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Creation Financial Services bashing

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  • LostAntipod

    Actually i based that CCA 1974 language on researching prior HFP comments. But thanks for commenting, I appreciate it.

    JDB

    Actually i based that CCA 1974 language on researching prior HFP comments. But thanks for commenting, I appreciate it.

    Regrettably, while the majority of people here are very helpful, there are are a number of ‘armchair’ experts on various topics who don’t have a scooby. You want to do your own research before going to FOS. This is link to the CCA 1974 section.

    https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1974/39/section/98A

    marks7389

    I am just below the points threshold to “earn” Spire next year. If Creation send me the points it owes me for the last two months, I would be over the threshold.

    I know this is academic for status, as the status will be rolled forward. However I suspect IHG will reward those who would have qualified with a slug of points… and I will miss out on those because of Creation.

    So, should this come to pass, am I allowed to claim the loss of that extra reward as a consequential loss from Creation’s actions?

    I’m in exactly the same position. I suspect we’re going to find it difficult to argue any additional recompense from Creation on this as, if anything happens at all, it will be within IHG’s gift. I suspect like you I had the 25,000 qualification bonus points last year on qualification and again earlier this year when IHG extended the status. I think I’ve seen others who have reached the threshold again say that they’ve not as yet been offered anything more.

    My gut feeling is to focus the argument with Creation on the points and anniversary night that are owing, and if we win that argument and IHG does do something for those who requalified take it up with them at that point with the requisite evidence of what’s happened.

    • This reply was modified 53 years, 1 month ago by .
    marks7389

    I complained to Creation in October set an end Oct deadline. They replied Dec 1 rejecting all my claims, namely
    – award of free IHG night or cash alternative, since I met the spending threshold, and by false promises, denied the opportunity to direct that spend to other reward programs;
    – annual fee refund, since they terminated my account a month prior to the end of the account year;

    Did they provide any explanation or reasoning for the rejection of your claims. Did you also claim for the points built up since they stopped transferring them, or did that only come to light afterwards?

    cinereus

    @cinereus – what are you suggesting to @Tom and others is the relevant legislation to “simply” cite in respect of points/free night vouchers?

    My skeleton would just start with the bog-standard contract law/consumer rights statutes.

    (It’s obviously not binding, but there have been relevant cases tried in court too).

    Unlike others, I personally think you’d have a good chance getting somewhere with just an LBA and a very good chance if it actually goes to court (on the assumption you can be bothered to spend a few hours properly preparing your case that is).

    cinereus

    @cinereus – what are you suggesting to @Tom and others is the relevant legislation to “simply” cite in respect of points/free night vouchers?

    My skeleton would just start with the bog-standard contract law/consumer rights statutes.

    (It’s obviously not binding but there have been relevant cases tried in court too).

    memesweeper

    I’m going directly to MCOL, just as soon as I can find the time, on all but one point of dispute with Creation. The pre-action protocols are set out here:

    https://www.justice.gov.uk/courts/procedure-rules/civil/rules/pd_pre-action_conduct#6.1

    It’s perfectly clear the court would like both parties to use ADRs where possible — and for good reason. However, this requires both parties to play the game, and Creation haven’t even replied to my letters. I’ve nothing to take to the Ombudsman, however, I do have a breach of contract and a Consumer Rights Act claim right now. I think I can justify my reasons for not going to the ombudsman.

    If anyone is interested in joining forces on research/digging up T&Cs/writing up a case for MCOL let me know. IANAL. My situation is I spent heavily on my Creation IHG card, 99% through Curve, including virtually all my non-Amex daily spend, plus significant spend at NS&I, HMRC and Amex. Likely average £200k a year for the past three years. I’d earned my Free Night voucher before my first statement for this year was issued. There was no recycling of funds, I did maybe one or two withdrawals from NS&I per year but none of it ended up back in a bank account that was used to repay Creation, even indirectly. Granted I am not as ‘innocent’ a party as some here, who never touched NS&I, but nor have I breached the Curve T&Cs on recycling, nor any Creation/IHG term. Curve recently did a check on my behaviour and haven’t shut me down. I’ve done well out of Creation, and understand they have been fleeced by some MSers, but none the less:

    – if I pay for a year’s service I expect to get a year’s service — or a refund
    – if I’ve earned the points legitimately, I expect to get the points
    – similarly, I’ve earned the free night voucher, I expect to see if in my IHG account immediately if they are going to close my account prematurely

    Given they have stopped their cards working with Curve altogether I simply don’t understand why they are closing the accounts at all.

    • This reply was modified 53 years, 1 month ago by .
    BillySillyWilly

    I spoke to someone at Creation today who stated that it’s in the terms and conditions from the point that I was notified the card was to be cancelled, no further points would be awarded. She quote a section in the T&Cs but I didn’t write it down. So my original complaint has been rejected although none of this is in writing yet.

    She did however suggest that my new account which I opened on Nov 30 and was automatically closed on Dec 1st should not have been closed down and will investigate. She said she is aware of the now discontinued card being closed but not the regular rewards card. Not sure if she is in the loop as much as she thinks she is?

    SteveJ

    I spoke to someone at Creation today who stated that it’s in the terms and conditions from the point that I was notified the card was to be cancelled, no further points would be awarded. She quote a section in the T&Cs but I didn’t write it down. So my original complaint has been rejected although none of this is in writing yet.

    Pretty certain this is not in theirs Ts & Cs, they’ve just made that up. It is also a matter of fact that I was still initially awarded points after the letter was issued, and those points transferred. Only on the 2nd statement after did they not transfer (but their communications, online and pdf statement) both continued to show points “awarded”

    whuaremassive

    App says restricted functionality, but I have been able to use my card still, even though my letter said it would stop on the 3rd Dec!

    cinereus

    I spoke to someone at Creation today who stated that it’s in the terms and conditions from the point that I was notified the card was to be cancelled, no further points would be awarded. She quote a section in the T&Cs but I didn’t write it down. So my original complaint has been rejected although none of this is in writing yet.

    Pretty certain this is not in theirs Ts & Cs, they’ve just made that up. It is also a matter of fact that I was still initially awarded points after the letter was issued, and those points transferred. Only on the 2nd statement after did they not transfer (but their communications, online and pdf statement) both continued to show points “awarded”

    Gotta love it when companies a) quote terms as scripture without understanding they have to meet legal requirements of fairness and b) when they potentially get caught making things uo prior to FOS investigations.

    XmaX

    This is strange. I never received a letter terminating my credit card. I assumed they deemed my use of Curve to be acceptable enough (used it maybe 10 times in total, no MS), but every transaction I try to do with my IHG Creation card now fails. Online account looks completely normal though.

    cinereus

    Actually i based that CCA 1974 language on researching prior HFP comments. But thanks for commenting, I appreciate it.

    Regrettably, while the majority of people here are very helpful, there are are a number of ‘armchair’ experts on various topics who don’t have a scooby.

    Sadly that’s definitely the case. Lots of people making bold claims who have clearly never submitted an MCOL claim let alone won a case on consumer rights grounds.

    JerrySignfield

    This is strange. I never received a letter terminating my credit card. I assumed they deemed my use of Curve to be acceptable enough (used it maybe 10 times in total, no MS), but every transaction I try to do with my IHG Creation card now fails. Online account looks completely normal though.

    I hope you phone them up and record the call and ask them what happened!

    I spoke to someone at Creation today who stated that it’s in the terms and conditions from the point that I was notified the card was to be cancelled, no further points would be awarded. She quote a section in the T&Cs but I didn’t write it down. So my original complaint has been rejected although none of this is in writing yet.

    She did however suggest that my new account which I opened on Nov 30 and was automatically closed on Dec 1st should not have been closed down and will investigate. She said she is aware of the now discontinued card being closed but not the regular rewards card. Not sure if she is in the loop as much as she thinks she is?

    With actions like the above from Creation you have to wonder who exactly takes them seriously

    • This reply was modified 53 years, 1 month ago by .
    eskimoboy

    Had four missed calls from Creation earlier. I guess about my complaint. I’m fairly sanguine about it all. I’d like one off my annual fee being refunded/free night voucher being awarded but if it doesn’t happen it doesn’t happen.
    Would also like the points I earned since I got the notification.
    I doubt I will get the above but I’ll still take it to the FOS anyway. Creation have been pretty useless and shoddy over the last few years.

    marks7389

    I spoke to someone at Creation today who stated that it’s in the terms and conditions from the point that I was notified the card was to be cancelled, no further points would be awarded. She quote a section in the T&Cs but I didn’t write it down. So my original complaint has been rejected although none of this is in writing yet.

    Pretty certain this is not in theirs Ts & Cs, they’ve just made that up. It is also a matter of fact that I was still initially awarded points after the letter was issued, and those points transferred. Only on the 2nd statement after did they not transfer (but their communications, online and pdf statement) both continued to show points “awarded”

    [My original response looks like it may be stuck in moderation presumably becuase of the links. Reposting – the links below are both on the Creation website.]

    There appear to be two separate sets of terms and conditions. This one for the card itself:

    /files/IHG_CLUB_T_C_s_live_22.05.19.pdf

    ..which contains the clause (14) under which they are unilaterally terminating the accounts with two months notice. However this says nothing about points award, which is covered here:

    /ihgcctermsandconditions/

    The only point of relevance I can see here is where it states “Points are only awarded to accounts that are open on the Statement date”. Notwithstanding an argument around fairness under the circumstances, they may try to use that as a get-out for not awarding points earned after the last statement issued prior to the 3rd December. However the accounts weren’t closed at the point of the October and November statement dates and corresponding missing transfers. I can’t remember what the letter said but there does also appear to be a mix of terminology in use – “closure”, “ending the agreement”, “restricted functionality” (web account access), “active” and its not wholly clear how those relate to each-other.

    Note that with regard to earning the anniversary night voucher it states that this occurs “On the anniversary of your account opening, so long as your account remains active”. If their position is that the account is no longer “active” because they closed it before the anniversary date, again that would seem to be an issue of fairness.

    cinereus

    You’re right but, as you rightly point out, it really doesn’t matter even if the terms mention it. Terms can only be considered if they are legal which would appear to be the crux of any argument someone here would be making.

    marks7389

    I spoke to someone at Creation today who stated that it’s in the terms and conditions from the point that I was notified the card was to be cancelled, no further points would be awarded. She quote a section in the T&Cs but I didn’t write it down. So my original complaint has been rejected although none of this is in writing yet.

    Pretty certain this is not in theirs Ts & Cs, they’ve just made that up. It is also a matter of fact that I was still initially awarded points after the letter was issued, and those points transferred. Only on the 2nd statement after did they not transfer (but their communications, online and pdf statement) both continued to show points “awarded”

    There appear to be two separate sets of terms and conditions. This one for the card itself:

    https://www.creation.co.uk/files/IHG_CLUB_T_C_s_live_22.05.19.pdf

    ..which contains the clause (14) under which they are unilaterally terminating the accounts with two months notice. However this says nothing about points award, which is covered here:

    https://www.creation.co.uk/ihgcctermsandconditions/

    The only point of relevance I can see here is where it states “Points are only awarded to accounts that are open on the Statement date”. Notwithstanding an argument around fairness under the circumstances, they may try to use that as a get-out for not awarding points earned after the last statement issued prior to the 3rd December. However the accounts weren’t closed at the point of the October and November statement dates and corresponding missing transfers. I can’t remember what the letter said but there does also appear to be a mix of terminology in use – “closure”, “ending the agreement”, “restricted functionality” (web account access), “active” and its not wholly clear how those relate to each-other.

    Note that with regard to earning the anniversary night voucher it states that this occurs “On the anniversary of your account opening, so long as your account remains active”. If their position is that the account is no longer “active” because they closed it before the anniversary date, again that would seem to be an issue of fairness.

    LostAntipod

    I complained to Creation in October set an end Oct deadline. They replied Dec 1 rejecting all my claims, namely
    – award of free IHG night or cash alternative, since I met the spending threshold, and by false promises, denied the opportunity to direct that spend to other reward programs;
    – annual fee refund, since they terminated my account a month prior to the end of the account year;

    Did they provide any explanation or reasoning for the rejection of your claims. Did you also claim for the points built up since they stopped transferring them, or did that only come to light afterwards?

    They closed my account “due to a business decision”. They referred to T&C allowing them to close it with 60 days notice.
    On the subject of any kind of refund of my annual fee, or award of the free night or equivalent cash compensation, “your annual fee and or your free night stay will not be awarded” (sic)
    On the subject of not receiving any points for the spend during the 60 days notice period – silence.

    ColinThames

    +1
    In the same boat. I’ll be going to FOS as point of principle once Creation have responded to my complaint. Or once the 8 weeks have expired. Their service over the years had been dreadful and their final badly managed action has left me gobsmacked.
    They claimed that not awarding my earned certificate was ‘a business decision’. My going to the FOS is a direct consequence of their poor decision making.
    Thank you everyone for your encouragement and information. With so many of us in the same boat I can’t help wondering if the Creation’s management underestimated the cost to them if cancelling our accounts whilst not honouring their agreements.
    If ‘treating the customer fairly’ is a key FCA principle they should maybe have their licence removed.
    Rant over…

    jj

    @ColinThames, I think that they expect most people just to suck it up. The cash they save from customers who can’t be bothered to complain will far exceed their FOS and remediation costs for those who do.

    If they do lose a series of cases at FOS, their response will be interesting. In assessing a complaint, firms are required to consider, “appropriate analysis of decisions by the Financial Ombudsman Service concerning similar complaints.” If a company consistently loses at FOS, the regulator has a clear expectation that old complaints should be reopened and customers offered appropriate redress in the light of what FOS has determined. This is not theoretical – I have seen it happen in practice.

    jj

    For those considering the FOS route, it’s worth noting the basis on which FOS must make decisions. FOS does not follow the letter if the law; here are its rules:

    The Ombudsman will determine a complaint by reference to what is, in his opinion, fair and reasonable in all the circumstances of the case.

    In considering what is fair and reasonable in all the circumstances of the case, the Ombudsman will take into account:

    (1) relevant:
    (a) law and regulations;
    (b) regulators’ rules, guidance and standards;
    (c) codes of practice; and

    (2) (where appropriate) what he considers to have been good industry practice at the relevant time.

    Additionally, the Ombudsman may, “exclude evidence that would otherwise be admissible in a court or include evidence that would not be admissible in a court.”

    marks7389

    They closed my account “due to a business decision”. They referred to T&C allowing them to close it with 60 days notice.
    On the subject of any kind of refund of my annual fee, or award of the free night or equivalent cash compensation, “your annual fee and or your free night stay will not be awarded” (sic)
    On the subject of not receiving any points for the spend during the 60 days notice period – silence.

    I also asked them to confirm their reason for closure. It’s pretty obvious (just from the fact that they gave 60 days’ notice and did not state any cause in the letter) that its a business decision and they’re exercising their rights under clause 14 of the first set of terms and conditions I linked, but it’s useful to have their confirmation that is the case.

    They are, of course, totally within their rights to do that but it should make it a much easier argument that customers should be treated fairly in respect of the owing points and anniversary nights.

    In my particular case my anniversary date is the end of December so I’m minded not to claim any refund on the annual fee (I didn’t ask for that in my complaint) and not pay off the final statement balance until the start of the new year which will still be within the due date. In terms of the anniversary night award clause it’s not clear what the account being “active” means and I can’t see it defined anywhere. However my argument to the FOS will be twofold: (i) That it is unreasonable for Creation to enforce a requirement for the account to still be “active” when they’ve unilaterally closed it on the basis of a “business decision”, and that (ii) The account still had a balance on the anniversary date and therefore I consider it was still “active” at that point anyway.

    Appreciate (ii) will not apply to most, but it may be worth considering where it does.

    marks7389

    @ColinThames, I think that they expect most people just to suck it up. The cash they save from customers who can’t be bothered to complain will far exceed their FOS and remediation costs for those who do.

    To me that seems to be the only rational explanation as to how they are behaving, and yet I’m not so convinced it will pan out that way.

    Curve customers are more likely to be financially savvy. Let’s be honest, that’s the whole point – they don’t think we’re we’re profitable based on their product model and they’re probably right. As a result they’ve targetted a body of customers who are far less likely to just suck it up.

    Rui N.

    If each complaint to the FOS is charged at £750, the math quickly goes out against them. I’m sure that each one of us is owed much less than £750. You just need a few complaints to not make it worth it (not to mention staff time, etc., which is probably a pretty penny they are spending as well).

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