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Joshua
Joshua, Lawyer
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 28987
Experience:  LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
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I pay a housing association £160 per month. On 1st April

Customer Question

I pay a housing association £160 per month. On 1st April 2021 Contour changed their name to Onward and they asked me to inform my bank accordingly, which I did. However, on 1/4/21 Contour were paid £160 and on 6/4/21 Onward were also paid £160. I have since been in touch with Onward on several occasions and communicated with NINE members of staff and yet they still haven’t refunded me. What advice can you give me. Thanks in anticipation
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: Penwortham, Preston, Lancashire
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: E mails. Phone calls to Onward
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: I’d been promised the refund by different members of staff. Just not been refunded
Submitted: 14 days ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  Joshua replied 14 days ago.

Hello and thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will be very pleased to assist you. I'm a practising lawyer in England with over 15 years’ experience. Please be aware that although I will endeavour to reply to you promptly, I am also in full time private practice and so I may not be available to respond immediately and it may also take me a few minutes to prepare a reply. The site will notify you as soon as I respond. I look forward to working with you to answer your question fully.

I am very sorry to read of the above and I imagine what a difficult position it must be. I will certainly try to clarify your options.

  1. How do you pay please - by direct debit or standing order for example?
  2. How did two payments come to be made? For example, did you set up a new payment and failed to cancel the old payment?
  3. is this justt a change of name or is it an entirely new organisation that has been established?
Customer: replied 14 days ago.
Hi Joshua, thanks for replying
I paid through my bank on both 1/4/21 and 6/4/21 by standing order. Contour did write to me that they were changing their name to Onward on 1/4/21 and advised me to inform my bank of this. I did but obviously too late, hence them taking it out twice.onward have since co-erced me into paying rent by standing order.
Expert:  Joshua replied 14 days ago.

thank you. it is not absolutely clear to me as regards ***** ***** double payment was the fault of your bank or you but I will assume for now unless you tell me differently, that your bank was not at fault here and you accept the bank acted on your instructions correctly.

if this is the case, then the question is how you go about recovering your money. If this was simply a case of a change of name whereby the housing association simply rebranded but is the same organisation simply with a different name, then it seems to me there is a very simple solution to the above whereby you simply skip next months rent. Since both payments have gone to the same organisation, which has just changed its name but is the same entity then you have simply paid the same organisation twice. A change of name of housing associational company is just like an individual changing their name - if you paid me £10 on Monday and I change my name on Tuesday and you then pay be another £10 you have paid me £20. I am not a different person - I have just changed my name.

By contrast, if they have established a new incorporated association and transferred all of the assets over to that new incorporated association then it may be that this is more than a name change and the above not apply but I will not expand on this point any further on the basis of your advice that this was a rebranding.

Customer: replied 14 days ago.
Thanks for your advice cancel ringing me
Expert:  Joshua replied 14 days ago.

certainly. If you find you have been charged for the phone call but no longer want to receive one, you can drop customer services a line to request a refund:

https://www.justanswer.co.uk/help/contact-us

Customer: replied 13 days ago.
I asked you to cancel the phone call Joshua, please refund me £44. Thanks.