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Where manual intervention has occured. Question.


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Where manual intervention has occured, eg due to a bank taking legal action against mortgage arrears, what would be acceptable as reasonable charges by the bank in these situations:

 

1) Original case, where CC fees are approx £500, but would include solicitors costs and staff time.

Bank charged £1500 for this.

 

2) Subsequent reissue of possession order fee is £25 (presumably again this would include staff time and maybe a letter/form.

Bank charged £300 for this.

 

Thanks in anticipation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Really, I suppose the question is, what could the bank claim as justifyable expenditure?

 

Or do I just claim for the whole amount, and wait for them to prove how much the manual intervention cost?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Sorry, I saw your post yesterday, but I don't know, and thought someone might know, so I didn't reply.

 

The fact noone's answered is probably for the same reason... As soon as there's a solicitor involved, it becomes harder to say "well, this is too much, this isn't". In the US, a lawyer wd have billing hours showing, in the UK, I don't know.

 

I've just had the same problem where I had a council charge of £160, but solicitors fees have pushed it up to over £350, and I don't think I can fight it. >:-(

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As I understand it, your initial letter to the bank would ask for all charges - it is then up to the bank to highlight the specifics of it's case should it not wish to pay you.

 

There was a similar point raised in another thread where it was made clear that you do not need to offer the 'other side' any help with determining what it should and should not pay, so don't draw attention to it in your letter.

 

If they reply and do highlight the cost of specific manual intervention, then your best bet would be to show the forum the actual wording used and you would, I'm sure, receive the appropriate help at that time.

 

John

..

.

 

Opinions given herein are made informally by myself as a lay-person in good faith based on personal experience. For legal advice, you must always consult a registered and insured lawyer.

 

 

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Guest stephen

no you cant the solictors fees are valid charges, however if the solictors fees were well over the top then you could probably question this.

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Worth a try. Abbey took us to court a few years ago for repossession. We got a reprieve, but they were charging us a fortune in charges and solicitors fees and I argued with them that even though we had agreed a repayment schedule with them, their fees were actually increasing the debt. I complained and got 1,200 (pounds, sorry don't have a pound sign on my keyboard) in solicitors fees reduced by half. It was particularly annoying as there was only about 5,000 owing on the mortgage at the time but for two or three years the amount we owed was actually going up.

 

On a second occasion they took us to court even though I offered them 500 of the 900 arrears the day before, again we got a reprieve but the unneccesary court hearing added another 600 to the account. On that occasion, 24 hours before the case the Abbey argued that the case was in ther hands of their solicitors and they could not do anything to stop it. Their solicitors on the other hand argued that they were simply following the Abbey's instructions and could not (or would not) stop the action unless Abbey told them to.

 

I would love to claim because I've paid thousands in excess charges and solicitors fees (just paid off the 3,500 balance but paid more than that in fees and charges in the last few years). My main argument is that contrary to the (volutary) mortgage code they offered us no help whatsoever and charged us fortunes.

I only mouth my opinion, please look elsewhere for sensible advice! :)

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(pounds, sorry don't have a pound sign on my keyboard)

My second chance to assist in this in a few days (yippee!):

 

ALT+156 will give you the £ sign.

 

However, you will be needing it a lot (with all the letters you will send!) so try:

 

Start Menu

Settings

Control Panel

Regional & Language

 

Clearly this depends on a) your version of Windows, and b) this being the problem in the first place.

Alecto, Magaera et Tisiphone: Nemesis on Earth is come.

 

All advice and opinions given by Spiceskull are personal, and are not endorsed by Consumer Action Group or Bank Action Group. Your decisions and actions are your own, and should you be in any doubt, you are advised to seek the opinion of a qualified professional.

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Have decided to adopt a dual track approach with this one. Firstly there are numerous charges that I am going to challenge.

After reading the various posts and comments, my feeling is that where they have charged a fixed charge for taking legal action, it is up to them to prove the expenditure.

I would have thought that any solicitors bills should be brought to light during the DPA search - along with details of staff manual intervention. If they fail to provide that, then I feel I would be justified in assuming that the charge is non-defendable in court, and add it to the claim.

In all probability the charges imposed are going to be more than the £5,000 limited - so I may have some leeway to drop any contentious items.

My biggest gripe with B&W though is their conduct, and I have lready made a formal complaint based on the fact that despite knowing we were going through a very difficult period, due to serious illness, they adopted a cyclic process of threatening litigation, reactivating a possession order, and then adding further charges.

This meant we were then pushed into further financial difficulties, and the cycle continued. When we pointed out to them that we were in serious difficulties, and that their actions were making matters worse, we were told that our comments "had been noted"!

I will therefore be continuing with a complaint to the ombudsman alongside my fee-reclaim action. At the end of this process I fully intend that the £5,344 that they say we still owe them will be cancelled, along with the interest (£29) that I am currently paying each month.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Bookworm,

 

Re your post about council charge of £160 being upped to £350 with solicitors costs...

 

Bit off-topic, but thought i'd add my half shekel into the discussion... I'm a book-keeper and 1 of my clients owed a creditor £1200 and had a letter from their solicitors asking for the debt plus £20 statutory interest (Fair enough...) AND £250 solicitors fees.

 

I phoned and said that on the basis that i'd had ONE letter from the solicitors, they were probably charging £500/hour cos it probably took less than half hour to run off that letter. I got the name of their senior partner from their website before phoning and asked if Mr XXXX, or the Law Society for that matter, would think that £250 for 1 letter was reasonable.

 

I said i'd like a breakdown of what the £250 was for. They couldn't give me an answer so i said i'm happy to pay the debt and interest, but could someone get back to me with a more reasonable figure for solicitors fees.

 

Had a call back in 5mins saying they'd accept £100 instead of £250. My client said ok and i sent 6 post-dated cheques a fortnight apart...

 

Might be worth a try...

You don't get diamonds as big as bricks...

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My second chance to assist in this in a few days (yippee!):

 

ALT+156 will give you the £ sign.

 

However, you will be needing it a lot (with all the letters you will send!) so try:

 

Start Menu

Settings

Control Panel

Regional & Language

 

Clearly this depends on a) your version of Windows, and b) this being the problem in the first place.

 

Hmmm...using the laptop tonight so I have a pound sign - look -> £ !

 

On my desktop I have an American keyboard, and there is a # sign where the £ sign is on our keyboards. It IS possible to alter the settings to English (UK) instead of English (US), this has worked fine for the past year or so until now. Now what happens is every time I reboot after shutting down it reverts back to the US settings, real pain in the butt as the desktop is the one I type my letters on (since that's the one the printer is attached to).

 

Alt + 156 (tried on the lappy) just made the page jump back to the index page. There is a shotcut, but I can't remember what it is.

 

 

Sorry to hijack the thread, OP.

I only mouth my opinion, please look elsewhere for sensible advice! :)

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If the solicitor's fees were added onto a claim that has been to a hearing befoe the district judge then I suspect that the lender obtained an order for summary assessment of those costs at the end of the hearing - that is the usual course anyway. If so then the costs have been judged reasonable by the court and your only recourse in that respect would have been to have asked for the costs to have been subjected to detailed assessment.

 

If, as I suspect, the hearings were some time ago then you are far too late to challenge the legal costs

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The original County Court case does include solicitors costs of £80 within the claim - these I accept and I have no problem with. There is also around £440 in CC fees, plus £90 for issue of the Possession Order.

 

After we were able to raise the money to pay the arrears, a charge of £1500 was added to our mortgage account.

 

On that basis, the court has approved £610, I also acknowledge that B&W would have manually intervened with the account - but not to the tune of £890!!

 

On the occasions where they have applied to reissue the Possession Order, the court fee is £25. Looking at the paperwork we have, there is no indication that a solicitor was involved. It seems to have been meerly a case that a person from the Litigation department sent a form to the court, and maybe spoke on the phone.

 

The charge on our account for this was £300 - again I would find it difficult to believe that the cost of this manual intervention came to £275.

 

Incidentally, on the last occasion, they reissued the Possession Order because we were £385 in arrears. This then had the effect of adding a further £300 to the account, plus another £50 for it being passed to the Litigation Dept.

 

The question would therefore be, do we go for the full £1500 and £300, or do we calculate what we feel is a reasonable figure from the evidence available and go for that (say £750 and £200) ?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • 12 years later...

This topic was closed on 03/07/19.

If you have a problem which is similar to the issues raised in this topic, then please start a new thread and you will get help and support there.

If you would like to post up some information which is relevant to this particular topic then please flag the issue up to the site team and the thread will be reopened.

- Consumer Action Group

 

 

 

 

 

 

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