Miladys Complaints - New account approved then blocked due to bad debt 17 Years ago

3 Weeks ago I opened an account at Miladys. They approved my account and gave me credit for R12,0000. I then bought a few things. Monday (about ten days later) I went there to buy more clothes on my account. The lady said my credit was stopped. My first purchase was for about R2000. When they phoned head office to find out why, the reason was the following: I had an account with them in 2002 which I couldn’t pay (R2,500) They want me to pay that account before I can get my credit back. My side: my husband was murdered before that account was handed over 17 years ago. I only worked on a commission basis. I was very ill because of his murder and I was admitted about ten times in Psychiatric hospitals for periods of two to three weeks at a time. I couldn’t pay my debt. I lost basically everything. My two children very young. I worked very hard to get up and restored my credit at ITC. This took many years. Now, I know in SA debt gets written off when it is older than 3 years. That account was written off. According to my knowledge they are not allowed to keep this against me. According to them it is company policy that I cannot have an account with them if I have bad credit with them. This is 17 years ago. My question: what can I do? Why did they approve my account two weeks ago? This is against the law. I know I didn’t pay the old account but take my situation in consideration. And there is a reason why the law is there to protect us. They didn’t contact me now to explain or to notify me of the new account being stopped. Please give me advice? Are they allowed to “still” keep this against me? What can I do to resolve this? What is my rights as a customer?
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