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    • Well done on your victory!  👏   You must have a magic touch, it's extremely rare that the PPCs accept an appeal.
    • Court hearing today. WON on all counts of claim. The win though is not the interesting bit, but the ‘why’ is really useful. We were allocated 90 minutes but it took two hours by telephone . The defense were represented but I failed to note whether by a solicitor, barrister or other advocate.   As soon as the judge finished the introductions and before he had time to pass the time over to me to explain my case, the defense interrupted and asked the claim be struck out. He then spent the next 40 minutes discussing with the judge that I had failed to properly serve my bundle upon which I intended to rely. The judge asked me to explain and I said I had served the bundle to them and the court 3 days before the deadline, by signed for post with a tracking number to the address named in the summons being the Royal Mail Head Office in London. I said it was a bit rich that they were making this request when they had failed to serve me and the court with their bundle within the deadline and that I had only just received it. They quoted a certain principle of law (which I failed to write down) which explained that service of documents must be made to the address which either party may request service to be made. They claimed that six months earlier when they lodged their defense to my summons, the covering letter had been sent from their Sheffield office and it constituted the address for future service of documents. I of course had no idea of such a requirement and said that a simple letter heading on a piece of correspondence was not the same as a formal sentence in a letter requesting such future service. It gave the judge some concern but he decided to park the issue and allow the hearing to continue.   I was able to explain my case for the £50 compensation for the lost parcel using the evidence from the defense bundle referencing the Overseas Post Scheme. It was all straight forward. I explained the facts and let them speak for themselves. I then moved on to the delayed Special Delivery items. This is where the fun began because I had to argue against their terms and conditions. I used the defense bundle referencing the UK Post Scheme. I quoted from various clauses which explained the rules relating to claims. That ALL delay claims must be made within 3 months, then that Special Delivery was actually 14 days so not 3 months after all, then another clause which confirmed the deadline was 3 months for all delay claims. I quoted further that these were “common terms” and that some services (Special Delivery was one) had additional terms which were called “specific terms”. Another clause stated that where a conflict arises between common and specific terms, then specific terms took priority. So I turned to the Special Delivery section to quote the specific terms as these would have priority. There was only one term that referenced claims. It simply said If we do not succeed in attempting to deliver by this time (being the next day) we will refund your postage. I used this single phrase to take priority over the 3 months  or 14 day deadline mentioned in the common terms. I discussed how the various clauses conflicted with themselves as if the clauses themselves did not know what the deadlines were and how ambiguous and confusing it was.   The time was then past to the defense and he started to argue there was no contract nor liability in tort (a substantial portion of their written defense document and bundle discussed this argument). It made me smile because I was ready for that. The judge though was ahead of the game and (especially because 40 minutes had been wasted at the beginning) he did not want to hear of it. After about one minute, he stopped the defense by saying exactly what I was preparing to say. Simply that I was not suing under contract or tort but under the conditions of the various postal schemes for which they were liable. He asked the defense to answer my claims. The defense then prevaricated trying to argue the clause that distinctly mentioned the 14 day time limit within which to make a claim for delay (which of course it did) ( as an aside, most people might accept that deadline and not bother to pursue a claim). He had nothing to add about the lost parcel.   Time had run out, we had no questioning and the judge said he was summing up. He was quite happy I had served my documents sufficiently well and took the view that the defense had fallen foul of the court order so he was cancelling out the question about valid service. He had no difficulty in accepting the claim that the lost parcel was valid and awarded me the £50 compensation. He then spoke at longer length about the delay claims and the conflict in the clauses. (at this point I had no idea which way this bit would go). Then, he spoke of how a business such as Royal Mail should not be accepting clauses in their contracts which were clearly inconsistant. (that’s when I started to relax), (and then the best takeaway of the hearing), He said that common law provides in the event of a standard contract if there is any ambiguity, the interpretation should be judged against the person drafting the contract. He called it Contra Proferendem. (I had no idea of that concept but had effectively explained it anyway). I was awarded the whole claim plus costs. The defense asked for permission to appeal which was refused.    Remember the phrase “Contra Proferendem” . I shall be looking more into it. I am sure it will come in handy against any institution that have drafted contracts that cannot be individually negotiated. And will certainly be useful for a long while yet against Royal Mail et al.
    • The White House highlights the upcoming offer of free trips in the US by the ride-hailing firms. View the full article
    • Original loan was £5000 unsecured over 5 years, 28 payments remaining, he wanted to extend it back up to 5 year.........the bank offered him £6700 to clear his credit card and the bank loan, £135 per month from the original figure of £121    One debt of two years old and one debt of 15 months        
  • Our picks

    • Ebay Packlink and Hermes - destroyed item as it was "damaged". https://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/topic/430396-ebay-packlink-and-hermes-destroyed-item-as-it-was-damaged/&do=findComment&comment=5087347
      • 33 replies
    • I sent in the bailiffs to the BBC. They collected £350. It made me smile.
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    • Hi @BankFodder
      Sorry for only updating you now, but after your guidance with submitting the claim it was pretty straight forward and I didn't want to unnecessarily waste your time. Especially with this guide you wrote here, so many thanks for that
      So I issued the claim on day 15 and they requested more time to respond.
      They took until the last day to respond and denied the claim, unsurprisingly saying my contract was with Packlink and not with them.
       
      I opted for mediation, and it played out very similarly to other people's experiences.
       
      In the first call I outlined my case, and I referred to the Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999 as the reason to why I do in fact have a contract with them. 
       
      In the second call the mediator came back with an offer of the full amount of the phone and postage £146.93, but not the court costs. I said I was not willing to accept this and the mediator came across as a bit irritated that I would not accept this and said I should be flexible. I insisted that the law was on my side and I was willing to take them to court. The mediator went back to Hermes with what I said.
       
      In the third call the mediator said that they would offer the full amount. However, he said that Hermes still thought that I should have taken the case against Packlink instead, and that they would try to recover the court costs themselves from Packlink.
       
      To be fair to them, if Packlink wasn't based in Spain I would've made the claim against them instead. But since they are overseas and the law lets me take action against Hermes directly, it's the best way of trying to recover the money.
       
      So this is a great win. Thank you so much for your help and all of the resources available on this site. It has helped me so much especially as someone who does not know anything about making money claims.
       
      Many thanks, stay safe and have a good Christmas!
       
       
        • Thanks
    • Hermes and mediation hints. https://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/topic/428981-hermes-and-mediation-hints/&do=findComment&comment=5080003
      • 1 reply
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Changing payment date of Smile loan


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In January I took out a loan with Smile, the payment date of this was the 26th of each month. I sent them a message the other day asking if this could be changed to the 27th to tie in with the date my salary goes into the Smile Current account - I didn't want them to take a loan payment that took me over my O/D limit.

 

In previous months this hasn't been much of an issue since the 27th has fallen on a weekend so I've been paid on the proceeding Friday.

 

I've never had a problem amending loan payment dates, or Credit card Direct Debit dates.

 

Anyway, Smiles response to my question was,

 

Hello Mr xxx

 

I'm really sorry but we can't change the payment date on your loan.

 

The Consumer Credit Act regulates the agreement you signed when you accepted your loan. If we were to change any of the information we'd be breaking the agreement. The agreement's there to protect you and us.

 

Thanks

I was under the impression that if both sides were willing, a change to the agreement between us could be made if it was in both our best interests, which in this case, it is. I don't want payments to go unmade and presumably they dont want me to miss payments either.

 

Could anyone clarify where I stand on this.

 

Thanks

Edited by honeybee13
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Hi,

 

Welcome to CAG

The guys will advise as soon as they are available.

 

Thats not right, write to them again stressing that once they have given you your final answer, you will take the matter to the FOS, it won't cost you anything, but it will cost Smile a minimum of £450 for the FOS to look into the matter.

Edited by honeybee13
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  • 1 year later...

The reason why they say this is because they can't change it in their system. There's nothing stopping you physically paying the money in one day later, but what happens there is the collections systems kick in and show you in arrears every month. You'll end up with a credit report that shows a continuous line of 1's where you want 0's.

 

Now I believe they're right about the consumer credit act. Your agreement was signed for that date only. What they would need to do is make you sign a new agreement, but they can't, because that's a new loan and their systems probably don't want to offer you any more money and that takes customer services right out of the equation.

 

Your option, should you require it, is to speak to their money management team and request a consolidation loan. This will only be offered to you if you're in financial difficulty though. It doesn't affect your credit file, but it will restrict future lending as it's seen as a call for help - so no overdraft, credit card or loan until it's paid off. Not the best option but it's absolutely perfect for some people in dire straits, believe me.

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