see the MIG policy if the case is taken to court. As this document contains the text that allows subrogation then it is the proof that any court would require before allowing a case to be brought and you are allowed a copy(discovery). Therefore, if they refuse to let you see it tell them that, for now you are conducting your own defence or get a solicitor to ask for it. If they do not send this then the court would not allow the case to be heard.

I refer to text in an earlier answer:

'Apparently Royal and Sun Alliance were suing Maxine and Stuart Carey from Essex for the amount that it paid out on their MIG after repossession. The Careys used Concept Management run by Peter Walker (see HRP for further info.) On Sept 5th 2000, 3 days before the county court hearing, the insurer dropped its claim and wrote off the 'debt'. I understand that this was after the judge insisted that the insurer produce full documentation to prove the claim.'

From investigations and discussions the documentation required was the MIG policy. This I beleive backs up the cases we have all read about when threats are made to take court action and nothing then happens. I really do not beleive that in the vast majority of cases the people doing the chasing have a legal 'leg to stand on'. That is my personal opinion so it could be wrong - let's hope not.

-- Matt (mattyc@ntlworld.com), November 25, 2000.


By the way the Careys' case was reported in The Times, so it should be available on its web archive.

This HRP site does express concerns about Peter Walker's views on MIGs, and stresses that *if* his views are right (and they may not be) that they will only be right for MIGs drafted before 1993. When I bought my MIG (pre-1993) there was certainly no suggestion of any risk that I would not be the beneficiary of the policy.

Some people do have written evidence that they were misled. There's a letter from a lender to a person taking out a mortgage written in 1991, which is posted on this HRP. (Under 'Repossession' I think.) Have you read it? Again, the lender is not coming clean about who's actually shouldering the risk.

I bet a lot more people had letters like this but binned them because they never expected to be pursued by the lender or the insurer up to 12 years after the repossession.

-- Eleanor Scott (eleanor.scott@btinternet.com), November 25, 2000.


I have never seen a copy of my MIG, all the documents were issurd for court and we received 3 bundles. None of them contained a MIG! THE SOLICITORS, BARRISTER, and the Judge did not pick up on this and we lost.

-- jacky jones (jones5@btinternet.com), November 25, 2000.

It is my understanding that you can ask the lender to show that it mitigated its loss: for example, that it claimed on the MIG. That brings the MIG into the court (or pre-court 'discovery') proceedings.

If it is the insurer chasing you, then they are claiming a right of subrogation to chase you for the money. Again, they would have to produce the MIG to show that they were entitled to do this under the terms of the MIG specific to your particular mortgage.

I do not feel that these points are well appreciated by solicitors.

But they are of course only my personal understandings of very complex issues.

-- Eleanor Scott (eleanor.scott@btinternet.com), November 28, 2000.


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