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Can a county court summons be issued on an overseas address?


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I have received a letter from a solicitor acting for a credit card company I am in dispute with. I sent a CCA request back in March but despite writing to the credit card company saying the account is in dispute I have heard nothing.

 

Now these solicitors say they will be issuing a county court claim. Can they do that when I am not resident in the UK and am permanently resident overseas (not in EU.) Is it lawful for them to issue on my last known UK address, (een though they know I do not live there) in which case they will probably get judgement by default without me knowing about it.

 

Any info much appreciated. Thanks

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General Information

Normally court papers must be served on the proper address of the defendant (which

must be within England and Wales), and if they are not, the defendant is generally

entitled to get any order made set aside, if they can show that there is an arguable

defence. However in some circumstances you can apply for an order that the papers

be served somewhere else. This is called an order for substituted service. If the

application is granted it means that papers served at the substituted address will be

treated as if they were served on the defendant at his own address address.

 

However before the court will make this order, it needs to be sure that the papers will

eventually reach the defendant. You therefore need to make it clear in the application

that the person at the substituted service addressawill, or is likely to, pass the papers

on to the defendant.

 

Regards

 

Andy

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So I can defend without attending? Clearly it is not practical for me to attend the hearing or do I need to organise someone to deal with it for me. I thought they could not issue proceedings on non UK residents?

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Well thats key, will they issue a summons most of the time its just hot air into frightening you into contacting them.I assume they have your non UK address and have contacted you at your current address.have you sold your uk property? or still own it?

 

Andy

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Yes I gave them my non UK address. I wrote to them to say I have not had the CCA from the credit card company nor has anyone told me that it the debt has been passed to them to deal with. The UK address they have is not a property I own or have ever owned.

 

I was aware of the substituted service issue but I did not think that also applied to an overseas address as I thought they had to serve within the jurisdiction of the court.

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Jurisdiction under the Conventions

 

 

 

 

The English courts will take jurisdiction if you can serve one Defendant here, and show that everyone else is “a necessary and proper party” who ought to be brought before the court for the purpose of determining the dispute.

Edited by Andyorch

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But we are talking about the county court here not the High court. I am not domiciled in the UK or any EU country. What is the likelihood of them going ahead do you think? After they have obtained their CCJ by default, they cannot enforce it surely?

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If a summons is issued (which i doubt they would) you can defend it MCOL.If its issued without your knowledge you can set it a side for all the above reasons.No they cant enforce it you are not here and have no property here.The best they would achive is for it sit on your Credit file for 6 years (if successful) so little achived.I would advocate waiting to see what there next move is if any.

 

Regards

 

Andy

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But we are talking about the county court here not the High court. I am not domiciled in the UK or any EU country. What is the likelihood of them going ahead do you think? After they have obtained their CCJ by default, they cannot enforce it surely?

 

It seems very unlikely that they could ever enforce, there is another post on here recently somewhere from a guy living in NZ, the discussion is mainly about can overseas CRA's be affected by defaults from the uk, the general answer would seem to be 'no'.

 

Andy

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I have a similar problem to deal with for a friend who no longer lives here. Is it possible to prevent judgment being entered by responding to the claimants before it reaches court or during the summons process by informing all the parties that the person is no longer here and therefore it would not be fair to enter judgment when they cannot defend themselves? This would save the cost implication of applying for the judgment to be set aside and prevent ruining someone's credit file! I have been informed that if the other party are aware that the person is out of the country and has not received the paperwork, and judgment is entered, then they themselves should apply for the judgment to be set aside under Civil Rules (13.5 I think) and request directions of the court. Not that the Judge listened when I quoted this recently in Court for my friend, she charged my friend the costs in her absence for me trying to have it set aside on her behalf. Both the Court and the claimant had been notified of her absence. In fact the claimant knew in advance of filing the Court papers and probably did it on purpose knowing they would secure the judgment!

 

I believe prevention better than cure?

 

Am I in the minority?

 

JQ

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But we are talking about the county court here not the High court. I am not domiciled in the UK or any EU country. What is the likelihood of them going ahead do you think? After they have obtained their CCJ by default, they cannot enforce it surely?

 

Well are they going to throw good money after bad to chase you across the world for something you may not have? DCA's and creditors like the easy life and unless you own property and the debt is considerable it's just not worth enforcing.

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I have a similar problem to deal with for a friend who no longer lives here. Is it possible to prevent judgment being entered by responding to the claimants before it reaches court or during the summons process by informing all the parties that the person is no longer here and therefore it would not be fair to enter judgment when they cannot defend themselves? This would save the cost implication of applying for the judgment to be set aside and prevent ruining someone's credit file! I have been informed that if the other party are aware that the person is out of the country and has not received the paperwork, and judgment is entered, then they themselves should apply for the judgment to be set aside under Civil Rules (13.5 I think) and request directions of the court. Not that the Judge listened when I quoted this recently in Court for my friend, she charged my friend the costs in her absence for me trying to have it set aside on her behalf. Both the Court and the claimant had been notified of her absence. In fact the claimant knew in advance of filing the Court papers and probably did it on purpose knowing they would secure the judgment!

 

I believe prevention better than cure?

 

Am I in the minority?

 

JQ

 

I have responded to them saying that if they issue on the previous UK address, they do so in the knowledge that it is not my current address and that anything served there will not reach me. They may go ahead and do it anyway, but they can't plead ignorance. My CCA request is over 6 months old and has been ignored and I know from looking at copies of others of around that date that it should not be enforceable anyway, so perhaps they are all mouth and trousers.

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Well are they going to throw good money after bad to chase you across the world for something you may not have? DCA's and creditors like the easy life and unless you own property and the debt is considerable it's just not worth enforcing.

 

It is around GBP3000 but I do not think they have an enforceable agreement.

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I believe that the court should strike out anything that is knowingly issued in someone's absence!

 

However, although it was twenty years ago, I was pursued to Spain, where I lived and worked, by Barclays for an overdraft of approx £300! They employed Dun & Bradstreet I think, and they obtained info from my work permit etc and came looking for me! For £300!! I can't remember what the outcome was but I bet the charges amounted to a whole lot more!

 

I hope for your sake they do not do the same!

 

Good luck.

 

JQ

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I believe that the court should strike out anything that is knowingly issued in someone's absence!

 

However, although it was twenty years ago, I was pursued to Spain, where I lived and worked, by Barclays for an overdraft of approx £300! They employed Dun & Bradstreet I think, and they obtained info from my work permit etc and came looking for me! For £300!! I can't remember what the outcome was but I bet the charges amounted to a whole lot more!

 

I hope for your sake they do not do the same!

 

Good luck.

 

JQ

They don't have to try and trace me, I have told them where I am but I am not in the EU or a country with a reciprocal agreement, so I can't see what jurisidiction they will have to enforce the debt even if they are successful in obtaining a UK CCJ.

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Well that is a complete waste of time and money if they cant enforce it!!? Let's hope they weigh it up and take the sensible route.

I wish you well.

JQ

 

Thank you! I will let you know what happens. I am not trying to avoid this debt, but let's face it if there was a clause in there, that said if I didn't pay they would take my grandmother, they would do it, so it seems only fair that the contract terms (or lack of them) work for both parties.

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