The house was in his sole name and had a right as a landlord and owner. This changed as part of the divorce settlement. I am waiting for the transfer to take place over to my name.
So it was an agreement between you, for him to pay the utility bills?
The house is still in joint names?
Are you disputing the amount or the liability?
no there was no agreement, he just took control and kept me out of the frame, the house is still in his sole name, the transfer has not been done yet, i am disputing the liability and the amount
there was no agreement for him to pay the bills he would have just paid the utilities as he had the money from the tenants, we were not speaking so he didnt speak to me about it,
So the house is in his name, you do not own it jointly?
How does your liability for the utility bills rise then?
You say that in the divorce settlement the house was put back in your name implying that it was in your name at some stage earlier, then you say that the house is still in his sole name. You then say that bear was no agreement I. am getting more confused as time goes on.
Can I have accurate facts in detail from beginning to end please, including how your liability has arisen , because I am sorry to say that at the moment, I cannot make head nor tail of how you got into this situation . . Thank you
The house was put in his sole name in 2004, but with a declaration of trust to protect my interest (I owned it with the previous partner). When we split in 2010, i ran the property for a year, collecting the rents and paying the utilites, it was my only income, but he decided in Nov 11 that he would start taking the rents and he threatened the tenants with eviction if they paid me, and as the owner and landlord, (HMO license in his name), they were to pay him. He made things very difficult when i went there to carry on collecting rents so when the tenants said they were going to pay him, i had to stay away. I asked the electric company to take the account out of my name and put it in his, as he would be responsible for the bill now, the account was in my name and was being paid by direct debit, after a lot of arguing with them, they agreed to take my name off the account from 5th Dec 11.
He had the house and all the rents for 10 months, we went to court in August and I got given the house, and was to take over on 1st October 12. I then rang the Utility Warehouse to say i was taking over again, and presumably they realised he had run up a large bill throughout that year, and as he wouldnt pay it, they wanted to put me back on the account so I would be responsible too. He showed them the declaration of trust, and they decided i was a joint owner, and liable for half the debt with him. He had had the money from the tenants and not paid them enough, it is his debt, he is also doing the same thing with the water company, and after several threatening letters from me, they have took my name off and said its his debt, owever the electric company wont, and they are sending bailiffs now, who want to come into the house and disconnect the electric. There is children in the house, and a pregnant woman!!
You cannot be responsible for a bill which isnt in your name even if you won the property. You cannot be liable by association!
Tell them that if they continue to pursue you for the period
whilethe account is in your husband's name, you will refer the matter to the energyombudsman. http://www.ombudsman-services.org/energy.html
tobe frank, I would probably do it in any event as soon as possible.
Ifthey turn up disconnect the electricity, do not let them in and call the police if they do not go away.
Itwould actually be better if a solicitor were to write to utility warehouse on amost urgent basis. In fact, I would follow up every telephone call with theletter sent by first class post and recorded delivery.
Ifyou want to get rid of this in the most risk free and easiest way possible,simply pay the bill and then sue utility warehouse in the Small Claims Court toget the money back on the basis that you paid under pressure/duress
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thanks for the reply. I actually emailed the energy ombudsman in December, but havent had a reply yet, they say there is a back log and i should hear within 14 working days.
The utility company say their legal department have said that because of the declaration of trust, that makes me liable for the debt!! Whats your view of that?? The water company said the same thing to begin with but changed their minds, and removed my name from the account!!
I have told the utility warehouse, that they are responsible for the debt my ex ran up, as they were sending him estimated bills each month, which were less that they should have been, and he was happy to pay them, without giving them actual readings each time. Also arent companies legally bound to get actual meter readings some many times a year, not just keep sending estimated ones??
Youare not liable for bills of any service that you don't use or are not in yourname. It seems like you have been talking to an idiot in a call centre.
Alandlord isnt responsible for tenants bills which are in tenants name. Then situationhere is no different.
Theywill estimate bills if he doesn't give actual readings although they can getcourt order to enter to read meters
no the bills werent sent in the tenants names, theres 7 units and 3 pay coins into a coin meter which would have been emptied each month and 4 had card meters where they had to buy cards from my ex, so he had the money for the electric and he had to pay the utility warehouse each month. The bills were in his name, but they are saying as theyve seen the declaration of trust, they were putting my name back on the account, making me liable with him.
Who i spoke to twice was a person in collections who had spoken to their legal department. Ive told them to take me to court and i will have my say, and show that he was running the house for 10 months and had the money to pay, but wasnt, do you think i have a good chance of winning the magistrates around that way?
Iappreciate that, I was using the bills in the tenants name as an analogy.
Whatthey are saying is that your husband could leave the lights and the electricityand the heating on 24/7 on full blast, and because you have an equitableinterest in the property (not a legal interest) you are responsible along withyour husband for those bills. Rubbish.
This is not magistrates Court, it is County Court.
I would certainly be going to court to defend it