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I have drafted a Final Notice Before Legal Action to be sent to the…

I have drafted a 'Final...
I have drafted a 'Final Notice Before Legal Action' to be sent to the party concerned, have I presented it in such a manner as will satisfy my filing a claim in the Small Claims court assuming settlement is not forthcoming. 

 


FINAL NOTICE BEFORE LEGAL ACTION


 


June 6, 2011


 


Mr xxxxx xxxxx


Senior Principal


xxxxx Solicitors & Mediators


xxxxxxxxxxxxx


xxxxxxx


xxxxxx


xxxxxx


 


xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx


xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx


 


Family Court – Divorce


 


Dear Mr xxxxx


 


I refer to my complaint to you fully documented on Oct 27, 2010 in respect of work done during January 28, 2010 through to April 16, 2011. The two invoices received being February 28, 2010 in the sum of £1,914.20 and April 13, 2011 £1,914.69 totaling £3,859.90 which were paid in full upon presentation. A Remuneration certificate does not apply being a family hearing and Court Assessment procedure through the Senior Costs Court is time barred.


 


My claim against you is for a breach of contract in that you over-charged me and failed to act with all reasonable skill and care more specifically:


 


excessive charging with no supporting documentation (attendance notes, apart from minimal accounting entries in the client ledger which are irreconcilable against the minimal correspondence file);


 


ignoring the client's instructions causing him undue expense from your billed time, stress and anxiety;


 


ignoring client's several requests to be kept up-to-date regarding the terms being agreed on the single condition – the date the respondent (me) leaves the marital home and the date he removes his possessions (tentative date 30 days from Court approval of CO) in the Consent Order submitted in draft form by the client on February 23, 2010;


 


use of the engrossment concept for signing the Consent Order, queried by the client at the time it was mentioned, further keeping the client out of the negotiating loop;


 


 


failing to confirm your verbal advise to the xxxxx County Court on March 15, 2010 that the FDR hearing was to be stood down causing the client's claim for a refund of the fee in the sum of £170.00 to be rejected by the Court administration;


 


My pre-arranged visit to your offices to collect 6 significant papers from my former solicitors files to assist in clearing up a dispute regarding costs affecting closure of the case. You were eating your lunch, a sandwich in your office as I looked at the files in an alcove in the passage outside your office. You have agreed to reimburse the charge of £86 as it was not supported with an attendance note;


 


There were protracted negotiations with Solicitor xxxxx xxxx (the Other Side) over agreement regarding the date I would leave the marital home and the date I would remove my possessions. Whilst you and she were on the identical charge out rate per hour there is a large disparity between what you charged even though it pertained to the same conversations, there were no file notes in support of these negotiations which also explains why you were so vague when I was asking for details of what was being agreed under your initiative of an engrossment. I only learnt of the terms some several days after the effective date. I am expecting you to reimburse me £500 for this specific overcharge.


 


I claim £1,200 in respect of the general overcharging, £750 in respect of ignoring clients instructions causing unnecessary expense to the client by going outside his brief to you, £170.00 for failing to confirm your instructions to the court to stand the FDR hearing down, for £86.00 erroneously charged, £505.25 in respect of discussions on costs which you promised would be reimbursed by XXXXX XXXXX but you have no supporting evidence of such negotiations to support this amount and he refused to do so out-of-hand, £500 in respect of the disparity between your charge for discussions to Solicitor xxxxx xxxxx.


 


A total of £3,211.25. plus legal and court costs and interest at one percent above the bank base rate from the date of this notice.


 


If you make a suitable settlement before June 15th 2011 you will avoid the court proceedings and costs related thereto.


 


Yours sincerely


 


 


xxxxx xxxxx


XXXXXXXX
XXXXXXXX

 

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Answered in 22 minutes by:
6/1/2011
UK-Justice
UK-Justice, Barrister
Category: UK Law
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Customer reply replied 6 years ago
Hi I noticed that and was about to say.

Is my notice acceptable profile-wise to the party and then the small claims court?

I sent a note to support to delete the text that reveals personal detail, I cannot edit that.
Customer reply replied 6 years ago
Your answer May23, 2011 5:50 am 'FAO Senior Partner...Excessive Charging... Then your only option is to sue the Solicitor for breach of contract in that he has overcharged you and failed to act with all reasonable skill and care.' - Should I make reference to 'Statute' under the Title 'Final Notice..'?
You need not make reference to statute, your position is very clear.

And yes letter before action is fine.

I would perhaps head it without prejudice so reserve your position.

But the letter is clear, detailed and he will be able to understand what your claim is about.
UK-Justice
UK-Justice, Barrister
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Customer reply replied 6 years ago
Just one thing I now live in Horsham, West Sussex 118 miles from where the court action took place Weymouth, Dorset. I am assuming if action becomes necessary I will file the claim in my local County Court. I would appreciate your clarification and comment. Thank you
Yes, and the claim will be heard in your local county court.
UK-Justice
UK-Justice, Barrister
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 16,193
Experience: Called to the Bar in 2007
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Customer reply replied 6 years ago
Thank you very much. In a few days I will submit two further unrelated questions covering US law and will pass further questions as the two Small Claims are processed.
Customer reply replied 6 years ago

FAO Law – ***response to Final Notice B4 Legal Action***. The response suitably edited with names & personal details blanked out see (link http://www.mediafire.com/?o0jn2ocqc3vl5ql). The wording of the letter is typical but unfounded the reason I suspended action with the Legal Ombudsman is that they do not have a remit to access solicitors accounts, yet they acknowledge that is what is required. I was advised not to proceed and therefore the Ombudsman's files are equally not in the public domain. However I will make reference to some of the dialogue as it supports my claim for example the fact that no attendance notes are on file which caused the solicitor to concede he needed to reimburse me on one of the two items the LO made ref to there is much more however.

I believe I continue my course of action to file a claim in the local Small Claims Court. Note that the letter is dated 6 December 2010 which should be 6 June 2011. As I am on holiday for the first two weeks in July I will watch my timing. Are there any points in the letter or otherwise I should watch out for?

Yes if you claim within the small claims it is unlikely he will get any costs.

There are no other points you need to avoid. Just be wary he will try and apply for costs.

The Court can only award this if you have acted unreasonably.
UK-Justice
UK-Justice, Barrister
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 16,193
Experience: Called to the Bar in 2007
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Customer reply replied 6 years ago
JA Support came up with a message that they were having trouble with the web page. And now I do not have opportunity to give feedback so I will put it here: You express yourself so clearly and precisely I have confidence to follow my desired plan with confidence. Thank you. I then tried to add a bonus of £25 but am unsure whether that was successful. I will refer this script to support. I do not want to close this question as I may yet hear from the other respondent.
Thank you.
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Customer reply replied 6 years ago

Thank you for your help to-date and specifically your answer 05.50 am, May 23, 2011 - I notice in the HMCS Leaflet 'How do I make a Court claim' Ref. EX302 page 6 “you can make your claim in any County Court (Horsham, West Sussex) but it may be transferred to another court if your claim is defended (which I fully expect) and the person you made the claim against (the defendant) lives or works in a different court area (which is the case Weymouth/Bournemouth, Dorset 118 miles away from my local court in Horsham, West Sussex. Is there anything I can do to avoid having the cases transferred if application is made by the defendants to do so?

If the defendant is an individual no.

But when it comes to trial and if you win you can claim 40p a mile each way.
UK-Justice
UK-Justice, Barrister
Category: UK Law
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Experience: Called to the Bar in 2007
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Customer reply replied 6 years ago

Thank you for your answer yesterday. In setting out my claim for filing in the Small Claims Court I propose to add to the amount claimed:

Court costs plus vehicle travel costs @ 40 pence/mile return from Horsham to Weymouth, a total distance of 236 miles £** and being 76 years of age will claim receipted overnight subsistence for bed and breakfast up to £80 plus an allowance of up to £18.30 to cover lunch and dinner.

Would I just state it as above?

Fixed costs you can only claim £50 towards accommodation - plus travel.

Thats it, so you will not be able to claim the additional £30 or £18.30 to cover lunch.

Small claims costs are very limited.
UK-Justice
UK-Justice, Barrister
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 16,193
Experience: Called to the Bar in 2007
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UK-Justice
UK-Justice
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