Welcome to the end of another eventful week in the timeshare world, the biggest story this week was the saga of Mrs B and her battle with MacDonald Resorts. This story finally came to an end on Wednesday, when the BBC Radio 4 Program You and Yours broadcast the story and interviewed Mrs B. The research team at You and Yours made contact with MacDonalds for a comment on the case, then just before the program went on air they agreed to “waive” the arrears and stop chasing for them. So now Mrs B and her Sister after an epic 5-year battle are finally free of their MacDonalds timeshare. There was also the latest news on the new “fake” law firm Las Alas Abogados, which is following the same Modus Operandi as the previous incarnations, even down to sending a photocopy of the La Caixa cheque, which incidentally is fake, the IBAN number does not come up as genuine. Today we bring you the latest news on Club la Costa and the continuing case of the Barclay Partner Finance agreements brokered by Azure Services Ltd without authorisation.
First, we look at a rather interesting piece of news from Club la Costa, this information may be the reason for the “rumour” being circulated by some dubious cold callers that Club la Costa is going into liquidation.
As we already know the only thing that has closed at Club la Costa are the sales decks with all sales staff now either out of work or on furlough. The reason for the suspension of sales and the sales team is really very obvious, with the current situation no one is travelling, therefore there are no clients for in-house or for the cold line. No clients, no sales!
It has now come to light that Club la Costa Ltd, Company Number 2448397 has filed with company records that they have had a change of name as of 21 October 2020. The new name which also keeps the original Company Number is now Jade Realty Limited.
This is not the first time that the name has been changed, in fact since 1990 they have had 3 previous names. Now the question is why the change of name now and why to the name of a real estate company?
Well, there is one explanation, could this be them getting ready to resume sales again, but this time with another product, possibly being passed off as real estate and property?
Your guess is as good as mine but it is a thought, only time will tell.
Moving on now to the story of Barclay Partner Finance, the Financial Conduct Authority and Azure Services Ltd.
As we have already reported, 1,444 Azure clients who purchased timeshares in Malta paid for with loans brokered by Azure Service Ltd. It turned out that these loans were not entirely legal, Azure was not authorised to carry out loan agreements or broker the loans on behalf of BPF.
When BPF turned to the FCA to have these loans “validated”, which then makes them legal and enforceable in the event of a default, the FCA issued the validation order. This set off a reaction from the various law firms and clients who took the case to the High Court in London to have the FCA retract the validation order.
The judge sitting ordered the FCA to investigate their decision to validate these agreements and take into account the impact of client detriment. It is also a fact that none of the usual checks were made for these substantial finance agreements. Not one client ever had a full viability check such as income v expenditure to ensure they could afford the repayments.
In October Inside Timeshare reported that the FCA did validate the loan agreements, (see link below).
Yet now the Financial Times has reported that BPF have been ordered to repay interest already charged on the loans issued between April 2014 and April 2016. It was also reported that future interest on the loans may also be cancelled.
The amount of interest to be repaid is £26m, which is around half the total value of the £48m owed in the loan agreements.
It also appears that Barclays must appoint an “independent assessor” in order to review if any of the loans were actually affordable. This is also an acknowledgement that this was not done at the beginning of the agreement process.
This could result in the cancellation of the loans and repay all clients back in full, this will also include an interest payment of 8%.
This is certainly good news for these particular timeshare clients, all we need now is for BPF and others involved in loan agreements for the purchase of timeshare to come clean and also admit they have never carried out any proper credit or affordability checks. This is obviously going to be a staggering figure considering that the majority of timeshare purchases that Inside Timeshare has seen were all purchased with loans brokered by the sales reps themselves.
Well, that is all for this week, If you have any comments or questions about any article published, or you would like to know your legal options for your timeshare, please use our contact page and Inside Timeshare will get back to you.
Have a great weekend and join us again next week.