08/02/2014 Your Money


08/02/2014

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Now on programmer, Declan Curry is here with this week's Your Money --

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now on BBC News. Hello and welcome to Your Money,

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your weekly guide to making the most of your cash and available all week

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on the BBC iPlayer. The banks paying back billions for insurance we

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didn't need or could not use, the financial ombudsman is here to tell

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us how to get our money back and how to avoid the companies that want a

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bite of that cash. Websites offering services who can get you services

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free elsewhere, the Advertising Standards Authority is

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investigating. And how to stop mental health problems turning into

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money problems as well, the charity MIND is here with its best advice.

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One reason the economy has perked up, the sheer volume of money the

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banks are paying back to customers who were tricked into buying

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worthless insurance. Lloyds put another ?2 billion aside this week

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and that by's total bill is now approaching ?10 billion and the bill

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for all the banks is fast approaching ?20 billion. Robert

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Paxton says that is equal to 1% of the nation's entire annual economic

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production. The insurance itself, PPI is legal and for some people it

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is very useful but the problem was the banks sold it to many people who

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either did not need it or could not claim it when they wanted to. They

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are now getting the money back. How do you know if you are entitled to a

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refund? And how do you get the money if you can? Caroline Wayman joins

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as, first of all, do you have to contact the bank will be back get in

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touch with you? If you are unsure, get in touch with the bank of

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whoever sold it to you. It may be that you hear something that

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directly from the bag in which case you can respond but if you are in

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doubt, get in touch with the person who sold it to you. Is that as

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simple as having to find the name of that person or can you just turn up

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at your local branch and say, "I know I was sold this, I thing I

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should be getting money back" question mark you can do to a local

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branch but try to find any documents you have, root around in the loft

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and see if there are old documents that help you make sure you have

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copyright business but then give them a call, that is usually the

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easiest thing. If you are not sure, you can contact the ombudsman.

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Thinking of people who might not have all the documentation, they may

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have shredded it or thrown it away, that does not stop you pursuing a

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claim? Absolutely not. If you have not got those documents, tell them

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what you know and what you remember and they should be able to help you

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find out whether you were sold it and if you were, whether it was

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something you should have been sold. Whether you get in touch with the

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back of the other way round, do you have to approve that this insurance

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should not have been sold to you? Is the burden of proof on your

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shoulders? You don't have to demonstrate anything in particular,

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it is not a court case, you do not need to put together an argument

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about why it was mis-sold, you only need to say that you don't think you

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needed it or wanted it and you want them to look into it and tell you

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whether they can put it right. You have gone to the bank, the bank has

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come to you, you have put in the complaint and it is being looked

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at, the bank comes back and says they don't agree with you and don't

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think you I'm entitled -- you are entitled. If that happens, you can

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come to the ombudsman if you are not satisfied so it is usually worth

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letting the bank have the opportunity to finish the

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investigation but they say that they do not think you are owed anything,

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you can come to the ombudsman for free, we are impartial, we will take

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a look and we will let you know whether they have to put things

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right. You need to give the bank time to assess your claim but what

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if you think they are dragging their feet? Can you jump the queue by

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going to the ombudsman? The bank has got eight weeks to resolve the case

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so it is usually worth giving them that amount of time because

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sometimes they need to find their old records as well but if you get

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to the point where eight weeks have gone by and you have not had an

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answer and you are not happy, you can come to the ombudsman then. Lots

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of viewers and experienced the telephone ringing and at the other

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end of the line, it is a company saying that they think you are

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entitled to get the money back and they will get the money for you.

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Should you take the spoon of these companies and do business with them?

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You need carefully to think about whether you need the help. You do

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not need to go to a claims management company, you can come

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directly to the ombudsman, it is simple and free, not difficult at

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all and we can help people if they are not sure what to do. If you want

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to use a claims management company, that is fine but think carefully

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before you do because they will take up to 30% of compensation that you

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are due. That is the crucial point. They will take up to a third of the

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money? Yes. And the banks will process it for free and the

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ombudsman are doing it for free. So you would hand over money you would

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get any way to a company doing something that you can do for

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nothing. Why on earth would you use these companies at all? Yellow we

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would urge people to think carefully about that and say it is simple and

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easy to do. Come to the ombudsman and we will do it for free. If you

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think you have been sold this insurance and you're going to get in

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touch with your bank, is they limited there a time limit -- is

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there a time limit? You have got three years from when you knew or

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should have known there was a problem and that means you have to

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know about something specific to you so if you did something like making

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a claim, perhaps at that point you should have known and you would

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usually have three years from them but for many people, they have not

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had anything like that that they would know. If you are in any doubt,

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come to the ombudsman and we can tell you whether you are in time. So

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the clock does not start until you think that you should get some of

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this money back or the clock doesn't start until the bank gets in touch?

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That's right so you have to know there is a problem. Thank you very

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much, Caroline Wayman for that information about PPI.

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Three whole somebody's News, have you noticed your gas Bill come down

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in price? No, me neither. The price the energy companies pay has fallen

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by 16% since December. Independent analysts say that is enough to save

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?30 from the yearly gas bill for the MPs accuse the energy companies of

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ripping off consumers who do not pay their bills by direct debit, people

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who pay by cash or cheque typically pay ?114 per year more stop energy

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company so that is because it costs more to process their payments.

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House prices are still rising but the steam seems to have gone, the

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Halifax as prices rose by 7.3% between January last year and

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January this year. In December, the annual difference was slightly

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higher at 7.5%. In November, higher still at 7.7%.

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Renewing your passport and getting a new driving licence, filling out

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your tax return, some websites offer to help you with that but they may

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charge you for it. You could get the service for free elsewhere.

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Something big advertising watchdog is looking into.

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Part-time nurse Vanessa thought she was taking the easy option when she

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decided to file her tax returns using what she believed to be an

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official website. She was charged ?400 to file her return by tax

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return gateway .com and only later did she revealed she could have

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filed for free through the official government website. They serve small

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print on the bottom of the screen that they are not the HMRC and there

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is a link to go through to the HMRC but if you're somebody who is in a

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flap trying to get it done with children and life going on around

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you, you tend not to read small print. Vanessa has since got her

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money back and the website she used has been upgraded. In a statement,

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tax return gateway have said: So when should you be taking extra

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care when looking online? The problem arises when you want to get

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your passport renewed, for example, and you may enter that into a search

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engine. If you press return, you will get a number of sponsored

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websites, who pay to have their website at the top of your search

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list. If you enter into one of these companies like what example this

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one, you will see a pretty standard looking website that may or may not

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seem to be an official one. If you scroll down, it makes it clear

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indeed that this will be a fee-paying website who will charge

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you for a service that you could get for free elsewhere.

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But not all websites are as clear as they should be. The Advertising

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Standards Authority says it has received around 700 complaints in

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the last 12 months alone. Complaints we are receiving are about people

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being lit Billy Morgan misled the nature of service offered, if the

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other they be official when they are not -- about people being misled.

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People that they are left out of pocket for a service they would not

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have entered into had they known it was not official. How can you avoid

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making a mistake and getting something that you should have got

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for frequent Jamaat you should go onto the Government website and it

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is www .gov .uk. An search within the website for drivers licenses,

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passport or whatever because that is the official government website and

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you know then that you're dealing with the right organisation. None of

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the websites are doing anything illegal and search engines are

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working closely to make sure that adverts are not misleading.

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It is reckoned that 25% of people will have mental health problems in

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any one year and where there is a problem, there is usually a money

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problem as well. Beth Murphy is from MIND hooch offer help to people with

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mental health problems and employers and families. Welcome to Your Money.

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The main problem for money is because you become anxious and

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depressed, you lose your income, you become depressed and then you are in

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a money pickle. The same way as with physical problems, it often means

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people cannot work and need time off work and they don't have money

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coming in and with things like anxiety and depression, they can

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make it even harder for you to do something about that said you are

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building up a credit card bill perhaps. You are scared to open

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envelopes, things can escalate. And it becomes a spiral? Eleanor Gass,

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you have not got money in the house, you are not going out of the house

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and it builds up -- yes, you have not got money in the house. You need

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to recognise things early on. Element if you have lost your job

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and you are not working, perhaps your benefits have been cut,

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recognise that it is an issue early on.

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Where can you get support from? Professional advice? It depends on

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the issue. If you are in debt, it is important to seek help for that.

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Things like the national debt line where you can go and speak to them

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and consolidate your debts and find a way of paying them off more

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evenly. If it is your mental health which is a problem, anxiety or

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depression, bipolar, if things things are getting worse, it may be

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an idea to get additional support. If you have a runner to -- a

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relative, it is -- is it appropriate for an employer to step in and try

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and help with the spiral? It is always appropriate to speak to

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people. You should not assume you know what is going on for someone.

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Don't make assumptions about if they are depressed and have got money

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worries, talk to them about it. The reaction is almost always positive

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for people speaking about things. We are quite scared about things and

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there are so many stigma issues. Having a conversation can help.

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There can be a frustration on the part of a derivative of friends that

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you want to step in and fix it and make your friend better but that is

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not often in your power. You're just there to provide comfort and support

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rather than a solution? That is right. You cannot fix another person

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in that way but can give them support and make them feel that they

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are not the only person going through this and make them know they

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are loved and cared about and give them something like the space to

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talk about these things. And they are really positive.

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That is all for this week. There is news and information about saving,

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borrowing, spending on pensions on our pages on the BBC website. You

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can get updates by following our feed on Twitter. Thank you for

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watching. More again next week. Hope to see you then.

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This is BBC News.. The headlines: Britain braces

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Weekly round-up of news about mortgages, savings, credit cards, bank accounts and pensions. Helpful tips and advice on how to get the best deals, consumer rights and making your money work harder for you. With Declan Curry.


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