Information to help you deal with your CRF's

Moderators: TalbotWoods, JaneClack

By winjad
#472354 Hi all

Apologies for the long post but I have been lurking/reading for a quite a while now and wondered if somebody could explain in laymans terms if there's any chance of me having a default removed from my credit file as I can't really make sense of all the jargon?!

I had a student account with Santander that had a maxed out £2000 overdraft.

I had been reducing it slowly after graduation and managed to reduce the limit to -£1000 with a £350 cash deposit (which was a large sum of money to deposit into the account at that time).

Only a few days later I went to New York and couldn't make a payment on my current account debit card (I'd forgotten to notify the Halifax that I was going abroad) thus used my Santander card - completely forgetting that I'd actually reduced the limit after making the deposit.

This transaction went through fine, and shortly after I received a letter to say my interest free graduate/student account had been changed to a current account, and I needed to pay back the overdraft immediately and would be accruing charges and interest until it was paid back in full.

After finishing university I was only able to find work part time at a bar. So I set up a £50 a month payment plan.

A handful of times I knew I would struggle to be able to make the payment but I always called the bank to let them know either prior or on the due date to make alternative arrangements and this always seemed satisfactory.

Santander have sent a trasnscript letter, outlining they would have told me at the time of the calls that it could effect my credit score but I don't recall this.

I struggled to clear this account in full, and felt I had done well in doing so, particularly having started to clear the account so soon after graduation - only to find out so many months later that the account that it had been registered as a default.

The only reason I am even aware of the default is because a finance company declined my application. I then used a credit reference agency (Experian) to get an explanation and the result came back that I had a default that I was not aware of.

I've received a FRL from Santander instructing to go to the FOS, which I will. I'm just wondering if anyone has any idea on my chances with this one?

I received no default notice, and there is no 'D' on my credit score? In fact, there is no '1, 2, 3' it goes straight from solid green ticks to '5, 5, 6, 6' - which are the four months immediately after the account closed and I had to pay back the £350 to get out of my unplanned overdraft and THEN start the payment plan.

As a student who'd just graduated from a fashion degree (not cheap) on a part time bar wage I find this to be unfair treatment. My account was managed well prior to the overdraft reduction and managed well after the three or four months where I struggled when the account changed over. I don't actually know why it was changed to a current account?!

The account is now settled and had been for over 12 months, but remains open (but unused).

Any advice at all would be incredible, I don't really have anyone to break this down to me in layman's terms… my mum's advice was 'well you just learn about these things along the way'. Sure… one default in mum!

It's extremely frustrating as my credit score is actually ranked 'good'.

Many thanks in advance! I really appreciate any advice, no matter how little :)

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By JaneClack
#472355 If a default notice has been entered correctly it will sit on your credit file for 6 years from the date it goes on. If you have paid off the debt it will also show the debt as satisfied.

If you are unhappy about the issue of the default then it is something you need to take up with the lender. You ask for a copy of their complaints procedure and they have to respond - if they do not then you can go to the Financial Ombudsman Service. This will not be a speedy process but if they find in your favour then the default notice would have to be removed and you may get some compensation. So it depends how long you have to wait until the default notice runs out normally.

This article by Debt Camel explains a lot of the misconceptions re defaults and I would strongly advice you to read this: