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Entitled

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  1. Over the Christmas/New Year holiday I received an "Unless Order" notification from Abbey/Santander. This is as described on the thread here. I have read through the letter from Abbey/Santander and if I have understood it correctly there is an opportunity to proceed - if I have a good reason to - or a chance to melt away into the shadows and they won't chase me for costs when the Judge dismisses the claim. Do I have a good reason to proceed? Do I have a chance of finding an argument that won't come under the ruling made at the High Court? Last year BankFodder had a thread that was asking for people to include their case details, but I didn't hear of anything that came from that. Have I missed anything exciting in the months since I checked in here?
  2. Yes, I too have received this letter. My case was stayed at the Leeds Mercantile Court oh so very long ago... I may have missed a few months or years in the debate, but wasn't there a particular angle that CAG were suggesting regarding the Abbey/Santander claims, about the way they had mentioned the word "breach"? Is there any reasonable hope in carrying on with the case?
  3. It is ages since I checked in here and read up on what's been happening. I seem to have missed a few things... so I'll be doing some more reading soon. In the meantime, yes, I have an ongoing action against Abbey/Santander, which was last heard at the Leeds Mercantile Court, when it was stayed pending the Test Case (30th August 2007). I have heard nothing from the courts since then. My thread is here; Entitled v Abbey
  4. So like a good Stocks Speculator, I should be gambling on either Champagne sales ...or Kleenex Tissues and Paracetamol, depending on the outcome. What other commodities would lucky people spend their money on?... I have to start spreading my risk
  5. Looking at my letter, it seems that "Ashursts" are now replaced by "Ashursts LLP". They put the old address and the new address as the same, not mentioning the Triton house address at all.
  6. In case you haven't already done so, may I suggest that all claimants attending the October 4th CMC at Leeds Mercantile Court, please read the thread from the previous ones in June and August. This is a link to one of the threads 29th August (although there have been two separate threads, so please check both)I've included a lengthy step by step description of what went on on the 29th August which I hope will be useful for anyone who has not been to one before. My impression is that Stays are very likely to be granted. That's my opinion. I don't like it, but that's what happened and I think that is what will happen.
  7. Magnum, I hope that you have sufficient time available to canvas as much opinion as possible from which to make up your mind on this. I attended Court yesterday to see my claim Stayed. This was at the Leeds Mercantile Court and I was one of 120 claimants whose cases were (almost) all Stayed. From what I saw yesterday, I'm finding it difficult to imagine a Judge lifting a Stay unless there are compelling circumstances. I cannot advise you or recommend any particular course of action. At this stage in MY case, I wish I had been made an offer that was still available. I would probably have accepted... but that's not the position for me now. I now await the OFT case.
  8. Ummm, Adam, you've just linked to the same thread that the post was added to!
  9. I attended the Leeds Mercantile Court yesterday for a Case Management Conference. Banks applied for Stays on each case and these were granted. Stays will last until the initial outcome of the OFT test case in January 2008. Nothing more to see here, move along, show's over... Or you can see this thread if you want to know what happened in detail.
  10. Caution: Long Post approaching!! Now that I've had a night to think about yesterday, and read other people's impressions, I think it might be good to write it out in as clear a way as possible. This will possibly (probably) contain some errors and ommissions, so I would very much like people to comment; At Leeds Mercantile Court on 29th August, Judge Behrens presiding, a Case Management Conference was held in the matters of some 150 Claimants that had broadly similar cases against Banking Institutions over the matter of "unfair charges". Of the 150 cases listed, some 30 had apparently been settled prior to the Conference. Of the 120 remaining, there were several (a handful?) of non-attendees, including one who had been listed for Aug 29th and also Oct 4th. There was one attendee who had not been listed (was on the Oct 4th list), but was dealt with on the day. The very first matter before the Judge was nothing to do with the Bank Cases - and this must have confused more than a few of us - we witnessed the "death" of Airfix and Humbrol, whose progression from "Administration" to "Liquidation" was ordered by the Court in agreement with the Administrators. The Judge made his opening remarks, where he outlined his task. He would be looking at making any Directions necessary for the next stage of the cases before him, to assist in the expeditious resolution to the cases. He understood that there had been some formal applications to the Court for Stays in a majority of the cases. He explained later that some of the applications had been made at very short notice (I received my notification from the Court on the Tuesday morning, to be decided on the CMC on Wednesday 10.30), partly due to the Banks seeking guidance from the Court as to how Leeds wished to treat the applications. Leeds had forced the Banks Representatives to apply for a Stay for each and every claim separately, on separate forms, with separate cheques (chortle). Judge Behrens explained that the OFT had launched a Test Case to be heard in London in January and that the Master of the Rolls had declined a request from the Banks to apply any "blanket Stay". Instead the guidance had gone to Judges that they could decide how they wanted to deal with the cases (I'm not clear on Judge hierarchy, but I think it went down to Districts, with all lower courts taking their lead from the Judges up their respective chain). Leeds had decided to listen to each case. Judge Behrens was going to give the Bank Reps and the Customers their chance to explain their reasons for a Stay, or reasons for opposing a Stay. As there were so many people in attendance it was decided that one of the Bank Reps, Mr Toledano, would go through the "General reasons for a Stay" on behalf of all of them and the Judge then invited Claimants to make comments as to why they might oppose a Stay. It was clear that many of the Claimants wished to oppose the Stays. Hands were raised and a succession of Claimants rose to make specific points which they thought would be reason to oppose a Stay. Several Claimants referred to the document reproduced from CAG opposing a Stay and the Judge was given a copy to read. Questions were raised about the Banks intentions with regards to "Enforcement" of debt-recovery, the continued application of charges and any Default Notices or notification to Credit Reference Agencies during the course of the Stay. Judge Behrens asked the Bank Representatives their position and they asked for time to seek "Instruction" from their Clients. They agreed to respond after the lunchtime adjournment, with as definitive an announcement as they could get in the limited time. By 1pm, which the Judge mentioned had been "later than I had anticipated", the Judge felt ready to adjourn the conference and that on his return, he would give his decision. At 2pm the court filled again (with several people unable to return due to work commitments, there was now space for nearly everyone to sit down). First, the Bank Rep Mr Toledano gave the Banks response to the points raised earlier. I've attempted to summarise below; The Banks reserve the right to persue debts during the course of the Stay, as in the vast majority of cases, those debts did not comprise solely of "disputed" charges. An example was given of a £20k overdraught, where £200 might be made up of disputed charges, the Bank would certainly oppose any restriction on them being able to persue their entitlement to recovery of the debt. The Banks reserved the right to apply new charges as and when they are appropriate (as described in their Terms and Conditions). They would oppose (appeal?) any restrictions that the Court might impose. The Banks explained that in the case of Credit Reference Agencies, or certain other 3rd Parties, there were Agreements that could not be broken with regards to sharing information. Some things that they HAD to tell each other, and some things they weren't allowed to tell each other. These agreements could not be broken. Judge Behrens then gave his Decision regarding the applications for Stay. He summarised what had been said in the morning, quoting remarks that had been made and going through the arguments. He decided to grant the Stay to all those cases in which Stays had been applied for. He stated that, on an account where the entire debt was made up of disputed charges, any attempt by the Bank to "Enforce" a debt recovery would automatically cause the Stay to be lifted. He repeated that his intention had been to allow everyone to have their say and that he would continue to hear each and every case that came before him. Mr Toledano sought clarification on whether future cases could be assumed to have a Stay, or that group applications could be made. Judge Behrens repeated that he would require individual applications, for each and every case. A claimant asked whether they still had the right to "appeal", by which I think he meant, do we have the right to request the Stay to be lifted. The Judge said we had that right, but then went on to say that as it was a decision made on the Court's discretion, any overturning would require there to be some evidence of a change in the situation or that his decision had not taken something into account that he should have done*. As the same Claimant (RTech?), mentioned outside the Court during the adjournment, such an application costs £35 in the County Court, but is £135 at Mercantile Court. Barclays Reps had not applied in advance for Stays, and the Judge refused to accept the application orally. After the Decision, Barclays customers were invited outside to discuss the way forward. On his return the Barclays Rep arranged with the Judge for directions to continue... but it was then revealed that it was the Bank's likely intention to seek Stays in the next few days, which the Customers had been made aware of. The Conference carried on to deal with those remaining cases which either did not require a Stay, or for which no application had arrived. * I wish I had sought some additional information on what kind of grounds might have been considered adequate for Removal of Stay. I heard One Rep stating that "Terminal Illness" might be one such, but to be honest it sounded very much like any Reversal of the Decision was unlikely to succeed. Having said that, it was stated very clearly that the Judges in Leeds will continue to consider each and every case and , at the moment, did not consider a "blanket Stay" to be appropriate, although he might well change his mind in the future.
  11. Well it's nice to see such enthusiastic and positive posts. I've been feeling absolutley rotten about the whole thing. Really down in the dumps and Mrs Entitled has just spent the best part of an hour berating me for my poor financial judgement and pathetic skills at getting what I am Entitled to. I was the ashen, trembling, dithering idiot that mentioned "we aren't all trained as lawyers and unlike the Banks we can't afford the best legal brains in the country" to which Judge Behren replied "ah, well that's another good reason to let the OFT test case bear the costs and pay for the top brains"... Uuurrrgghhh, wish the ground could swallow me whole. During the Lunch break I practically dug a hole in the Waiting Area and climbed in... sorry if any of you tripped over me. None of us said what was really on our mind; "Oh please Judge, don't make a Stay! If you make it for trial then the Banks will pay us off... please don't, please don't" Oh and Mr French was just as I had imagined him to be... Due to the lack of seating he ended up on the very front row where (presumably) all the wiggy Lawyers get to be. Tall and with strong voice, he clearly stated his case and drew the Judge's attention to various clauses and this-that-other, with good humour and not the slightest embarassment (I swear, one of those Credit Card claims was for less than 30p, I'm sure it was). I hung on till 4pm, too polite to walk out any earlier... yet there were still people in there. Yes I saw Scoobz, another very confident and well-prepared claimant. All the Barclays customers filed out at one point as their Bank's Rep had hoped to apply for a Stay verbally today but was told to do so with forms and cheques. Directions were made for hearing, but Stay applications will be most likely completed and granted in the next couple of weeks. Judge Behrens read the printout that we offered on "argument against a Stay" but only really seemed to notice the first couple of points. He made no specific mention of the parts about Human Rights, etc. I have a massive headache now and need to find a rock to crawl under....
  12. Oh the irony... looking back at the optimism of the first post in this thread. Another long day at the Mercantile Court. The Judge, whose name I didn't catch (but he made a referrence to Judge Kaye so it wasn't him), took great pains to listen to the applications for a Stay (explained on behalf of all the Legal Reps by a chap whose name is probably spelled Toriadou) then to any objections to a Stay. It all took rather longer than he'd expected. One Legal type said to another "I thought we'd have been finished in 10 minutes". He broke for lunch at 1pm and reconvened at 2pm. This also allowed the Representative for HSBC to ask for instructions about what the Banks would do with regard to "seeking enforcement" against any debts, whilst they were subject to the Stay. That was over in 10 mins. Judge ruled... Stays applied on all cases where Stays had been applied for (which Leeds demanded had to be on individual applications from each Bank for each customer). Stays to be until 14 days after the ruling given in the OFT case in London (commencing Jan 14th 2008)
  13. Hi GaryH. Thanks for this latest piece of work. I have added it to my letter that I shall be taking to Judge Kaye at Leeds Mercantile Court tomorrow for the Case Management Conference. I note from my cut'n'paste into the Word Document that there have been a couple of spelling mistakes that you might want to correct ("similar", "repeatedly", "inappropriate"). Do I understand this bit correctly? Has the Abbey changed its Defence recently? Does this mean that they have to infoorm the court of their new Defence? Or can they change their minds at any time? I'm just wondering if they will have to produce anything tomorrow at the Case Management Conference which I can poke them with. As you say, they will probably be there with nothing more than a bit of paper to ask for the Stay. As I am going to a CMC only, I do not have to take a full Bundle. Is there anything relative to your post that I should now take with me? I am taking a Mini-Bundle that just consists of the letters between Me, Abbey and the Court (which includes their Defence).
  14. In the post this morning was a letter from the Court. They enclosed a copy of Abbey's request for Stay and advised that "All Parties must attend" tomorrow (29th Aug) as Judge Kaye will consider the application at that time. So that answered my earlier question. I like the sound of Judge Kaye . Several people recommended the train instead of the car, and that's what I shall do. Thanks for the overview of the timing too. Very important to attend (even if the Alliance and Leicester think they can get away with it). I notice that once again, the Abbey did not manage to comply with court instructions. They got their CMI sheet back to the court on Friday, which is certainly not "at least seven days before the hearing". I've looked over their application for stay, and it sounds quie straightforward and, dare I say it, convincing. In contrast I am beginning to feel that the Request to Remove Stay that we are using is... a bit over the top! It seems to be going into a little too much depth on relatively obscure points and might bore the Judge to read it. Obviously, I am going to use it, as I certainly couldn't do anything better... but I was wondering if this has proved itself yet. Have there been successful "Stay Avoided" cases using this wording?
  15. I like your thinking Prouty. I got something in the post to say that Abbey have already sent in the forms and the cheques to pay for the Stay applications on th 16 Abbey claims that are due for Case Management Conference on 29th August (Leeds Mercantile Court). I wonder if that means they will assume it has been granted and not bother coming to the conference. Perhaps the Judge will make up his own mind on the day - perhaps waiting to hear any objections from us, the claimants. At the last Case Management Conference at Leeds Mercantile Court, almost everyone got their claim settled by cheque outside the court. Sadly the Alliance & Leicester never turned up, so their cases continue... so not having a Lawyer there won't be enough to win at this kind of preliminary stage.
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