CREDIT CARD users could be sitting on unclaimed millions of pounds following a County Court decision on Monday that means consumers have more time to make a claim against their credit card company when a purchase has gone wrong. QualitySolicitors Howlett Clarke, based in Brighton, has won a case for their client which means that consumers who used their credit card to pay for an item or service that later turned out to be misrepresented, for example, fraudulent, may have up to 6 years from when they notice the error inform their credit card company. Until todays decision, consumers only had 6 years from the purchase of the item or product to claim their money back from the credit card company. QualitySolicitors Howlett Clarke also secured interest for their client over the time lapsed. Paul Tilley the QualitySolicitors Howlett Clarke lawyer involved in the case, said: What this decision means is that there could be thousands of people out there who have purchased something on their credit card that was a misrepresented purchase in our clients case it was an investment that was fraudulent but they are unaware that they can bring a claim against their credit card provider to recoup the money. The decision means that the 6 year clock to make their claim starts ticking from the point they notice the misrepresentation, not from the date they made the purchase. So someone who made a purchase more than 6 years ago, but today notices it was a misrepresented purchase may be able to make a claim against their credit card company as long as they inform the company of it. This applies equally where consumers have, for example, paid a deposit for an item using a credit card and paid the balance in cash or by cheque, such as transactions where a vehicle was purchased. While only the deposit is funded by the credit card, the full transaction price could potentially be recovered from the creditor. Few people realised before this case that credit card companies are liable for such purchases. It is a protection that debit cards do not offer. Credit cards just became even better with this case. People may have more time to check their credit card statements to see if there are any purchases that turned out badly. They could be able to get that money back with interest. With the spectre of Christmas debt preying on peoples minds there might be some respite from a purchase gone wrong hidden in a credit card statement somewhere. QualitySolicitors Howlett Clarkes client had part paid of her investments on her credit card, but by the time she realised she had been fraudulently sold the investments the company that had sold them to her had gone bust. She sought to recoup the money from her credit card provider MBNA . Craig Holt , who heads up the QualitySolicitors network group, which has over 200 branches throughout the country, said: Quality Solicitors network has always seen itself as a consumer champion and the work of QualitySolicitors Howlett Clarkes is certainly reflective of that ethos. More importantly, this case opens up the way for consumers to exert their rights that they thought they had lost due to the passage of time, or because they weren't aware of their rights under credit law. Its not just families and other consumers who could be affected by the decision. Many small businesses who are struggling to access finance or credit from their banks have turned to credit cards in recent years. They too may have a claim. For more information and interviews please contact Melissa Davis at MD Communications on 020 7438 1575. Jamael Kudratt PR Executive MD Communications DL: 020 7438 1575 Mob: 0758 22 99 336 E: firstname.lastname@example.org .
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