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Enforcing an FOS's Final Decision at County Court using Form N332A***Resolved***

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I hope for your help on how I should apply the Central London County Court to Enforce an Financial Ombudsman Final Decision using form N322A?

 

I am a Danish pensioner, living in Denmark, on 28 March 2018 the Financial Ombudsman Service ( FOS) made a Final Decision in my favor regarding my complaint against Abshire-Smith Global Ltd., 26 York Street, London W1Y 6PZ, which I accepted.

 

However, the business has unfortunately not complied, i.e. paid me the required amount (GBP 84.833, incl. 8% interest and a GBP 750 compensation awarded by the FOS) within 28 days of me accepting the FOS Final Decision, as they were ordered to by the FOS, despite many reminders from the FOS and finally the FOS reporting the business to the Regulator (the Financial Conduct Authority), but all in vain.

 

The FOS has therefore advised, that I can apply the County Court, nearest to the business, in order to enforce the ombudsman decision (see the attached FOS Consumer Factsheet "enforcing an ombudsman decision in court").

 

I therefore informed the business that I would now proceed to the County Court unless they complied with the FOS Final Decision - and thereby also saving the business the considerable court fee.

 

However, as I did not hear from the business I sent my application by email (Enquiries.centrallondon.countycourt@justice.gov.uk) to the Central London County Court on 25 Oct. 2018, with all required documents duly completed incl. Form N322A, but less court fee (I requested the Court for information on the court fee amount and how to pay it). I received an automated reply, that I would receive a answer within 10 working days. However, 10 working days have now passed and I have not heard from the County Court, despite sending them a reminder last week.

 

In the meantime Adam Neal, the CEO and Founder of Abshire-Smith Global, has sent me an email informing "Please note we have the option of a judicial review, which is what we are requesting". They have said this before to the FOS shortly after the FOS Final Decision, but apparently it was just a threat and I also believe they should have requested for a Judicial Review within 3-4 months of the date of the Final Decision, so it's properly another delaying tactic?

 

I have, therefore, asked my contact person at the FOS, the Adjudicator,for information on what the Judicial Review means and how I can know if the business has actually applied for this, if the Court accepted the application, the processing time and whether I will be informed of the outcome. Apart from informing me she will inform me "shortly" I have not heard from her again in over 2 weeks, despite my reminder by email.

 

I therefore wish to proceed to enforce my FOS Final Decision at the County Court, but how should I proceed, as they do not respond to my emails?

 

I hope you can help me?

enforcing-an-ombudsmans-decision.pdf

n322a-eng.pdf

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Which business was it? If theyre not compling with the FOS or other regulators, they might be trying to wind the business up.


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In theory it should be straightforward to begin an action in the county court to enforce the decision of the FOS. However, you are certainly right to query the fees before you go ahead. I'm not at all sure whether enforcing a decision like this is charged the same level of fees as if you were making a money claim. I gather that you are talking about over £84,000 here. Is that correct?

 

I would doublecheck with the companies house web check service http://wck2.companieshouse.gov.uk//compdetails that you do have the right company and the correct address. The registered address which I have discovered is different to the address you have given above.

 

Also, I think you have to start smelling a rat. The companies listed as dormant and their accounts are overdue by about four years.

 

I'm not too sure why you have left it for four or five months since the date of the ombudsman's decision. I think you should have moved more quickly. As to whether or not they can get a judicial review of the FOS decision, I'm not at all sure I'm afraid that much of this is going to be outside our experience. However, given the size of the sum involved I'm afraid that I would think about instructing solicitor if you have the funds for it.

 

Also I would start going around the Internet to all the various review sites start posting up details of the story that you have experienced and explained to everyone exactly how this company has failed you. This is the kind of thing that can cause serious problems for a company like this and they may then well want to deal with you in order to bring it to an end.

 

I think it's a shame that you haven't had a response from the county court about the fees. I think you would be better off calling them if you can. They are extremely busy. Extremely under resourced and not very efficient – although the people who work there are generally speaking very nice.

 

Also, if you are in a pension – if you have limited resources then you may be able to apply for a fee waiver.

 

From what you say, you can be fairly certain that there suggestion that they will go for a judicial review is a delaying tactic. I don't know what the what the time limit is for bringing a judicial review is but three or four months certainly sounds like a very long time. I would certainly expect that the time limit for bringing the review has expired.

 

Certainly your first move must be to discover what the fees are for this kind of action and then start calculating whether you think that this is a risky move or not. On the basis that they are going to be slippery, you could end up getting the judgement but even that won't get you your money. You would then have to put the High Court enforcement officers in and hope that they will be able to get your money for you.

 

I'm afraid that none of this is straightforward


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Okay I've telephoned the court in central London. I had to wait quite a while but eventually I got through to a very helpful guy who told me, amazingly, that the fee for the N322 a is

 

is…

 

is…

 

£44!! :jaw::jaw:

 

At that price, I think you should just go for it. Stop wasting any more time and get the papers in. However, don't expect it to be easy.


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In post 1 you mention adjudicator

Have you escalated this to the ombudsman??

A final decision from an adjudicator is not binding for court purposes if i remember rightly from the ppi days

 

It HAS to be a final decision from the ombudsmen .


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Thank you for your quick reply and advice.

1. The amount I claim is GBP 84.833, which includes 8% interest since 16 January 2015 and a GBP 750 compensation awarded by the FOS.

2. I have calculated the court fee to GBP 4.242, from the guidelines given by the Court

3. The business has a Registered Head Office address, which I used, and a Trading Office address.

4. The business has 21 days to comply with the final decision, after I accepted it. After that the FOS has been chasing the business, etc. and we have to wait for the payment for a couple of weeks. Every time I have to chase the FOS to take action and finally they reported the business to the FCA, then wait some more weeks. so that's the reason for the long delay before going to the County Court.

 

It's really disappointing the business can just ignore an FOS Final Decision like that.

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good thanks for clarifying..

 

dx


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Thank you for your quick reply and advice.

1. The amount I claim is GBP 84.833, which includes 8% interest since 16 January 2015 and a GBP 750 compensation awarded by the FOS.

2. I have calculated the court fee to GBP 4.242, from the guidelines given by the Court

3. The business has a Registered Head Office address, which I used, and a Trading Office address.

4. The business has 21 days to comply with the final decision, after I accepted it. After that the FOS has been chasing the business, etc. and we have to wait for the payment for a couple of weeks. Every time I have to chase the FOS to take action and finally they reported the business to the FCA, then wait some more weeks. so that's the reason for the long delay before going to the County Court.

 

It's really disappointing the business can just ignore an FOS Final Decision like that.

please can you pointers to the court guidelines that you are following. I suspect that you are simply applying the charges from a money claim.

 

I was very specific to the adviser who I spoke to at the County Court and he was very clear that it is a fixed fee of £44


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Thanks a lot for the call to the Central London County Court and the very good news about the court fee, which I calculated myself to GBP 4.242, as per their guideline!

 

I have submitted my application with the required documents, incl. Form N322A, all duly completed, by mail to the Enquiries at Central London County Court on 25 Oct. 2018. I guess I have the patience, as I started my complaint with the business back in January 2015!

 

My mail to Enquiries Central London County Court:

 

Dear Sir/Madam,

 

I hereby submit my attached application (Form N322A) to your Court to enforce the Financial Ombudsman Service Final Decision of 28 March 2018.

 

I am a Danish national, pensioner, 67 years of age and living in Denmark.

 

On 28 March 2018 the Financial Ombudsman Service ( FOS) made a final decision in my favor regarding my complaint against Abshire-Smith Global Ltd., 26 York Street, London W1Y 6PZ. However, the business has unfortunately not complied (i.e. paid me the required amount of GBP 84.833, less court fee, within 28 days of the date of the Final Decision) as they were ordered to by the FOS, despite many reminders and finally also reporting the business to the Regulator (the Financial Conduct Authority), but all in vain.

 

The FOS has therefore advised that I can now proceed to enforce the Ombudsman Decision in the County Court nearest to the business location and drawing the Court’s attention to Section 228(5) of FSMA 2000 and Paragraph 16 in schedule 17 of FSMA 2000.

 

I hope I have submitted my application to the correct office of your Court (which I believe is the nearest Court to the business). Please advise the required court fee amount (please check if the amount on the attached form N322A is correct) and how may I pay it so that your Court to process my application as soon as possible?

 

Please find enclosed:

1. My completed and signed form N322A.

2. Final Decision of 28.03.2018 from the FOS.

3. Consumer Factsheet on “Enforcing an ombudsman’s decision in court”.

4. Letter from my contact officer at the Financial Ombudsman Service, dated 4 September 2018.

5. My calculation of interest.

6. My initial bank transfers to Abshire-Smith Global

 

I look forwarding to be hearing from you soonest possible.

 

Yours sincerely,

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Enforcing an award in the County Court – fees order 8.9

 

• Application for the enforcement of an award for a sum of money or

other decision made by any court, tribunal, body or person other

than the High Court or County Court, unless where exceptions apply.

£44

 

Enforcing an award in the High Court – fees order 7.5

 

• Request or application: £66

- to register a judgment or order; or

- for permission to enforce an arbitration award; or

- for a certificate or certified copy of a judgment or order for

use abroad.


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gov.uk/make-court-claim-for-money/court-fees

 

Home

Business and self-employed

Business debt and bankruptcy

Make a court claim for money

Contents

How to make a claim

Court fees

Claim the interest

After you make your claim

What happens at the hearing

Enforce a judgment

Court fees

You must pay a court fee when you make your claim.

The fee for making a money claim online is cheaper than the fee for sending a paper claim form.

If you know the claim amount

The court fee is based on the amount you’re claiming, plus interest.

Claim amount

Paper form fee

Online claim fee

Up to £300

£35

£25

£300.01 to £500

£50

£35

£500.01 to £1,000

£70

£60

£1,000.01 to £1,500

£80

£70

£1,500.01 to £3,000

£115

£105

£3,000.01 to £5,000

£205

£185

£5,000.01 to £10,000

£455

£410

£10,000.01 to £100,000

5% of the claim

4.5% of the claim

£100,000.01 to £200,000

5% of the claim

You cannot make a claim online

More than £200,000

£10,000

You cannot make a claim online

To calculate 5% of the value of the claim, take the amount you’re claiming and multiply it by 0.05. If necessary, round down the result to the nearest 1p.

The fee will be calculated for you if you make your claim online.

If you do not know the claim amount

Use the paper claim form if you do not know the exact amount - you cannot make a claim online.

Which fee you need to pay

You’ll need to estimate the amount you’re claiming and pay the paper form fee for that amount.

For example, if you estimate you’re claiming between £3,000.01 and £5,000, you’d have to pay £205.

If you leave the ‘amount claimed’ blank, the fee is £10,000.

Pay the court fee

Pay by credit or debit card if you’re making a claim online.

If you use the paper claim form, pay with a postal order or cheque (payable to ‘HM Courts and Tribunals Service’).

You may have to pay more fees later on - for example, if there’s a court hearing or you need to get a judgment enforced.

You may be able to claim the fees back if you win the case.

Find out more about court fees.

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I'm afraid that it is quite likely that sending them a form without an accompanying fee will simply be treated like a load of correspondence and put to the back of the queue.

 

I would suggest that you send the form again and this time with the fee. Make sure that it is sent by some registered trackable post. How are you sending the fee? Are you using a cheque drawn on a UK bank? If you aren't then that might also cause problems.

 

As I have already said, the County Court staff are very nice, well-intentioned, under resourced, overstretched, and I would be very wary about sending them things that they aren't used to


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And yes, from what you have posted above – you are applying the fee rate for money claim which is calculated according to the value of the action.

 

What you are doing is completely different. I really wouldn't hang around. Get the claim in. There should be no problem about you winning – it should be pretty well automatic although be prepared for judges who have never done this kind of thing before and aren't sure that it's possible. I hope you are intending to be there to steer it through.

 

You will have to come armed with chapter and verse including the relevant legislation, printouts from the FOS website et cetera.

 

Once you eventually get your judgement, don't hang around. Have it transferred up to the High Court enforcement mechanism immediately.

 

Don't enter into any negotiation with the company. Don't get involved in any kind of discussion, simply put the sheriffs in and hope for the best.


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Thank you very much for all the very useful advice and information.

 

Perhaps I should send my application to the Central London County Court by registered mail and include a bank cheque of £44 made out to the court. I don't think I can use the " Money Claim" online for this purpose - also because I am not residing in the UK?

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I can imagine that you would need a UK address for service of documents. Do you not know anybody in UK who might be able to receive documents for you, open them and then scan them over to you very quickly.

 

I think this is very important


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Should I make the bank cheque payable to just: HM Courts and Tribunals Service

 

Or do I need to include an address?

 

"if you use the paper claim form, pay with a postal order or cheque (payable to ‘HM Courts and Tribunals Service’)."

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Unfortunately I don't know anybody in the UK, but according to the Court's guideline it should be possible to send and receive all documents by email?

 

"The use of email in the Civil and Family Courts From the 7 December 2015 all enquiries to civil courts and family courts can be received by email.

What documents can be sent by email? You can send all letters and documents relevant to the case including adoption cases. However, due to the sensitive nature of adoption work the court will only send emails to secure email accounts. We will send you confirmation that we got your email."

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I'm sure you are right that they are prepared to accept email correspondence, but I'm equally sure that they will want some kind of UK residential address.

 

As I have already said, the county courts aren't used to doing things "differently" and I would say that if you gave a Danish residential address, this will send them all into a flurry of confusion.

 

No wonder that Abshire-Smith Global Ltd seem to be so unfazed by you. Frankly I think that you are playing into their hands.

 

Find a way of using a UK residential address.


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Have you bothered to read the link I provided in post # 5 ?

 

https://www.lawgazette.co.uk/practice-management/enforcing-financial-ombudsman-decisions/5041981.article

 

Also you are using the wrong form.....use N322B....not N322A

 

You can make payment by telephone.

 

You are not making a money claim...simply making application to enforce the Order using a Part 8 CPR process.

 

It should be the case that a litigant in person can go to the court and make a part 8 CPR Claim, accompanied by Form N322A (with evidence of course) and the court should then (without a hearing) order that the money award be recovered by execution issued from the court as if it were payable under an order of that court.

 

Also is there a particular reason for using the above court......It has a shocking reputation for not responding and making errors.


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Thanks for all the info and useful lawgazette link.

 

I believe the Central London County Court is the court closest to Abshire-Smith Global Head Office at 26 York Street, London, W1U 6PZ. According to FOS factsheet: "You will usually need to start enforcement proceedings in the branch of the court that is local to the business". Perhaps there's a better County Court I can use?

 

I have read the information written by Tobias Haynes (and previously the link from Debt Camel) several times and I am still in doubt whether to use form N322A or N322B, actually the forms seems completely identical, but if you say form N322B is the correct form to use in my case - I will do so. However, I am now in doubt on how to enforce the order using the mentioned Part 8 CPR process? Should I also complete Form N208: Claim form ( CPR Part 8)?

 

All in all it seems quite a difficult task for me to obtain the Court Order, so I am considering the help of a Solicitor, (edit ). After all, the expenses for their assistance will be included in my claim to the business.

Edited by Andyorch
Solicitors name removed

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" All in all it seems quite a difficult task for me to obtain the Court Order, so I am considering the help of a Solicitor,. After all, the expenses for their assistance will be included in my claim to the business."

 

That would be a wise move...and the added bonus of someone here in the UK dealing with it for you.


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I just wanted to update you of progress of my above query:

 

I contacted a solicitor, but he concluded, after I have been chasing and reminding him and his office many times over one month, "that it would not be cost effective for me to use his services"! I therefore went back to the Central London County Court to enquire how I could make the £44 court fee payment, considering I don't know anybody in the UK and I therefore need to make the payment from Denmark. Fortunately I did get contact to a very helpful and persistent officer at the Correspondence Team of the Central London County Court, and after much writing back and forth over several weeks, he contacted their foreign payment office in person and was told it was possible to make the payment using an international bank draft for £44.

 

Then, after chasing my Danish bank, the bank draft was posted to the Court and I could thus resend my N322A application to the court together with my Final Decision of the Financial Ombudsman Services and all other supporting document, including my calculation of 8% accrued interest. Surprisingly, after a few days I received by email and post my "N322 Order for Recovery of Reward" dated 28 January 2019" which has been before a District Judge. The Order has also been sent to the business by post.

 

Now, I assume the business owing me money has 14 days to make the payment to me and if nothing happens I will have to lift my Court Order to the High Court using a High Court Enforcement Office and a private Enforcement Service company/baliffs? I have seen there's a £66 fee for this service, but otherwise no other fees if the business pays up? I also wonder if I should contact the business and advice them of the Court Order?

Edited by Andyorch
Paras

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