‘Timeshare fraudster ordered to pay £1000’s to victims’

Further actions have taken place in a criminal case that KwikChex supported with evidence gained from investigations and consumer reports.

Frank Madden was previously sentenced to 40 months imprisonment for operating a bogus holiday discount club scam and has now been ordered to pay back £20,000 and had further banning orders imposed.

Read the article here:
Timeshare fraudster ordered to pay £1000’s to victims
https://www.bcpcouncil.gov.uk/News/News-Articles/Timeshare-fraudster-ordered-to-pay-1000s-back-to-victim.aspx
(BCP Council, 8th July 2019)

Timeshare Claims Warning March 2019

Important advice re increasing risks related to timeshare claims businesses 

On 22 February 2019, purported ‘timeshare claims specialist’ businesses Meredith Pritchard Consultants Ltd.  and First Law Solutions Ltd. were wound up in the UK High Court following action by UK authorities. 

The Insolvency Service presented petitions to the court on the grounds that both companies traded with a lack of commercial probity by failing to provide contracted services in a timely manner or at all. This included accepting payments in respect of non-viable claims, charging excessive fees, and using misleading and aggressive sales techniques. Losses to consumers deceived by the businesses are believed to be in excess of half a million pounds. 

The news follows the winding up of another timeshare claims operation just weeks before, when International Timeshare Refund Action (ITRA), were also wound up in the High Court after failing to refund monies to consumers as per court orders established, they too had not provided the promised services. 

In the past 18 months, several businesses offering timeshare and relinquishment services have shut down without making good on their promises. Other notable examples include RSB Legal and Standon Mortimer. 

In addition, there have been multiple arrests made by the police and convictions through prosecutions, including the prolific EZE Group that are connected with the targeting of timeshare owners, In August last year, the problem was highlighted by Action Fraud, who reported that victims seeking their assistance had reported losing £7,893,028 in just the first half of the year. KwikChex has estimated that well in excess of £150 million has been lost by consumers to such activities over the last 5 years. 

Over 100 businesses have been identified as operating in deceptive and fraudulent ways or simply failing to deliver the promised services. Regrettably, this has even included regulated businesses including at least one firm of solicitors. Fake lawyers have also been springing up and making unlawful, unsolicited contact with timeshare owners. 

The problem has turned into a large-scale epidemic and KwikChex is currently in discussions with several authorities on how to tackle it. 

 

Free help with checking and due diligence 

KwikChex, via the Timeshare Task Force provides a free service to consumers wanting to check on businesses operating within the timeshare sector. It is the only resource of its kind officially vetted and approved by UK Trading Standards. 

Given the vast scale and nature of the problem, KwikChex is urging consumers to: 

  • Use the Timeshare Task Force resources to check all businesses offering timeshare relinquishment and claims 
  • If they simply want to relinquish their timeshare, to make enquiries of the timeshare developer/ resort at which they own in the first instance to see what exit options may be available  
  • If they believe they have a claim, to check what options are available with the Timeshare Task Force resources 
  • Report all unsolicited contacts – as almost all have been shown to be rogue in nature 
  • Use free resources provided by KwikChex to ensure that all due diligence is carried out and that all information regarding proposed services is put in writing 
  • Avoid any business that states it cannot accept credit card payments 

 

Important information for clarity 

The free services provided to consumers by KwikChex are funded through the Resort Development Organisation (RDO), which represent timeshare businesses in Europe. In order to ensure that the services provided by KwikChex maintain the highest levels of integrity, they have been vetted and approved by UK Trading Standards and continue to be monitored on an ongoing basis. 

KwikChex has an outstanding track record of resolving problems and gaining refunds for consumers free of charge. This has included several well-publicised cases where assistance has been provided that enabled consumers to make successful regulatory-based and court claims. Where KwikChex is unable to help directly and the consumer wishes to take formal legal action, KwikChex will advise that an expert legal professional is used and advise on the selection process. 

The official KwikChex accreditation, approval and verified consumer feedback can be viewed on the following link. 

https://www.buywithconfidence.gov.uk/profile/kwikchex/24358/

Consumer successfully released from ITRA demands and timeshare

In July 2016, a consumer contacted KwikChex via the Timeshare Business Check website, with the following request

“I have been mis-led and signed up for relinquishment of my timeshare with DRI. I thought I was seeing a consumer advice person at Timeshare Advice Centre Exeter only to be told that ITRA will be working on the relinquishment of my membership for a fee which needed to be paid immediately. Fortunately I realised before paying by BACS to a Bank in Morocco that all was not as it seemed. I cancelled the agreement within 3 days and asked for the return of my Deeds. They are refusing to do this unless I pay work in progress of £1280. Can you help?”

After intervention by KwikChex,  the deeds have been returned by ITRA to the consumer and have ceased demands for payment. In addition, the consumer has now relinquished their timeshare in return for a very low administration fee. These services were provided free of charge as part of the role played by KwikChex leading the Timeshare Task Force.

Asked to comment on her experience with KwikChex and the Timeshare Task Force, the consumer replied

“ I have no objections to helping others if I can and have appreciated the help and information given by yourselves and Mindtimeshare who gave me your contact details.”
Mrs B, Nov 2016

ASA Uphold Complaint against Ultimate Holiday Package/Easy Consulting

ASAThe UK Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has upheld a complaint submitted by KwikChex regarding Ultimate Holiday Package/Easy Consulting.

A complaint was filed with the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) in April .

The investigation by KwikChex was carried out as part of activities by the Timeshare Task Force www.timesharetaskforce.org which KwikChex manages.

The complaint challenged (an Ad on a website for a holiday company, www.theultimateholidaypackage.co.uk, which was seen on 27 February 2016) whether:

1. the ad was misleading, because it did not make sufficiently clear that the price of the holidays was dependent on customers attending a timeshare sales presentation and that failure to attend would mean incurring the full cost of the holiday accommodation; and

2. the claim “the single largest provider of promotional holidays in Europe” was misleading and could be substantiated.

Easy Consulting SL t/a The Ultimate Holiday Package did not respond to the ASA’s enquiries.
The ASA upheld the complaint stating that the ad must not appear again in its current form.

Full details of the complaint on the ASA website – https://www.asa.org.uk/Rulings/Adjudications/2016/7/Easy-Consulting-SL/SHP_ADJ_335491.aspx#.V4XZBGh96hc

A previous upheld ASA ruling on a connected business – Love All Inclusive which found that claims of ABTA membership and licensing by the Ministry of Justice were not substantiated and were therefore misleading. Full details of the ASA ruling – https://www.asa.org.uk/Rulings/Adjudications/2015/7/Love-All-Inclusive/SHP_ADJ_303742.aspx#.V4XakGh96hc

A list of connected businesses is available on the Ultimate Holiday Package profile – http://timesharebusinesscheck.org/the-ultimate-holiday-package/

ASA Uphold Complaint against Timeshare Relief UK

ASAThe UK Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has upheld a complaint submitted by KwikChex regarding Timeshare Relief UK.

A complaint was filed with the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) in October 2015.

The investigation by KwikChex was carried out as part of activities by the Timeshare Task Force www.timesharetaskforce.org which KwikChex manages.

The complaint challenged whether the following claims were misleading and could be substantiated:
1. “the UK’s leading Timeshare disposal company”; and
2. Mr Warren and his … partners … have saved their clients over £40,000,000 million pounds [sic] in fees …”.
3. KwikChex also challenged whether the claims “New Rules aim to end decades of pressure-selling and release thousands of people from costly and unfair contracts”, “Soon to be implemented Europe-wide rules are expected to back the decision” and “A Norwegian woman was awarded more than £28,000 by the Spanish Supreme Court in March, giving fresh hope to Britons locked in similar arrangements” were misleading because they understood the decision applied only in Spain.

Timeshare Relief UK provided a response by telephone.
The ASA upheld the complaint stating that the ad must not appear again in its current form.

Full details of the complaint on the ASA website – https://www.asa.org.uk/Rulings/Adjudications/2016/3/Timeshare-Relief-UK/SHP_ADJ_313293.aspx#.VugW_o_XKIW*

ASA Uphold Complaint against Easy Consulting SL

ASAThe UK Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has upheld a complaint submitted by KwikChex regarding Easy Consulting SL t/a www.directresortsinternational.co.uk.

The investigation by KwikChex was carried out as part of activities by the Timeshare Task Force www.timesharetaskforce.org which KwikChex manages.

The investigation by KwikChex challenged that the ad (“All our luxury resorts are from £99 per person … 5 star Luxury Accommodation at RCI … Affiliated Resorts”) was misleading, because it omitted what they believed was a significant condition that the prices of the holidays were dependent on consumers attending a timeshare sales presentation, and that failure to attend would mean incurring the full cost of the holiday accommodation; and that the claim “at RCI … Affiliated Resorts” was misleading, because they understood that the advertiser had no connection with Resort Condominiums International (RCI).

The ASA upheld the complaint stating that the ad must not appear again in its current form.

The full details of the ASA adjudication can be found on the ASA website – http://www.asa.org.uk

The Only Way Out

Preview by Thumbshots.comThe Only Way Out
www.theonlywayout.co.uk*
Product Offered: Timeshare Disposal.
Transparency evaluation:Contact details and legal entity provided on website.
Actions by authorities:None known
Verified Information**:Name & Registered Office:
The Only Way Out Ltd
A1 Accounting Solution, 29 Birley Street, Blackpool, Lancashire, FY1 1EG
Company No: 09763115
Director: Jeremy David Lowe
https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/09763115
Other Sources*:None known
RDO Member:No
Contact DetailsAs supplied by business
Business Address:2 Shorebury Point, Amy Johnson Way, Blackpool, Lancashire, FY4 2RF
Phone Number:01253 362222
Email Address:enquiries@theonlywayout.co.uk
Other Trading names
Maintenance Release http://www.maintenancerelease.com/ Timeshare Business Check Profile
What happened when we reached out to this business?
We contacted this business by e-mail on 05/11/2015. We asked for confirmation of company registration details and the business trading address. The business responded on 12/11/2015 confirming company registration details and the business trading address.
Observations and comments
TBC
Report your concerns
Information & disclaimers:
Timeshare Business Check is managed by Kwikchex.com. KwikChex does not endorse any product, service or business. This information is provided to assist you in your decision to use a particular business or website. Some information within this table has been manually checked by our verification team, using reliable and trusted sources, but we cannot guarantee total accuracy. **See How we verify. The information provided on the Timeshare Business Check site should not form the entire basis of any decision to make a purchase or enter into a contract. You should pay particular attention to aspects such as terms and conditions and if unsure, seek further advice. Timeshare Business Check is not responsible for the content of external websites - *See full external links policy. This information is subject to change at any time. Last update: 13/11/2015
Contact:
If you believe any of the information in this profile to be incorrect or have concerns about this company please contact us.
Thumbnail Screenshots by Thumbshots

Maintenance Release

Preview by Thumbshots.comMaintenance Release
www.maintenancerelease.com*
Product Offered: Timeshare Disposal.
Transparency evaluation:Contact details and legal entity provided on website.
Actions by authorities:None known
Verified Information**:Name & Registered Office:
The Only Way Out Ltd
A1 Accounting Solution, 29 Birley Street, Blackpool, Lancashire, FY1 1EG
Company No: 09763115
Director: Jeremy David Lowe
https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/09763115
Other Sources*:None known
RDO Member:No
Contact DetailsAs supplied by business
Business Address:29 Birley Street, Blackpool, Lancs, FY1 1EG
Phone Number:01253 362222
Email Address:info@maintenancerelease.com
Other Trading names
The Only Way Out http://www.theonlywayout.co.uk/ Timeshare Business Check Profile
What happened when we reached out to this business?
We contacted this business by e-mail on 05/11/2015. We asked for confirmation of company registration details and the business trading address. The business responded on 12/11/2015 confirming company registration details and the business trading address.
Observations and comments
TBC
Report your concerns
Information & disclaimers:
Timeshare Business Check is managed by Kwikchex.com. KwikChex does not endorse any product, service or business. This information is provided to assist you in your decision to use a particular business or website. Some information within this table has been manually checked by our verification team, using reliable and trusted sources, but we cannot guarantee total accuracy. **See How we verify. The information provided on the Timeshare Business Check site should not form the entire basis of any decision to make a purchase or enter into a contract. You should pay particular attention to aspects such as terms and conditions and if unsure, seek further advice. Timeshare Business Check is not responsible for the content of external websites - *See full external links policy. This information is subject to change at any time. Last update: 13/11/2015
Contact:
If you believe any of the information in this profile to be incorrect or have concerns about this company please contact us.
Thumbnail Screenshots by Thumbshots

Timeshare Relinquishment / ‘Legal Action’ rogues ordered to repay victims

Neil Mendoza and Michael Girvin, who were convicted in December 2014 of offences relating to misleading consumers, have been ordered to pay £30,000 and £100 respectively.

Mendoza and Girvin used typical scare tactics, falsehoods and pressure to persuade timeshare owners to pay monies for assistance that was not actually being provided.

See details of the news article – http://www.exeterexpressandecho.co.uk/Crooked-Exeter-timeshare-salesman-repay-30-000/story-28099143-detail/story.html

Timeshare Business Check Profile for Neil Mendoza

Timeshare Business Check Profile for Michael Girvin

1 2 3 27