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Wedding Photographer Court Claim - Lying about Address

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Hi,

 

I'm in a legal dispute with my wedding photographer/videographer and issued a court claim against him over a month ago claiming a specific settlement amount. He didn't deliver on his promise re: services, and we ended up with sub-standard wedding photos and terrible low-quality unedited footage as our wedding video (complete with raw sound from the day e.g. people walking around, chattering etc.) He then completely stopped communicating with us.

 

After issuing the claim via MoneyClaim Online (to his business address), he sent an envelope back to the court with a note saying 'Gone away'. The court sent this back to me along with the claim form without any further instruction. I know he is actively operating at that address, and 'Gone away' doesn't mean the address is invalid, so don't know why they've sent it back to me.

 

What should I do? Should I issue a warrant via MoneyClaim Online, or is there a better way?

 

I'm so frustrated. I cannot let him get away with this, and am furious that he's simply brushing it off!

 

Thanks.

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Visit him at his business premises and give them a copy of the claim form plus associated admission and defence form. Try to put it in his hand but at the very least make sure that he is there and then leave it on his desk or on his floor – if possible telling what it is.

 

https://www.justice.gov.uk/courts/procedure-rules/civil/rules/part07#7.5

 

 

Then complete a certificate of service – within seven days

 

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/form-n215-certificate-of-service

 

However, you better call the court to make sure that they have a claim on file and if they have any special requirements – particularly for when you want to go and apply for judgement if no defence is filed.

 

When you go around there don't get into a fight or an argument and it might be helpful to have somebody else with you to witness what goes on. They should simply be there to witness and not to take part or to say anything or to get involved in anything


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You only complete the N215 when serving separate particulars of claim...which must be done within 14 days of the claim being issued.

 

If you didnt opt to serve separate particulars ...then the claim will have been issued within 2 days of you submitting and deemed served after 5 calendar days.

 

The Defendant has 19 days from the date on the claim form to acknowledge service...returning it back to MCOL marked " Gone Away " is not a valid response and therefore you should be able to request a default judgment.

 

Why MCOL has sent it back to you only they can answer...You shouldn't have to deliver the claim yourself you have paid for a service...nor should you have to go face to face.

 

Regards

 

Andy


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I'm not sure if that is quite the correct interpretation.

 

My reading is that you must complete a certificate of service once the particulars of claim have been served. If you have served a claim form which contains the particulars of claim then you set about completing and filing the certificate of service from that moment. If you have served a separate particulars of claim then yes, it is correct that the time for completing the certificate of service runs from that later moment.

 

Notice and certificate of service relating to the claim form

6.17

 

(1) Where the court serves a claim form, the court will send to the claimant a notice which will include the date on which the claim form is deemed served under rule 6.14.

 

(2) Where the claimant serves the claim form, the claimant –

 

(a) must file a certificate of service within 21 days of service of the particulars of claim, unless all the defendants to the proceedings have filed acknowledgments of service within that time; and

 

(b) may not obtain judgment in default under Part 12 unless a certificate of service has been filed.

 

https://www.justice.gov.uk/courts/procedure-rules/civil/rules/part06#6.17

 

also it seems to me that the time for filing the certificate of service is 21 days. Years ago it used to be seven days.

 

 

However, I have just come across something extremely surprising, if I understand it correctly:

 

Notification of outcome of postal service by the court

6.18

 

(1) Where –

 

(a) the court serves the claim form by post; and

 

(b) the claim form is returned to the court,

 

the court will send notification to the claimant that the claim form has been returned.

 

(2) The claim form will be deemed to be served unless the address for the defendant on the claim form is not the relevant address for the purpose of rules 6.7 to 6.10.

https://www.justice.gov.uk/courts/procedure-rules/civil/rules/part06#6.17

 

This suggests to me that the court has developed a rule to prevent defendants simply returning a claim form marked "not known here" et cetera. So far as I can gather, if the court serves the claim and the claim form is returned then the court must inform the claimant, but it is still held to be a good service and so presumably, you can go ahead and apply for judgement.

 

Frankly I would cover yourself and make a personal service anyway and then file the certificate. If you can be sure that you have seen the defendant with the claim in his hand then it will be very difficult for him later on in a set aside application to deny knowledge of it.


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" After issuing the claim via moneyclaim Online (to his business address), he sent an envelope back to the court with a note saying 'Gone away'. The court sent this back to me along with the claim form without any further instruction. I know he is actively operating at that address, and 'Gone away' doesn't mean the address is invalid, so don't know why they've sent it back to me."

 

6.18 (2) applies if it was the defendant and not the PO who returned it....then it is deemed as good service and default judgment can be requested after 19 days.....but as already stated clarification from MCOL Northampton is required.

 

If it was the PO who returned it then 6.18 (1) applies and yes the Claimant could hand serve and file a Cert of Service.

 

But generally Certificates of Service are dispensed with if the claim is made through MCOL CCBC...and there are no separate particulars.

 

Notice and certificate of service relating to the claim form

6.17

 

(1) Where the court serves a claim form, the court will send to the claimant a notice which will include the date on which the claim form is deemed served under rule 6.14.

 

(2) Where the claimant serves the claim form, the claimant –

 

(a) must file a certificate of service within 21 days of service of the particulars of claim, unless all the defendants to the proceedings have filed acknowledgments of service within that time; and

 

(b) may not obtain judgment in default under Part 12 unless a certificate of service has been filed.

 

 

And for clarification on separate particulars

 

Particulars of claim and certificate of service

 

6.1 Where the particulars of claim are served by the claimant separately from the claim form pursuant to paragraph 5.2(2), the claimant must –

 

(1) serve the particulars of claim in accordance with rule 7.4(1)(b); and

 

(2) file a certificate of service in form N215 at the County Court Business Centre within 14 days of service of the particulars of claim on the defendant.

 

6.2 The certificate of service may be filed by sending form N215 by email to mcolaos@hmcourts-service.gsi.gov.uk. However, the subject line to the e-mail must contain the claim number.

 

6.3 The claimant must file the particulars of claim at the court to which the proceedings are sent under paragraph 12.1 or 12.2 within 7 days of service of the notice of transfer by the court.

 

6.4 Where the proceedings are not sent to a County Court hearing centre under paragraph 12.1 or 12.2 and remain at the County Court Business Centre, the claimant is not required to file the particulars of claim unless ordered to do so.


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Thank you all so much for your input! To clarify, the defendant did not initially respond to the claim within the time frame (I believe it was 21 days?) and so I requested judgement online. After this, he sent the form and envelope back to the court with said note.

 

Visit him at his business premises and give them a copy of the claim form plus associated admission and defence form. Try to put it in his hand but at the very least make sure that he is there and then leave it on his desk or on his floor – if possible telling what it is.

 

I am considering this but he lives in another city, and am also concerned it could get unpleasant since his business address seems to also be his personal address.

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So the defendant returned the claim pack to MCOL Northampton with a note " Gone fishing "...not the PO service.

 

Have you rang MCOL and asked why they sent the claim form to you ?

 

Ask if they are not aware of the procedure when a defendant fails to respond.

 

Its 19 days to request judgment.....the claimant has 19 days inc service (5) and 14 days to acknowledge service.....then you can request a default judgment.

 

Andy


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Yes that's right, it was the defendant not the PO. I will call MCOL, haven't done it yet as I wasn't sure if I should contact them or the court.

Edited by dx100uk
quote not needed

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Well go and post it through his letterbox


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Well go and post it through his letterbox

 

Thanks, I will do that - appreciate your help!

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