Sadly, there are times when banks, lenders, and others get it wrong, and go chasing someone for a bill or debt that they simply do not owe. I recently was recounted this tale of someone being chased for an electric bill that was over £5,000!
Yes, over £5,000, more like £5,300.
The person being chased for this money, had yes, lived in the flat the power company (who will remain nameless), provided the electricity to, recently moved, and was located via the Council as they changed their Council Tax billing address.
The power company just followed the “paper trail” to locate this person, and present them with this huge electric bill.
This tale takes on an interesting twist, and shows how we need to document certain events to insure we can defend ourselves against being wrong accused of owing money.
Let us begin….at the beginning.
This person accused of owing in excess of £5,000 for electricity, did reside at the address in question for a period of three (3) years. They also had a signed tenancy agreement for each year which stated they were responsible for the electricity costs, but the landlord paid for any gas charges.
So that was documented in the tenancy agreement, which also showed the dates this person lived at the address.
Those dates they resided at the address in question did not completely line up with the dates the power company stated they owed money for. So one mistake for the power company.
But here is where is gets even better, the electricity for the property in question was on a key, a pay-as-you-go electric key! The meter had a £5 emergency electric supply, but if you used this emergency electric, you paid it back when you topped up the key.
You cannot use more electricity than what you have paid for, period.
So what was the outcome of this mistake??
The outcome was good for the person accused of owing such an outrageous amount, but there was some headaches involved.
The individual accused of owing the money had to provide proof of the time the resided at the address, their tenancy agreement, and the fact they had no account with said power provider.
In the end all was well.
The point of all this…..keep records, documents, photos, don’t take things for granted.