I have often admired Julia’s persistence in scrutinising and commenting upon the truly bizarre court cases which attract her attention: and it is in this spirit that I ask that you focus your mind upon the strange case of the ‘Threatening CD’.
Seems as though this woman’s husband had died, and as he had looked after the payment of the family’s bills, and as there was a total of £292.00 owing after he had died, this woman thought that, as a gesture of ‘Goodwill’ on EDF’s side of things, they should kindly forgive the debt.
As is, of course, a perfectly normal, and indeed natural thing to wish!
Mrs Rowland alleges EDF Energy tried to get her to pay the money back by sending her a CD featuring a recording of her dead husband’s voice as evidence she was also responsible for the bills.
The recording, EDF Energy confirmed, was from the telephone conversation Mr Rowland had to add his wife to the account. Mrs Rowland said: ‘Last month EDF sent me a CD with a recorded message of my husband’s voice from July last year. ‘The only reason why he phoned them was to put my name in our account because it only used to be in his name.
‘These people care more about making money rather than people’s emotions.’
Mrs Rowland hasn’t even listened to the recording all the way through yet because it is too upsetting.
She said: ‘Instead of mourning my husband’s death, I’m constantly thinking of EDF.
‘It’s like cutting my wound which is already open. I can’t carry on like this.’
So, despite accepting that the debt is valid, and the money is owed to EDF, as was confirmed by the Ombudsman after having reviewed the case and agreed Mrs Rowland was liable for the outstanding balance; she still reckoned that, because of the stress, the debt should be forgiven, which, after the Daily Mail intervened, it was indeed written off.
My goldfish died forty-five years ago, and I had to give a dog away to a friend before leaving South Africa; I wish that British Gas would cancel my bill, because of the long lasting stress.