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Gladstones - Court Claim Form & defence

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  • Loadsofchildren123Loadsofchildren123 Forumite
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    Well as long as all the points were in, you can expand on them in a Skeleton later on, and in your WS.

    I wonder whether, for ease of reference, you could retype your Defence word for word as it was submitted, but adding formatting and numbering - send it to the solicitors and say that you want this put in the trial bundle which they will eventually have to prepare, where it should be put immediately after the one you submitted to court - simply because it is easier to read and the MCOL wouldn't accept any formatting. Probably premature to do this now pre- transfer and pre- WS, but I would try and remember to do it after that. It will be much easier for the judge to follow if you do this.

    Even if you ask, they will probably "forget" to put it in....
    Although a practising Solicitor, my posts here are NOT legal advice, but are personal opinion based on limited facts provided anonymously by forum users. I accept no liability for the accuracy of any such posts and users are advised that, if they wish to obtain formal legal advice specific to their case, they must seek instruct and pay a solicitor.
  • Good point - I will do this (I have it saved). It wasn't that far removed from the nicely formatted version, but I saved lines by not repeating who I am, case details etc (they're already there) and by judicious editing to maximize words on a line but not be overly wordy, without tampering with any legal-sounding stuff. I had read the Newbie #2 thread but I think I just panicked. I will certainly make sure every element is included in entirety in the WS (assuming it doesn't get thrown out before then, of course!)
  • Hello again.
    So, just to update, I've just received the email below from the Solicitors (Gladstones) so my search for similar procedural stuff begins now!

    I've taken my name off for obvious reasons :-) They've supplied just a N180 Special Directions word doc and a form N180 Small Claims Track.
    The Word Doc attached to the form just says

    REQUEST FOR SPECIAL DIRECTION

    We kindly request that the Court send the N159 form (attached) to the Defendant for their consideration and, upon the Defendant consenting to the case being heard on the papers alone, the Judge makes the following direction;

    “The matter will be considered on paperwork without a hearing. The parties attendance is not required and the Judge will determine the matter based upon the documents and evidence supplied and any written representations received.”

    The completed Directions Questionnaire they refer to has no information except their name and address, that they're not asking for written testimony by an expert witness and that they have no dates they aren't available as they're referring to the email (which then asks for the case to be considered by the Judge on paper only). Thereafter, it's just signed with GS. I'm wondering, with the documents I can bring together, whether this is a reasonable approach or whether I should push for a hearing (they might withdraw??) but any advice gratefully received, as ever.

    (BEGINS)

    We act for the Claimant and have notified the Court of our Client’s intention to proceed with the claim.

    Please find attached a copy of our Client’s completed Directions Questionnaire, which will be filed with the court upon their request. You will note we intend to request a special direction that the case be dealt with on the papers and without the need for an oral hearing

    This request is sought simply because the matter is in our Client’s opinion relatively straightforward and the costs incurred by both parties for attending an oral hearing would be disproportionate.

    You will note our Client has elected not to mediate. Its decision is not meant to be in any way obstructive and is based purely on experience, as mediation has rarely proven beneficial in these types of cases. Notwithstanding this, our Client would be happy to listen to any genuine payment proposals that you wish to put forward.


    Yours sincerely


    Chris
    Administration Assistant

    Gladstones Solicitors Limited
    (ENDS)
  • Loadsofchildren123Loadsofchildren123 Forumite
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    Ignore that.
    The next stage is that the COURT will send you a DQ.
    Gladstones send it to you in advance to try to unsettle you.

    When you receive yours there will be a court order with it telling you when you have to return it by. Until you receive this ignore whatever Gladstones does or says.

    When you fill it in, say that you object to the court dealing with the matter on the papers, as they have requested, and ask for it to be transferred to your local court for a hearing (they'll only do this if you consent - you need to make it very clear that you do NOT consent).
    Although a practising Solicitor, my posts here are NOT legal advice, but are personal opinion based on limited facts provided anonymously by forum users. I accept no liability for the accuracy of any such posts and users are advised that, if they wish to obtain formal legal advice specific to their case, they must seek instruct and pay a solicitor.
  • Update: I have a date for court: August 1. I'm now busy pulling together my statements and all the evidence I intend to rely upon. The letter says that I have to submit to the Court and to the Claimant all that I intend to rely upon in my defence a maximum of 14 days prior. So, I'm presuming that I don't do this until just before the deadline - in case they don't pay the Court Fee (due prior to this deadline) and the case is therefore closed (I live in hope!!)
  • I think they've given up!!
    I've just received a 'Notice of Discontinuance' from Gladstones saying they have filed it with the Court. I must admit I'm suspicious and unsure whether to trust them; can I check that it's all over somewhere online ??
  • beamerguybeamerguy Forumite
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    I think they've given up!!
    I've just received a 'Notice of Discontinuance' from Gladstones saying they have filed it with the Court. I must admit I'm suspicious and unsure whether to trust them; can I check that it's all over somewhere online ??

    good news ..... contact the court to confirm

    You are right, Gladstones cannot be trusted
  • Tried ringing, cant get any sense out of them - seems they haven't seen or filed this yet. Think I'll go down there and ask in person - just to be sure!
  • Loadsofchildren123Loadsofchildren123 Forumite
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    Courts are rather inefficient and things that are sent in take a while to be processed and reach the court file.


    A discontinuance leaves costs open for you to claim, which you should do. Just write to the court with a costs schedule and ask it to make an order in your favour (you'll have to go into why they behaved unreasonably - this is a long winded version that I drafted, which you can perhaps adapt to argue why there should be a costs order. You must add to it that you were never "parked" and this is a claim that should never have been brought, or should have been withdrawn much earlier - had they followed the pre-action Practice Direction then these issues would have come to light much earlier and this is what makes this a compelling case to make a costs order.
    https://www.dropbox.com/s/4cn1tbjiim1ycsl/COSTS%20APPLICATION%20updated.docx?dl=0


    Send a copy of the letter to Gladstones and tell the court you've done this and say that this is an issue which the court should and can deal with on paper rather than by way of a hearing. Gladstones can make their own written submissions if they are instructed to do so by their client.
    Although a practising Solicitor, my posts here are NOT legal advice, but are personal opinion based on limited facts provided anonymously by forum users. I accept no liability for the accuracy of any such posts and users are advised that, if they wish to obtain formal legal advice specific to their case, they must seek instruct and pay a solicitor.
  • edited 6 July 2017 at 2:13PM
    UmkomaasUmkomaas Forumite
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    edited 6 July 2017 at 2:13PM
    Tried ringing, cant get any sense out of them - seems they haven't seen or filed this yet. Think I'll go down there and ask in person - just to be sure!

    Many courts are well behind with paperwork (some 2-3 weeks adrift), so if G's notified the court by letter, it may still be in its envelope unopened in a large heap!

    If you've got it in writing from G's (letter or email?) then I wouldn't be making what could be an abortive journey to the court, especially if they are experiencing backlog.

    If you're determined to make a visit, take the G's communique with you and ask the court clerk if it appears genuine to them.

    While we've seen lowlife operators/debt crawlers try the 'case discontinued (but not really, as you'll soon realise if you don't turn up on the day)' nasty tactic, I can't see a firm of solicitors, notwithstanding some of G's other incompetencies, deliberately misleading you on this.
    Please note, we are not a legal advice forum. I personally don't get involved in critiquing court case Defences/Witness Statements, so unable to help on that front. Please don't ask. .
    I provide only my personal opinion, it is not a legal opinion, it is simply a personal one. I am not a lawyer.
    Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day; show him how to catch fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.
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