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  • FIRST POST
    • HiltonFarm
    • By HiltonFarm 13th Jul 17, 7:31 PM
    • 10Posts
    • 1Thanks
    HiltonFarm
    Removal company refusing to pay out
    • #1
    • 13th Jul 17, 7:31 PM
    Removal company refusing to pay out 13th Jul 17 at 7:31 PM
    Hi all

    Thank you in advance for your help.

    We moved house in February at a cost of £4,800 (from England to Scotland).

    It was a terrible move, the removals turned up late and had the wrong size van so had to leave items behind such as trees and plants previously agreed.

    Unfortunately the company were stopped by VOSA on the M6 and were deemed over the weight limit. The two vans were impounded for being over weight. One was allowed to go after unloading a third of the items and all but one of the removals team leaving just the driver.

    Unfortunately an addition lorry that they 'borrowed' had a faulty tail gate and all of our belongings were soaked.

    They revived a fine from VOSA and as a consequence arrived over 24 hours late.

    The contract stated that we needed to let them know of damages in writing within 7 days. I discussed this with the removals company and asked them to send an official form. Which they did not. In the end we mailed them with details but this was sadly on the 8th day. There is over £10,000 of damaged items and it is heartbreaking. I concede that other than a text message saying that there are damages we were one day late.

    Today we heard that our claim had been rejected as we were 24 hours late. We also received a solicitor's letter saying that we had obviously damaged the items ourselves as we didn't take their packing service. They agreed to pay for a Christmas tree that they acknowledge they left but nothing else. How full must the vans have been to not even squeeze a Christmas tree on?

    It was a strongly worded solicitor's letter and it has just been the icing on the cake for this saga.

    The claim was submitted on Feb 15th followed by requests for photos and information on the items and now they have rejected it.

    I accept that other than a text we were 8 hours late in submitting the claim however, are they not in breach of context for delivering 24 hours late? We spent a horrible night in our floor in a house with no electric and despite what they say, being impounded by VOSA for exceeding their weight limits is not an act of God. This is what damaged our furniture, not our packing.

    Any advice please?
Page 1
    • Quentin
    • By Quentin 13th Jul 17, 7:40 PM
    • 33,606 Posts
    • 17,510 Thanks
    Quentin
    • #2
    • 13th Jul 17, 7:40 PM
    • #2
    • 13th Jul 17, 7:40 PM
    In view of the sum involved you may consider instructing a solicitor over this is justified.


    If there was an insurance policy involved, then there will be a formal complaints procedure set out in the policy and you should follow this if available - if they ignore your complaint for 8 weeks or you aren't happy with the reply then you would be able to escalate to the FOS for their adjudication at no cost to you
    • newbutold
    • By newbutold 13th Jul 17, 7:44 PM
    • 661 Posts
    • 1,052 Thanks
    newbutold
    • #3
    • 13th Jul 17, 7:44 PM
    • #3
    • 13th Jul 17, 7:44 PM
    Do you have any legal cover with your home insurance? If so you could possible get some legal advice with it.
    If my posts have random wrong words, please blame the damn autocorrect not me
    • HiltonFarm
    • By HiltonFarm 13th Jul 17, 7:51 PM
    • 10 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    HiltonFarm
    • #4
    • 13th Jul 17, 7:51 PM
    • #4
    • 13th Jul 17, 7:51 PM
    Thank you

    I asked the insurance company about the FOS and they said that they wouldnt entertain our claim as we are not the policy holders. Her actual wording was ' they only cover complaints from an insurance policy holder, regrettably as there is no contract between yourselves and our counts insurer the ombudsman will not consider your case'
    • HiltonFarm
    • By HiltonFarm 13th Jul 17, 7:52 PM
    • 10 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    HiltonFarm
    • #5
    • 13th Jul 17, 7:52 PM
    • #5
    • 13th Jul 17, 7:52 PM
    Sorry clients not counts
    • rs65
    • By rs65 13th Jul 17, 7:53 PM
    • 5,297 Posts
    • 2,513 Thanks
    rs65
    • #6
    • 13th Jul 17, 7:53 PM
    • #6
    • 13th Jul 17, 7:53 PM
    Does your home insurance cover this?
    • societys child
    • By societys child 13th Jul 17, 8:01 PM
    • 4,895 Posts
    • 5,348 Thanks
    societys child
    • #7
    • 13th Jul 17, 8:01 PM
    • #7
    • 13th Jul 17, 8:01 PM
    £10,000 pounds?

    • HiltonFarm
    • By HiltonFarm 13th Jul 17, 8:03 PM
    • 10 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    HiltonFarm
    • #8
    • 13th Jul 17, 8:03 PM
    • #8
    • 13th Jul 17, 8:03 PM
    Sadly yes, £10,000. Nearly every piece of furniture we own was damaged, either scraped, smashed or soaked (the third van was full of water). Mirrors and pictures were damaged as well as all of our garden furniture including barbecue.
    • Alter ego
    • By Alter ego 13th Jul 17, 8:10 PM
    • 2,194 Posts
    • 2,130 Thanks
    Alter ego
    • #9
    • 13th Jul 17, 8:10 PM
    • #9
    • 13th Jul 17, 8:10 PM
    Why did you wait till day 8 to inform them in writing?
    Ignore me if you like, it's not the real me anyway.
    • HiltonFarm
    • By HiltonFarm 13th Jul 17, 8:15 PM
    • 10 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    HiltonFarm
    You are absolutely right and I accept that. I had sent texts (no 3G or wifi) and called and we were lulled in to a false sense of security by them being thoroughly pleasant and repeatedly offering to send the form out. When we hadn't received it after the 7th day we wrote - silly us.
    • Geoff1963
    • By Geoff1963 13th Jul 17, 8:28 PM
    • 1,056 Posts
    • 679 Thanks
    Geoff1963
    Not nice.
    the removals turned up . . . and had the wrong size van
    One was allowed to go after unloading a third of the items
    Having to unload a third of the items to become road-legal, means the van was too small, for even what they did take. The VOSA action is a formal record that the company ( by their own incompetence ) had to deviate from any plan they might have had. It is proof that they exposed your property to risk of damage, while they were being paid to take care of it. The foreseeable consequential transfer, exposed it to further risk of loss and damage ; even without the leaky lorry..

    Did the company unload the items from the vehicles at the far end, and did anyone notice then that they were soaked ?
    Was the damage obviously only from water ? Most packing relies on the vehicle being watertight, so their packing wouldn't have fared any better.

    other than a text message saying that there are damages
    How specific does the contract say, the complaint must be ? Sounds to me like you made the complaint in plenty of time, then followed up with some extra details. If complaints must be made on an official form, within a deadline ; that unfairly allows the company to prevent you doing that.
    The Law Commission is proposing that wills can be filed by text message.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-40590117

    followed by requests for photos and information on the items
    Sounds like at this point, they had acknowledged the timed-based validity of your claim. Perhaps since then, their insurance company has refused to pay out to them ; because they didn't take proper care. Maybe they can be traced, only to explain their reasoning.
    • HiltonFarm
    • By HiltonFarm 13th Jul 17, 9:15 PM
    • 10 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    HiltonFarm
    In fairness to the removals company they were very explicit in their terms:
    below).
    12. Time limit for claims
    12.1 If You or Your authorised representative collect the goods, We must
    be notified in writing of any loss or damage at the time the goods
    are handed to You or Your agent otherwise we shall not be liable.
    12.2 Notwithstanding clauses 9, 10 and 11 we will not be liable for any
    loss of or damage to the goods unless a claim is notified to us, or
    to our agent or the company carrying out the collection or delivery
    of the goods on our behalf, in writing as soon as such loss or
    damage is discovered (or with reasonable diligence ought to have
    been discovered) and in any event within seven (7) days of delivery
    of the goods by us.
    12.3 For goods which we deliver, You must advise Us in writing of any
    loss and damage within seven days of delivery by Us. We may
    agree to extend this time limit upon receipt of Your written request
    provided such request is received within seven (7) days of delivery.
    Consent to such a request will not be unreasonably withheld.
    13. Delays in transit
    13.1 Other than by reason of our negligence or breach of contract, we
    will not be liable for delays in transit.
    13.2 If through no fault of ours we are unable to deliver Your goods, we
    will take them into store. The Agreement will then be fulfilled and
    any additional service(s), including storage and delivery, will be at
    Your expense.
    13.3 Any transit times quoted by Us are estimated and based upon
    information known to Us at the time. Transit times may vary due to
    a number of factors outside Our control including but not limited to
    changes in sailing or departure dates made by the freight/shipping
    company, changes in the routes used by the freight/shipping
    company and port congestion. We will advise You of any material
    changes to the transit times as soon as We become aware. We
    will not be liable for any loss or damage incurred by You as a result
    of delays in transit time unless directly attributable to Our
    negligence or breach of contract
    • gardner1
    • By gardner1 13th Jul 17, 9:25 PM
    • 2,239 Posts
    • 3,317 Thanks
    gardner1
    they sound like a cowboy outfit......but cant be because you paid them £4800
    • Geoff1963
    • By Geoff1963 13th Jul 17, 9:44 PM
    • 1,056 Posts
    • 679 Thanks
    Geoff1963
    12.3 For goods which we deliver, You must advise Us in writing of any
    loss and damage within seven days of delivery by Us. We may
    agree to extend this time limit upon receipt of Your written request
    provided such request is received within seven (7) days of delivery.
    Consent to such a request will not be unreasonably withheld.
    Does a text message count as "in writing" ?
    • HiltonFarm
    • By HiltonFarm 13th Jul 17, 10:34 PM
    • 10 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    HiltonFarm
    It's a good question, I would argue 'yes'
    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 13th Jul 17, 10:42 PM
    • 61,011 Posts
    • 356,361 Thanks
    PasturesNew
    I'd partially dismiss the 7 days/claim as that's intended for people who randomly put in a claim.

    Your traumatic removals experience is well documented and evidenced - their failings can be seen and so you're not "somebody taking a chance to claim for a random bunch of items after X days"...

    I doubt, on the balance of evidence, that there's much weight put on times/dates and cutoffs as your situation was exceptional.
    • HiltonFarm
    • By HiltonFarm 13th Jul 17, 11:07 PM
    • 10 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    HiltonFarm
    Thank you PasturesNew

    How do I follow it up? Insist with insurance company or go down the small claims route?
    • Quentin
    • By Quentin 13th Jul 17, 11:30 PM
    • 33,606 Posts
    • 17,510 Thanks
    Quentin
    if you have insurance cover for this on your own then of course claim for it, though you cannot claim off the removal company's policy.


    If not, then you do need to train your sights on the removal firm.


    And getting legal advice might be worthwhile in view of the sum involved
    • eddddy
    • By eddddy 14th Jul 17, 6:19 AM
    • 5,552 Posts
    • 5,235 Thanks
    eddddy
    Based on the Consumer Rights Act 2015, it sounds like you may have a good case for claiming breach of contract...

    • You had a consumer contract with the removal company - they contracted to provide a removal service.
    • The Consumer Rights Act adds implied terms to every consumer contract (i.e. the law adds specific terms to the contract, even if they are not written in the contract.)
    • One of those terms is that Services must be performed with "reasonable care and skill".
    • It sounds like the removal company did not perform their service with "reasonable care and skill", therefore they are in breach of contract.
    • These are statutory terms, the removal company cannot avoid them.
    • You have up to 6 years to claim damages for breach of contract.
    • Your claim for damages is against the removal company, not their insurers.

    More info here: http://www.moneysavingexpert.com/shopping/consumer-rights-refunds-exchange#services
    • csgohan4
    • By csgohan4 14th Jul 17, 7:40 AM
    • 4,021 Posts
    • 2,500 Thanks
    csgohan4
    name and shame them
    "It is prudent when shopping for something important, not to limit yourself to Pound land"
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