Jump to content


conflyer

Bifolds fitted at incorrect floor level

Recommended Posts

I would appreciate some advice on the following matter,

 

I am in dispute with a glazing company X that fitted my extension bifolding doors at incorrect floor level, end of last year.

The doors come from a reputable factory and are of high quality.

The cost of the job was not at all small and the balance was paid in full before the issue became apparent.

Certificates and guarantees have been provided.

 

When their surveyor turned up to measure, the screed had not been laid down yet in the extension.

He argued that the finished floor level had to be provided and requested a sign off as a condition of the contract.

This was liaised with the building contractor who provided the final floor level datum with a laser cross level, based on the existing house floors.

 

I have learnt this is not something uncommon in construction due to the stages of work.

It is important to note that the company did not refuse to undertake the work, it only set a condition as it was clearly requested the weather track had to be flush with the floors.

 

Company X put everything on email, including heights of the weather track, screed and floor thickness etc providing four digit millimetre precision measurements for signing.

 

Everything was noted with reference to the fixed support lintel of the opening.

After double checking this with the building contractor it was signed off in good faith.

Eventually the screed and tiles got in place and it became apparent the weather track was offset higher by about 14mm from the agreed floor level.

Thus a 4 meter opening is now showing a nearly 20mm lip sticking out from the last tile.

 

I revisited all measurements with high precision from multiple points of reference against the information provided on the order.

Company X provided no plans or drawings for the system itself.

There is absolutely no doubt from my end that the doors have been fitted higher by at least 14mm against the agreed floor levels on contract.

It is also possible the doors were designed shorter.

 

To make the really long story short, I contacted Company X several times and requested they come out to survey their work.

They argued everything was fitted as agreed and blamed the builder.

Emails and calls were never returned for weeks.

I asked them to provide all the measurements for the door system but it was completely ignored.

That was about 3 months ago.

 

I expected they would at least come out to check the work, but that never happened which raised a lot of suspicions.

To my understanding this is breach of contract, something they in fact requested to sign off.

 

I decided to give the situation a last chance, submitting the case to the GGF of which they are members.

I wrote to their conciliation scheme and sent a all the communications with the company, contract details etc.

Company X replied in the same tone at first, "we don't understand why you went to the GGF, everything was done right, there was no screed" etc.

 

The GGF allowed their member 21 days to respond, which the company ignored. Once the deadline passed, I complained that no consideration or reply was provided. The member was given a 14 day notice as part of the scheme, that I could not justify.

 

On the last day of the extended period there was a three line response at about 6pm.

Again, pointing out that heights were provided to them, there was no screed etc.

They even attached the same contract that I had already forwarded to the GGF.

 

On the last line they add they are willing to come out on site and "if the doors can be lowered" they will do this as "good will".

All the building damages to be covered on my end!

 

Full of empty words, they are covering up a cock up with a "good will" proposition while suggesting leaving me cover serious damages to a new building.

I wrote back asking that the member submits the door plans requested 3 months ago.

 

The GGF, that merely facilitates the communication and not examining the merits of the case replied,

"Please be advised that our Member is simply required to satisfy your contract with them as agreed and signed for"

 

This is not acceptable, although we are prepared to consider compensation we cannot accept this as "resolution". The company failed to inspect the work against the agreed heights and I cannot accept additional damages as a result of their negligence.

Patience is running thin, the GGF have an arbitration scheme as a next step but I am not confident of their impartiality.

 

I am also not going to let this company walk away, they acted really unprofessionally, they were given the opportunity to check their work and chose to repeatedly ignore it until I had to escalate the matter.

 

I am now considering a two step proposal,

a. they either take full responsibility for the work and damages to the building or,

 

b. compensation reflecting the cost of bringing the work to the standard it should be as in the contract or taking to small claims to recover the cost.

This will require a surveyor/expert witness involved which will obviously incur costs.

 

Apologies for the long post

Any thoughts are welcome!

Edited by dx100uk
formatting

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Does your contract with the GGF member require you to use the GGF arbitration scheme? My concern is that you cannot use the small claim track of the county court IF you agreed to arbitration as the required binding alternative.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for these points.

 

We have not agreed to arbitration so far. From what I understand from the GGF this is the next stage after conciliation fails, for which I would have to apply separately.

 

Also, there is no term in the Company X contract regarding GGF or arbitration.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Any views on further damage to be covered on my end? Since the work is complete it is not possible for them to fullfill the contract without damaging my home. To my understanding the company was contracted to supply/fit the bifolds on a condition set in contract. They failed to apply due diligence. The builder provided the height they asked for and from that point onward he made the floors to that level as far as I can tell. I am not happy with him but he is not liable for their work.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's all about the floor level.

If the builder gave them the correct measurements in writing they'll have to redo the doors at their expense.

If they don't do it do a chargeback or section 75 on your card (if you've paid by card).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It's all about the floor level.

If the builder gave them the correct measurements in writing they'll have to redo the doors at their expense.

If they don't do it do a chargeback or section 75 on your card (if you've paid by card).

 

Unfortunately it was paid for by transfer as it was a fair amount of money.

 

The builder provided the floor level (*to match the existing house floor) and they put this into context against the lintel in our contract. The one they asked me to sign...

 

So the matter is almost independent to the floor if taken in that context

i.e the weather track deviates 15mm higher from the height we have signed.

 

Both parties had to comply with a specified level height.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

After wasting another 2 months in communications with this company we have hit a wall. I am now trying to decide whether it is going through arbitration or straight to small claims.

 

The situation stands, they do not admit to the error or cover any damages and will only move the system if we cover all the costs for repairs. A ludicrous position, considering accidental damage, insurance complications and the potential disputes that could arise with this company. This is all down to their negligence to comply with the contract they asked to sign. Why on earth would anyone accept remedial works while undertaking all repair costs.

 

After four months of chasing them up one of the directors agreed to come out on site. Desperate to deflect from the issue, he kept scrutinising the builder's floor work.

Their line of argument being that the builder's tiles are also off by a few millimetres so the company can now be discharged from the contract for fitting the doors 14mm off the contract signed height.

 

First he claimed someone told the fitter to fit the doors at a different height on site.

Then moved on to say the builder's work is not perfect. Then the track was never meant to be measured from the very top of the profile (as stipulated in the contract!) but a line further down. It is just hard to describe how unprofessional these people have been in handling the issue. All in all he pretty much confirmed my findings that the track is off !

 

They even had the cheek to say they pay so much money to the GGF that the federation is not interested in the case. I found this a seriously compromising statement and put it into the conciliation record with the GGF. The GGF is now proposing their arbitration scheme, but after their member statement I am very reluctant to use the scheme. The company is now trying to deny the statement, unfortunately for them I made sure to have a witness present during the visit.

 

The only concern is whether a judge would argue that arbitration should have been considered as an option first?

 

I am in touch with solicitors and expert witnesses trying to understand cost implications which can be significant. I believe the case falls under consumer law but if an expert is required it will be costly. It has also been suggested to take the case to small claims myself. However we have now exhausted communications with the company and they do not take this seriously. It is perhaps better to have a letter before proceedings coming from a solicitor with full perspective of costs...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How can costs implications be significant if it small claims track ?


We could do with some help from you.

PLEASE HELP US TO KEEP THIS SITE RUNNING EVERY POUND DONATED WILL HELP US TO KEEP HELPING OTHERS

 

 Have we helped you ...?         Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

 

If you want advice on your thread please PM me a link to your thread

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
How can costs implications be significant if it small claims track ?

 

Ok, obviously I am not suggesting tens of thousands but still a significant cost to the average person. Expert witnesses propose fees in the range of £1k+ and solicitors have suggested fees of £200 per hour. Adding the costs of remedial works the figure adds up to the cost of the entire system. There are also implications for the warranty of the system for which I may need to take advice.

 

Perhaps an expert report may be more important than a solicitor? But some experts suggested they need to be invited by the court/solicitor.

 

Also to add, a final settlement proposition at a very reasonable amount was rejected rudely by the company. The communications have poor form and the company has been patronising from the start of the issue. They are now even suggesting I am after money for their workmanship error!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You dont need a Solicitor..Im not sure you need an expert to confirm the floor levels are wrong...providing you document it with photographs and plans....the only risk is your issuance fee.


We could do with some help from you.

PLEASE HELP US TO KEEP THIS SITE RUNNING EVERY POUND DONATED WILL HELP US TO KEEP HELPING OTHERS

 

 Have we helped you ...?         Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

 

If you want advice on your thread please PM me a link to your thread

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
You dont need a Solicitor..Im not sure you need an expert to confirm the floor levels are wrong...providing you document it with photographs and plans....the only risk is your issuance fee.

 

It is not about the floor level being wrong.

 

The claim is against the company for fitting the track higher than specified in the contract.

We signed the contract to fit the track at specific height and they fitted higher than the contract. In theory this was to match the floor level that was fitted later by the builder.

 

 

So it is important to make this clear, I am not comparing the floor at present against the doors. Although the problem is evident visually.

 

I am sticking to the contract and the reason is that, the company is attempting to deflect the issue supporting the floor is also a little bit off here and there. So their work does not have to match the contract!

 

My point being that I have a binding contract with them for fitting the doors, not the floor.

This is not to say the floor is wrong but it is irrelevant to the claim where the floor is.

 

To conclude, the claim is for either putting the doors at the correct contract height including remedial costs or to compensate at a value that reflects this inconvenience.

 

One problem is the company is guaranteeing the doors for 10 years and no other company is going to refit this system because they are not willing to guarantee.

 

Which is why I am thinking whether an independent report or help is required to present this?

Edited by conflyer

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well track levels...same difference.


We could do with some help from you.

PLEASE HELP US TO KEEP THIS SITE RUNNING EVERY POUND DONATED WILL HELP US TO KEEP HELPING OTHERS

 

 Have we helped you ...?         Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

 

If you want advice on your thread please PM me a link to your thread

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If the floor level is irrelevant, and your issue is that the door tracks have been installed higher than the contract says, then what does the contract say the track height is being measured against?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was going to ask the same question as above.

Also I cant get my head around why would you get doors fitted before structural work is done.

That's really putting the cart before the horse, or another analogy.

Having all your windows fitted befor the walls are built

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Floors, walls- what was the datum point for the drawings? You might be shooting yourself in the foot here because they may have put the doors in perfectly it is just that the rest of the building is out of step with the measurements.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
If the floor level is irrelevant, and your issue is that the door tracks have been installed higher than the contract says, then what does the contract say the track height is being measured against?

 

The floor height level on contract was taken with reference to the RSJ on site. The contract states the exact size of the weather track and where the bottom and top of that track is to be in reference to the lintel.

 

I didn't make the contract of course, they did and asked me to sign it. My point is very simple in this case, a contract is signed specifying where something needs to be and the end result is that it is not where it says on contract.

 

I hope this is more clear now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I was going to ask the same question as above.

Also I cant get my head around why would you get doors fitted before structural work is done.

That's really putting the cart before the horse, or another analogy.

Having all your windows fitted befor the walls are built

 

I understand your point but I also found out this is not uncommon. It is not ideal, although screeding and tiling is not structural work as I see it.

 

The builder asked to order the doors to make the building watertight.The frame profiles need to be encased in render outside and plasterboard indoors before plastering begins etc.

 

The company did not refuse to take the job, in fact I thought this was common and their terms to proceed with the order was just to sign the floor level.

They said they were completely happy to fit the track exactly where it said on contract. I believe this is not rocket science, measuring the track is not where it says on contract.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The contract states the exact size of the weather track and where the bottom and top of that track is to be in reference to the lintel.

 

I didn't make the contract of course, they did and asked me to sign it. My point is very simple in this case, a contract is signed specifying where something needs to be and the end result is that it is not where it says on contract.

 

I hope this is more clear now.

 

Could they have complied with the contract given the circumstances they faced?

If the bottom track wasn’t where it was expected would they have had to fit it at the wrong height to keep the upper limit correct?

Or reduce the height of the doors to fit?

 

You seem to want them to comply with the contract, but if that wasn’t possible, “frustration” will take effect.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's the first time I have visited this thread.

 

I don't really understand the technicalities of all this – but it sufficient for me to accept that you are there and that you are very familiar with it and that you have a contract in your hand which you can show has not been correctly executed.

 

That's good enough for me.

 

I gather that the company is prevaricating and even offering a gesture of goodwill – but at some risk to you if something goes wrong.

 

I don't understand why you are continuing the conversation with the contractors.

 

You haven't told us what the total value of this is. Is any of the work that they have done at all useful or is it all a write off?

 

What I mean here is that if you got somebody else in, could they finish the work or carry out reparations and if so how much would that cost?

 

If some of the work which your present contractors have carried out is of value, then how much of the contract price would it be worth paying them after the work was made good by somebody else.

 

I'm asking these questions because we need to estimate what your losses are – because you need to understand what your outcomes would be.

 

If some of the work is good then you wouldn't want to sue for the entire contract price. On the other hand you would have to taking into consideration having the job finished by another company.

 

If you want to say that in fact somebody else would have to start again from scratch then clearly you don't want to pay any of the money.

 

I hope not being too convoluted here, but you can start off by telling us the value of the contract, the value of the work they have done so far – and what would it cost to somebody else to finish it. Then it will be easier to understand what you would have to sue for.

 

In terms of getting involved them on the basis of goodwill et cetera – I wouldn't risk it if I were you. It seems to me that court papers have to be issued so that they are under pressure. You will then find that they start negotiating with you in a totally different way. If you are prepared to forego actually going to court then I would settle for a Tomlin order which properly itemises all the work which needs to be done, to the proper standards, is subject to a final inspection by an independent expert, and setting out a timetable for all of this to happen – failing which you apply for judgement.

 

It sounds to me as if you were being jerked around and you need to take control.

  • Confused 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It's the first time I have visited this thread.

 

I don't really understand the technicalities of all this – but it sufficient for me to accept that you are there and that you are very familiar with it and that you have a contract in your hand which you can show has not been correctly executed.

 

That's good enough for me.

 

Thank you for raising these valid points. I appreciate the information is overwhelming to the outside reader and perhaps some things are unclear in the first post. I am trying my best to stick to the point and summarise.

 

The job is complete, it was carried out last year, signed off by the company and invoiced. Unfortunately it was paid in good faith before the error became noticeable, with the building work wrapping up a month later when the floor was put in place.

 

In summary, the company had a clear brief to position the doors so the track of the system can be flush with the future finished floor. They requested to sign a "height measurement" corresponding to that level as a condition for executing the contract.

They happily confirmed it was received and signed, also on voicemail recording.

BUT the end result is deviating from that measurement both technically and visually.

This is the dispute in its simplest form.

 

The company expressed no other concerns, nothing in the process changed or prevented them from executing the contract.

 

I don't understand why you are continuing the conversation with the contractors.

 

I have actually stopped exchanging further emails with them, the quality of their dialogues has been very poor from the start anyway.

 

I involved the GGF because the company is a member, assuming we would settle the matter without going to court. In fact they have done nothing more than ask the company to reply to my case. I realise that proceedings should have kicked in a lot earlier to obtain results but I had to let the process run its course, as it may be used in evidence to show my effort to settle.

 

The GGF now propose arbitration via TGAS, however the body is under GGF and considering the director's comments I am inclined to reject this option due to impartiality issues.

 

Can the court argue I should have opted for the ADR?

 

You haven't told us what the total value of this is. Is any of the work that they have done at all useful or is it all a write off?

 

I hope not being too convoluted here, but you can start off by telling us the value of the contract, the value of the work they have done so far – and what would it cost to somebody else to finish it. Then it will be easier to understand what you would have to sue for.

 

The cost of the system for supply and fitting is in the range of £5,000

 

As mentioned above the work is practically finished, the system is in place.

The only remedy would be for the system to be moved down.

The logistics of repositioning the system are far too complicated because,

of building damage e.g external render, plasterboards have to be removed and them made good, accidental damage to tiles, the kitchen etc. Insurance may be affected and the actual door system can be damaged requiring replacement. All of which the company is not willing to guarantee and can definitely raise further endless disputes.

 

I understand all this sounds like a nightmare which is why I offered the company two options, either to move the system and rectify damages on their end or make an offer to reasonable compensation. They have rejected both and stand by a "conditional goodwill" position which is impossible.

 

In terms of another company carrying out the remedial works. I spoke to a reputable company who supply/fit the same system and responded they would not touch the work unless they entirely replace the system, as they cannot guarantee someone else's work/mistake.

 

So this brings us down to why I am looking for advice or a solicitor.

In terms of quantifying the remedy or compensation, does it have to go as far as the whole system or the remedial costs or making good/repositioning on the assumption the system suffers no damage.

 

The company was dismissive , disrespectful and unprofessional in how they handled the issue. They are now claiming I am just trying to make money out of the issue. I cannot imagine these people walking away while enjoying a full payment, when they requested me to sign a contract with clear instructions and signed off the work without checking.

 

 

 

It seems to me that court papers have to be issued so that they are under pressure.

 

It is indeed time to start writing down my detailed particulars but I want to keep things within a reasonable claim and have to summarise all communications in a meaningful way.

 

Can you please elaborate a little more on the Tomlin order?

 

By independent expert does this fall under the expert witness I described in my earlier posts?

 

 

 

It sounds to me as if you were being jerked around and you need to take control.

 

I couldn't agree more.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you.

 

I think you will need to get two independent evaluations as to what needs doing – and also quotations for the work. You may will need to obtain an expert opinion.

 

You said the work cost £5000. If the final solution is that the work needs to be completely undone and then redone, that means that will cost at least £5000 to redo the work and maybe cost £1000 or £2000 to get rid of the old work.

 

In that case you would be suing for £7000. This is less than the small claims limit.

 

If an expert opinion said that in fact some of the existing work could be left in place and was useful in order to reduce the cost of stripping it out and then replacing it then your claim will be less than £7000.

 

Because you have a duty to mitigate your loss then you would have to accept the cheaper of the options available to you – as long as the quality was at least as good as the quality for which you contracted.

 

I don't think you should bother about ADR. I don't think you should bother about going to the professional association. Professional associations are normally a waste of time and simply look good on paper and may be prepared to discipline their members if there is some real wrongdoing, meaning a breach of ethical standards, for example.

 

In your case, I don't think that they will be any use at all – except that they may be able to recommend independent assessors. If you had an independent assessor who agree with you and was a member of the same trade body and had been recommended by the trade body then this would make their evidence more compelling when it went to trial.

 

 

You don't need a solicitor for this. That would just be another load of money and also the solicitor will waste a lot of your time getting into protracted correspondence. If one day you do decide you need a solicitor maybe to go into the hearing, then you should instruct that person after you've done most of the spade-work[sic] yourself. Frankly if the expert testimony supports what you say then you probably won't need a solicitor.

 

Your best case preparation and your best advocate will be yourself motivated by self-interest, grudge and anger. There's nothing better.

 

Don't start getting irritated by their disrespectful attitude. This is not grounds for bringing an action and it is not something which can be compensated for in the courts.

Anyway, your delays in getting anything done and your loss of control of the situation has not done very much to earn any respect.

 

You should certainly be making detailed statements of everything that has happened because you will need those in the future. Well done on recording your calls. Most people don't. Make sure you keep the recordings properly backed up so you have at least a couple of copies. You should keep notes about the recordings so that you can identify what each one is about in case you need access to them.

 

The first thing you should do is set about getting an independent expert to evaluate the situation and compare it against the written contract and to give you a written opinion. The next thing you should do is to get two independent quotations for the work to put it into the condition that it would have been in had the contract incorrectly carried out.

The next thing you should do is to provide a copy of the expert opinion plus the two quotations to the other side. Giving them 14 days, invite them to carry out their own independent inspection and also cost up the value of the repairs for themselves. If they refuse – then well and good. Nobody can say that you haven't given them a chance.

 

I'm not for one moment suggesting that the existing contractors should be asked to do the work. I think they should not be permitted to do so save under very strict conditions of staged inspections by an independent inspector. I think it is entirely reasonable to say that you now have no confidence in them and as they are now your adversaries, it is no longer appropriate that they carry out the work. They have been given ample opportunity to repair the problem and they have refused. However, you must give them every opportunity to appraise the problem and also to appraise the value in case they want to challenge your quotes.

 

Set your timescales/deadlines and stick to them. Give them 14 days to carry out their appraisal. After that give them 14 days to agree to fund the remedial work or else you will sue them. Then sue them. Don't hang around.

 

If they are prepared to fund the remedial work then it must be in some way in which the payments are guaranteed. You should not stop trusting them.

 

If they are not prepared to give you the guarantees that you want then issue the court papers. I expect you will then find that they will be more ready to negotiate. They will be anxious to reduce costs and to avoid judgement. Once you have issued the court papers then you should only agree to a solution on the condition that it is rendered into a Tomlin agreement on the basis which I have outlined in an earlier post.

 

A Tomlin agreement is an agreement by which a settlement is negotiated between the parties which can potentially bring an end to the litigation. The settlement is put before a judge and it is signed off by the judge. It falls short of a judgement. If the terms of the Tomlin order are breached then you would have liberty to restore the action and seek judgement. You might want the Tomlin order drafted by solicitor but the contractors would have to pay for this.

 

I don't know how big this company is but some of these companies are known to dissolve themselves and then to re-emerge under a different name. It's known here as Phoenixing. If you do issue court papers then one of the terms of the Tomlin order would be that the money for the work is either paid to you immediately or is held in escrow. Paying money into court would be the best solution.


Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Many thanks for all your points and the informative post.

 

I have a few questions and some more information to add.

 

I think you will need to get two independent evaluations as to what needs doing – and also quotations for the work. You may will need to obtain an expert opinion.

 

You said the work cost £5000. If the final solution is that the work needs to be completely undone and then redone, that means that will cost at least £5000 to redo the work and maybe cost £1000 or £2000 to get rid of the old work.

 

If an expert opinion said that in fact some of the existing work could be left in place and was useful in order to reduce the cost of stripping it out and then replacing it then your claim will be less than £7000.

 

 

I have already arranged for two companies to inspect and quote including remedial works. Should have done that much earlier indeed.

 

 

 

By expert opinion I presume you mean the expert witness report. In this case my only question is, if an expert report is produced before proceedings can this cost be justified and added into the claim?

 

 

The reason I ask is because the cost is around £1000 from quotes. From the present research and witnessed visit of the director we can easily conclude the doors are not where we agreed, although this is not professionally documented yet. Also the quotes for remedial work may have specific information or a brief survey, at least about the track position which can be documented.

 

 

 

Is there a possibility that the expert witness cost is argued as unnecessary at a later time?

 

 

I don't think you should bother about ADR. I don't think you should bother about going to the professional association. Professional associations are normally a waste of time and simply look good on paper and may be prepared to discipline their members if there is some real wrongdoing, meaning a breach of ethical standards, for example.

 

 

Speaking of this, I have received a new communication with the GGF siding with the company for the first time in months.

 

Firstly they are revoking the proposal for TGAS arbitration because they claim the member has not withdrawn the offer to reposition the doors (albeit with all damages at my expense). They support the claim for the issue was made 3 months after installation so the company has no responsibility for making good. I have therefore every reason to reject arbitration.

 

"the claim that the doors were too high was made some 3 months after installation during which time the making good inside and out was completed. Under the circumstances we believe that our member has made every effort to resolve this dispute at no cost to yourself."

 

 

To be clear, there is ample documented evidence to prove the doors were encased in render/plaster a couple of days after installation.

 

Most of the work that needs making good was in fact carried out shortly after installation. The problem evident only when the tiles were laid later in November. In my view other trades carried on with their duties as the glazing company signed off on the job and left the site.

 

I cannot imagine the tradesmen are bound by some duty to verify the glazing company's work?

 

 

Is there any statutory limitation in terms of the issue being reported and the matter pursued?

 

Your best case preparation and your best advocate will be yourself motivated by self-interest, grudge and anger... Anyway, your delays in getting anything done and your loss of control of the situation has not done very much to earn any respect.

 

 

I have actually not taken this as revenge or having any feelings for the company. It is definitely business and the claim is for remedial works purely because a contract was signed for exactly the mistake they have made. I just wish they had engaged more professionally with the problem from the start. I fully agree the steps taken should have been more cutting and shorter but I did not want to walk out of the GGF process I started, in case it was argued at later time that I made no effort to reach resolution.

 

 

 

The first thing you should do is set about getting an independent expert to evaluate the situation and compare it against the written contract and to give you a written opinion. The next thing you should do is to get two independent quotations for the work to put it into the condition that it would have been in had the contract incorrectly carried out.

The next thing you should do is to provide a copy of the expert opinion plus the two quotations to the other side. Giving them 14 days, invite them to carry out their own independent inspection and also cost up the value of the repairs for themselves. If they refuse – then well and good. Nobody can say that you haven't given them a chance.

 

 

However, you must give them every opportunity to appraise the problem and also to appraise the value in case they want to challenge your quotes.

 

 

Thank you for the steps. This is what I also roughly had in mind.

 

 

 

In my view their opportunity to appraise the problem was given, as the director had the opportunity to visit the property and all he did was focus on proving the floors are wrong as well, so that he can argue they are discharged from the contract obligation. Having said that I am more than happy to allow for a fair process. They did take photos and measurements so I am not very keen having them around to re-assess the cost.

 

 

 

Once you have issued the court papers then you should only agree to a solution on the condition that it is rendered into a Tomlin agreement on the basis which I have outlined in an earlier post.

 

Do I need a solicitor to initiate/draft the Tomlin agreement if things move to that direction?

 

 

 

I don't know how big this company is but some of these companies are known to dissolve themselves and then to re-emerge under a different name. It's known here as Phoenixing. If you do issue court papers then one of the terms of the Tomlin order would be that the money for the work is either paid to you immediately or is held in escrow. Paying money into court would be the best solution.

 

 

I have been warned about this actually by an expert I spoked to recently. The company seems to have been around for many years, at least 15 year, which is why I was surprised with how they handled the matter. Their asset base is in the range of £1m on companies house but that could be anything. I have an insurance backed guarantee at least if the company went into administration for guarantee matters with the doors.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree that you need to be careful not to incur costs unnecessarily. For this reason I think it would be a good idea to give them notice that you are bringing in an expert. I suppose that if you were able to agree with the contractors as to precisely what the issue is and how it could be made good – leaving merely the question of liability to be decided, then you could by mutual consent avoid the necessity for an expert testimony. This would be useful. I think it would also be useful to propose it so that if they reject it then you are able later on to say that you attempted to mitigate losses and you attempted to reach agreement with the other side before incurring any expenses.

 

You should certainly serve notice on the other side that you will be asking expert to carry out an inspection. You should provide the quote for the inspection to the other side so that they are fully informed. You could even invite them to to agree on the identity of the expert. You can even invite them to be present at the inspection.

 

However you seem to be saying that the solutions being proposed by the other side are not viable because of the way the work was carried out. As long as you are able to express this in a very clear bullet pointed document which a judge will understand and which can be confirmed by your expert then you shouldn't have a lot of trouble.

 

You can see, though, that the other side are already starting to say that they have made reasonable proposals to remedy the situation and that they have given you an opportunity to mitigate your losses and that you have obstructed them. You will have to identify every element of what they say and have an answer to it and also your expert to address each point as well.

 

What is very helpful is that they don't seem to be denying your general position that they got it wrong. It really is turning into a dispute about quantum

 

They are likely to say no to your suggestions but at least then you can show that you have bent over backwards to cooperate with the other side, to reduce costs, and to do everything by agreement.

 

At the end of the day if you win your case then I would say that the cost of an inspection will be easily recoverable. You probably need to show that you have taken quotes from two or maybe even three experts and that you have chosen the cheapest.

 

Don't incur any expenditure without letting the other side know – but give them rigid deadlines such as seven days to raise objections which must be accompanied by reasons. Don't let them draw you into some extended discussion as has clearly been happening until this moment.

 

I don't think you do need a solicitor to draft Tomlin order. We can give you lots of pointers here although we are not experts. However you are a long way from this point and if the other side do agree to enter into a Tomlin order then it will be basically because they have accepted that they are not going to win the argument and so you will look to them to pay the costs.

 

Once again, I don't fully understand the technical information that you are posting here. That's mainly because I would need to look at the situation myself in order to understand and I don't have a complete overview of what has happened. I'm simply suggesting courses of action for you on the basis that you understand the situation and that what you are saying is correct.

 

There is no statutory limitation for beginning a complaint – other than six years in contract and six years in negligence for beginning an action. However, the longer you delay then the more likely people are to raise their eyebrows. If you could have reduced the harm by reacting more quickly – if it had been reasonable to do so – then people may ask why you waited so long


Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for taking the time to reply.

 

 

You can see, though, that the other side are already starting to say that they have made reasonable proposals to remedy the situation and that they have given you an opportunity to mitigate your losses and that you have obstructed them. You will have to identify every element of what they say and have an answer to it and also your expert to address each point as well.

 

 

To clarify, the only solution proposed and accepted by the other side is to come out and lower the doors but all damages to the fabric of the building to be made good on my end. I explained why this position is not realistic to them

 

1. the damage is not documented/itemised/costed, could have impact on my insurance and they do not guarantee accidental damage. It would be insane to allow a company we are in dispute to come out and carry out works while they are not even accepting the fault.

 

2. the company takes no responsibility and given their history of dispute it is more than likely to open new issues

3. it is unfair to bear the making good costs after they signed off their work - they knew the dependencies with other trades. The problem could not be identified by someone else until the tiles were put down. They effectively suggested I should have surveyed the glazing company's work that they signed off. Which is why professionals were contracted and they strongly requested a contract of heights.

 

 

 

Another point, as you also raised, is the proposed solution involves the company themselves carrying out the work and not paying someone else to rectify. Which is a conflict while they are not accepting to rectify damage or put in writing guarantees.

 

 

 

The company has expressed the view the matter is closed and the only communication has been via GGF. Who after months of communications are now openly backing the company's conditional goodwill as proof of the best effort to resolve. It is a rather strange timing for GGF to jump in since this proposal was made and rejected two months ago.

 

 

I understand this communication now needs to move into recorded notifications tied to deadlines, with documented quotes and professional opinions. I agree the cost should be clearly communicated and given that the other side is not willing to document or recognise the problem, the cost of an expert witness will be justifiable as an independent source. So far I have gathered the system could be saved and will not need to be replaced, which is good. Once quotes are in place I will start sending formal notices.

 

 

 

 

Once again, I don't fully understand the technical information that you are posting here. That's mainly because I would need to look at the situation myself in order to understand and I don't have a complete overview of what has happened. I'm simply suggesting courses of action for you on the basis that you understand the situation and that what you are saying is correct.

 

 

I appreciate that. If it helps or of any interest, I will be happy to pm a link with some pictures that will demonstrate the situation and make a lot easier to understand.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please don't treat this as being dismissive – but I don't need to understand what the dispute is about. All I need to do is to accept your position – whether it is right or wrong. I'm not here to act as a building arbitrator. You don't need to link the pictures.

 

I get the gist of what you have said just now. My recommendation is to keep on moving forward without allowing them to hold you back at all – but making sure that there is a solid paper trail and that they are informed at every step and given opportunities to check or doublecheck at every step. Once you see the papers they will start to take you seriously. That's when you will need to be able to say that they were invited to join in in the process and they refused


Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 Caggers

    No registered users viewing this page.


  • Have we helped you ...?


×
×
  • Create New...