In this week’s blog, we at Debt Centre, the home of Consumer Debt Support and Debt Eezy would like to introduce our clients to our very own, debt review expert and our official legal representative in all our court matters, Mister Quintin Zimmermann, attorney at law, from the esteemed legal firm, Liddle And Associates in the Western Cape, remaining instruction attorney on Debt Centre matters referred to corresponding attorneys National. We dubbed him, MR Q – our own “Debt review 007 Legal eagle”.
A legal summary towards debt counselling
When you visit or consult with a debt counselling company to assist you with your debt, we cannot stress enough that you should make sure that they are legally registered, with proven and visible credentials. Your overall debt assessment, will lead to a debt review process to protect you, as well as your property against your creditors and legal prosecution. For that, you will need a professional legal team to handle all your affairs.
On the front line the debt counselling team will handle your application, assessment to qualify you, your payment restructuring, and all the important documents. In conjunction with them, a professional registered attorney at law is the key person who will represent you the consumer in court, acting strictly according to the specifics of the National Credit Act Law of South Africa.
Ask your debt counsellor who the legal attorney at law is that they work with. You have the right to know if they are also registered with the LSSA (Law Society of South Africa)
In your defense
There are many things that can happen when a debt review matter gets referred to court, and for that, an experienced attorney that knows the NCA (National Credit Act) Law inside out, can defend you to avoid the following:
- A creditor can issue a Section 129 default notice.
- The consumer could be in default and legal action will commence.
- The creditor can oppose the application, in some cases they question the change of financial income and various other reasons.
- High Court Summonses will be issued following the default on a home loan or vehicle finance.
- Unlawful enforcement of vehicle surrenders by the bank appointed asset Collection Company, without a Warrant of Execution or repossession.
- Creditors could attempt to unlawfully terminate debt review.
- Creditors can ignore or delay the request to submit reckless lending documents.
- Pregnant mothers, who are struggling to pay their existing debt review pay plans, could default and be overwhelmed by legal threats.
- Consumers, who encounter severe illness while having a debt restructuring court order, will face legal action without creditor lenience.
We deal with unhappy consumers on a daily basis, that contact our call centre, claiming that the debt review system has failed them, and did not protect their assets. They stand to lose their home or their car due to inexperienced debt counselling individuals, or unlicensed debt counselling practices, and the cause of their default, causing depression that effects their lives negatively.
When a consumer is over-indebted, the matter must be referred to the Magistrate’s Court to be declared with relevant document to state the case. The court will rule as such when the consumer can no longer afford the existing payment agreements, as for very specific criteria, like the services fees, interest rate, the credit life insurance policy payments, will be restructured by the debt counsellor, to suit the affordability of the consumer.
The new payment plan will be proposed back in court, by the appointed attorney of the debt counselling firm, to be granted by the court of law, then to be the new amended and approved payment plan.
Unregistered debt practitioners cannot address these matters to court, neither can they appoint an attorney to represent. As the court will request a copy of the debt counselling registration certificate as proof, with the annual renewals in place, before any matter will be heard.
Why our clients like Mr Quintin Zimmermann as their representative
He shows compassion and concern for the consumers and their families. He strives to go the extra mile for the clients by getting their debt review consent orders granted in the shortest time possible.
Mr Q focuses on the importance of experienced and licensed debt counselors in the industry, and will stand to protect the consumer’s rights against unlawful creditors.
At the office, he continually educates his debt counselors, ensuring that they understand the court’s view and requirements, reviewing the preparation and drafting of the legal documents he needs to submit, with his stern Einstein look of “do not disturb me”.
One of his biggest concerns is to ensure that the debt review applications are not struck off the roll due to the lack of consumer’s information, or outstanding documents. Always focussed on the outcome of the proceedings, he makes sure that the client stays updated, just to give them the good news that they are protected from their creditors.
Mr Q – above and beyond the call of his duties
In most cases the consumers find themselves already over-indebted and the creditors proceeded with legal action, aimed at the home loan that is the biggest and most valuable asset.
So many consumers struggle with the pressure when their vehicles are also in arrears and their debt counselors either had not enough experience, and their debt review applications was continually delayed to be submitted to court.
In contrasts to that, Mr Q is highly experienced and persistent in this regard, and consistently follows up with his debt counselors to get all the correct paperwork in order and in time.
All together, we at Debt Centre enjoyed a consorted 10 year business relationship with Mr Q, developing valued skills of our profession under his guidance, understanding the legal aspects and his role in court, in relation to Rule 51 – (addresses appeals from the Magistrates Court to the High Court)
In his capacity he ensures that the application of section 103(5) of the NCA is enforced under debt review. This is the statutory in duplum rule law that credit providers try to ignore. (It specifies that interest on a debt will cease to run when the total amount of arrears interest has accrued to an amount equal to the outstanding principal debt)
Mr Q is one of the few attorneys that goes to court and stops these credit providers, which includes the four main banks, from over-charging interest. When it comes to home loans, he can save the client an excess of R700,000.00 in interest alone.
He pursues cases against reckless lending from credit providers, in order to get the interest written off, or even the entire debt if possible. He has successfully opposed close to 99% of all debt review rescission applications, that have been launched by the banks, where they tried to eject consumers from debt review in order to go after their assets. He specializes in the protection that a debt review court order offers, which he enforces by strict law.
In most cases, he even pursues punitive cost orders against the banks, on the basis of pursuing frivolous and vexatious legal proceedings against over-indebted consumers.
Mr Q wins the fights, one by one
In cases of High Court litigation, Mr Q battles against the banks on behalf of financially distress consumers. He was the first attorney to successfully extend the protection of Section 88(3) of the NCA, to include consumers who defaulted on their debt review orders, providing time to make up the default before the Sheriff arrived at their doorstep to serve the summons.
He successfully defended numerous bank legal summonses, where he was able to prove that the consumers did not breach their debt review orders, but the short payments were as a result of payment distribution errors which do not fall under the definition of a “consumer default”.
By utilizing his in-depth knowledge of the inside workings of the bank’s credit policies and procedures, he has drafted and filed a recognized Special Pleas of Reckless Credit in the High Court. (This has been instrumental for Mr Q being able to negotiate massive write offs of debt on vehicles and homes.)
If there is a legal fight needed against a bank, Mr Q is the one that will not back down. He has a vigorous passion for consumer rights, they will always receive the best legal protection they deserve. Our Mr Q is our 007 man on a mission, one consumer at a time.
This was just to share with our readers what we do for our clients. Mister Quintin Zimmermann is the man behind our success story. The Founders and Dream Team of Debt Centre can assure that our client’s rights are protected at all times. We entrust our client’s valuable assets and protection of their rights, and access to justice in the hands of our legal firm, Liddles and Associates, that goes further than the extra mile for our clients in debt review.
DARE TO CARE FOR EXCELLENCE is the living motto of DEBT CENTRE, we live to ensure we protect the rights of our clients by giving them affordable access to justice.
Message for the author, Annienne Nel
I really hope that this blog will ensure readers to embrace the hope that there are debt counselling companies that give their professional best, to ensure justice and protection of the income of their clients, that is vital to the living and support of their families and dependents. May God bless you and your families…