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disillusion'd

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  1. hello, I am looking for a legal precedent to quote in court: Someone hold themselves out as an expert and their advice causes a consumer high costs and their advice turns out to be highly questionable (ie wrong and with no evidence leading to their advice) Example: Expert advises customer to remove a perfectly sound structure and 'expert' gets the contract to replace it Is there a legal precedent for the consumer to recover costs?
  2. Hello Bankfodder, Please don't apologise, it is my fault. I should have found out myself that I should file for a judgement. I researched in the wrong place, and got wrong information that the Claimant is not obliged to file a response to a Counterclaim. As you suggested I have attached the Counterclaim. It sounds vey plausible until you know the facts. Incidentally, I approached the County Court in Brighton asking to attend a Small Claims hearing to understand how the Court will conduct a Small Claims hearing. The clerk told me it's not allowed. I sent a letter to them with copies of documents which show that Small Claims hearings are public. I received a response saying I have to wait until I get a hearing date, then I have to write again requesting permission to attend Court, they will arrange a suitable date if permission is granted. The Judge was talking about 2 weeks after my pack submission date for a hearing. I likely wont get a chance to sit in, and if I do I wont have enough time to change my material and arguments if I need to. Can you give me any pointers: eg Do I just talk to the judge, do I cross question the other party, does he cross question me, on whom is the burden of proof, how much material will be tolerated by the judge for such a small case (I may I have too much). If I don't send in an answer to the Counterclaim Defence, which is riddled with misinformation, straight untruths and inaccuracies, will I get to go through it in Court to answer it? I'm not sure how much is really decided by the Judge just on reading the documents or does he just give them a quick once-over before the case so he has a basic understanding before everyone speaks? As you have said, I don't want to give all my information to the other side beforehand. I also have to prepare my own witness statement. I was a bit startled at that as I thought I would just be speaking in Court. A witness statement will probably fully prepare him before the case. He has a bit more to lose than we do: we've already paid out the sums, so those are in our minds a net loss already. Should I just do a timeline or should I put my arguments forward in the witness statement? Any pointers you can give me so I get the docs right without giving away my case to the other side would be very helpful. As you can see, I have no idea what is expected of me/waiting for me in Court. M ltd Counterclaim defence by S. (anonymous) converted to Word.doc
  3. Hello I have attended Court for the Directions hearing for expert witnesses. The other side turned up with nothing, having sent me nothing either, and they did not reply to my pack with witness statements and other evidence. The judge instructed The Claimant to prepare a defence to my counterclaim. He told me too that I could have entered a judgment against the Claimant as he had not filed a Defence to my Counterclaim. I didn't know this and now we have to go through with the whole court case. The judge told me I have to present my own witness statement. On the last date allowed by the judge, the Claimant sent me a pack with his witness statement and his Defence to my Counterclaim. As his original Claim submitted online had no details, only the figures he was claiming, this is the first time I have seen the detail of his claim against me. He has had an opportunity to respond to my Counterclaim. Can I respond to his with a defence to his Defence? If so, can you give me any guidance on how this may be presented? Is this something I should write down or do I just speak to it in court? The case is quite complicated, with lots of small detail and accusations going back and forth. He has consulted a lawyer who has written things in the Claimants name in a very plausible way so that he looks very reasonable on first reading. I have to be able to counter this in some way without the whole case becoming a muddle. I am concerned that after first reading of the Claimant's lawyerly and reasonable document, the judge will have it is his mind that the other side is Mr Reasonable and we are not. I was almost convinced myself! I have to get the pack in to Court and the Claimant by deadline 9 May.
  4. Thank you very much Bankfodder, that has made everything much clearer for me and I will be better prepared than I am now. In answer to your question, no I haven't sent the witness statements to him yet as I asked them to rewrite according to your instructions. I have received them now and will send them tomorrow. The date of the directions hearing is 4 April so that is 18 days away. I haven't received any documents yet from the claimant. I will prepare a letter to go with my witness statements according to the guidelines you gave me a while ago.
  5. Hello, Can you clarify something for me please? My letter from the Court (County Court/Small Claims) says: "Upon considering the Court File... 1. This matter be listed for a directions hearing to deal with whether expert evidence is required." 1. I have made an assumption that this hearing is not the actual hearing of the case. 2. What exactly do I have to send to the Court for this hearing? 3. What must I take with me to the Court for this hearing? 4. As I am not an expert, does my own presentation to the Court (as the defendant/counterclaimant) have to be sent to the claimant, or is this something I still have time to work on and present to the court later? 4a) If I do have to send my statement to the claimant can it just be a brief factual point-based statement or must it be the fully fleshed out one I will read out to the Court? 5. If there is any document I haven't sent to the claimant will I not be allowed to use it in the hearing of the case? Thanks for your help
  6. Crumbs, no. they don't look like that. They are simply written out on their letterhead in their own words, and with a statement of truth at the end. Does one have to do all this for a Small Claims case? I have also got a few quotes from companies that are endorsed by the industry body. In these, they have stated why they won't use the track that is in place. Can these be presented in the court? I can of course send these to the claimant as well
  7. The hearing date is 4 April. Right. I understand. I've been watching too much Judge Rinder.
  8. OK I will contact the claimant. I didn't actually intend that any of these witnesses attend court, only that I be allowed to present the (written) witness statement. Ditto the experts. The court document asked specifically about how many written witness statements I wanted to use. I didn't realise you have to let the other side see and dispute witness statements. I almost certainly wont get to see theirs.
  9. Hello. I've just received a notice from the Court giving me a date for a Directions Hearing. It says 15 minutes have been allocated for this. The notice says: "Upon considering the Court File... 1. This matter be listed for a directions hearing to deal with whether expert evidence is required." What am I required to do for this hearing? I did ask for the opportunity to use expert evidence , as I wanted to present quotes, witness statements and the evidence of the claimants expert. In my Directions Questionnaire I ticked the box "Are you asking for the courts permission to use the written evidence of an expert", and in the 'Why' box I wrote 'Technical expertise and opinion'. In the box saying how many witnesses, I wrote 4. This was to use the witness statements of 4 witnesses, (but not ask them to appear, except maybe my husband). I haven't seen anything from the other side at all, no documents of any kind and no response to my CPR31.14 request.
  10. Hello, Can I check what is required to be done now? I have checked with the court, the claimant was required to lodge a DQ by 3 January and failed to do so. After i called a couple fo times the court sent them an 'unless' order to reply by 20 January and they sent in their DQ on 17 January. They have not supplied a defence to my counterclaim. I don't know what their defence is or what documents/other they will rely on as I have received nothing from them or from the court. They have received my defence and counterclaim both from me by recorded mail and from the court. Is there something i should be doing now for the court?
  11. Hello In a phone call to the Court they told me they had not received the DQ from the claimant, due 3 January. They said the Court would be sending their own 'unless' order to the claimant, and they told me they generally allow 14 days for a response. I imagine that i will have to wait until that deadline expires before I can apply for a judgement against them? MCOL has no more information listed on it, it seems since the notice that the claim was being transferred to the local Court. I read online that the original claimant doesn't necessarily have to file a defense to a counterclaim. Is that true for a Small Claims Court matter?
  12. They haven't replied to my counterclaim - or at least, I haven't received anything. Bearing in mind the holidays, how much time would they be allowed for a reply? Perhaps I'm being too impatient. I do think they would have jumped on the opportunity to get a judgement against me on MCOL if they could have. How would I know if the Courts have received the claimants DQ? It isn't possible to speak to anyone there as they don't have counter service. Would this just be a notification from the Court? Is this 'unless' application just a letter I write to the Court, or is it a form? Do you recommend taking the 'unless' application route - I'm reading online that it's not very common and I'm not sure if the failures could be said to be wilful or just because it was all over Christmas. Would I do better to simply allow the process to go forward in the normal way? I guess it wouldn't look so very good for the claimant if he hadn't complied with the Court requirements. But equally, I don't want to fail to take a route I should take.
  13. Hello Can I check the next step with you please? I put in my defence and counterclaim Particulars along with the Directions questionnaire at the County Court on 15 December, my deadline was 19 Dec. I also posted off a copy of the Particulars to the claimant on 15 Dec. I saw that the claimant had been given a deadline of 3 January for his Directions questionnaire. I haven't received any documents at all from the Court since the Directions questionnaire and no documents from the claimant, nor an answer to the CPR 31.14 I sent. At this stage all I have from the claimant is the very short description of their claim on the original notification of the claim. I have received two emails from the claimant saying they were offering to 'come and straighten' the crooked track. I don't want them working here again. We wrote back to them the first time saying that the matter was with the Courts, and they received my Particulars shortly after the second email, so they know that we have lost confidence in them. Bearing in mind that it is over 2 weeks since my counterclaim went in, is there an opportunity for me to ask for judgement against them if they have taken no action, or is this not possible once it has moved from MCOL to the County Court? Is there anything further I need to do? Thanks for your help.
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