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  1. #1
    Lola49's Avatar

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    Exclamation sold digital advertising 'patient direct'/ multimedia international

    I operate a small business & was approached at the beginning of the year by a representative of Patient Direct, I was very busy at work at the time, however he seemed genuine and was selling advertising space at a local GP surgery. I accepted the contract but found that the amount verbally agreed was doubled when I looked at the contract some while later.
    I also had concerns because the screen at the surgery was never actually on when I have popped in to see it. This happened several times, and because it is fairly local, I am able to ask other people if they have seen it on, no one has.
    So, I raised all this with the company, asking if they could send me a log of the times that the screen has been on / off. No they can't they said, its too complicated.
    However, they say time missed will be reimbursed. So in essence I feel that the rep hurried me to sign this contract, over charged me, then I haven't received a service anyway. And any time 'missed' will be down to them to identify, which, apparently is 'too complicated' for them to share with me.
    So, I haven't paid them for a long time, just have no confidence that they are an honest company, and basically can't be bothered to send me info (apparently unless it goes to court).
    So now they have sent me a nasty letter saying I have 7 days to contact them or I'll owe them all the money (£520), if they don't get it they'll send in the bailiffs.
    Anyway, since all this, I find this company has a bad reputation & have a habit of overcharging, not doing what they say they will etc...
    So in response to their letter I sent them this...

    :


    Dear Multimedia International / Patient Direct,



    I have many issues with the apparent agreement made with Patient Direct. I do not believe that the initial agreement was for the amount shown having reviewed the paperwork.
    I also have serious concerns about whether the company Patient Direct exists having searched Companies house and found no registration ( which is a legal requirement). I also find that Multimedia International have a history that is far from straightforward - as well as the directors current and historical positions in this company & others is confusing at best.


    I have expressed previously my concern that the contracted ad is not being shown as agreed - i have given examples of the screen not being on at all to you previously. This has occurred on several occasions and I have witnesses all of whom will support my position - I asked in writing for a copy of the log so I could support my information and concerns. I was told I would receive these, however then informed that you were unable to provide this information. It is reasonable for me to request this record because without it I am unable to verify time owed for reimbursement (as stated in your paperwork). I am left with no real idea of when the advert shows, if it shows at all and when. As you will probably understand this has left me very concerned as to the level of service I am receiving from you.

    I strongly feel that your company has not given me what I was promised in terms of the 'real time' advertising. I feel I have been reasonable in my request to you for further information regarding lost time and non advertising of my business. I would add that out of my 300 + regular customers, not one has been from the advertisement I was sold by your representative. This alone arouses some suspicion. I do not think that what I was sold is 'fit for purpose' in legal terms.


    The position is that I no longer have any confidence, evidence or faith that you will be providing a fair service and provide me with straightforward quantifiable evidence. I also feel that the way I was approached by your representative (being very busy at the time of his visit), the responses from the company regarding my concerns and seemingly the overall approach and set up of your company lacks transparency, is unreasonable and comes over as covert.


    The original verbal agreement was half of the cost which I remember your representative saying was just over £300. I have put this to you however have received the same rigid & unhelpful response as before.
    I would be grateful if you could you also provide me with a breakdown of what it actually costs you to run a 20 second advert in one location (one that has been predesigned).


    If you will now reimburse the money I have paid to Patient Direct / Multimedia Ltd, given that I have not received what I was promised - this will then draw a line under this matter and end the relationship.


    Finally, I have received a letter from an unnamed Credit Control Manager at Multimedia. This letter threatens court action. This does not concern me given the circumstances - you are offering me no other alternative as I have taken steps to try to resolve this with you which has met with refusal. I wish to make clear that if you would like to take legal action I will defend my position vigorously.


    I hope you will address my concerns and respond reasonably at this point.


    Yours Sincerely





    What, if any, is the legal points I need to focus on? Prior to this letter threatening court action no one has made contact, they just seem hell bent on getting the money rather then helping resolve any issues. Frankly, I would advise anyone not to sign any contract with them, most of it is interested in only supporting their company.
    Is there anyone else who has actually been in court with this mob??

  2. #2
    Lola49's Avatar

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    Default Re: sold digital advertising 'patient direct'/ multimedia international

    I have received a letter back saying well its all in the contract & giving me 14 days to pay, refusing to give me the log which shows 'downtime' of the ad because of resources, and referring me to the contract.... I am inclined to ignore them or just take action, how do I do this myself, and what's the best approach? Misselling & misrepresenting the advertising, being a novice do I apply to court to rescind the contract?
    If anyone can help I would appreciate it

  3. #3
    ostell's Avatar

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    Default Re: sold digital advertising 'patient direct'/ multimedia international

    Hunt around the forum for patient direct. There are many entries. It may give you some ideas for a way forward.

  4. #4
    hennie348's Avatar

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    Default Re: sold digital advertising 'patient direct'/ multimedia international

    I am currently trying to sue these idiots! I have a very similar situation and now they are counter suing me for £2500 which will destroy my new business if they win.

    Any statements from other companies that have the same issues would be much appreciated.

  5. #5
    Lottie1's Avatar

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    Default Re: sold digital advertising 'patient direct'/ multimedia international

    We are in a similar situation they are demanding money off my husband but he never signed the agreement and never payed the deposit.

  6. #6
    thedirtyhound's Avatar

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    Default Re: sold digital advertising 'patient direct'/ multimedia international

    Sorry to hear of your difficulties with this. I do have considerable experience of the advertising industry, so I have some comments that will help you.

    Firstly, you signed a contract that is evidenced in writing. You can't seriously argue misrepresentation over price. If you thought is was, say, £300 and it turns out to be £600, it will almost certainly have been a two year deal. Usually the contracts do spell everything out in writing. Where there is misunderstanding, it is nearly always because the client has signed it without reading it properly. To quote you "when I looked at the contract some time later". Enough said on that point!

    Where you do have good grounds is over the non-performance of the contract, ie your advertisement hasn't been appearing. However, there is difficulty with that too.

    The advertising company will have a contract with the surgery/health centre for them to operate the screen. The company can send the information feed down a phone line to the digital receiver at the other end (which will 100% guaranteed be turned on), but there is little they can do if the surgery hasn't turned the screen on. It isn't too much trouble for the company to tell you, because I don't think they would even know!

    The only way you can get evidence of non-performance is if the surgery tells you that is the case. Its all well and good asking individuals if they have seen it, but do you honestly know who goes to the doctor's surgery each day? You would have to gather a considerable number of statements for that to be credible. You actually need the people who work at the surgery to come clean with you.

    However, that gives rise to another problem, because if it turns out the surgery hasn't been turning the screens on, they will be breaching their contract with the advertising company. So they would be the party ultimately culpable.

    It is a bit of a tricky situation and I have sympathy for both you and the advertising company, as the ultimate blame may lie with the surgery!

  7. #7
    patientdirectscam's Avatar

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    Default Re: sold digital advertising 'patient direct'/ multimedia international

    I just wanted to reply quickly to thedirtyhound's post. While I appreciate that most advertising companies do act legitimately, Patient Direct in many cases misrepresent contracts, lie, and in some cases act fraudulently. I was never shown the contract with the true costs on so have no idea how my signature got on it. They also routinely take all paperwork away with them, leaving you nothing to read over in your own time.
    I'm sure this is not what you intended but your post makes it sound like you're defending patient direct, and placing at least some of the blame on the small businesses who were scammed by them.

  8. #8
    thedirtyhound's Avatar

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    Default Re: sold digital advertising 'patient direct'/ multimedia international

    The difficulty that you face is that if or when a dispute about a contract comes to court, if it is a written contract the judge will always go by the wording of it. It is very difficult, if not impossible, to try and argue something else. Of course, it is an entriely different matter if you are alleging that the signature on the contract is not yours, or the sales rep from the company forged your signature. In that case it would be a crime, so you could report it to the police or your local trading standards department. I'm not trying to defend the company in the least, but I think you will have a tough job on your hands. One thing in your favour is that it is a relatively small amount, so if you kick up enough sh*t and give them a lot of hassle, they might let you off simply because it isn't cost effective to pursue.

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