‘I’m worried that there could be bailiffs turning up on my door’ – Sunderland woman bombarded by mistaken debt-collectors

Pauline Cooper of Gray Road, Hendon, Sunderland, who has had a number of letters from a debt agency that are not addressed to her.

Pauline Cooper of Gray Road, Hendon, Sunderland, who has had a number of letters from a debt agency that are not addressed to her.

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HARASSED Pauline Cooper has been bombarded with letters from a debt recovery agency claiming she owed £15,000.

Buchanan Clark and Wells have sent numerous letters to the 62-year-old’s address for more than six weeks.

Although the letters are not addressed to Pauline, she said she had been left feeling harassed and feared it would have an effect on her credit.

Pauline, of Hendon, said: “It started about six weeks ago. I contacted the number on the letter and told them that nobody of that name lives here.

“We’ve lived here for 27 years and own our house and it is all nothing to do with me.”

The letters are addressed to Mr and Mrs Eccleston and claim the couple owe £15,000.

“I told them I didn’t want to hear any more from them and they said they wouldn’t send any more,” said Pauline.

But just a week later, she received another letter to the Ecclestons from Buchanan Clark and Wells.

“This has got to stop. It’s my address and I don’t want my home to somehow become blacklisted and I’m worried that there could be bailiffs turning up on my door.

“I’ve never been in debt in my life and on Tuesday two more letters came.”

Pauline added: “It’s getting me down. It’s my own home and I feel harassed. We’ve worked hard for what we have got and I don’t want a bad name.

“I should not be phoning them to complain, it’s costing me money, it’s not right.”

Peter Marshall, money advice supervisor at the Citizens Advice Bureau, Sunderland, said the next step was to raise a formal complaint with the company.

Peter said: “Generally, what you find is that it will go through the internal process and it gets resolved but if it does not get resolved then it should be raised with the Financial Ombudsman or The Office of Fair Trading who have regulations in place for debt collecting agencies.

“I would expect that they would resolve the problem for her and she could require compensation for the stress she has had. The Ombudsman would make that request to the debt collecting agency.”

Paul LePoidevin, head of collections and trace at the Buchanan Clark and Wells Group, said: “Our client has identified that an incorrect address was forwarded to us, due to administrative error on their behalf.

“Our client has now written to the occupants to apologise with regards to this matter and inform them that their address has been removed from both our and their records, so that no further correspondence is sent to this address.

“By way of apology for any inconvenience or stress caused, our client has also enclosed some shopping vouchers.”

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