A MUM was terrified when debt collectors stormed into her home and demanded she pay off her £1000 bill – but it wasn’t hers.
Rebekah Wilkinson, 23, had to try to calm her crying children while the strangers spent three hours installing new power and gas meters to claim back money for an unpaid bill.
But, the mum-of-three didn’t owe a cent to Utilita Energy, who ordered the warrant – the previous tenant in her London rental left without paying £848.
Rebekah proved to the debt collector that she wasn’t that tenant – but he was told by the energy giant to still to go through with the warrant.
The men installed pay-as-you-go meters and told Rebekah every time she topped up her account, 35 per cent of the money would go towards the unpaid bill.
The young mum says paying her own power bill is already tough enough, without having to pay someone else’s, too.
And while the matter has now been resolved, the mum-of-two is still feeling shaken from the ordeal.
She told The Sun: “The whole situation has been nothing but stressful to me and my children.
“It shouldn’t have happened.”
Rebekah, her partner, and three children, had only been living in the Farringdon home for a month when she got a knock at the door on Tuesday.
There was a man standing there – with another more three vans of people parked on the street – who said he was a warrant officer on behalf of Utilita.
He read out a name and asked if that was her – which it wasn’t.
Rebekah said: “I proved to this man within five minutes of him entering that I was a new tenant. I showed him tenancy agreements and two forms of photo ID.
“The warrant officer was happy that I wasn’t the woman or man who owed the debt to Utilita.
“He then phoned the company and asked if he had to still go ahead with the warrant – even after I had proved I was not the previous tenant – and he was told to go ahead.”
Rebekah added: “He hung up the phone very confused as to why he had to go through with it.”
She says her home was then stormed by the men, who were installing the new meters, and said: “They told me very rudely that I would now be paying the other tenant’s debt.”
Rebekah says the men had been in the house for about half an hour, when her children started to get really upset, and they worked for almost three hours.
She added: “I was alone with my two children. One is a two-year-old who is autistic and was stressed at the situation with random people in the house.
“And a nine-month-old baby who was also stressed and crying as I couldn’t get to the kitchen to get his bottle because the men were in the way.
“This was extremely stressful for all of us, especially me being a 23-year-old young mother.”
They told me very rudely that I would now be paying the other tenant’s debt.
Rebekah says she had to contact her GP as the ordeal pushed her mental health to breaking point.
The mum-of-three then battled for a whole day on Wednesday to get a in contact with Utilita to resolve the error – but says she was on hold for several hours before being hung up on.
She eventually got speaking to someone on the company’s Facebook, but still didn’t know if it had been corrected.
Yesterday she got a call from Utilita, who apologised and offered her £50 credit on her account.
A Utilita spokesperson told The Sun: “I can confirm that we attended under a warrant yesterday as there was debt on a previous tenants account.
“We apologised for this and confirmed no debt was uploaded to her meter.
“We have also switched the meters back to credit mode.
“Ms Wilson was provided with a goodwill gesture of £50 which will go towards her August bill, she is now happy, and the issue is resolved.”
However, Rebekah says she will not be accepting the offer, and is now working to change energy companies and seeking legal advice.
She added: “I have always paid my bills on time so I had no idea this could even happen and also had no idea how to handle the situation.
“I am truly disgusted and upset at my treatment through these already challenging times.”