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taking car trader to small claims court

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I expect that the answer is in CPR 19.8


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I expect that if you describe yourself as something like "the estate of Joe Bloggs by his personal representative", claimant – then that will probably do it. You then go on to describe yourself as claimant all the way through that you've already made it clear the claimant is.

Double check it – but I expect that that is the answer

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I have literally just had the post come through the letter box and received a letter from Trading Standards & Licensing Dept from my local council requesting relevant documents (correspondence etc), so that they can contact the trader to resolve the complaint....


Should I follow this process first, and see if it can be resolved and then come back to the claim etc? It does stipulate that "we cannot make a trader refund your money/exchange your goods or repair faults" however seeing an official letter may spur the trader into some sort of action?


Would be interested to hear your thoughts...


Also, in reference to using / defining myself, I was thinking of including the following at the beginning of the particulars of claim


'MY NAME' is acting as the personal representative on behalf of the Late 'MY LATE FATHERS NAME' (claimant). Hereafter, 'MY LATE FATHER'S NAME' will be referred to as the claimant. 




2021-07-05 15-15 2.pdf

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Well I don't know how you managed to attract the attention of trading standards – but well done. Very unusual nowadays.

If they are going to have a look then it could be worth waiting – but on the other hand you shouldn't expect it to happen quickly. I think you could be looking at another month or even two months before there was any kind of feedback to you and as they have said, they won't be able to enforce a refund.

It's clearly a matter for you as to how pressed you are. Personally I don't like sending letters of claim and not following up immediately at the expiry of the deadline. It sends a weak message and you've already done this several times.

You will have to decide.

In terms of your suggested identification of yourself as the claimant, I think it's completely unnecessary. I think the short claim and identify which I suggest is more than adequate.

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Just to add, the PDF which you posted above is quite legible – but we would rather prefer that you scan your documents correctly and also presented them in the correct order – rather as you might like them presented to you if you are trying to help somebody free of charge.

Just because we are providing free help, doesn't mean that this stuff has to be presented without a bit of care. Get a scanner

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Thanks for the advice and noted re documents - I was working from my phone and although I have a scanning app , it didn’t have the facility to black out my personal details hence the edited photos. 
And I have a scanner but thanks for the suggestion

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Even with a phone, they could be presented in the right order

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all in our upload guide


done the pdf for you.




  • Thanks 1

please don't hit Quote...just type we know what we said earlier..

DCA's view debtors as suckers, marks and mugs

NO DCA has ANY legal powers whatsoever on ANY debt no matter what it's Type

and they

are NOT and can NEVER  be BAILIFFS. even if a debt has been to court..

If everyone stopped blindly paying DCA's Tomorrow, their industry would collapse overnight... 

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  • 4 weeks later...



So we have a response from the trader to my local Trading Standards officer. 


"The trader has contacted me. 


He is alleging consumer misuse regarding the usage of the car, i.e. the car had been run low on oil. I have explained that this would need to be proven and the burden of proof may depend on the trader or the consumer depending on when the fault first occurred.


Also the trader indicated that a courtesy car was provided to your father at the time but that car was not been returned Obviously, at Trading Standards we do not advise on the facts as only a judge in small claims can decide on the facts of the case. If a person alleges something then it needs to be proven.


The tenor of the contract has been that they are not liable for the alleged fault as it was consumer misuse and also that they will be pursuing the non return of a courtesy car. 

The matter seems to be at a standstill and it is up to you to decide if you wish to pursue the matter further in court. Please refer to the initial letter I sent to you regarding our remit on civil matters at Sandwell Trading Standards. 


In the event you do go to court you can mention to the judge you did try to resolve the issues through a third party, namely ourselves, to avoid going to court but the matter was not resolved. The judge would look favourably in this information. "


My response to the above is: 


1. The first we knew of the car being low on oil was when the trader returned the car back to my father in August 2020, after having the car from Nov 2019 - end of Jan 2020 (over 3 months) and from March 2020 - August 2020 (6 months). When the trader returned the car in August he casually mentioned that he had topped the car with oil as it had been running low. How can it be misuse when my father didn't even have the car for 6 months prior to the alleged fault?

The car was returned back to the trader in August 2020, within a week of it being returned, due to engine noises that were noticeable, and that were not there before. 


2. The courtesy car was provided to my father whilst his was allegedly being repaired. After my father's death, the trader mentioned the return of courtesy car once to my brother in law who he was in contact with, and it was agreed that he could pick his courtesy car up when he returned my late fathers car. At that point we believed the car was being repaired and would be returned.

In my communication with the trader, not once has he requested return of the car.  The return of the courtesy car has never been an issue and I am happy to arrange return of the courtesy car, although I am hesitant to meet the trader personally. In addition, the car has no car tax (expired in March 2021) therefore I am not willing to drive an untaxed car.


Should I contact the trader to arrange for him to collect it from my fathers house?  And would it be wise to take photos of the condition of the car (inside and outside, and mileage) in case he tried to clutch at straws and make further false allegations? 


3. In regards to the trader's claim as consumer misuse, if this was the case then why was my father not made aware at the time, and why did the trader take the car back to "repair it" and where is it now? Also, why has the trader continued to take the car apart to the point where it is now is an undriveable state than when it was when taken? 


I am waiting for the case officer to write me back to the response, however I just wanted to get your thoughts on the above. 


Thank you 

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The trading standards officer didn’t come back to me yesterday so I’m going to call her on Monday morning and just clarify that there is no further action she will be taking so I can proceed to submit the money claim form. 


However before I do this, I just wanted your guidance on a few things please. 


1.  Should I contact the trader to return his courtesy car as he has mentioned this to the Trading Standards officer?  I am not willing to drive an untaxed car, nor do I want to particularly drive to him even if he arranges the car tax, but do I contact him to arrange a suitable day / time for him to collect it from my mums address. ? 


2.  Should I register my fathers car in my name? The DVLA were made aware that my father had passed but at the time, we were under the impression the car was being repaired and would eventually be returned back to us so that we could decide what we wanted to do with it (keep it vs sell it). The situation has since changed and I’m just wondering whether I should register myself as the keeper 


3.  My father also had private registration plates on the which we want to keep. I know I need to fill in the relevant paperwork to retain the plates, however should I request the physical plates back from the trader? In hindsight I maybe should have included this in the letters that I sent to him, but is this something I can request via the money claim? In addition, when the keys for the car were given to the trader, they had a key ring of my son of when he was a baby. It might sound petty but I really don’t like the thought of the trader having this, so am I able to request this via the courts also? 


4.  When I fill in the online money claim form, should I put my late fathers names as the claimant , i.e Mrs MY NAME as the personal representative of Mr FATHERS NAME (deceased)’.


5.  I also just wanted to have a final sense check of the wording of the particulars of claim as below. 


The late Mr XXX, claimant, bought a Jaguar vehicle registration number XXXX XXX from the defendant for £10995 on 4th September 2019. Soon afterwards, the vehicle developed serious defects and despite defendant's attempts at repairs, it has continued to exhibit problems. The vehicle is in the possession of the defendant and has been with him for 21 months during the entire 22 months of the claimant's ownership. The defendant is fully aware of the nature of the defects and has been fully appraised. The defendant has supplied a vehicle which is not of satisfactory quality and the claimant has been fundamentally deprived of substantially for the whole benefit of the contract. Prior to issuing proceedings, the personal representative of the Late Mr XXX, claimant, sent a Letter of Claim to the defendant demanding payment. In the circumstances, the claimant seeks reimbursement of £10000


The one thing I am unsure of in the above  wording is the part where it says “….and has been with him for 21 months during the entire 22 months of the claimant's ownership”


Is the car still classed as the “claimant’s ownership” even though my father passed during this period and I haven’t registered the car under my name? Do I (as the personal representative/ executor) technically own the car? 


I apologise for all the questions but I would really like to get this right to avoid any unnecessary delays / costs etc. 


And I appreciate all your help with this :)


thank you 

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Have you told us about this courtesy car before or am I right that this is the first we've heard of it?

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I can’t remember if I have mentioned it before or not without looking through the thread. 

it was given to my dad while his was being “repaired”. And since his passing it’s been parked on the drive, not been used. 
The trader mentioned one about picking it up and I said it would be easier to pick it up when he dropped ours (my dads) off, and that was the one and only time it was mentioned.

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I think we spend a lot of time on this and given you a lot of advice. On the other hand, you have not been forthcoming and now we find a completely new and extremely relevant piece of information that apparently you are in possession of a car which was lent to your father by the trader and for some reason or other you appear to think that it is scarcely relevant.


I'm afraid I don't think there's anything more I can say here


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Please can you explain how I have not been forthcoming? Because I wouldn’t disclose the name of the trader? 

And I didn’t say the courtesy car was irrelevant but at the time I was in contact with the trader (via phone) it was agreed that he would collect it when ours was returned. I am happy for him to collect it at a convenient time but that still doesn’t shy away from the fact that he still has my dads car and it still isn’t repaired, despite him having it since last August. 


if you don’t wish to help me any further then that’s fine - I have been completely honest and open and apologise if I hadn’t made it clear previously in regards to the courtesy car. 


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