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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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Friends Life Services are chasing me for money they paid into

Resolved Question:

Friends Life Services are chasing me for money they paid into my mums account 7 years ago by mistake in relation to a policy my deceased father had, total of £800. My mum passed away December 2014, am I liable for this? I never received any money nor was I executor to either estates?
I am in court tomorrow.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 3 years ago.

Alex Watts :

Hello my name is XXXXX XXXXX I will help you with this. Please note that I am a working Solicitor and may be on and offline as I have to attend Court and meet with clients, even at weekends. As such you may not get an instant response when you reply as this is not an ‘on demand’ live service, but rest assured I will be giving your question my immediate attention upon return. There is no need to wait here, you will get an email when I reply.

Alex Watts :

No you are not liable

Alex Watts :

If it was an overpayment made by mistake then they had 6 years from the date of overpayment to recover it under the Limitation Act 1980

Alex Watts :

As it has been 7 years the debt is now statue barred and there is no liability

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?

Customer:

It went to court in 2013, however they tried to contact me at an address I lived at 7 years ago. The first I knew about this was a balif notice at my correct address. I have now applied to set aside judgement and the hearing is tomorrow. They have written to me today asking for an adjournment essentially because they are not prepared. I do not want it adjourned simply resolved.

Alex Watts :

Yes indeed.

Alex Watts :

Your defence is you are simply not liable and they are out of time to chase payment.

Alex Watts :

Over 6 years it is statue barred.

Alex Watts :

I would refuse an adjournment

Alex Watts :

So go tomorrow and tell the Judge its statue barred

Customer:

The Northampton court upheld their claim December 2013, I think the issue is terminology, they are claiming overpayment as opposed to debt?

Alex Watts :

Ok - even so its 6 years under the Limitation Act.

Alex Watts :

It would have been Judgment in default so no hearing

Alex Watts :

Therefore you should say to the Judge tomorrow its time barred

Customer:

Can they push through the adjournment if I object to it?

Alex Watts :

Unlikely

Alex Watts :

A Judge will want it to go ahead

Alex Watts :

But dont forget tomorrow isn't a trial just whether Judgment should be set aside

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything else?

Customer:

I asked a local solicitor for help, he basically said I didn't need his help in this matter, my concerned is I am not a solicitor I'm a buyer so quite used to 'negotiating', I am concerned about elements of law which I should be citing.

Alex Watts :

As I said its the Limitation Act 1980

Customer:

is this actually a debt in my parents name as it was paid into their joint account, if so the debt should come out of my mums estate?

Alex Watts :

Yes an overpament is a debt

Customer:

I forgot, the payments (£200 ish) were made in the May of 2007 through to 2009, this is within the 6 year limitation

Alex Watts :

Yes it would be.

Alex Watts :

But in any event they could only claim from the estate of any deceased person

Alex Watts :

They can't claim anything off you personally.

Customer:

do you know why they would chase me for the debt citing me as a representative of my fathers estate?

Alex Watts :

If you didn't know of it then you can not be personally liable.

Customer:

Is there any statute I can use as reference to that point?

Alex Watts :

You are not personally liable.

Alex Watts :

This is because you are responsible for the estate.

Alex Watts :

Being named as representative wont mean you are necessarily personally liable, but you are responsible for the affairs of the deceased

Alex Watts :

If they did not lodge a claim - well thats not your fault.

Alex Watts :

If the £800 was never distributed they can't magic the cash

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything for you about this?

Customer:

Apologies, I am confused now. They paid the money into a joint account after my father had passed away, I do not know what the policy was for as they will/have not furbished me with a copy despite 4 requests. Mum passed away in December 2014, not sure how they would have laid claim to any of mums estate as it was me not her they were chasing?

Alex Watts :

Yes but you are not liable for the money

Alex Watts :

You can't be, you never had it

Alex Watts :

In any event any liability would only be for any sums received within the last 6 years, nothing more

Customer:

Ok, guess I will find out tomorrow. Thanks you

Customer:

Thank you

Alex Watts :

Yes good luck

Alex Watts :

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Alex Watts :

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Alex Watts :

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