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By jet
#27284
Hi there,

It has been a while but I thought i'd give an update should anyone else be in a similar situation in the future...

In the end (Nov) my DAS was settled for 14500. WilsonAndrews informed me that I had to pay the sum swiftly or risk losing the offer. I was told I was not due back any money from this sum (including the installment I was told to pay on promise it would be returned). The 13500 did not include the fees WilsonAndrews were due from the settlement fund - the additional £1,000 covered what WilsonAndrews required in fees to settle my DAS. Despite paying them over %10 of my monthly installments for a year (well over £400), they required £1,000 to settle it.

Since Nov, I have been living a happy, debt free existence where I have accumulated savings and enjoyed not thinking about how annoyed I was by WilsonAndrews. It is now that I feel ready to write to them to detail my complaint.

My key problem is a lack of transparency and communication. One of two things happened:

Either some advisers did not know the correct answer and misinformed me

OR

I was misled


Both scenarios, I find unacceptable. I paid this company for a service. They literally forgot, ignored and denied my requests for information. I have saved a number of e-mails showing a refusal to give direct answers to queries about returning my final installment and communications which reveal the length of the time I was ignored by the company.

The key thing for anyone in debt is learning how to plan and budget. To do this, you need accurate information about how much money you have and what you need to spend. WilsonAndrews prevented me from doing this for a number of months through the smoke and mirrors created while trying to settle. I just hope others do not face the same uncertainty in the future.

For peace of mind, avoid the company and use a non-charging service. You won't feel so robbed at the end of it.

Regards,

Jet
User avatar
By Hayden
#27299
Hi Jet

Thanks for the update. Firstly good news that you eventually got this sorted.

In terms of the fees you paid, generally it is normal for a debt management company to make a charge in relation to agreeing a settlement with your creditors. However Wilson Andrews seem not to have made this clear to you from the outset and led you to believe that the £13500 origionally stated would be all that was required to settle your debt. To then add a further £1000 for fees at the last minute is I think pretty underhanded and i can understand your frustration with them.

If only Wilson Andrews had handled the whole thing better and been absolutely up front and open I think you would be feeling far happier with them now.

In terms of your recommendation for people to use a free service to implement a DAS, you are right to point out that free services are available. However many people do chose a fee charging service because often the service provided is better. Unfortunately in your case this was clearly not the situation and I feel a formal complain to Wilson Andrews would be in order.
By Steven
#27300
Dear Jet,

I'm sorry to hear that despite settling your DAS, you're still unhappy with the service you've received from Wilson Andrews.

With reference to your comments on settlement fees. Wilson Andrews fee was only £85 for the work involved in settlement. The remaining fees were made up of 2% Accountant in Bankruptcy fee and 5% payment distribution fee. Both the Accountant in Bankruptcy fee and the payment distribution fee are statutory fees over which we have no control and unfortunately these fees have to be added to the creditor settlement figures, rather than deducted from them.

I do appreciate that when looking to settle a DAS it's preferable if a vast majority of debt can be written off, although you must be aware that the offers accepted are solely at the creditors discretion and not ours.

We have taken note of your concerns and raised this as a complaint.

Our complaints coordinator will be in touch to discuss this with you further.

Thank you

Steve Hewitt – a member of the team at Wilson Andrews
User avatar
By James Falla
#27314
Thanks for the clarification regarding your fees Steven. Unfortunately it seems that the way the AiB fees and your distribution fees were to be charged was not made clear to Jet from the outset which seems to be the source of the frustration.

Jet, I would echo Hayden's comment about using a fee charging service to implement a DAS or Debt Management Plan. If the associated charged for each part of the service are fully explained and set in writing there is then no room for confusion and on that basis most people using such services are very happy.