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Some companies totally lack integrity

After your weekly dose of 'Rogue Traders' or 'Watchdog' you might be forgiven for thinking it was only builders, plumbers and travel companies who were dishonest. Far from it, some of our largest commercial enterprises are guilty of the most extraordinary abuses of regulations. And they are extremely intolerant of customers. Their idea of 'customer service' is merely the customer's pipedream. It doesn't exist in real life.

It's perfectly true that customers can be a pain in the arse. If there was a way to run a business without customers it would be bliss but the truth is, as a wise old sage once said, "Without customers, we ain't got a business!". Hence the old saying that 'the customer is always right.'

Unfortunately, that's just what it is - an old saying. These days, the customer is rarely right. He's an interruption to a company's efforts to make mega-money for the greed-ridden directors - he's an annoying blot on the marketing plan.

So what sort of tricks do these companies get up to?

Well ... if, as a customer, you are prepared to accept without question the extortionate prices you are charged, and if you pay in a timely manner, they will do nothing but relieve you of your money. But if you question the charges or complain about the quality of their goods or service, woe betide you. They will either consign you to their Customer Relations Manager who is permanently blindfolded so that he sees no other viewpoint than the company's, or they will introduce you to a whole host of Customer Advisers who are similarly blinkered and obviously don't work to the same set of guidelines. Each one will tell you a different story and you will eventually get completely pissed off because you are getting nowhere.

A few letters may ensue and those you receive will merely confirm that neither the Customer Relations Manager, nor his staff, are sufficiently well educated to construct a grammatically-correct letter without spelling mistakes. Even though your Microsoft Word spell-checker works perfectly well for you, theirs doesn't appear to function at all. Either that, or they do not understand the wiggly coloured lines underneath certain words!

As a person with principles, you will argue your case defiantly, not realising until later that the company in question does not have principles ... or scruples ... or integrity. Then they will come down on you with the full force of the law using highly expensive legal firms - often crooked and also totally lacking in integrity, honesty, etcetera - knowing you certainly cannot afford to pay for your own defence because you are very likely to end up paying for your prosecution.

Unless you are extremely skilled in self-representation, you will probably lose in court. And you cannot rely on courts dispensing justice because that's not something they do. These large corporations have the laws of the land tied up so firmly in their favour that they are totally impervious. Unless you find a loophole, they win ... you lose.

All you can then try to do is expose their practises, as we have done on these pages. Strangely, although the culprits know our exposures exist, none have never contested anything we said. That's how secure they feel. But we think our purpose is served if we deter just one potential customer from buying their goods or services. It takes time but it has a long term effect - drip ... drip ... drip.


Visitors' Comments

Ivor Johnson, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim writes:

With the credit crunch in full swing and top cat wages capped, how come companies are increasing the price of their goods and blaming it on the weak pound against the Euro? Surely price increases should be on hold until this has calmed down, especially the car companies who received a cash injection.


Editorial Comment:

Good point, Ivor. We had the same thoughts.


Peter Cooke, Perth writes:

I'm in full agreement with your comments, and to lend weight to your arguments, listen to this. I hired a car from www.car-hire-uk.com on the 29 Apr for four weeks in Aug/Sept, and cancelled it four days later after having paid the full amount of 419.42 which is company policy. The live operator I spoke to on computer assured me that a cancellation form would be sent to me, and my money refunded. Guess what? they now refuse to refund my money with some lame excuse about it being a special deal, and I didn't take out insurance. I would like you to disperse this message far and wide in order that no-one else is caught out like me. Thank You.


Editorial Comment:

Car Hire UK is a Bromley based company who mainly appear to operate car hire facilities at Heathrow and Gatwick. Having checked their Terms and Conditions it appears that their cancellation fee is 100% of the rental charge unless their cancellation protection option is taken. But if an employee told you that your money would be refunded then you should pursue the matter.


Peter Lewis of Saudi Arabia writes:

I hired a car from carhire uk and still have not had my deposits returned to my credit card account despite being told on numerous occasions that it will.

On checking the internet for other disgruntled customers in ten minutes i found hundreds of other customers, mainly with overseas addresses that had also been swindled by this company.

DON'T HIRE FROM THIS COMPANY.


Richard O'Flynn writes:

I agree with the comments about "Car Hire UK".

I had to go to a funeral of a young cousin of mine in London and rented a car from them for the day. The took a 900 deposit which they said was standard in case of damage. That was last April and it is now Sept and I am still waiting to get it back. I have been on to Visa and they are trying there best but am still waiting.

I have never had a call from them or any contact from anyone but the reservation desk which keep telling me they will forward the info and will be sorted straight away??? That was months ago.

My advice is to stay well away from them. Car Hire UK is the worst company I have ever come across and I rent on average 10 cars a year for the last 25 years for business.


Joanne Woolgar of Loughton writes:

I ordered a chair from a website called www.modernclassicsdirect.co.uk. They took 239 from my card over the phone and sent me a receipt and invoice by post. The card transaction receipt named the company as JMC Trading Ltd.

The Modern Classics Direct address is listed as 102 Cavell St. E12JA. London. Tel: 0845 466 0298. I made the purchase on 24/7/07 but never received the chair and never received a refund despite numerous phone calls. Basically I gave up on them but having seen your website I feel it is worth publicizing that this is a decidedly dodgy company.


Paul Sargent of Haywards Heath writes:

I used to work for a company called SPC Horsham now trading as Sussex Dyno Tuning. A Mr. Phillip Boase bought SPC Horsham and immediately broke my contract of employment which stated i was on 40hrs a week by making me work only 1 or 2 days a week. I let Mr. Boase have my contract of employment to read but never saw it again, but i went to the CAB and got a copy first.

I left SPC Horsham after presenting Mr. Boase with a grievance letter and then took him to an Employment Tribunal and won 11,000 plus interest due to Unlawful Constructive Dismissal. He never paid up.

I got a Judgment on him through the County Court and then sent the Bailiffs in through the High Court. He let the bailiffs do a report, but when the bailiffs went to collect he said he had GIVEN the assets of SPC Horsham to his parents and was leasing them back at 15,000 a month through his new company (which was formed 24 days after the Tribunal) called Sussex Dyno Tuning.

Mr. Boase attempted to strike off SPC Horsham but i got it suspended due to the judgment and bailiff warrant against the company. I have been told that giving the assets of an active company away to avoid paying debts etc is illegal, i still have not been paid and i am now unemployed and face having my house repossessed. I am now not sure what steps i can take to get what i am owed and ARE some of the assets that Mr. Boase gave to his parents legally mine and should he be paying me to lease them. Can i also prove that SPC Horsham and Sussex Dyno Tuning are in fact the same company etc to get my money.

Mr. Boase also charges VAT for both companies but has never paid any back.


Eric Parker of Hull writes:

The Right Car Supermarket work hand in hand with Barclays Partner Finance, If you hand your faulty vehicle back under Right To Reject, Shaun who hops around the dealers setting up finance deals denies settling the finance, then you get hounded by the finance even though you have lost your part-ex vehicle, the car you have purchased and now stuck with a massive bill which you are left to prove against the dealer and the finance company, even though the little box on the agreement states that both the dealer and finance company are liable to be sued, on asking a solicitor to talk over the matter it was going to cost 800 for the first hour, CAB was a complete waste of time, financial ombudsman services are going to write to ask Right Car to try and settle the matter, Could be 6 weeks, This is owing to a vehicle purchase that the car's steering failed 1/2 mile on from having the pre-delivery MOT test!

1 week later we get it back, drive it home and the engine management light comes on and goes into limp home mode, these snowballing probs carry on for 3 week, accruing interest for Barclays who are now ringing night and day because we stopped all direct debit payments on the advice of a solicitor and Right Car themselves,

Please do not fall into the trap of buying a one lady owner Vauxhall Zafira 1.9 cdti with full service history, which is stamped on the log book when you get it from DVLA, the secretaries name from a ex fleet hire company, Right Car forgot to clean out the glove box, Steer clear of Right Car, Unless you want to be ripped off.


Donall O Connor of Belfast writes:

Whatever you do, do not use Rubbe Car Hire and here is why: I have a family of 6 kids and in January 2010, I booked a 9 seater at Barcelona. Rubbe Car Hire confirmed the booking in Jan 10, took my full money of 1200 and sent a "Confirmation voucher".

Great I thought, that's that sorted !...... but not so ! Just 10 days before I travelled in July 2010, Rubbe Car Hire sent me an e-mail with "notice of cancellation" because the hire business had had an accident and they no longer had a 9 seater.

I corresponded with Rubbe Car Hire (a lot!) telling them that there was a contract in place and they had a responsibility to provide me with a 9 seater from Barcelona @ 1200. (The hire price in July at short notice had now soared to 1900 ).

Rubbe denied all liability and said it was "not their fault"! This is rubbish. They had made a contract and were now denying their obligations under this deal. There was an offer by Rubbe and I accepted their offer. Rubbe confirmed the booking (in writing) and they took full payment in consideration for the rental. This in my view forms a legally binding contract. Anyhow, their UK based employees didn't want to know my problems (of their making) and when I checked out Rubbe Car Hire it turns out to be based in Latvia. I have no difficulty with this but I am now left to pursue their "shell UK company" via legal means. It's not so much the 700 that I lost but the principal of this faceless web agency who believe they can treat customers like rubbish !

Anyhow, the moral of the story is this: Avoid Rubbe Car Hire like the Plague! Or as I now call them "Rob Car Hire" I did get my money refunded (but not the cost of 6 which my bank charged for a Latvian - NatWest transfer !) I am pursuing Rubbe Car Hire for the 700 extra that their short notice cancellation cost me.


Sarah of Cramlington writes:

www.furnishyourhome.co.uk charged me 230+ for a 6-seater dining table over 1 month ago with a online promise of 5-10 day delivery. I've phoned them up countless times but they keep giving me excuses and saying that someone would call me back but that's never happened.

I tried to call them again this evening after being told it would be delivered tomorrow or Friday so that i could find out which day seeing as I'd have to take a day off college so needed notice to warn my teachers... However, 6 times the phone clicked onto a fax machine during the open hours...

Can anyone tell me if this company are fake? Or if I'm just paranoid??? I'm only 19 and its a lot of money to pay but i wanted a family table for Xmas.


Jay Stork of Newcastle writes:

LICENSE4YOU LTD - DO NOT USE THIS COMPANY - They pretend to be an SIA course training provider, however they do not hold a license. They will ask for payment online/on the day and let you attend the three day course and tell you to wait ten days for the results.

After ten days you try to contact them but they ignore your emails and phone calls. You never receive a certificate because they are not a genuine training provider.


Joey Moses of N Ireland writes:

I've had the luxury of a mobile phone since their introduction and i did own 2 Motorola expensive models. One was faulty after having it 3 months but the problem was minor - after a year it developed a screen lock fault, a common fault and Motorola wouldn't repair or replace. They destroyed it with no warning despite my pleading a company to avoid caveat emptor -- buyer beware


Julie Eltringham of Horsham, Victoria, Australia writes (on 13/12/11):

Add us to the list of people who have been ripped off by Car Hir UK. We hired a car in May 2011 for a week and were charged a depot fee of some AU $1,000. This company refuses to refund our deposit, despite a number of assurances that it was being processed and would be deposited into our account in a few days. We have sent a letter of demand from our solicitor, but to no avail. Does anyone know what we can do to get our money back?

 

William of Telford writes:

Brilliant site! I have been dealing with a real bunch of cowboy companies lately and now it is payback time for me.



"Many men stumble across the truth ... but most manage to pick themselves up and continue as if nothing had happened."

Winston S Churchill


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