Our agreement with you, our Terms of Business
Please read the following terms carefully as they set out the basis of our contract with you. We will be completely transparent in our dealings with you so that you can be confident you are in safe hands. They set out our obligations to each other for the duration of our relationship and explain the details of your Debt Management Plan. If there is anything you do not understand, please contact your Personal Case Manager who will be happy to help.
The agreement between you and us is made on the following terms; please read them carefully as they set out the basis of our contract with you. We will be completely transparent in our dealings with you so that you can be confident you are in safe hands. They set out our obligations to each other for the duration of our relationship and explain the details of your Debt Management Plan. If there is anything you do not understand, please contact your Personal Case Manager who will be happy to help.
1. Definition of Terms
“You” Our Client/s, whose names are recorded overleaf.
“Us” Humber Debt Solutions Limited, 362 Holderness Road, Hull, HU9 3DL. Company Registration Number 7451293. Authorised and Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority – Authorisation Number 640786. Data Protection Number Z2479641
“Creditors” Any and all of your unsecured creditors whose details you will provide to us in accordance with section 3.
“Debt Management Programme” A plan of repayments produced by us in accordance with section 4.2
“Period” The period during which the Debt management Programme is in operation.
“Fees” The fees to be paid by you to us in accordance as stated in section 5.2.
2.1 Agreement; You request us and we agree to provide you with a Debt Counselling Advisory and Adjusting Service in accordance with these terms and conditions. You authorise us to negotiate on your behalf with your creditors. This agreement shall continue until final repayment of the creditors is made in accordance with the Debt Management Programme, unless it should have been terminated beforehand in accordance with section 6.
3.1 Your responsibilities; you will provide us on request with information relating to your finances. This will include but will not be limited to true and accurate details of your income and expenditure, your Creditors and any agreements you have with them, any loans or mortgages you have, your dependants and any judgements made against you or any other enforcement action being taken against you.
3.2 You will sign any necessary forms of authority or any other documents so that we may negotiate with your Creditors on your behalf.
3.3 You will pass copies of all correspondence from your Creditors to us and keep us informed of any dealings you have with any Creditors, whether we are negotiating with them or not. Once the Debt Management programme has been agreed, you will not make any expenditure over and above your reasonable living expenses as calculated in the Debt Management Programme. You will not use your credit cards nor incur further debts.
3.4 You will consult with us in relation to your Debt Management Programme repayments and in relation to any alterations to it or reviews of it. Your payments to us will need to be amended to reflect any reasonable changes which your circumstances dictate. You will make payments to us under and in accordance with the Debt Management Programme promptly and without deductions.
3.5 On occasion your Creditors may not provide us with balances of your accounts due to their own company procedures. If these circumstances arise then you will obtain this information for us and supply us accordingly.
3.6 We cannot be held responsible for any legal action taken against you by your Creditors as a result of fraudulent or incorrect information provided by you at the time of acquiring a loan, HP agreement, credit card or any other credit.
3.7 Non contact from you will not be considered cancellation of the agreement. Written confirmation will be required to release any funds owing to you in accordance with section 6 of this agreement.
3.8 If you do not maintain regular payments we will suspend any action and payments on your account. Your Creditors may have to be informed that payments are not being maintained. This may result in your Creditors applying further interest and charges increasing what you owe, they may cancel any reduced repayment arrangement and could take legal action against you for which we cannot be held responsible.
3.9 You remain responsible for and it is important that you continue to pay your priority debts such as mortgage, rent, council tax and utility payments including secured loans, mortgages or Hire Purchase agreements and all household bills (including insurances).
4.1 Our responsibilities; we will review your finances, covering your income, expenditure, debts and assets. These must include all debts secured on property or goods, which we will take into consideration, but cannot, negotiate reduced payments on. We will calculate your disposable income, based on reasonable living expenses. We can only provide advice on the services that we offer.
4.2 In consultation with you we will produce a Debt Management Programme by which you can pay off your creditors out of your disposable income at the rates you can afford. The Debt Management Programme will let you make monthly payments to us and will take account of your Creditors and of our Fees. It will not take account of any matters you have not told us about in accordance with section 3. It will also take account of the differing requirements of your different Creditors, if there is more than one.
4.3 We will negotiate with your Creditors and attempt to agree repayment terms with them of the amounts outstanding. In doing so we shall use the Debt Management Programme and we shall ensure that the periodic payments that we agree with your Creditors on your behalf do not exceed your disposable income (less our fees) as calculated by us for the same period.
4.4 We shall attempt to agree with your Creditors, where appropriate, that they freeze or reduce their interest charges and that they suspend or withdraw enforcement proceedings issued in connection with your agreements with them. In rare instances County Court proceedings may still be actioned against you. In these cases we will assist in all relevant paperwork as required. We cannot guarantee to stop the issuance of default notices or prevent legal action by your creditors.
4.5 Because taking out a plan will result in you not making your contractual payments on your unsecured debts, your credit rating maybe adversely affected in the short to medium term. However your credit rating may have already been affected if you have arrears or history of missed/late payments. This will normally be recorded on your creditor file and normally retained for 6 years and may make it difficult to obtain credit in the medium to long term.
4.6 We shall make payments to your Creditors monthly or 4 weekly in accordance with your Debt Management Programme.
4.7 The payments made to your Creditors will be reflected on the statements you will receive from them. We will send you a statement at least annually showing the payments made and distributed in that particular period. A full breakdown of all payments we have made can be obtained on request.
4.8 Should your circumstance or any other relevant matter change during the period, we shall, in consultation with you and your Creditors, review the Debt Management Programme and if necessary shall make changes to it in agreement with you and with any Creditors concerned.
4.9 From time to time your creditors will request an update of your financial situation. We will contact you to review your current financial circumstances and update your Debt Management Programme accordingly. To aid this process we request that payslips are regularly forwarded to us for review.
4.10 All payments made to us will be made into Humber Debt Solutions client account. This account is separate to our own business accounts & funds held for distribution to your creditors will be retained for that purpose only. No interest is payable to us or you on these funds. At all times funds held will be classed as client monies and distributed to creditors within 5 working days subject to cleared funds. If you wish to pay us on a weekly or fortnightly basis, we shall hold your funds until a total of your monthly agreed amount has been paid. This will then be distributed to your creditors but will result in us holding your funds for longer than 5 working days in these instances. In all cases, unless expressly agreed with you, we will not distribute payments to your creditors within the first 14 days of the plan (Distance Selling Regulation 2000).
4.11 During the negotiation process some creditors may continue to charge interest and other recovery charges. We cannot always prevent these charges being levied. These will however be paid off as part of your debt Management Programme.
5.1 How your plan will work; there is no setup fee and no pre-contractual fees. A monthly management fee will apply as per 5.2. The management fee covers a full financial assessment with a Personal Debt Advisor, drafting of your payment plan, and communication with your creditors by telephone, in writing and by fax, calculation and issue of the reduced repayment proposals, preparation of the financial statement and the full and ongoing negotiation process with your creditors and distribution of your payments; as a result of this you may fall into or further into arrears.
5.2 During the first 4 months we will collect a Monthly Management fee of 50% of your monthly payment amount of *** that you pay into the client account, subject to cleared funds. Thereafter a monthly management fee equal to 17.5% of your monthly payment amount will be charged, subject to a minimum fee of £30.00 and a maximum fee of £120.00. We charge a fee of 25% of the difference between the actual balance and the negotiated balance upon Full & Final Settlement of any credit agreements. A minimum fee of £30.00 per settled account applies. We reserve the right to reduce the fee for clients paying less than £75.00 per month to ensure that no less than 50% of your payment is paid to your creditors.
5.3 We estimate your payment plan to be *** months. The total amount payable to your plan is estimated to be *** . This figure is inclusive of our management fee of *** to be spread over the term.
5.4 The above calculation assumes that your creditors will freeze interest and not impose further charges on your accounts, for which we will negotiate on your behalf but cannot guarantee. If they do not it may increase the total amount to be repaid over a longer period of time.
5.5 If no payment is recovered from you for 90 days or over and your plan is closed the fees will be charged in line with 5.2 when you rejoin the programme and monthly fees will apply as a new debt management case.
5.6 Additional fees may apply if you are subsequently transferred to a different debt management option.
5.7 In the case of weekly payments or payments more frequently than monthly, the monthly management fee will be charged on each distribution once your full monthly payment has been paid as stated in 5.2. If you stop paying and we are unable to contact you, we reserve the right to distribute any funds on the account to your creditors after deducting our fee as stated in 5.2.
5.8 If this agreement is ended in accordance with section 6, we will return any undistributed funds after having deducted the aforementioned fees and you will not have to pay us any more money. This will be made within 7 days of receiving written confirmation
5.9 We retain the right to change the fees charged at any time by giving you no less than 30 days written notice
6.1 Termination of agreement; you have a right to cancel within fourteen days from the date you accept our terms and conditions for your debt management plan. If you decide not to continue with the plan within the first fourteen days, we will refund any payments made unless these have been distributed with your permission to your creditors within the first 14 days in which case we will refund the Monthly Management Fee paid to us; see 4.1.
6.2 You may end this agreement at any time by giving us four weeks notice in writing.
6.3 We may end this agreement by giving you four weeks notice in writing if anyone of the following happens:
- You breach this agreement and do not remedy the breach within seven days of our bringing the breach to your attention.
- A bankruptcy petition is made against you or you enter into a Individual Voluntary Arrangement / Trust Deed
- Where the information provided to us is knowingly incorrect.
- The information provided by you at the time of acquiring a loan (HP agreement, credit cards or any other form of credit) is deemed incorrect or fraudulent by any creditor, or
- If we are affected by force Majeure.
6.4 We will use all reasonable endeavours to refund to you any monies that we are unable to distribute to your Creditors if your account with us becomes inactive. (i.e. you stop paying your monthly / weekly payment). Where we have made reasonable endeavours to make a refund then after six months we reserve the right to retain any monies outstanding on your account.
7.1 How to complain; Should you feel the level of service you receive has fallen below an acceptable standard, you should contact us to voice your concerns to us in the first instance, so we can attempt to put things right.
Phone: 01482 585017 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Write to: The Compliance Manager, Humber Debt Solutions, 362 Holderness Road, Hull, East Yorkshire, HU9 3DL.
7.2 Where possible we aim to resolve your complaint by the end of the next working day following receipt of your complaint however a more detailed complaint may take longer than this to resolve. We will endeavour to provide a final response to your complaint within eight weeks.
7.3 We are a member of APDSI (www.apdsi.org.uk) and our complaint policy informs you how to use their conciliation and complaints scheme as a second step.
7.4 In the unlikely event that the matter remains unresolved after 8 weeks you have a right to refer any dissatisfaction to the Financial Ombudsman Service.
7.5 You can find out more about the Financial Ombudsman Service on their website at www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk You can write to the Financial Ombudsman Service at: The Financial Ombudsman Service, South Quay Plaza, 183 Marsh Wall, London, E14 9SR Telephone: 0845 080 1800 Email: email@example.com
8.1 If any part of these terms and conditions is found to be invalid or unenforceable, that part shall be deemed severed from our agreement which will otherwise remain in full force and effect. If at any time, we agree to allow you to breach any part of this agreement it does not mean we have agreed to your doing so on a future occasion.
Important points to remember
- Following our appointment as your DMP provider, we will inform your Creditors within ten (10) working days of our appointment (including the your informed consent). We will acknowledge our mandate to act for the you when requested.
- We will provide your initial statement-of-affairs within one business day of completing a financial review with our debt adviser. This will summarise your income and expenditure, the unsecured creditors you have requested that we act upon and the estimated duration and total fees payable based upon your statement-of-affairs at the time of issue..
- Wherever possible, please quote your Client ID when corresponding with us or your creditors and their appointed debt recovery agents. Please state that you have authorised Humber Debt Solutions to act as your appointed Debt Management Company.
- We request current balances from your creditors on the accounts that you have requested we act upon from your statement-of-affairs. We also ask that further interest & charges be stopped. The outcome will depend on your current financial relationship with each creditor but it is our experience that the majority of creditors will observe 30-days breathing space from our initial contact with them, allowing us to set-up and negotiate your Debt Management Plan (DMP). At the start of your DMP you will be allocated a Personal Case Manager who will be your primary point of contact with us.
- We recommend that you stop paying your unsecured creditors that you have requested us to act upon once we have notified your creditors that we are acting for you and we will advise you when this has occurred in respect of each creditor. We will endeavour to start distributing payments to your creditors within the first 30-days of the commencement date, subject to having cleared funds from you to achieve this and the credit agreement numbers for the respective debt repayments.
- Please immediately advise us if either a creditor or their agent attempts to re-negotiate a payment arrangement with you once we are appointed, as this is a breach by them of the Financial Conduct Authority Debt Collection rules (CONC 7.12).
- We aim to have acceptance from your creditors within 30 and and we will write to you to confirm this approximately 30 days after we have started the negotiations with your creditors.
- In the vast majority of instances, we are successful at freezing interest & charges during the DMP but there is no guarantee of reduced payments or freezing of interest & charges being agreed with every creditor.
- You must prioritise payments, such as mortgage/rent, council tax, water rates, utility bills and car finance, before any unsecured borrowings such as credit or store cards and personal loans. Allowances are made for these in your monthly budget when we calculate your monthly payment to us for your DMP.
- Your credit file may show a one (1) month lapse in payments to your creditors which may show as further arrears on your credit file. This is generally because of the timing between acknowledgement of our payment and the creditor monthly submission to the credit reference agencies. This may be especially the case where the debt is placed with a debt recovery agency, who have to notify the creditor of our appointment and payment.
- Your creditors still have the option to use the county court (in Scotland/Northern Ireland the Sherriff Court/Northern Ireland Court Service) system to pursue their claim against you at any time. They may also issue a default notice under the Consumer Credit Act 1974 (as updated in 2006). They may precede this with statutory letters that should not be ignored. There can be costs incurred by the creditor which they are entitled to add to your account, causing the debt value to increase and the repayment period to be extended. Judgment debts and default notices have an adverse effect on your credit rating and this is unlikely to improve until six years have expired or until the majority of your credit agreements have been settled and marked as satisfied on the respective credit reference agencies records.
- Creditors should place a default against each credit account in the DMP and they should place a DMP flag on the your credit file for the duration of the arrangement to record your participation in a DMP and the progress of the DMP, as set out in the Debt Management Protocol (February 2013).
- Creditors should ensure that your information is removed from their credit-related marketing lists for the duration of the DMP.
- If the creditor chooses to sell a debt that is subject to a DMP, the debt-buyer is generally obliged to honour the existing plan for as long as it operates in accordance with the negotiated terms. It is essential that you inform us if you are notified of a debt assignment.
- Any monies paid to us will be paid into a Client Account. We will disburse funds to your creditors in sufficient time to ensure that payment is made by the agreed date, subject to Cleared Funds, and within 5 working days of reciept of the cleared funds. If you wish to pay us more frequently than monthly then you agree for us distributing these funds on a monthly basis or on reciept of payments totalling your monthly payment amount. For example, weekly payments will be disbursed to your creditors on reciept of 4 weeks payments, this will be agreed with you in advance. Your creditors will be advised of this arrangement. All creditors and their agents are obliged to accept our payments and allocate them to your account.
- You have consented for us to deduct any Monthly Management Fees from the Client Account. These will be detailed on your Monthly Statement and are explained in the Terms of Business.
- You may choose to pay a monthly sum greater than the agreed monthly payment, for us to pay Priority Creditors on your behalf in accordance with any payment arrangements we have agreed with you. We will notify you if a surplus accumulates in the Client Account. If there is a shortfall then we will notify you who will be paid as a matter of priority.
- It is Your right to communicate with your creditors at any time but we recommend that you keep calls short, polite and always advise the creditor or their agent of our appointment, quoting your Client ID. Please forward any postal communication you receive from creditors, their debt collectors or their legal agents to your Personal Case Manager. We will hold this electronically on your case record.
- Reviews are conducted by us no less frequently than annually, based upon the anniversary of you starting your DMP or the last review date. Your creditors may periodically request reviews. Please do not ignore any of these requests. If reviews are delayed or missed the creditors can terminate any payment arrangements that we may have negotiated. Upon completion of the annual review we will send you a statement showing the previous 12 months payments.
- It is important that you promptly respond to any request for signed documentation or additional information regarding your creditors. Any delay in response may affect the outcome of our negotiations with your creditors.
Dealing With Debt – 5 Things You Should Know
- There are sources of free debt advice and services. You can find out more by contacting the Money Advice Service at:
- https://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en/articles/where-to-go-to-get-free-debt-advice; or
- 0300 500 5000 (8.00am-8:00pm Monday to Friday, 9:00am-1:00pm on Saturday).
- You should have been advised on all the options for dealing with your debt [e.g. bankruptcy, debt relief order (DRO), individual voluntary arrangement (IVA) in England & Wales). The advantages and disadvantages of each were discussed with you to enable you to can make an informed choice.
- You know the estimated total cost to you of the DMP and the time it will take for your debts to be repaid under the DMP. Any money you pay to us to cover our fees will not be used to repay your debts. You have the right to a Cooling Off Period as set out in the Agreement.
- We have been through a full and accurate budgeting process with you. This is vital to make sure that the payments you are asked to make are affordable for yourself and fair to your creditors.
- If you are not happy with the service you receive, you can complain. You should refer such complaints to us first to give us a chance to put things right in accordance with our complaint policy. The complaint policy is in our Terms of Business and on our website. We are a member of APDSI (www.apdsi.org.uk) and our complaint policy informs you how to use their conciliation and complaints scheme as a second step. If you are still not happy with the outcome, you can complain to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS). FOS is an independent service who will look into your complaint and can award you compensation if they decide in your favour
We are here to help you, so if your circumstances change please contact your
Personal Case Manager immediatley