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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 3:58 pm 
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I had a man in to check out some odd noises coming from my central heating a few weeks ago. He didn't know what he was doing and couldn't even get the cover off the boiler. I kept telling him there's a screw to undo. In the end he just left it. He took a couple of wild guesses what might be the problem. Then he pulled out a sheet of paper and said he had to put down a diagnosis just to cover himself. He left and I was disappointed that he'd been so useless. I didn't have to pay anything because there was no call out charge from this company. But a week later I got an invoice through the post for over £50 for the diagnosis! I got another today with OVERDUE in big red stamp. Needless to say I'm not paying up. As a single mother I can't afford to just give my money away. Can anyone help me here? I don't know what rights I have and I don't want bailiffs coming round.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 4:02 pm 
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have you read the terms and conditions
no call out charge does not mean his attendance is free
it just means there is no charge to turn up at the door

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 4:16 pm 
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big-all wrote:
have you read the terms and conditions
no call out charge does not mean his attendance is free
it just means there is no charge to turn up at the door


I'm aware of that. I'm being charged for diagnosis when he just made 2 wild guesses and picked one to write down. That's fraud.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 4:26 pm 
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fraud is a strong word
he did not appear very good at his job seems more accurate

whilst i fully agree that on what you say he is over charging
but we only have one side off the story

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 4:32 pm 
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He openly admitted to writing something down to cover himself. I wouldn't mind if he was just useless but I'm being charged for it. The problem has since been fixed and it was something totally different.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 4:42 pm 
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It would be interesting to find out if there is normally such a thing as a diagnostic charge.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 4:44 pm 
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Talk to the people that sent you the bill if you have no luck pay up. Looks like you have been had.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 4:53 pm 
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Thanks for your advice everyone. I think I have been had and I think the best thing is to make complaints to the appropriate agencies.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 5:04 pm 
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i would complain
express your dissatisfaction with the way he conducted himself
ask for an explenation off the charges
tell them you dont think he helped in any way or came up with a reasoned suggestion
tell them you are surprized theres any charge under the circumstances and await there reaction

then offer £25 in full and final settlement

if they think they are right expect little or no movement

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2013 2:44 am 
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Unless you were given a 7 day cooling off period in writing or got you to sign to say you were waiving that right then they are breaking the doorstep selling regulations.Just contact trading standards and explain it to them.They can prosecute the firm and get them fined for not complying with these regulations which were brought in to combat this type of thing.

DO NOT PAY THEM ANYTHING AS THE LAW IS ON YOUR SIDE.

https://www.gov.uk/doorstep-selling-regulations

Knowing your rights is very empowering, bailiffs for example cannot come around unless a court order has been awarded against you.Before a company can take you to court it is best practice to give you reasonable time and warnings to pay up.In court they expect you to recieve at least 3 letters warning of the threat of court action.

Any how forget bailiffs etc as i bet they have breached the regulations i linked to above, just get trading standards to take up your case,problem solved.

So many companies fall foul of these regs pleading ignorance which doesnt cut it in the courtroom.



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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2013 10:41 am 
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not 100% sure about that
she phoned asked them to provide a service they provided that service [in there eyes ]
she didnt invite them for a sales pitch at home she formed the contract over the phone they agreed

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2013 4:17 pm 
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I'd agree with BA re door step selling. The guy was invited to check the heating, not to provide a quote to check the heating which turned into a hard sell for a replacement boiler.

The OP needs to call the firm and explain what she's said here, that the guy couldn't even get the cover off the boiler and therefore how can he make a diagnostic?


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2013 10:08 am 
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Im 100% sure on the door step regulations because i know a locksmith who got caught out by it.After he was caught out our organisation got the membership to contact various trading standards around the country and they were the ones who informed us that anyone who comes to your house to carry out work is required to comply with it,its quite clear.We pooled the results the various trading standards got back to us with and it was consistent.Its a very powerful bit of legislation to tackle rogue traders.

The locksmith in question was called out to let a woman in,she agreed his charges etc and he did the job.The son of the woman thought he had ripped her off and cancelled the cheque she paid with.The locksmith chased it up and was told by trading standards he had fallen foul of the law because of the 7 day cooling off period paperwork regs not being followed.

If you dont believe me look into it for yourselves,contact trading standards because it applies to anyone who visits someones house.

Even if you phoned them up (the customer) and they came out the act covers it as it mentions that as "on an excursion you’ve organised away from your business premises".

Ignorance of the law wont get you out of trouble if you fall foul of it so best gen up and comply.Ive known about this for at least 4 years and mentioned it on here before now.

Now take a good look at this link https://www.gov.uk/doorstep-selling-regulations and you will see what im on about.Its very clear and plain english and up to 5k fine if you dont comply.


In this case the company is asking for £50 for providing a diagnosis, therefore they have provided goods or services at the customers home of over £35 so have to comply with the regs.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2013 12:20 pm 
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Did you sign anything?


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 11, 2014 6:28 pm 
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I'm not sure you'll get anywhere with that company quoting doorstep regulations even if they do apply.
If they are a legitimate company they are going to waive this fee because they know that it will be too costly ro enforce a £50 payment in court.
If they are not a legitimate company they are going to hope they can scare you into paying by sending threatening letters.
But ultimately it makes no difference either way, they can't get you to pay this £50 unless they take you to court and it's not worth filing a claim online for £70 over a £50 bill.

So you've got options.
If you have the fortitude to ignore the letters, then just put them in the bin and sooner or later they'll stop. Same with any calls - just block the number.
If you want an easy life, pay them and if you want to meet half way as another member suggests pay them £25 and draw it to a close.


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