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Consent or not to have judgement set aside

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Hey folks,

 

I took a small business to court because I believe there's strong evidence that their work damaged my car. At the initial hearing the court hadn't issued the letter telling us we needed to exchange evidence, so we were dismissed with a date to exchange evidence by (within a month) and told to return another day on a date set by a letter that would be sent out. That hearing cost me nothing because I was in a two week holiday.

 

I receive a letter with the new hearing date on after a few weeks.

 

Some time goes by and that month deadline for evidence arrives. I receive an email from their solicitor (I'm acting for myself) to request a one week extension, which I grant. A week later, on the deadline, I receive an email copy of the evidence.

 

Hearing date arrives and they're a no-show at court. Neither them nor their solicitor arrive. I'm taken into the room half hour late, during which I offer to call the other party to ask where they are - the judge tells me it's their own responsibility to be there. He decides not to take oral evidence but makes judgement based on both written statements. I win.

 

Almost a month goes by when the letter arrives that I've won and how much I'm owed. Two days later I get an email from their solicitor - they never got the letter with the court date on it. They want me to set aside judgement, presumably so we can go to court again.

 

Now, I have several issues with this. Firstly, I'm self employed so my business lost a full day of income at that second hearing. A third hearing will cost me another full day. I can't claim anything for it as there's no evidence I lose personally - my business does. Secondly, there was a week shy of three months gap between that first and second hearing. Surely any solicitor would enquire after a month of the first hearing when the second one is going to be? Why would you wait three whole months when the second hearing is obviously going to have taken place?

 

I don't mind that they want to face me in court. I mind they didn't turn up in the first place. Another day in court means my business income loss would equate to 39% of my claim, which I feel is getting a bit excessive.

 

So before I say no or yes - what should I do?

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If they knew when the evidence had to be exchanged (they requested an extension) they also knew the hearing date...as you did...same letter.

 

 

Andy


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If they knew when the evidence had to be exchanged (they requested an extension) they also knew the hearing date...as you did...same letter.

 

The judge told us that we had exactly a month (it was the 7th and he said the 7th of next month) to exchange evidence and submit it to the court. He didn't give us a new hearing date then and there though, that came on a separate letter.

 

But their solicitor still did nothing for three months and let the court date pass, which seems to me like their solicitor is either useless or willingly wants to cost me money!

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Well let them set a side at their own request ...you do not need to consent..let the court decide on their application


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you do not need to consent..let the court decide on their application

 

Are there pros and cons for me of consenting or not, or will the outcome be the same regardless?

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Normally consent is agreed if your happy to agree or you have acted unreasonably...which you have not. From what you state this is a qualified Solicitor who does this work for a living and should be fully aware of procedures and consequences if he fails...

 

Consent from yourself is very likely to lead to the judgment being set aside but it’s not guaranteed. Consent on its own is not enough. It is always at the discretion of the court.

 

Judges are generally happy to endorse an agreement made between the parties to litigation. Occasionally, they ask for more information before they make a decision but this is usually to make sure that there are good reasons for removing the judgment.

 

The main reason will be whether they have made the application promptly.

 

I cant see good reason for consent


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