QLD RACQ moved a debt to an agency without prior notice is this legal

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Gary

Well-Known Member
2 November 2014
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Since 2015 I been paying a debt to RACQ for an accident I was involved in in 2014. As part of the agreement I am obliged to pay an amount on the date agreed upon, the 18th of each month. At the time I was not living in the home I shared with my ex partner but seeing as our seperation was amicable she agreed that I could use the address for RACQ correspondence as I did not have a stable and permanent address. That was working fine and payments were being made as required.
On Thursday 9th April 2020 I received a call from a gentleman who would not declare who he was untill I had identified myself. I did so upon which he advised that he represented a company called Milton Grahame and that as of that day they were now taking over the management of my debt with RACQ and future repayments starting with payment due on 18th April 2020. Told the person I had had no correspondence from RACQ he said take that up with them. I asked what is the nature of their business as they sound like a collection agent. He replied that they were but not to be alarmed as my case was not part of a debt collection. No reporting had been done and that RACQ had decided to outsource certain debts. Are there missed payments -NO are there any defaults-NO so I have honored and continue to honor my agreement - YES I said that I think I need to get some advice.He replied there was no need. My case had been handed over to them to be managed and not to act as a debt collection agency again stating no need to be concerned and that I was not being placed as a bad debt and no reporting would be done.I again asked why it was being handled by them and he said you have to take that up with RACQ. He asked for my email so he could send the information for my repayments, not sure if I was breaking the law by saying no so i confirmed my email. I then contacted RACQ and spoke to a lady who advised that she was my new case manager. I asked about Milton Graham. She confirmed that they were now handling my file and to make all future payments to them. Have i missed a payment,- NO have I defaulted - NO.Have i honored my agreement-YES. She told me RACQ after looking at the internal process, had decided cases like mine and similar, would be better managed by an outside party. I asked why I hadnt been notified and was advised that mail, both postal and EMAIL had been sent out. I said I never got it she said she had done it that morning. She advised postal was sent via Australia Post and to an address I left in 2015. I asked why after 5 years have you suddenly decided to send to an address that i was at at the time of the accident when there was a perfectly good one on file that you have used for five years without issue? An address chosen for its stability. The address change was made in December 2019 after a check with main roads. I told her main roads should have my current address but that was beside the point. Why after 5 years was it suddenly an issue, and one that required a double check with main roads. She said she did not know. But all correspondence was sent to Highgate Hill. to clarify I said I have no dafaults and have honored the agreement-yes You sent important correspondence from January 2020 to a different address after 5 years of there being no issues with the adress given-yes and the day Milton Grahan call is the day you draft a letter and email to notify me that they were taking over the account-Yes. She said she had sent a few emails, none of which were to advise of RACQ's decision to outsource, I advised her i never got them, she said check spam I did, nothing there. , I told her RACQ had a rule so it wouldnt spam. She said I will send you two again. I checked and confirmed they had arrived. I said if I had seen them like that i would have deleted. I get a lot of spam and hoax mail so unless it is clear who its from id have trashed it. she said I should have noticed because it has RACQ in her from address. I use Mozilla and this is how it appears in my inbox MVXXXXX ccmvoutbound thats it. i would only have seen RACQ if i were to open it and i wouldnt do that for fear it may be contaminated. She said that she had sent it and it wasnt her problem if I deleted it. I told her that if it had said RACQ i would have opened the email, probably still ringing to confirm that it was safe to open the attachment. I said that I was unhappy with all of this and she said I can lodge a complaint. RACQ complaints team would look at it and get back to me. With it being a long weekend it would probably be Wednesday the 15th April or Thursday the 16th April. If after that I was still unhappy then I could take it up with the Ombudsamn.
Is what RACQ have done legal. Handing over my case file to an outside company, a debt collection agency, and notifying me via postal and an email on the day the file is handed over
to Milton Graham. If they had not contacted me I would be no wiser.
I know that I still have to continue my payments but as far as I can tell I do not have any such agreement with Milton Graham and I think that by making a payment I would be accepting an agreement should i still send payments to RACQ or Milton Graham? The fact that the day before the easter break I am called by Milton Graham to advise that they now manage my files, the day they do is the day that RACQ send postal and email information regarding the change, the fact that they have sent to wrong postal address and the email does not clearly identify RACQ as the sender , that any complaint cannot be attended to untill the 15th or 16th of April has left me with little time to find out my rights, to obtain legal advice or to lodge a complaint that can be dealt with in a fair and reasonable time frame leads me to beleieve that this hasd beena premeditated well cordinated covert operation. I feel bullied and trapped and also feel that my rights have been violated and a proper and fair process has been ignored.
 

Rob Legat - SBPL

Lawyer
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What’s the problem? Simply put, there is none. Milton Graham is one of the better collection agencies to deal with. RACQ are well within their rights to use a collection agent. It’s effectively no different than if they’d gone through a lawyer. They’ve confirmed you’re not in default, and you’re not behind. It’s just a change of collector. Keep your payments up and there’s no problem.
 

Gary

Well-Known Member
2 November 2014
38
0
121
whats my problem??....lol....didnt you get any chocolate this year? My problem is that I have a signed contract with RACQ, The company they have asked to represent them is already trying to change the goalpost so the arrangement does not remain the same and advising me of the change, after the company now represnting them had made contact. I am pretty sure that I have some rights too and I am pretty sure that fair notice is one of them and I am pretty sure that a signed contract is another Thanks for your advice. I think this is the fourth time you have answered my posts 3 in different aspects of the law, you are a man of many talents but please do not answer anymore of my posts. I dont know if you mean then to, but your posts come across as irritated abruot and rude, this one with the opening statement "What’s the problem? Simply put, there is none. " reads to me like "stop moaning and whinging and be thankful. tug your forelock and just do as your told" you may reply that i am reacting this way because i didnt like your response. Not at all Mr Legat I dont very much care for the tone. Thank you again and good night.
 

Rob Legat - SBPL

Lawyer
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16 February 2017
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Gold Coast, Queensland
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No, I didn’t get any chocolate this year. I’m doing a keto diet with my wife and picked the worst week to start. But that’s beside the point.

I apologise if you’ve interpreted my comments as targeted or terse. They weren’t meant in that manner, and I rarely look at who is asking the question before I answer. It makes little difference to the answer. If you don’t want assistance from me, I’m happy to oblige. You can always feel free to ignore my comments.

With respect to the subject matter at hand, in this instance I believe you’re overreacting. There’s no mention of any change to the payments arrangement per se, just the collecting party. They’d have to give notice/negotiate for a change in payments. Where they’ve simply appointed an agent - and have confirmed the appointment (albeit belatedly) - that’s all you need to know. I think you may be hung up on the stigma of being contacted by a ‘debt collector’. If you’re still paying the same amount on the 18th of the month, all it is is a different person you have to deal with. It is effectively no different than if you had had a new manager appointed internally at RACQ. The unless to that is if Milton Graham illegally use/disclose your personal information, of course. Unless there’s any indication of that occurring the there should be no issue.
 

Rob Legat - SBPL

Lawyer
LawTap Verified
16 February 2017
2,380
501
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Gold Coast, Queensland
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I apologise for drawing this out and going off topic to the original thread, but I believe this is the correct place to put this as it is in response to a comment made in this thread. Namely:

I think this is the fourth time you have answered my posts 3 in different aspects of the law, you are a man of many talents but please do not answer anymore of my posts. I dont know if you mean then to, but your posts come across as irritated abruot and rude...
Yes, I can come across as 'irritated, abrupt and rude' (as any lawyer can) from time to time - that I don't deny. I purposefully try not to be that way. I can also be quite overly wordy, so I try to pull back on that rather than blowing things out. So, I went back and did a review of the times I have answered your posts. I don't think it plays out the way you claim.

I found these threads in which I've replied to your posts:

- QLD - bullied by manager then banned from pub : My post is a little short, I agree. Abrupt? Probably. It was a Friday before Christmas, so I could have been scrambling to get everything done (no excuse on my part). There's nothing in there to show I'm irritated and I'm not being rude.

- QLD - Allowing Legal Firm access to Superfund info : I don't see anything irritated, abrupt or rude here. Scruff even gave me a thumbs up. Thanks Scruff!

- QLD - Can I contact the family solicitor : I don't see anything irritated, abrupt or rude here.

- QLD - Banned from Pub for 1 Year - Allowed Under Australian Law? : I don't think this one can be considered irritated, abrupt or rude either. Maybe my initial post could be considered that way, but if read in a neutral tone without inflection (which these should be) then I think the conclusion you've made is reaching. My second post is responding to a rather pointed and personal assumption made against me, for which you apologised (thank you), and which I accepted. And then I answered your further question.

If these responses, taken as a whole, qualify as 'irritated, abrupt and rude' to you, I apologise. That was not my intention. My intention was merely to be helpful in the most succinct way possible. Sometimes that means telling people things they don't want to hear. That's part of our remit as lawyers - to not tell people what they want to hear, but to tell them what they need to hear. I don't apologise for that.

I also feel it's relevant to disclose why I am doing this. The same as anybody I may not like criticism but I can cop it when it's fair. However, when I feel it isn't I reserve the right to respond. My reputation on this site matters to me. I do generate work off this site. And, like I said, I try not to be 'irritated, abrupt and rude' in my postings here. I would hate for someone to get the wrong impression of me because of a criticism against me personally, without at least being able to put a response.
 
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Gary

Well-Known Member
2 November 2014
38
0
121
Dear Mr Legat. After taking this matter further, and supplying no more information than posted here, i was advised that i am right to be cautious and even though RACQ may well have dotted all their i's the fact that there is very little transparency was enough to merit further inquiry. If i had taken up your advice the possibility of me entering a new contract arrangement was very real and would replace the existing contract. Again thank you for your advice. Thank you for taking the time to review our previous interactions and thank you for your apology. It is a greater man who can look at themselves and highlight the negatives as well as the positives. Good luck on your keto diet and dont worry, jesus may have died for chocolate but you dont have to.