MBNA are chasing me for debt - can you help? | This is Money

With more and more of us suffering from debt in the UK, it can actually feel more confusing than ever to find out what to do and how to deal with debt collectors. With so many debt collection agencies out there, and so many different credit accounts we might have, it’s easy to lose sight of what you owe and when.

If you’ve received notice of an MBNA debt, and you aren’t too sure about what to do, then you’ve come to the right place. We take a look at who MBNA are, and what MBNA debt means for you.

MBNA debt – the basics

First of all, it is worth knowing who MBNA are and why they might be getting in touch with you. From there on in, you will know exactly why they’re reaching out to you, and what you should do next.

Who are they?

MBNA is a bank holding company that since 2017 has been the trading style of Lloyds Bank plc. Their registered office address according to their Companies House page is Cawley House, Chester Business Park, Chester, United Kingdom, CH4 9FB

Their company number can also be found on this page – that’s 02783251. They are also regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA).

Why are they getting in touch?

If you’ve received a letter from MBNA, stating that you might owe them some money, you should ensure that you do have accounts open with them. All of us have fallen victim to scams, whether that is an email scam or a postal scam. 

If they’re claiming that you owe a debt, then the chances are that you do. Creditors claiming for debts rarely contact customers in error, so it’s likely you will owe the amount that they say you owe.

Are they trustworthy?

Owing to the fact that they have a Companies House page, and they have regulation from the FCA and the PRA, MBNA are very much a real and trustworthy company, and you should take their letters and other correspondence seriously.

In 2010, however, they were investigated by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) as they treated customers who were struggling to meet payments with very little respect. They were found to do things like bypass customers’ appointed representatives, such as debt charities and debt management firms, and they also didn’t always make it clear that they would accept token payments from those in severe difficulty. They were told to make their letters clearer and to communicate with their customers in a more respectful manner.

MBNA debt – next steps

Now you know who you’re dealing with, you can start to consider your next steps and what to do. Knowing just who you’re dealing with is only half the battle – negotiating with MBNA about your MBNA debt is the next part of your journey. 

We’ll take you through an easy to follow guide in how to deal with them best, and go on to answer some of the more frequently-asked questions about MBNA debt and debt collection in general.

Gather information

This is one of the most important steps in dealing with your MBNA debt. Having as much information to hand about your debt will be really important in dealing with MBNA. 

Make sure you go through the MBNA debt letter with a fine-tooth comb, and dig out any other letters or pieces of correspondence they might have sent you in the past. 

Cross-reference all the amounts on the letters as well – if the amounts are markedly different, you should raise this with MBNA, and you may not actually have to pay them at all.

Keep notes

As you negotiate with MBNA about your MBNA debt, you’ll want to note down as much information as possible, at every step of the way. Keep notes on the dates of each of the letters that they send to you, and when they phone you up. 

If you can, take down the names of all the people you speak to as well. If any issues arise further down the line, you’ll have plenty of information to prove you’ve been diligent and taken the MBNA debt claim seriously.

Prove the debt

If you’re still uncertain about the debt that they say you owe, and want physical evidence of the debt from MBNA, or even you might want slightly longer to see if you can amass any further funds to settle your debt, you can send them a ‘Prove the Debt’ letter. This means that they have to send you a letter proving that you owe the debt that they say you owe.

You can either try your hand at writing your own ‘Prove the Debt’ letter, or you can use one of these templates. There are also extensive instructions on what to do, how to word the letter, what information to include, and how to negotiate your way through a ‘Prove the Debt’ letter quickly and easily.

FAQs

If you follow those steps, you should be able to negotiate and deal with your MBNA debt quickly and easily. Below, we go through some of the more commonly-asked questions about MBNA debt, and about debt collectors in general.

Will they visit my home?

If you do not respond to any of their attempts to get in touch with you, they may well take the next step and send a representative to your home. However, this is quite rare for them to do, and it only really happens when they don’t see any other option.

Should I ignore them?

No. If you ignore them, they won’t simply disappear. Debt collection agencies and creditors just want their money back at the end of the day, and ignoring them will simply encourage them to step up their game and pursue you even more than they have been.

What happens if I don’t pay them?

It can be argued that we all should pay our debts and the quicker that we do this, the better. If you don’t pay them, you will only be causing more problems for yourself. They could involve bailiffs, they could apply for a County Court Judgment, and they could even try and make you bankrupt.

In extreme cases, there’s also a jail sentence for serial debt dodgers, so it’s best to reach out to them as soon as you can and see if you can arrange something.

Can I make a complaint?

MBNA are already under the microscope with regards to how they handle debt and collect any unpaid fees, so if you believe that they haven’t treated you with respect in regards to your MBNA debt, you absolutely should make a complaint.

You should get in touch with them first and foremost, stating the nature of your complaint. If they don’t respond, you should get in touch with the Financial Ombudsman Service to escalate matters.

About the author

Scott Nelson

Scott Nelson is a financial services expert, with over 10 years’ experience in the industry, including 6 years in FCA regulated companies. Read more
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