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Court Claim Against Hermes raised - damaged goods ***Settled in Full at Mediation***


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Hi, I'm hoping someone can advise me on Hermes.

 

I sent some bathroom taps back to a supplier using Hermes. I paid extra for the insurance (£20). The taps were wrapped in bubble wrap and inside boxes, however upon arrival the bathroom company said that the box was rattling and the taps inside were damaged (small dents and straches). The bathroom company would not accept the taps back, and therefore I did not get a refund (just under £300).

 

I have been in a back and forth with Hermes since sometime in Aug - a huge number of emails with either the most incompetent or complicit staff I have ever had to deal with. 

 

I have provided Hermes with an email from the bathroom company stating that the goods were rattling, damaged and that they would not accept them for a refund. Hermes have photos of the damage, how much they cost and other details they claimed to need.

 

Hermes have today said that they will not take my claim forward as, as I have said that they WERE adequately wrapped and did not provide them with proof that they weren't already damaged. Firstly, they have never asked for this proof, secondly I sent these taps in good faith and did not think to take pictures before hand. It is my belief that the taps were damaged in transit, not by me or the bathroom company.

 

I have exhausted the Hermes complaints channel - they have been messing me a around for months - and now I want to take them to court. I have had a read around and believe the next step is to write a 'letter before claim'.

 

Please can someone give me some advice on this? Am I wrong for not taking photos before using Hermes? Is this standard practice with couriers? Is there a particular act or law I should quote in the letter? 

 

Just to be clear, I definitely will take them to court, this won't be an empty threat. £300 is a lot of money  and they have wasted my time, which I also believe is worth something.

 

Appreciate any advice!

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After reading around some more, I realise I should have mentioned I also did a Subject Access Request, however I don't think I did this correctly i.e. it was a bullet point amongst others in an email. I guess I should do this request separately and in letter form, recorded delivery? Can I also send this via email?

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You made  number of errors:

 

You didn't take pictures

You used Hermes

You relied on faith (Bless!)

 

Yes, you will have to issue legal proceedings.

Post up your proposed letter of claim here before you send it off.  Don't expect it to have any effect.  You will have to issue the papers.

 

Normally Hermes would then force you at least to go to mediation and would then settle for what they think they can get away with in order to avoid court action.

 

Hermes don't want judgments against them where those judgments would expose their unfair treatment of customers - such as insisting on insurance to cover their own negligence, or relying on a prohibited items list to evade liability for loss.

 

However, in your case, the issue is not one of insurance or prohibited items.  The question is merely whether the items were adequately packed and so on this issue they could afford the risk of going to court and losing because nothing would undermine their way of doing business.

I am telling you this because it means that Hermes might be slightly more determined than usual to to face a judge even though the dispute is over a small sum.

 

Read around some of the Hermes threads to see how it normally goes - but as I suggested, most of them will not be relevant to you.

 

I don't see any purpose in sending an SAR in this case but please do tell us if you disagree.

 

Once you send the letter of claim, you must carry out your threat to begin the claim on day 15. Register on the Moneyclaim website and start getting the claim ready.  Let us see the draft POC before you click it off

 

 

 

 

 

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Hi, I've just drafted a letter of claim.

 

Please can you let me know what you think. Should I add money for my time that they have wasted (which is a lot!)? Also, is it worth mentioning the films of Hermes staff throwing parcels around? The most recent one has appeared in the papers yesterday, or would that not be relevant to my claim as I can't prove that any of the parcels they have been caught throwing belong to me?

 

 

 

Martijn De Lange

Hermes

Capitol House 1 Capital Close

Morley

Leeds

West Yorkshire

LS27 0WH

 

Dear Martijn,

 

Reference: XXX

Parcel ID: XXX 

 

On the 20th August 2020, I purchased your next day delivery service, with insurance cover, to send some taps and components back to a bathroom supplier as they were not suitable for our bath. The items had been taken out their packaging to view them, before being wrapped back in their original packaging (bubble wrap and plastic packaging, inside their original boxes), and were then placed comfortably inside a large box (i.e the boxes had not space to move around inside the large box) for you to courier.

 

On arrival, the recipient has stated that the box was rattling. Upon inspection, dents and scratches were found as the items were damaged in transit. This has meant that I did not get a full refund for the unsuitable items.

 

Parcel contents: 

1. Hansgrohe - Talis E 3-Hole Rim Mounted Bath Mixer - £145.78

2. Hansgrohe - Basic Set For 3 Hole Rim Mounted Bath Mixer - £138.64

3. Also included Mixer 110 - with Pop-Up Waste, which was the only item undamaged and refunded by the bathroom supplier.

 

After multiple exchanges with various Hermes staff, I have now been told that you will not process my claim as I do not have photos of the items before I sent them. I sent these items in good faith and did not damage them before sending. Indeed, in one of the many correspondences with yourselves, you admit that parcels go through a number of handling and transportation processes where damage can occur. Additionally, there are a number of films in the press (4th November 2020 - The Daily Mirror, The Sun) showing the rough handling of parcels by Hermes.

 

I hereby inform you that unless you reimburse me for the £284.42 for the above mentioned goods within 14 days, I shall issue a claim in the County Court to recover this money from you, plus interest, plus costs without any further notice.

 

NB: a hard copy of this email has been sent today recorded delivery.

 

Regards,

 

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I think you should stop doing the "good faith" bit.

 

Take that out – but otherwise it will do although it's a bit heavy on narrative.

When it comes to the particulars of claim we will help you do a much briefer version

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Hi,

 

Here's my particulars of claim. Pls let me know what you think.

 

Reference: XXX

Parcel ID: XXX

  

Defendant courier company undertook to deliver the claimant’s taps and fixings to the value of £284.42 to an address in the UK. Defendants damaged the parcel contents through their negligent handling.

 

The claimant seeks compensation for the defendant’s negligence: £284.42, plus interest pursuant to section 69, County Courts Act 1984

 

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That is certainly brief. Well done.

 

32 minutes ago, Eyeroll said:

 

 

Reference: XXX

Parcel ID: XXX

  

Defendant courier company undertook to deliver the claimant’s taps and fixings to the value of £284.42 to an address in the UK. Defendants breached the contract by damaging the parcel contents through their negligent handling.

 

The claimant seeks compensation for the defendant’s negligence: £284.42, plus interest pursuant to section 69, County Courts Act 1984

 

 

 

They will defend – and they will choose mediation. The mediator will try to get you to compromise and it will be up to you whether or not you want to stick your heels in. If you stick your heels and then of course it will go to court and you risk losing the lot – but on the other hand, Hermes risks losing as well.

Their particular Achilles heel here is that you did actually pay for their so called compensation cover.

Because there is no particular issue which they could lose and which would impact on their business methods, they might decide that this one is worth the risk of going to court.

If you win, it will be very good for you – but it won't establish any particular principle for others.

 

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  • 1 month later...

Hello! I hope you had a good Christmas.

 

Please can you help me? Hermes are disputing the full amount, are defending the claim and have filed a defence. I don't understand what they have written so could do with some help understanding, and what the next steps are.

 

As mentioned above, I did take out full cover i.e the £20. They have the proof of the cost of the items. One tap was undamaged so I am only claiming for the two items that are damaged (thought this was clear in my letter of claim?) - £284.42.

 

 

 

 

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We would prefer that you post up the original document in PDF format please – the whole thing

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Thank you.

This is the standard response. They seem to be in a mess because as you say, they have even sent you an incomplete document.

It's certainly not quite clear whether they have the impression that you didn't buy any of their so-called insurance but of course if you have read around the threads on this sub- forum, you will understand completely the position that it is completely unfair that you, the customer, should be required to purchase insurance against Hermes own negligence.
It is Hermes which should insure against their own negligence, not you the customer.

They also say that they want you to prove the value of the lost or damaged items. Presumably you can do that easily – so there shouldn't be any problem there.

 

Hermes will also try to say that their terms and conditions say that they don't carry anything of a greater value than £300. Of course this is nonsense and your position will be that you fully declared the value and not only that you bought the so-called insurance cover to insure you against the full value of the damaged items.

There really is nothing new here at all. It's standard stuff and you should now wait for the directions questionnaire to arrive which hopefully will be within the next 14 days. That will invite you to make representations – including to say which court any hearing should be held in – and you will indicate that it will be your local court because you are a litigant in person and they are a business.
Hermes no doubt will agree to go to mediation and so you will be asked whether you agreed – and you should say yes.

Make sure you have read up on the sub- forums about the mediation journey and how you will even come under pressure from the mediator to give up some of your money.
Of course in order to go ahead from here you will have to pay an additional fee and this will be a decision for you, but remember that this is where Hermes is testing your resolve to go forward. The fact that they are already spending far more than the value of the lost items means nothing to them. They simply want to face you out and to crush you.

So don't worry. Make sure you read around about the various arguments and what happens at mediation. Let us know when you get the directions questionnaire

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Yes, agree to mediation – but the fact that they haven't asked for it probably means that they won't go there. But certainly it would be a good idea to show willing.


The next thing that will happen will be either that you get a date for mediation – which seems to be unlikely – or you will get notice that the case has been transferred to your local court for a hearing. You will get a date and it will probably be a telephone hearing.

Let us know and then we will start preparing.

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Yes...to their Solictors.....as per my link above...3copies

 

 

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Yes whoever is acting for them

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 The National Consumer Service

 

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

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • Andyorch changed the title to Court Claim Against Hermes raised - damaged goods ***Settled in Full at Mediation***
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