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    • This preliminary hearing has been allocated 20 minutes so it should be fairly simple. However, judges are always on the look-out to get cases settled and sometimes these things can mushroom unexpectedly, so I would take along all the paperwork in order and prepare too much rather than too little. For example, we have a recent case where someone went to a preliminary hearing but the judge was appalled by the parking company's case and put huge pressure on their solicitor to discontinue - which he did. I have personal experience of trotting along to a preliminary hearing, only for the judge to go ballistic at the other side's solicitor who promptly dropped the whole case against me. I suggest your Mum takes these notes along and refers to them when necessary.   1.  I sent Parking Eye a Subject Access Request on 03/07/2023.  After one calendar month they had not replied. 2.  Their failure caused me a great deal of distress.  I was desperately trying to prepare for a court case and I felt they were hiding information from me. 3.  However, I did not rush to court, I sent a Letter of Claim on 03/08/2023 giving them an extension.  Again they did not reply.  So I started this court case. 4.  Parking Eye insist I have proof of postage for everything I sent - and I do.  5.  Parking Eye eventually satisfied my Subject Access request at the end of August 2023.  I believe they put a false date on their letter to pretend to have satisfied the one-calendar month deadline.  I believe they will have no proof of postage. 6.  In April Parking Eye sent me a letter to try to settle the matter, which offered me nothing.  7.  Later I sent them a letter offering to settle and asking them to offer a serious amount, not nothing, but they did not reply. 8.  I would be willing to settle out of court, but not on the basis that they offer me nothing.  
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Serious Problem With Harold Wood Audi/Accident Exchange


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In December 2010, my stepson was involved in an accident. Another car crashed into him and it was the other drivers fault. My stepson contacted Audi Harold Wood and they sent one of their reps to come and look at the damage. The Audi rep informed my step son that they would deal with everything on his behalf and he did not need to contact his own insurance company. He was also informed that a company called Accident Exchange would contact him and arrange for a courtesy car to be delivered whilst his car was being repaired. His Audi A3 was collected and an Audi A4 was supplied.

 

My Stepson's car was repaired and collected on 25 January 2011. Initially the car seemed fine, but the next morning my stepson noticed a strange noise when starting the car. This was very similar to the noise that was pointed out to the Audi rep that inspected the car in December. A few days later the engine management light came on. My stepson returned the car to Balgores Motors who had carried out the repair on behalf of Audi. My stepson notified them of the strange noise but no action was taken, but they did reset the engine management light. Four days later, the same light came on again and my stepson contacted Audi as he was sure that this problem was obviously accident related. Audi advised him that Diagnostic tests would have to be carried out and that the other party’s insurance company were requesting for an independent report as they did not agree that the problem was related to the original accident.

 

Audi produced their own report on 14 March 2011 and they stated that the problems with the car were due to lack of oil in the gearbox. Trinity Insurance (the other party’s insurance company) produced their own report on 6 April 2011. The inspection was completed by a company called Hoopers. This report basically mirrored the report of Audi and stated that the fault was due to the gearbox and was not accident related. By this time Audi had provided my stepson with an estimate to get his car repaired which come to a staggering £4339.86.

 

There is no way that my stepson's gearbox was faulty prior to this accident. On the 28 July 2010, my stepson collected his car from a garage in Southend. They had fitted a new clutch. On the evening of the 28 July 2010, my son was involved in an accident (not in his car) which left him 35 percent burns. He nearly died and was in the intensive care department of Broomfield Hospital for around 6 weeks. Even when he was allowed home, he was not able to drive for a long period of time. In fact he had only been driving for about two weeks prior to the accident. The garage that replaced his clutch has provided written evidence to state that at the time that they were working on the car, there were no problems with the gearbox.

 

My partner and I decided to instruct an Independent expert and he provided us with a comprehensive report. In the conclusion of his report he states;

 

CONCLUSION AND COMMENTS

In my opinion it is likely that the items of concern listed below including

damage sustained were caused/influenced as a direct result from accident

damage/impact from the nearside front.

• Plastic under tray.

• Transmission nearside casing is damaged below the differential/driveshaft.

• Exhaust flexible-down pipe damage.

• Oil leaking from transmission.

• Transmission casting/cooling fin above the oil leak is damaged.

 

Note: the effects from shock waves/side loading through the transmission case

on impact via the driveshaft cannot be accurately calculated but would have

been substantial.

It is impossible to say with certainty whether all or part of these faults were

present prior to the accident. It is however alleged/implied that these items were

old faults which had materialised some time prior to the accident.

NOTE:

Both Audi and Balgores motors had the opportunity to inspect and roadtest the

customers vehicle subsequent to completion of repairs and handover, but made

no mention of these findings until the vehicle returned for diagnosis following

the customers complaint.

If the additional items had been included in the original estimate then the vehicle

would have been a total insurance loss claim i.e. Written off.

 

As soon as I had the copy of the report and a letter from the garage that replaced the clutch, I wrote to the Audi Harold Wood complaints manager. This comprehensive letter was sent on 30 August 2011. This letter was not acknowledged so I rang Audi Harold Wood and spoke to the Manager. The Manager apologised and asked me to email the letter to him directly and he would deal with the matter. He got back to me a few days later and asked if my stepson and partner were prepared to have a meeting with him. They declined as they had already had a previous meeting with one of the service Managers and it ended with him lowering the car whilst they were trying to take photos of the damage underneath the car. Also people have a habit of forgetting and denying what they say verbally!!!!

 

On 3 October, I received a letter from the Manager of Audi basically saying that they were not prepared to do anything with regard to my stepson’s losses and repairing his car. I responded on 4 October 2011 by sending a letter before claim, I advised them that my stepson would be reducing the claim to £5000 so the matter could be dealt with in the small claims court. I am sure that you can imagine that the cost of storing his car, hire charges, train fares and the actual cost of repair came to quite a bit more than this !! I gave Audi Harold Wood until 18 October 2011 to respond and advised them if they did not get back to me I would issue proceedings against them in the small claims court. I received an email at 5pm on the 18 October from the Manager and he stated that he was willing to have a look at my stepson’s car and carry out further investigations. I actually believed that they were finally going to do the decent thing, but I was wrong!!!!!

 

They collected the car in November 2011 and I received a letter on 13 December 2011 which basically stated that they were not prepared to do anything and my stepson should contact his own Insurance company. I responded by stating that this was not an option that was open to my stepson as his own insurance company washed their hands of the matter because Audi had referred him to Accident Exchange. I also advised that we would be filing a claim in the New Year.

 

A claim was made at the beginning of February this year and we have just been informed of a hearing date of the 26 April 2012, this is to allow the Judge to find out all the facts prior to the claim going to court. I have been asked to provide the court of evidence of a contractual agreement between my stepson and Audi. Unfortunately, I do not have anything in writing other than the fact that they carried out the work on my stepson’s car. I also will be stating that if Audi do not consider that they had any type of contract with us, why did they agree to collect and inspect the car in November 2011?

 

I just hope that Audi are not going to get away with the way they have dealt with this matter and I worry for other people who may find themselves in a similar situation.

 

If anyone has any suggestions or comments, I would love to hear from you and I will of course keep this thread updated.

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Any chance that you could give some details of the particulars of claim ?

 

The hearing will be a case management hearing,so its important that you have all the emails,letters and other communications together and can demonstrate that you have a cause of action.

Have a happy and prosperous 2013 by avoiiding Payday loans. If you are sent a private message directing you for advice or support with your issues to another website,this is your choice.Before you decide,consider the users here who have already offered help and support.

Advice offered by Martin3030 is not supported by any legal training or qualification.Members are advised to use the services of fully insured legal professionals when needed.

 

 

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Have a happy and prosperous 2013 by avoiiding Payday loans. If you are sent a private message directing you for advice or support with your issues to another website,this is your choice.Before you decide,consider the users here who have already offered help and support.

Advice offered by Martin3030 is not supported by any legal training or qualification.Members are advised to use the services of fully insured legal professionals when needed.

 

 

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Interesting, look what I found on the Accident Exchange Web site;

 

 

Released: Tuesday 27th June 2006

 

Audi UK adopts Accident Exchange -

Manufacturer to roll out Accident Aftercare service

 

Accident Exchange, the prestige vehicle replacement company, has entered into an agreement with Audi UK to support the brand's franchised Audi Centre network as the recommended solutions provider for accident aftercare.

 

Through the "Audi Accident Aftercare" initiative, the company will deliver a suite of services designed to allow Audi Centres to capitalise on the customer support and revenue opportunities a focused accident management solution can deliver.

 

This manufacturer driven programme follows positive feedback from Audi Centres already utilising the Accident Aftercare proposition. During the past twelve months, more than 50% of the network has already signed up to the programme and benefited from a service offered at no cost to the Centre or to the customer.

 

The Accident Aftercare programme presented by Accident Exchange will include branded Centre marketing material, Centre staff training support and access to the Accident Exchange website giving key management information.

 

The clear aim is to capture the 17 percent of Audi Centre customers who will be involved in an accident over the next twelve months. Accident Exchange Chief Executive Steve Evans explains: "Audi Accident Aftercare will unite the various Centre departments to provide a seamless, customer-focused programme, providing both incremental sales (parts, labour & new vehicles) & increased profit through the payment of referral coming direct from Accident Exchange to the business.

 

"The service is designed to enhance the overall brand experience, introduce intelligent cost savings and release otherwise unobtainable profit from new car sales, parts sales, bodyshop and increased labour hours," he concludes.

 

Dominic Elms, Audi UK Head of Aftersales, welcomes the initiative: "An Audi Centre which is structured to react quickly, communicate efficiently and provide valuable support to a customer involved in an accident, will not only be rewarded with loyalty, but also potential incremental business."

 

All Audi Centre customers, whether connected through new vehicles, used vehicles or after-sales, will receive free membership to Audi Accident Aftercare, providing assistance with everything from recovery of damaged vehicles to mobility arrangements and insurance claim management.

 

 

 

 

It would seem to me that the part that I have highlighted would suggest that Audi had a form of agreement with my stepson

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When I first started this thread, I sent an email to Martin Sander who is the Managing Director of Audi Uk. I sent him a link to this post and asked him if he wanted me to send him a copy of the original complaint letter.

 

This morning I received an email from the Customer Relations Manager of the Executive Office of Audi Uk. The Manager informed me that Mr Sander had asked her to deal with the matter on his behalf as he is away this week. They stated that they were sorry to learn of the difficulties and inconvenience that my step son had experienced and asked me to forward a copy of the original complaint letter.

 

My stepson received a further email this afternoon asking for him to send all of the information regarding the claim against Audi Harold Wood and this will then be passed to their legal team to review.

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I was just about to prepare my paperwork to send to the court regarding proof that Audi had a contractual agreement with my stepson and not the insurance company. I therefore had another look at the court notification of the hearing. It would seem that my step son and I got our wires crossed !!! However, it is in fact good news, it is Audi that have to provide the court with proof that they they were a sub contractor of my step sons insurance company.

 

I will send the court a copy of the extract from Accident Exchanges web site and inform them that I have also been in touch with the Customer Relations Manager at Audi UK and they are now aware of my stepsons claim and this is currently being reviewed by their legal department. In fact they were rather shocked that Audi Harold Wood had not informed them of this claim !!!!

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  • 3 weeks later...

Had the case management hearing today and the Judge advised us that she was satisfied that Harold Wood Audi had a contractual agreement with my stepson. She also stated that we were correct in bringing this claim against Audi Harold Wood and not any of the other parties concerned.

 

We are now awaiting a hearing date and I will update this post once we receive notification from the court.

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Just wanted to add that I have not heard anything further from Martin Sander's office, they advised me on 11 April 2012 that they were passing this matter to their Legal Department to review.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Sounds like a mess really

 

I'm surprised the agreement is with Audi, i'd have thought it Accident Exchange, as they were said to be the handlers of the claim from the inception even though you contacted Audi, who acted initially, to assist with a call out from a rep from somewhere

 

Accident Exchange pay referral fees to garages, and I wonder if Audi could be collecting somewhere for the 17% of their customers who apparently may have non fault accidents

 

The bodyshop weren't necessarily acting for Audi, but Accident Exchange. It is likely they who should have correctly estimated the vehicle, and submitted initial and supplementary estimates to Accident Exchange appointed assessors. Accident Exchange used to say they authorised and paid for all work in the case of non fault accidents, so they would have appointed the engineer, who could have been called out again in your case.

 

Audi are possibly just trying to enhance their service by using Accident Exchange, and are responsible I think for sub contract work. So if they use that bodyshop they are responsible I believe, if Accident Exchange use that bodyshop, then I would think they are. Audi will probably have not authorised any repairs at all or even estimated the car. Was the guy that came out an Audi garage employee? Initial estimates are usually subject to stripping and e&oe so you should be able to add this repair easily to the claimed work

 

Accident Exchange handle all of the claim not Audi in the slightest

 

This is worse when garages with no bodyshop of their own team up with a independent shop, then gain approval for them to work on their brand, usually amongst others, and get involved in the repairs this way, syaing they have an approved bodyshop, when they don't 'have' one, they 'use' one.

 

The trouble is someone has to have the clout to get things put right. Yes Audi may have had the chance to inspect the car, but I would say it wasn't for them to do unless asked to.

 

It doesn't seem the process was made that clear aside from the mention of Accident Exchange by the guy that came out to you

 

Balgores Motors would have been instructed by the non fault claim company only, and are responsible in my own opinion for the estimated work, and Accident Exchange ultimately for their subcontactor workmanship and the claim process itself. The person to put it right I would expect to be at the claims company, to instruct the engineer to re examine the vehicle at Balgores, and handle any subsequent work as a supplementary claim. In your case the repair has been done perhaps, and they could have retained the parts to pursue this afterwards, which an assessor could still examine from either party if required.

 

Shame you're getting such a runaround, only my2p but it's the path i'd have followed, even if some say incorrectly perhaps

 

If it happens again, i'd leave the dealer and manufacturer out of it, definately if the dealer hasn't it's own in house paintshop, they are extremely quick to turn their back on you, and definately will on the car now it's had any sort of repair, regarding possible future corrosion claims and paint etc in the area of repair.

 

Good luck, sounds like you are on your way

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Hi and thank you for your comments. However, I must say that I agree with the Judge regarding the fact that Audi had a contractual agreement with my stepson. I thought long and hard before making this claim and as far as I am concerned my stepson contacted Audi and they informed him that they would deal with everything on his behalf. When he asked should he contact his own insurance company he was advised that he did not need to.

 

The man who initially inspected the car was dressed in Audi Corparate clothing. The fact that Audi sub contracts is a matter for them.

 

We have now received notification that this case will be heard on 12 July 2012 and I will update this thread with the final outcome.

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  • 5 months later...
  • 3 weeks later...

I just received a message from Helios, the answer is yes and yes to both questions. I am really sorry as I cannot reply to you directly as I have not yet wrote enough posts to allow for me to reply to personal messages.

 

Kind Regards

 

Lorraine

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Not too long to wait then.

 

Is there anything in their Court bundle that is bothering you ?

Have a happy and prosperous 2013 by avoiiding Payday loans. If you are sent a private message directing you for advice or support with your issues to another website,this is your choice.Before you decide,consider the users here who have already offered help and support.

Advice offered by Martin3030 is not supported by any legal training or qualification.Members are advised to use the services of fully insured legal professionals when needed.

 

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Today was the final hearing and we won. Audi Harold Wood were ordered to pay £5000 plus additional expenses to my stepson.

 

Audi instructed a solicitor just a few days before the hearing of 12 July so they were respresented by a Barrister. It is very difficult in the small claims court to go against a Barrister and this case was adjourned as the other side protested that there was not enough time for the case to be heard in the time that was allocated. I tried to raise several issues at the time but the other sides Barrister kept butting in. It had already been established at the hearing in April that Audi did have a contractual agreement with my stepson. However, their Barrister was now disputing this fact and saying that it was Balgores that we should be claiming against. It was even written in the directions that we could bring another party into the claim. Despite this option, we decided to stick to our guns and carry on with a claim solely against Audi Harold Wood. It was also agreed that a new hearing date needed to be arranged with a whole day allocated to it. A few weeks later, we received notification that a hearing date had been set for the 16 October.

 

We now knew that unless we also instructed a Barrister, we would have very little chance of success. We therefore made the decision to not have our independent expert witness attend and just rely on his witness statement. We then used the money that we would have paid for our expert attending court to put towards the cost of instructing a Public Access Barrister. Under the Public Access scheme, members of the public can instruct a Barrister directly without having to have a solicitor. This can save a substantial amount of money. You just have to ensure that you are able to present your case in a clear and concise manner and if you are unsure of anything, their clerks are always on hand to assist you.

 

We decided to instruct Ian Stebbings from 1 Greys Inn Square Chambers. We cannot thank Ian enough, he is a brilliant Barrister and a really nice and approachable man. I would recommend him to anyone.

 

I will add more details about the hearing later as we have some serious celebrating to do !

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