Thanks again Andy. I tried being a bit more shocked and horrified with my point about the screenshot. I added a concluding type point in 13 that is a bit more forceful, but I don't know if the language is a bit too accusatory and not appropriate. I've only changed 11 onwards, the bits I've highlighted, if it's okay?
Side note, I was mistaken about the ID I think, I can't see it now, but they did write that I took it out in store which I've responded to.
I, John Doe of London, the Defendant in this case, make this statement in support of my defence against the Claimant, Lowell Portfolio I Ltd. The matters set out below are within my own knowledge, except where I indicate to the contrary. The claimants witness statement confirms that it mostly relies on hearsay evidence as established by the drafts person in the opening paragraph. It is my understanding that they must serve notice to any hearsay evidence pursuant to CPR 33.2(1)(B) (notice of intention to rely on hearsay evidence) and Section 2 (1) (A) of the Civil Evidence Act.
It is my understanding that the claimant is an Assignee, a buyer of defunct, disputed or bad debts, which are bought on mass portfolios at a much reduced cost to the amount claimed, 10p to 15p in the £1 to which the original creditors have already wrote off as a capital loss and claimed against taxable income. The assignee then issues claims to circumvent and claim the full amount of debt to maximise profit.
THE DEFENDANT’S RESPONSE TO THE CLAIMANT’S WITNESS STATEMENT
The Claimant claims that legal assignment had taken place on 20 December 2016 and the Notice of Assignment was correctly served as required by the Law of Property Act. The Defendant denies having received any such documentation, with the first contact from them being this claim. A backdated computer generated copy has only been received as a response to the CPR 34.14 request and attached to the witness statement.
The Claimant states that they have provided the Defendant with a “further 28 letters”, of which they have provided alleged evidence of these letters, under their exhibit "NA4", which they deem as meeting the requirements of Pre-Action Protocol. The Defendant again categorically states that no letters have ever been received from the Claimant, with the first contact from them being this claim. Therefore, the Claimant is to put strict proof to their claim by providing proof of delivery for these letters. If the Claimant cannot provide this, then the Defendant invites the Court to strike the claim out based upon a failure to adhere to Paragraph 6 of the Practice Direction – Pre-Action Practice and Protocols.
The Claimant alleges in Paragraph 8 of their witness statement that an early termination charge (ETC) of £416.54 is due from the Defendant. The Claimant in Paragraph 9 states that the terms and conditions of the contract dictates that such an ETC will be charged if there is a breach in contract. The Defendant denies the responsibility to pay such a charge as it is considered unfair under Ofcom guidance, Office of Fair Trading guidance, Guidance provided by the Department for Business Innovation and Skills and the Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999.
The Claimant states in Paragraph 21 of their witness statement that the Defendant should "have to pay for services he has had the use and benefit of" however this is clearly contradicted in Paragraph 6 where the contract breach occurred much earlier than the 24 months of full service, outlined in Paragraph 4 of the Defendant's witness statement, service that the Claimant claims the assignor has provided, therefore the Defendant states that no services were provided for the amount that the Claimant is looking to claim.
Ofcom dictates under their Guidance on unfair terms in contracts communications that an ETC as alleged by the Claimant would mean that the provider of the service would receive a disproportionately high amount for not having to provide any services. Ofcom considers this unfair and believes that this falls under Schedule 2, Paragraph 1 (e) of the Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999 "requiring any consumer who fails to fulfil his obligation to pay a disproportionately high sum in compensation". The Defendant invites the Court to strike the claim out on the basis that such a charge is unlawful under Consumer Contract Regulations 1999.
As the Claimant is looking to recover an extortionately high amount for a terminated contract where they had to provide no service that falls under unfair charges in accordance to the Consumer Contract Regulations, the Claimant is put to strict proof to disclose a breakdown of fees and quantify losses. If the Claimant is unable to do so without falling under Schedule 2, Paragraph 1 (e) of the Consumer Contract Regulations and cannot prove the legitimacy of the claim, the Defendant again asks the Court that the claim be stuck out.
The Defendant vociferously disputes Paragraph 5 of the Claimant’s Witness Statement, in which the Claimant considers that they have no requirement to provide an agreement. The Defendant claims that his request of 31st December 2018 under the CPR 31.14, of which the Claimant has confirmed receipt, for the disclosure and production of a verified and legible copy of the Agreement has not been adhered to, by way of the fact that a Service Contract is entirely missing from the Claimant’s evidence.
In light of the above, it is clear that the claimant has failed to provide any evidence of assignment/balance/breach as requested by CPR 31.14 and the Claimant is put to strict proof to:
(a) show how the Defendant has entered into a Contract; and
(b) show how the Claimant has reached the amount claimed for; and
(c) show how the Claimant has the legal right, either under statute or equity to issue a claim;
As per CPR 16.5(4), the Defendant alleges the Claimant has not proved their allegation that the money is owed.
The Claimant alleges that the Defendant entered into a contract in-store however this is not the case, this contract was entered into online through a mobile reseller website. The Claimant was requested to provide the Service Contract via CPR 31.14 however they failed to do so.
Paragraph 24 in the Claimant's witness statement shows part of the credit report of the Defendant which is completely unrelated to this case and has absolutely no bearing on any aspect of the claim. The Claimant was not given permission to distribute this data and has directly breached rules set out in GDPR by including a screen shot as a medium for which to damage the reputation of the Defendant.
The Claimant shows time and again that they do not act in good faith, they are not willing to comply to the requests for documentation on which the case relies. The Claimant declines to carry out due diligence on a case and rely on the Defendant or the Court to carry that burden for which they face no sanctions. The Claimant sends out claims with irrelevant evidence that breaches confidentiality intended to intimidate and provide erroneous statements in regards to the case. The Claimant intends to colour the case in a certain way regardless of the means used to achieve this whether they disregard their obligations or extend past their authority. The Claimant continues to be unable to show prove their allegation that the money is owed. The Defendant respectfully asks that the Court strike the claim out based on the Claimants conduct to this case and their total disregard to correct etiquette.
By reason of the facts and matters set out above, it is denied that the Claimant is entitled to the relief claimed or any relief.
I believe that the facts stated in this Witness Statement are true.