09 Mar 2015

A question about : Ex Employer hassling over money

I was let go by my previous employer in June (was so lucky to get other work).

Upon leaving I was told that I had been overpaid by two days, but I had one days holiday owing and that the wouldnt chase me for the other day - I have this in an email from the local HR rep.

I also had a laptop from them which you are supposed to pay off monthly from your wage. They dont wnat the laptop back and have written to me demanding the full sum of money for the laptop and the two days overpayment.

Now 1st of all the 1st letter they sent me contained wrong figures and wrong maths adding up their sub-totals based on their wrong figures.

To cut a long story short, they ignore all of my replies, in each and every one I state that the debt is in despute, do not pass to a debt collector, reference and attach the email saying I wont be chased for the 2 days. I will then either get a standard we will look into it reply or nothing then around 2 weeks later another threatening letter arrives.

THis is very stressful (which I have stated) as Im still in quite a mess from being unemployed for a while. Even if they waive the 2 days as promised I cant afford the laptop repayment. I know i will need to pay that one day but I am not agreeing to anything until the days thing has been sorted.

What is the advice regarding what I do next when they write to me as this would be the 6th time they have ignored my reply asking for the matter to be resolved.


Best answers:

  • Ideally I think you should send payment for the outstanding amount you owe for the laptop with a letter explaining that you had been notified by HR that the two days' pay wouldn't be clawed back (attach another copy of the email you received). Send the letter by Special Delivery or some other method that requires a signature.
    If it's really impossible for you to clear the laptop debt then you should send as much as you can with the promise that you will pay the monthly amount you originally agreed to each month until the debt is clear. Not sure how many such payments would be required.
    In spite of the fact that your previous employers made errors in their original letter to you, you definitely do owe for the laptop. I hope you manage to persuade them that the two days' pay is not required to be paid back.
  • Hi TheBruce
    I've moved your post to the Debt Free Wanabee board where hopefully someone can help as the CAB board is now closed to new questions I'm afraid.
    MSE Wendy
  • do you have a union to contact?
  • Thanks for the replies.
    No union.
    There would be 2.5 years left to pay at that rate, but the issue is that this was on a salary sacrafice scheme so there was a tax break. Also the T&C do say you have to pay in full if you leave (which obvioulsy i wasnt planning to).
    I got a reply back stating that they will have a final answer for me by the 9th as to what i owe. Then I will have to start negotiating the repayments or they can take me to court as i just dont have the money
  • Duplicate post...
  • Return the laptop essentially. I would be speaking to HMRC on this subject since it sounds like a benefit. If they made you redundant, it's not like you had a choice to leave, so realistically, they can either have their asset back or write it off. I dont see why you should be lumbered with an asset that was specifically supplied by your employer and which you have apparently paid for in some way. You should also be asking about depreciation since by definition, the laptop isnt worth what was paid for it in the first place.
    Frankly, I've never heard of such a setup and you need some more professional advice here
  • It was redundancy, i refused to move to LOndon so they ended my probabtion period
    Its not an asset of theirs, this was an employee benefit scheme to get a personal laptop. Lets you get a laptop on credit without touching your credit file, which appealed to me.
  • Do you have a copy of the terms of the agreement in relation to the laptop? Is it a hire purchase agreement?
    Returning the laptop might not work depending on the circumstances. If the agreement is HP you could end up with a shortfall depending on where you are with the agreement, or else a demand for return of the goods. If the laptop isn't HP your ex-employer might try to recover the losses suffered, for example, due to depreciation of the laptop's value.
    Your ex-employer could attempt to enforce their debt in the county court. If they got a judgment against you they could then apply to enforce the judgement. Enforcement action could include instructing bailiffs (or potentially high court enforcement officers depending on the nature of the agreement), an attachment of earnings order, or (if you're a home owner) a charge on your house.
    You have a number of options, but without knowing the exact ins and outs of the agreement or your circumstances in general it's difficult to give a definitive answer. You might be able to challenge the whole or part of the debt depending on the terms of the agreement. If that doesn't work or isn't possible you could negotiate affordable repayments over time, either directly with your ex-employer or by applying to the county court for time to pay.
    Just a few things to think about. To be honest it might be easier to pop into your local CAB branch or other free advice centre with a copy of the agreement and correspondence to look at. They should be able to look at your whole circumstances and give you some tailored options.