Barclays Partner Finance now have a dedicated page on their website regarding loan agreements for Azure products, brokered by Azure sales staff through BPF, the trading name of Clydesdale Financial Services Limited. This page clearly explains what BPF have decided and who it affects, along with how they intend to implement their solution.
The page which can be found on the following link, https://www.barclayspartnerfinance.com/home/personal/azure/ begins:
Azure customers notice
From 2006 to 2018, Clydesdale Financial Services Ltd (CFSL), trading as Barclays Partner Finance (BPF), funded loans for timeshares sold via Azure.
Following a thorough review of the complaints we’d received about the Azure timeshare loans, it’s come to light that Azure didn’t consistently meet the standards we expect our credit brokers to provide to our customers when selling timeshares/loans or providing services to customers. We’re really sorry about this – and how long it’s taken to get to this point.
The review of complaints, which is very substantial, came about due to the BPF, FCA and Azure case heard at the High Court by Judge Timothy Herrington. It is also a result of the hard work of probably the largest group with a vested interest, The Azure & Barclays Action Group administered by Ivor Williams, who as a whole bombarded BPF and other parties with evidence.
The opening paragraphs refer to the dates which are covered, they are only for loans brokered by Azure between 2006 & 2018. They do not include any Azure sales before that date or for any product sold by Azure’s sister company Silverpoint, or any other timeshare company.
In the second of the two paragraphs, they admit that the “Standards” (read sales practices) of Azure “consistently” didn’t meet the standards “set” by BPF. Now considering the way Azure sold the timeshare and the loans for so many years, we do have to ask the question, why has it taken so long for BPF to recognise the “illegal” sales practices of Azure and the timeshare industry in general?
AIT thinks the only answer is greed, they did not expect the timeshare sales industry to basically collapse in Europe, so did not expect a flood of claims against these loans. Many of these claims began with the first court cases in Spain, where the timeshare contracts paid for by these loans have been deemed illegal and declared null and void.
The following paragraphs explains the refund process where they reiterate previous statements that they will contact those who fall within this time period, including those who have not yet expressed any “dissatisfaction” with BPF.
The rest of the page includes brief FAQ’s, the last question in the list asks:
Do I need to use a solicitor, or Claims Management Company (CMC) to make a claim?
No, you only need to respond to us when we write to you, with any concerns you may have with your timeshare product. If you do choose to use a solicitor or a claims management company, they may charge a fee for their services.
Obviously, they are referring to legitimate solicitors and CMCs, not the plethora of scam operators out there, especially on the periphery of timeshare, which is where we now include our own warning.
As we have seen before with any announcement about timeshare, the news will be twisted and manipulated to suit the scam, starting a new campaign of “Cold Calls” with their version. They will find ways of explaining how they can include your timeshare loan in this refund, even though it is not.
Once you have taken the call and agreed to a follow-up from a “consultant”, is where the real “hard sell” will kick in. They will exaggerate the “complicated process” using various consumer laws and anything else that looks good, they may even tell you that what BPF is saying is not true but a publicity stunt. All of this will be for the sole purpose of convincing you that only they can help, only they have the “expertise” for such a “complicated” claim.
The scam can only operate with your help, by accepting the first call you are showing an interest, and it is then very easy for the “opener” to convince you to accept a call from the “consultant”.
Your first thought should be where they have obtained your details, how do they know you had a timeshare or finance agreement?
They will be very hard pressed to prove the data they are using is not illegally obtained, a clue will be in one of the following:
- It came from the Timeshare Owners Database
- The finance company has contracted us to deal with it
- Our law firm is involved in the case and has client lists provided by the court
- We have taken over claims from a company you had dealings with that went into administration
All very plausible but untrue, scam operators use data stolen from the timeshare companies themselves, data from every company that has ever contacted you, some of which you may have paid. Your details of what you purchased, when, where, finance or cash, and every resale company, claims company or exit company you have ever spoken with, all have improved on the original information by what you have supplied. This makes those lists invaluable, they have everything the fraudster needs to know.
When it comes to cold calls, especially around timeshare, 99% of calls are going to be scams, pure and simple, they are probably the same people under different names who scammed you years ago. They don’t have any “magic” solutions, the only “magic” is how they get your money.
While finishing off this article a certain Baby Dog decided differently, just had to drop everything and comply with his orders.