A record fine, but Talk Talk blunders again

Betty Spencer at her home in Shiregreen. Talk Talk have had debt collectors sending her payment demands for money she doesn't owe. She is holding a copy of the cheque she sent and one of the demands

Betty Spencer at her home in Shiregreen. Talk Talk have had debt collectors sending her payment demands for money she doesn't owe. She is holding a copy of the cheque she sent and one of the demands

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BETTY Spencer fears debt so much she paid a rogue Talk Talk bill immediately - even though she didn’t owe a penny.

And she was beside herself when the blundering firm then called in debt collectors.

The widow, aged 79, has heart problems, a pacemaker and diabetes. Her symptoms are aggravated by the thought of owing money.

Betty, of Molineaux Road, Shiregreen, said: “They sent me a bill without any explanation. I don’t know what it was I just paid it. That’s me, I don’t like to be in debt.”

Her cheque for £47.25 was cashed, but Talk Talk sent another letter demanding the money.

Then Betty got a letter from debt collectors - and then another from a second firm of debt collectors who threatened legal proceedings over the bill, which had now climbed to £77.25.

She was in tears by the time she rang Action Desk.

TALK Talk has been Action Desk’s most complained-about company for some time and it has just been fined a whopping £3m for incorrectly billing 65,000 former Tiscali customers.

The record fine for a telecoms firm comes after two investigations by watchdog Ofcom. Meanwhile customers, especially the elderly, are still suffering poor customer service.

An Ofcom spokeswoman said: “We’re still monitoring any complaints we receive and may take further action should we find there is still a problem.”

A Talk Talk spokeswoman said: “Mrs Spencer’s account has now been fully closed and the balance has been cleared. We apologise for any distress this error caused and Mrs Spencer should receive no further communication on this matter.

“Talk Talk has recently completed the huge task of migrating customers to our network and moving 4 million customers to our single billing system. These complex operations caused some customer disruption.

“We’re committed to providing good service alongside our best value and, while we still have lots to do, we’re confident that our customers are beginning to see the benefits of the changes we have made.”

The company has paid more than £2.5m in refunds and goodwill payments to affected customers.

n Action Desk will forward Betty’s case to the regulator.

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