Barrow OAP gets dead man's bill
Last updated at 16:58, Monday, 20 August 2012
A PENSIONER with emphysema has spoken out after being chased for money owed by the deceased former tenant of his house.
SRJ Debt Recoveries sent 10 letters threatening legal action to Donald Tyson, 67, over a £26.30 gas bill owed by the late Francis Goligy, a man he had never met.
Mr Tyson moved into his property in Fenman Close, Barrow, in January and began receiving the letters addressed to Mr Goligy soon after he arrived.
He said: “Normally when that happens to me I just send them back to the post office, but the more I sent back the more they came. When I finally opened one of the letters weeks after moving in, I realised it was far worse than I thought.”
Two months ago he explained to SRJ that Mr Goligy had passed away and was assured the matter would be taken care of.
On Thursday, however, another letter came through Mr Tyson’s letter box.
He said: “I explained the situation to them again and they asked me if it would be a problem for me to obtain a death certificate.
“I didn’t know the man, I don’t know how old he was and I wouldn’t even know where to start in getting a death certificate for a stranger.”
The father-of-two and grandfather of four says the stress of the situation made his condition worse.
He said: “I can’t get it out of my head. My family are worried about me.”
The former construction worker turned to his housing trust, the Accent Foundation, for help and Accent agreed to help Mr Tyson if the problem continued.
But following a call from the Evening Mail, SRJ Debt Recoveries said they would be apologising to Mr Tyson.
In a statement an SRJ spokesman said: “SRJ were first instructed in late April of this year to collect outstanding balances due to its client from an account holder at what is now Mr Tyson’s address. SRJ Debt Recoveries Limited were not aware that the account holder was in fact deceased.
“SRJ Debt Recoveries Limited will be issuing an apology to Mr Tyson for any inconvenience that may have been caused to him.”
First published at 16:34, Monday, 20 August 2012
Published by http://www.nwemail.co.uk
Have your say
the mail should have investigated this bill before naming the previous deceased tenant and they would have discovered that the previous tenant owed nothing to the gas company. also the new tenant should not have opened the previous tenants mail but marked the envelope not at this address and return to sender. todays apology in the mail came from the gas company but not one word of apology from the mail and its reporter who blackened the name of the previous tenant by saying he owed money and who named the man who had died after a long illness and couldnt defend the allegation
Accent only agreed to help Mr Tyson "if the problem continued'. That's disgusting. Any 'landlord' should be legally obliged to deal with any 'problems' like this. Mr Tyson is responsible for what happens from the date his tenancy began - nothing more - and yet Access seem to be happy with the fact that he has been harassed by debt collectors. As for SRJ, what sort of professional organisation asks for a stranger to supply copies of a death certificate? It would be funny - if it hadn't turned into a nightmare situation for Mr Tyson.