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Captain Bat v HSBC


chauvesouris
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Hello All,

 

I logged a claim for just over £2000 with MCOL in May (following all the usual shenanigans and the letter from Colin etc.). I received a letter from them saying that HSBC have asked for 28 days to prepare their defence. Counting from the actual date of service, that 28 days was up just before I went on holiday on 23 June. Now I am back and I still haven't heard anything more - either from the court or from HSBC. Should I be writing to the court to ask them to proceed anyway, or is there something else I should be doing?

 

Thank you, in advance.

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have you gone on mcol and checked the status -

does it say defended - then that means they have defended as per normal and in a couple of weeks (very soon) you will get a copy of their defence and a transfer to your local court. then the local court will be in touch to say how they want to proceed.

 

if your mcol says - judgment - press the button

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Yes, it is being defended. MCOL says there's nothing more to be done online.

 

DG have ticked the "I intend to defend all of this claim" box on their acknowledgement of service form. But their 28 days is up and I have heard nothing from them (or from Northampton cc).

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no, you won't do. they have taken the 28 days allowed and then filed a defence - and as i said above you will in due course hear from the mcol peeps that it is transferred to your local court and send you a copy of their defence (which we've seen a zillion times). with the amount of claims going through the system - this transfer and defence takes 2-3 weeks at the mo to get to you. then you wait again to see how the local court wants to proceed.

 

 

one further thought - you need to send dg a copy of your schedule of charges at this point if you haven't already and you need to send the court 2 copies (if you haven't when they acknowledged) so, if you haven't sent the court their copies - i'd now wait until you get your transfer to the local court and then send it to them - but dg's copy you can send now

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Thanks, Lateralus.

 

It will be two weeks on Thursday since the 28 days ran out. Is there anything worth doing to check and make sure things are still progressing? Or do you think it is safe to sit tight and wait?

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Ha ha. Guess what arrived in Tuesday's post? It is almost as if Lateralus has some sort of divine knowledge.

 

It looks like the standard HSBC defence. And I have the order for no AQ (unless the local DJ wants one). I am going to phone the local court tomorrow and check about the AQ situation (re fees etc.) and start sending nudge letters to DG - it's got to be worth a try.

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don't say that - there's a guy on here somewhere who will think that's proof i work for hsbc.................lol...............as if!

 

 

 

 

hsbc and dg and even the courts are just really, really predicatable

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...apart from their apparently random decisions about settling some claims early and taking others to the wire. I wonder if they do have any actual method or whether they just let a few of them through to ease up the load on DG.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I wrote and sent my first nudge letter to DG on Tuesday:

 

------------------------------

Dear Miss Eaves,

 

######## v HSBC Bank

Claim No. 7QZ74455

Date Issued: 18/05/2007

 

HSBC Account Number: #######

 

I have received notification from Northampton County Court that you are defending the above claim on behalf of HSBC Bank and that the claim has been transferred to Wandsworth County Court.

 

Please find attached a copy of the schedule of charges which I have submitted to the court. I will, of course, be asking the court to apply the simple interest rate of 8% per annum as per the County Courts Act s69.

 

I appreciate that your client is dealing with a large number of claims similar to my own. I am also aware that they have so far failed to defend a single case in court. I firmly believe that the case based on Reg 5 UTCCR 1999 (and the example in Sch 2(1)(e)) is about as clear cut as the law gets - hence your client's refusal to see the matter go to court.

 

Mindful of the two possible outcomes of this dispute; namely that your client will either offer me a settlement before the case is due to be heard, or your client will lose in court, I would urge you to put it to them that they should settle now rather than abuse the court process in order merely to delay payment. I am willing to consider an offer in full and final settlement of my claim for not less than £2,400.00 + £0.44 statutory interest per day from 18 May 2007 until the date the settled amount is paid to me. This amount includes the detailed charges plus interest, my court fees, and my other expenses (in both time and money) relating to this claim. I am not willing to agree to a confidentiality clause, nor will I waive my right to further action.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

etc.

------------------------------

 

I don't expect to hear anything back from them. But I am going to write to the court next week and ask them to strike out the defence as an abuse of process, or alternatively to consider making a draft directions order to call HSBC's bluff. I will post it on here when I am happy with it.

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  • 4 months later...

I have been letting my studies get in the way of my internet surfing lately but there has been movement in my claim. It was stayed by the judge (acting on court's own motion and initiative) in August, while I was on holiday. I wrote back saying I objected as soon as I got the letter, but I didn't think there was much chance of a successful appeal - seeing as it was the judge's idea to stay the claim. So I didn't appeal using the appropriate form and then I wasn't surprised that I didn't hear anything back...

 

And then, in mid October, I received a notice from the court that my claim was listed for a hearing on 14 November. I called the court and they said it was to decide on lifting the stay and on striking out the defence (as I had requested in an early letter to the court and in my "appeal" letter).

 

As luck would have it, I was due to be in France until today and so I wrote to the court asking for the hearing to be rescheduled. I heard nothing from the court for a couple of weeks and so I called them again (Monday 5th November) and they said they hadn't received my letter. So I faxed it through and they said it would be dealt with urgently. I called again on Friday and they said it was due to be dealt with that afternoon. And I've been frantically ringing the court ever since and have, typically, been unable to get through. So I am hoping they haven't gone ahead without me, but if they have I will have to complain.

 

Meanwhile, I decided to make a request for information from DG - namely, I asked them to give me details of how much they have settled in cases like mine, how many cases there have been etc etc. I got the expected refusal back from them when I arrived home today (the new St Pancras is quite nice, by the way). I expected a refusal because a request for information under CPR Rule 18 doesn't apply to cases which have been allocated to the Small Claims Track. But then it occurred to me that my case was stayed before it had the chance to be allocated; so it hasn't been allocated to a track, and so HSBC are bound to give me the information unless they can show that it's irrelevant or would be disproportionately difficult to provide.

 

I don't hold out much hope really - it doesn't seem likely to me that a judge in a county court is going to remove a stay imposed by his buddies (or himself). And although it is clear to you and me and everybody who doesn't have their finger in the pie, that HSBC have abused the courts since the beginning of all this, I can't see the judge risking opening the floodgates. But it gives me something to do while I wait for the OFT to decide whether they're actually going to do anything, and then do it, and then fight the appeals etc....

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Hiya Chau, good to see your still fighting your corner :) although your right about the stay appeals, even for cases of hardship the stays have been left in place... and even on one case replaced after it was lifted following proving a sound hardship case in court :rolleyes:.

 

It would be interesting to hear your views on possible pressure from the government on the county court judges... possible or not?.... only in theory of course :)

 

pete

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Hi Pete.

 

I don't think there's any way the government can put pressure on the judges - at least that's the theory in constitutional terms; separation of powers etc. And in practice there's not a lot they can do. Obviously the judiciary have ears and the government have mouths so there's always a possibility that they might communicate, but it's not really practical at county court level.

 

However, there's nothing to stop Parliament from passing emergency legislation to do something about it. However, I would say the government's strongest hand lies in talking directly to the banks. The big question is really whether the government actually cares - and I'm not sure the answer is positive.

 

I was reading the HSBC Interim Report today (the one they released at the end of July and which admits that unauthorised overdraft refunds cost them $236 million in the first half of the year) and was struck by the fact that HSBC were saying quite clearly that this wasn't expected to have any material impact on the company, and that they had already provided for any future costs. They also had the nerve to say that, "the bank intends strongly to defend its position" - presumably their idea of a strong defence is to keep denying they've done anything wrong until just before it gets to court and then to pay out. I suppose it's quite a strong defence compared to, say, writing to all their customers and pointing out that they've been taking money unlawfully and that they'd like to pay it all back.

 

I'll be using the report at my hearing. There is another interesting bit where they say "Proceedings are at a very early stage, and may (if appeals are pursued) take a number of years to conclude." - which is, I think, quite telling.

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Have you seen the Leed's Mercantile judgment ?

 

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/show-post/post-1155075.html

 

Judge Behrens (sitting as a high court judge) makes some interesting observations regarding proceeding after the first instance judgement... (its also usefully to keep HSBC off your back if your stay is to remain in place :))

 

pete

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