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Letter from Lowell debt collectors

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Letter from Lowell Portfolio 1 Ltd debt collectors

This section explains what you should do if you have received a letter from Lowell Portfolio 1 Ltd debt collection agency.

Have you received a letter from Lowell?

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Do you even owe them the money?

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If you have received a letter from Lowell Portfolio 1 Ltd, you may feel that you are being chased for a debt that you do not think you owe.

They will probably have written to you claiming that you now owe them money, but they will never have lent you money or provided you with a service.

Lowell are a debt purchase and debt collection agency that buy and collect other companies debts, which is why you may not recognise them.

Lowell Portfolio 1 Ltd basically bulk buy "bad debts" off finance companies like Capital One, Orange and Shop Direct. They buy the debt for a few pence in the pound and then chase the debtor for the full amount. This was if they get 20% of the people they chase to pay, they have doubled their money.

Debt collectors like Lowell tend to send a variety of standard letters, initially demanding you contact them by phone to arrange payment, then writing to you threatening to visit your home. They will then write again offering an out of court settlement, then threatening to take you to court to obtain a county court judgement or make you bankrupt. These are standard, system driven letters, so don't take them personally, but they can persist for months.

We have also had people contact us saying the first thing they heard from Lowell was when they received a CCJ enforcement letter put through there door.

If you have been contacted by Lowell then read on to find out what they can do. If you need help with Lowell or have received a threatening letter then let deal with them for you.

Call the debt helpline on 0800 36 88 133 or click here and we'll call you straight back.

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What can Lowell Portfolio do?

Debt collectors like Lowell must follow the strict debt collection guidance laid down by the FCA (Financial Conduct Authority)

The FCAs debt collection rules and guidance sets out minimum standards that companies like Lowell Portfolio must comply with in order to be considered fit to operate as a debt collection agency.

Under the FCA rules, they can not claim unfair or excessive collection charges, they can not harrass you, they can't threaten to seize your property (when lawfully they cannot), they can not bypass an appointed representative and contact you directly. The FCA also bans debt collectors from threatening legal action when it is unlikely to take place.

They are also required to give you advanced notice if they are going to visit you at your home. So they can't just knock at your door.

The chances are that if you have an a debt with Lowell your credit file will suffer because of it. They will have marked the account as defaulted.

Don't just ignore debt collectors, they will not go away. If you do not sort it out they are likely to apply for a County Court Judgement, after which they can instruct Bailiffs, or apply for a charging order if you are a homeowner.

If you are worried about Lowell then let Money Advice Online deal with them for you. Call the debt helpline on 0800 368 8133 or click here and we'll call you straight back.

Whilst all the letters and phone calls might be worrying, it is up to the Lowell Portfolio 1 Ltd to prove that you owe the money, and not your job to prove that you do not owe it.

It is not uncommon for Lowell Portfolio 1 Ltd to send out letters to people with the same name, taking a scattergun approach, in the hope that someone will pay.

Depending on your situation, there are many different ways to respond appropriately to debt collectors.

Use the "Prove the debt" letter

As it is Lowell Portfolio 1 Ltd job to prove that you owe the money, simply use the "prove the debt" letter below to ask them to prove that the debt is actually yours. It is often the case that they can not prove the debt and therefore mark it as settled.

Please Note: This letter is not legal advice.

Dear Sir/Madam

Account No: xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

You have contacted me regarding the account with the above reference number, which you claim is owed by myself.

I would point out that I have no knowledge of any such debt being owed to CREDITOR

I am familiar with the Consumer Credit sourcebook of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) which states the following rules.

"A firm must not ignore or disregard a customer's claim that a debt has been settled or is disputed and must not continue to make demands for payment without providing clear justification and/or evidence as to why the customer's claim is not valid." 7.5.3

"A firm must suspend any steps it takes or its agent takes in the recovery of a debt from a customer where the customer disputes the debt on valid grounds or what may be valid grounds." 7.14.1

"Where a customer disputes a debt on valid grounds or what may be valid grounds, the firm must investigate the dispute and provide details of the debt to the customer in a timely manner." 7.14.3

"Where there is a dispute as to the identity of the borrower or hirer or as to the amount of the debt, it is for the firm (and not the customer) to establish, as the case may be, that the customer is the correct person in relation to the debt or that the amount is the correct amount owed under the agreement." 7.14.4

"A firm must provide a customer with information on the outcome of its investigations into a debt which the customer disputed on valid grounds." 7.14.5

"Where a customer disputes a debt and the firm seeking to recover the debt is not the lender or the owner, the firm must:

  • (1) pass the information provided by the customer to the lender or the owner; or
  • (2) if the firm has authority from the lender or owner to investigate a dispute, it must notify the lender or owner of the outcome of the investigation." 7.14.6

In not ceasing collection activity whilst investigating a reasonably queried or disputed debt you are using deceptive/and or unfair methods.

Furthermore, ignoring and/or disregarding claims that debts have been settled or are disputed and continuing to make unjustified demands for payment amounts to physical/psychological harassment.

I would ask that no further contact be made concerning the above accounts unless you can provide evidence as to my liability for the debt in question.

I await your written confirmation that this matter is now closed. Otherwise I will have no option but to make a complaint to the trading standards department and consider informing the FCA of your actions.

If appropriate I will also take this matter forward as a complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service and Information Commissioner's Office.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Yours faithfully

(Type your name, DO NOT SIGN IT)

Download the "Prove the Debt" letter

You can download the "prove the debt letter" by clicking here

Once you have printed off and sent the letter, you may receive a response from the debt collection company stating “we have traced the debt back to you”, with a deadline to respond by. You can disregard this, as they still need to provide proof of the debt, which should be the original credit agreement with your signature. This is why you shouldn’t sign the letter, as this would provide them with a copy of you signature and could be used to re-create the original credit agreement.

If you genuinely do not owe the debt, you should receive a letter saying that they have dropped it and you will no longer be contacted. If you do owe the debt then you should look at ways to pay it back, whether this be in a lump sum or installments.

Need Debt Advice?

Our specialists can quickly advise you of your options if you have received a letter from Lowell Portfolio 1 Ltd. Simply call the team on 0800 368 8133.
Alternatively take the online test and see what you can do about Lowell debt.

  • Last updated 21 March 2018

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