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Leeds Mercantile Case mgmt conf - 12 December 2007


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Is anyone here due to go to the case management conference next Wednesday (12 December) at Leeds Mercantile Court? If so I'd be glad to hear from you, as I am currently all alone having only just registered on the site!

 

Thanks in anticipation

Sharon

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Hi and welcome. Can you give us some details regarding your case?

The more details the better.:) Just leave out any personal stuff!

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I'm claiming back from HSBC - it has been dragging on for ages and got tangled up in the OFT case, so I have to try and make my case distinct from the test case so that I can get it over and done with sooner. I wonder sometimes if it is worth going through with all this, but it's too late to back out now!

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Hi Freakyleaky - I must have ben typing my reply while you were! I started my claim back in February by writing to the bank (HSBC) - they offered a settlement but I decided to go through Money Claim Online for the full amount, as their offer was only a little over half of what I was claiming. HSBC then left it until the very last possible day to submit their defence, which resulted in my case coinciding with the OFT test case. The small claims judge then referred it to the Leeds Mercantile court as they are handling a number of these cases. HSBC have asked for a stay pending the outcome of the OFT test case.

 

I spoke to my solicitor last week about the case management conference and she gave me some legal pointers, and explained what was likely to happen and why. She said I need to make it clear that I want my case re-allocated to the Small Claims track, as at present it is with the Mercantile court and I'll have to pay costs if I lose. She also said I need to distinguish my case from the OFT test case so that I have a chance of my case not being stayed, so I am going to use as an argument the lack of uniformity or logic in the way they have applied charges to my account (eg different charges for the same overdraft figure / unpaid cheque etc).

 

I would be glad to hear from anyone else who is going to be in Leeds next Wednesday - my solicitor suggested meeting up with or at least talking to anyone else who is likely to be there so that we can present a united front, as there are likely to be quite a few of these going on on the day. She looked through the paperwork I had and said it sounded like the judge hearing the case was likely to be sympathetic, as they refused HSBC's initial request for a delay. That gives me some hope, but I still feel like a very small person fighting a very big corporation.

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Hi,

 

I put this in the court hearings section first but a kind person has suggested I put it in the HSBC bit as well. I am claiming against HSBC and initially wrote to them in February this year. They to'd and fro'd with letters then offered me a little over half of what I was claiming, so I decided to go through MCOL. HSBC then left it until the last possible day to first acknowledge the claim and then again to submit the defence, by which time the OFT test case had been started. Because of this and HSBC defending the entire amount my claim has been referred to Leeds Mercantile Court and has been allocated to the multi-track.

 

I have a case management conference next Wednesday so I spoke to my solicitor last week for some guidance. HSBC has asked for a stay based on the OFT case, so she suggested I fight it, but to do so I have to distinguish my case from the test case. I am going to use the argument of the illogical and non-uniform way in which charges were applied to my count, and I have just found the thread about stays which has some really useful information.

 

However much I read, though, I am still worried about next week (even though it isn't a hearing, just a case mgmt conf). My solicitor suggested seeing if anyone else here is due in Leeds next Wednesday, 12 December, so that we can do some preparation and present a united front. Is there anyone here who is at the same conference as me?

 

I would also appreciate guidance from anyone who has already gone through this - I don't have a very legal brain so lots of the documents on here just aren't sinking in yet (although that may be related to the fact it's 11.20pm!).

 

Any advice or support would be appreciated.

 

Thanks

Sharon

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This is info the op gave before the thread was moved!

 

I'm claiming back from HSBC - it has been dragging on for ages and got tangled up in the OFT case, so I have to try and make my case distinct from the test case so that I can get it over and done with sooner. I wonder sometimes if it is worth going through with all this, but it's too late to back out now!

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Also this!

 

 

Hi Freakyleaky - I must have ben typing my reply while you were! I started my claim back in February by writing to the bank (HSBC) - they offered a settlement but I decided to go through Money Claim Online for the full amount, as their offer was only a little over half of what I was claiming. HSBC then left it until the very last possible day to submit their defence, which resulted in my case coinciding with the OFT test case. The small claims judge then referred it to the Leeds Mercantile court as they are handling a number of these cases. HSBC have asked for a stay pending the outcome of the OFT test case.

 

I spoke to my solicitor last week about the case management conference and she gave me some legal pointers, and explained what was likely to happen and why. She said I need to make it clear that I want my case re-allocated to the Small Claims track, as at present it is with the Mercantile court and I'll have to pay costs if I lose. She also said I need to distinguish my case from the OFT test case so that I have a chance of my case not being stayed, so I am going to use as an argument the lack of uniformity or logic in the way they have applied charges to my account (eg different charges for the same overdraft figure / unpaid cheque etc).

 

I would be glad to hear from anyone else who is going to be in Leeds next Wednesday - my solicitor suggested meeting up with or at least talking to anyone else who is likely to be there so that we can present a united front, as there are likely to be quite a few of these going on on the day. She looked through the paperwork I had and said it sounded like the judge hearing the case was likely to be sympathetic, as they refused HSBC's initial request for a delay. That gives me some hope, but I still feel like a very small person fighting a very big corporation.

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Sorry for the confusion I seem to have caused, hopefully the posts above will explain my situation (twice!).

 

Castlebest - I have a personal account with HSBC.

 

Since I have been reading everything in preparation for Wednesday I have gone through HSBC's T&Cs several times, and can't find any reference in them to charges they apply for unpaid DDs, unauthorised overdrafts, unpaid cheques etc. Am I looking in the wrong place, or is this information really not included in the T&Cs?

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Hi Oidhche. I think the relevant section you need is 7.13 in the T&C's but I will take a look and get back to you to confirm.

 

.

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Hi Mike,

 

I may be going into overkill mode, but I am taking:

 

- all the documents I have been sent so far from the bank and their solicitors

- my original claim and all the letters I sent and a summary of the charges I am reclaiming

- a copy of the application to over-turn a stay, which is here --> http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/bank-templates-library/17065-application-removal-stay-updated.html#post1046820 - I am taking this and trying to memorise it (or at least the principles of it) tonight, so that we can prevent a stay being granted and won't need to apply to overturn it.

- a copy of the Overriding Objective text, since I want my claim to be re-allocated to the Small Claims track (it is now in multi-track, I believe, where I would have to pay costs if I lose), and my solicitor has said that the banks are notorious for taking a heavy-handed approach to litigation when the cases are really quite simple and should be dealt with as simply as possible, particularly where the claimants are only individuals and it isn't big commercial stuff (in layman's terms - I don't know what the legalese is!)

 

I am also going to write my speech / pitch when I get home (currently working) so that I have it firmly in my head - if I finish it in good time I'll post it here so that you can see it and comment, as I am sure I won't have got it quite right.

 

Do you think that all sounds ok - am I taking too little or too much information?

 

Thanks

Sharon

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You can never have to much in my opinion but you need to know what you are relying on when you get there.

Have a look at this thread for more information Bundle for stay hearing

 

As you only have tonight to prepare I would continue reading as much as possible tonight.

 

Best of luck to you both for tomorrow!:)

 

 

 

 

.

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The application for stay removal please note that this is a template letter and as such should be amended/adapted to suit your case :)

Any typos spelling mistakes are due to leprechauns in my keyboard they move the letters around sometimes (amended just for Bookie)

 

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Thanks Freaky - I had been looking for that link when I was typing my reply earlier, but was on a train and got to Leeds sooner than I expected so I had to abandon it. That is the other thing I have, except for the Witness statements: the thing tomorrow is only a case management conference and not a stay hearing, so I am hoping that using the arguments already detailed for over-turning a stay can be used in advance of the stay being granted (since Judge Grenfell has refused to automatically grant stays).

 

The only thing that I am concerned about is that the argument for overturning a stay refers to 223 settled cases in an attached Annex (which isn't in the thread). Were these specific to the particular bank the individual was claiming against? I have downloaded the list for HSBC (142) and am concerned that there are no figures - or no cases were settled - after 27 July, whent the OFT brought their test case. I am concerned that if I use this in court tomorrow the HSBC solicitor will ask how many were settled since the test case, and I don't know what my response would be other than 'none'.

 

Right, I'd better get writing and reading...!

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Good luck to you both :)

 

I don't think we have any figures for the post OFT announcement but I believe there have been a small few settlements. You might find something in the successes forum at the top of this forum.

 

All the best

 

Zoot :)

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Has anyone got any distinguishing factors as I am finding it difficult. I have been charged different amounts for similar occasions when I have been overdrawn but am worried that they will say that it is the number of unauthorised payments and not the amount, i.e £25 a time.

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Does anyone have distinguising factors as I have been charged different amounts for similar occasions of being overdrawn, but am worried that HSBC will say it is the number of occasions they pay items when I am overdrawn and not the amount, ie £25 a time.

Also do you know where I can get details of the 142 HSBC settled cases and 223 other cases as I am having difficuly finding them.

Many thanks

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I am writing my pitch now and have just been thinking of that issue. I am going to say that the fact that the cost of the charge is related to the value of the unpaid item or informal overdraft request demonstrates that it is an arbitrary figure that is not proportionate to the amount of effort required by the bank to deal with such items, therefore is detrimental to the consumer under section 5(1) of the UTCCR (1999).

 

I am also going to say that - in my case - the bank has used delaying tactics which have resulted in a delay in dealing with my case, which contravenes the Overriding Objective and article 6.1 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which provides that "In determination of his civil rights...everyone is entitled to a fair and public hearing within a reasonable time".

 

The other bit that I am going to refer to (nicked from the 'application for removal of a stay' thread) is about the Overriding Objective:

"It is submitted that the Overriding Objective requires that my case is allowed to proceed speedily so that a just settlement may be obtained by the parties to this case. There is no complicated issue of law. The common law relating to contractual penalties is settled law since the late 1800s and has been reinforced as recently as the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999 which itself is the result of a European directive.

 

"Attached to this application is a list of 142 cases complete with county court reference numbers of which the claimant is aware and which have been started since February 2006. All of them have been settled before hearing. It is submitted that the pattern of cases settled so far suggests very strongly that the banks are merely using the judicial system as a publicly funded meeans of intimidating their customers and dissuading them from pursuing their legitimate Right. It is submitted that this is abusive of the judicial system and of the public resource.

 

"The sum claimed is insignificant to the bank but it is a significant sum to me. Furthermore, although a stay prevents me from recovering my money, the defendant bank is not prevented from levying its charges or interest on debt comprised of those charges so the order of the court has the effect of favouring a powerful and well-resourced institution, which contravenes section 1.1(2)(a) of the Overriding Objective (ensuring that the parties are on an equal footing)."

 

When I returned my CMI sheet I proposed a direction that my hearing is scheduled for March, since the OFT test case is scheduled for hearing on 14 January 2008 and the results of it will be known by 1 March. This is just a practical thing though, and not a distinguishing feature really.

 

Other than that, I have to admit I am also struggling to distinguish my case from the OFT test case - sorry.

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Mike - the 142 HSBC cases can be found in the litigation section - http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=138&Itemid=82

 

On the page, change the 'Show results for' drop-down box to HSBC, then click 'View Now'. You'll get a page showing an image of the list of settled cases - there are 50 cases per page, so all I did was print the page, click Next to go to the next one, print it, etc etc until all of them were printed. Ignore the number 223, I have just been reading the application for removal of stay and I think it relates to Lloyds TSB as that's who the person who wrote it was suing.

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