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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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Hi, my husband and business partner has secured a loan on the

Resolved Question:

Hi, my husband and business partner has secured a loan on the business car without letting me know that he used the car as security to obtain this loan.

He left the partnership after one month of obtaining this loan which he used to open a new business, but the business never took off, he paid the loan company for a year and he defaulted on the repayments now the company has taken him to court and obtained a court order to return the car to the finance company, he explained to the judge that the car was not he's car and at the first hearing the first judge adjourn the hearing for the Claimants to prove the rightful ownership of the car, he produced the documents that the car belong.s to my business and was purchased as a business car but the judge established that because the evidence and my witness statements and an accountants letter, stating this was her business car were given to him only on the morning of the hearing he did not have time to reed them, but infact the documents were sent 3 weeks, both by post and mail, plus the judge refused to let me speak at the hearing even though I was a Witness . The hearing was I think conducted in appropriately and I am going to make a complaint to the court regarding this issue alone, but I wish to know my legal rights as far as my car is concerned, as the Claimants are now threatening to take my car and it must be given up to them.

This is my only business car and i need this for business avery day, this car is my car as my husband is no longer in the partnership, I have no intention of giving the car which is rightfully mine up for this debt, as the debt has been agreed, but my car is not part of that debt, I was not party to any agreement with the claimant at all and I have never signed any documentation regarding my car and the claimant do I need to sue the claimant ? please help;

1) Can i refuse to give the car up to the claimants ? they are now harassing me and threatening to send bailiffs.

2) they are now threatening my husband that he will go to prison if I do not return the car, is this possible?

3 can i sue the car company that are harassing me and making it very difficult for me to concentrate on running my business under this harassment and extreme stress, for the reposition of the car that belongs to my business?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 3 years ago.

Alex Watts :

Hello my name is XXXXX XXXXX I will help you with this. Please note that I am a working Solicitor and may be on and offline as I have to attend Court and meet with clients, even at weekends. As such you may not get an instant response when you reply as this is not an ‘on demand’ live service, but rest assured I will be giving your question my immediate attention upon return. There is no need to wait here, you will get an email when I reply.

Alex Watts :

Who is named as legal owner of the car please?

Customer:

The legal owner of the car is the company, (business) which was a partnership and is now a sole trader, consisting only of myself.

Alex Watts :

When did you find out about this Court Order?

Customer:

the complication seems to be accruing as the company, which is a a fashion label, has the title of my husbands name, as he was the original designer for the fashion label. The company name is XXXXX XXXXX but as I have explain dI am now and have been for several years a sole trader and the car is an asset of my business.

Alex Watts :

Was the loan taken AFTER he left?

Alex Watts :

When did you find out about the Court order?

Customer:

at the hearing on 6.2.14, which as I explained was very badly conducted, the judge ruled for the claimant then, but the actual order arrived on Friday 21.214 but stingily 0 minutes after the order the claimants agents arrived a tmy residential address to pick up my car.

Customer:

No the loan was taken when it was still a partnership.

Alex Watts :

Did you attend the hearing?

Customer:

yes as a witness

Alex Watts :

For your husband?

Alex Watts :

I assume you said the car was in the Company name?

Customer:

yes for my husband, but the judge refused to let me speak. yes the claimant's case is against my husband and not me.

Alex Watts :

Did you file a witness statement?

Customer:

the term company car is for a limited company, but as a sole trader it is only reffered to as a business car.

Customer:

Yes, I sent my witness statement to the court 3 weeks before the hearing, by post and mail

Alex Watts :

Ok.

Alex Watts :

All you can do (or he can do) is appeal the decision

Alex Watts :

He needs to show:

Alex Watts :

1) there was an error in law, or

Alex Watts :

2) there was an error in Court procedure, or

Alex Watts :

3) the decision was unreasonable.

Alex Watts :

I am sorry to say you can not refuse to give the car - they can just come and take it because they have a Court order.

Alex Watts :

So you can't do that - as it would cause trouble.

Alex Watts :

You can't sue the car company as they have a valid Court order

Alex Watts :

What you should have done is applied to the Court proceedings to be added as a Defendant or Intevener.

Alex Watts :

But as it stands, you have a Court order for return of the var

Alex Watts :

car

Alex Watts :

Therefore ALL you can do is appeal the decision

Alex Watts :

But you can't appeal just because you dont like the outcome

Alex Watts :

You can only appeal on the grounds above

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?

Customer:

they have a court order against my husband, whom took the loan with them, they do not have a court order against me, so therefore if the car is mine, as per the documentation, they do not have a court order agisnt my car ?

Alex Watts :

But they do - its against your husband for the car. HE could end up in prison

Alex Watts :

But if they find it then they can just get it

Alex Watts :

This is why the ONLY thing you can do is appeal.

Alex Watts :

I am sorry if this is not the answer you want and certainly not the one I want to give you, but I have a duty to be honest

Customer:

He is appealing, as the Judge's conduct, if the first judge adjourned the hearing as ownership of the car was not proven by the claimant, how can the second judge not ben discuss that point ?but what are my actual rights as to the car ? if it it in my possession it is surely legally mine, the debt is another question surely ?

Alex Watts :

No - its not legally yours. The Court has ordered the return of it.

Alex Watts :

Its returned because if it is used as security you NO LONGER own it

Alex Watts :

Same as a mortgage - it belongs to the bank

Customer:

Also if the car is not available to them, can they force the issue with me ? my husband is not in the country at this time.

Alex Watts :

Well you are trying to avoid recovery - this will only cause problems. They can get bailiffs to enforce the Order.

Alex Watts :

If your husband is out the country, how can he appeal>

Customer:

also the appeal is being lodged a the court tomorrow, how long until this appeal is granted, if not granted on what grounds can it be refused and can he then go to the High court to appeal ?

Customer:

Also I have read that as an interpleader, I have an equitable interest in the goods so I can also make a claim, as a partner or spouse ?

Alex Watts :

As I said you can only appeal on 3 grounds

Alex Watts :

1) error in law

Alex Watts :

2) error in procedure

Alex Watts :

3) the decision was one which no reasonable Judge could have made

Alex Watts :

The Court will consider the appeal on the papers.

Alex Watts :

If permission to appeal is refused then you can ask for an oral hearing

Alex Watts :

If permission is refused then you have to appeal to the Court of Appeal.

Alex Watts :

You can make a claim but you are a little late to do that. You should have done that earlier as an intervener.

Customer:

He is doing by mail and sending to the court. Ok in your opinion was the Judge right ? he was terse and rude and would not let me as a witness speak. Again I return to this issue, how can the car not belong to me, if I took out no loan against what is mine ? why should I as an innocent third party be penalised, can I still be an intervener in this case. Can not my husband now make an agreement to pay directly to the claimant for the loan, as it says on the order he has to return the cat or pay the money, which he would not be able to pay as a lump sum.,

Alex Watts :

I can't say as I have not heard the transcript or seen the evidence. But I do consider the appeal has prospect of success.

Alex Watts :

Its possible you could intervene but only if permission is granted

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything for you?

Customer:

Firstly there was no clerk at the hearing, so no transcript , which was first issue I raised. How do I intervene, I run a small business and cannot afford to pay huge sums to defend this, but if you could guide me further, as to at least put a stop to the immediate action, how can permission be granted ?

Alex Watts :

All hearings are recorded. There will be a recording which will be transcribed. You need this to appeal.

Alex Watts :

Permission can be granted one of the three grounds above which I will repeat here again

Alex Watts :

1) there was an error in law

Alex Watts :

2) there was an error in procedure

Alex Watts :

3) the decision made was unreasonable

Customer:

Also as this is so stressful for me, how can I protect the car if they try to pick it up again ? Can they force entry, if I do not let them in ? Can I sell the car now the Order is on the car

Customer:

Ok, understand about my husbands appeal, but what should I do at this juncture to protect my rights in this case ?

Alex Watts :

You can't sell the car - you do not own it.

Alex Watts :

They have a charge on it.

Alex Watts :

He needs to seek a stay on enforcement pending the decision on appela

Alex Watts :

That is ALL that can be done at this stage

Customer:

Ok, but again,the car is not proven as owned by my husband and this has not been verified by law, as in-fact it is owned by me, surely I have some rights here, under the Human Rights act ?

Alex Watts :

There is a Court Order requiring the return.

Alex Watts :

You have no rights against a private company under the human rights act

Alex Watts :

Only against a public body

Customer:

Ok, but if the Order is not correct, firstly, how do you do a stay of enforcement ? He has filled out the form , appellants notice and is mailing to the court. I must myself have grounds to appeal agaisnt the Order ?

Alex Watts :

Because that is why you appeal.

Alex Watts :

You can't apply to appeal, you are not a party.

Alex Watts :

Only your husband can

Alex Watts :

There is a final order, You personally can't do anything now

Alex Watts :

You are too late

Alex Watts :

You should have applied to intervene earlier

Alex Watts :

But appeal is the ONLY way foward

Alex Watts :

If this is refused, the car has to go back

Customer:

Sorry how can I be too late, if I did not know this fact ? There surely must be a way round this from my side ?

Alex Watts :

You attended Court.

Alex Watts :

The Court made a final order

Alex Watts :

Only your husband can appeal

Alex Watts :

You can't do anything at this stage

Customer:

I am reffering to the appeal, i.e. The Judges decision, a public body, was penalising me as an individual under the Human rights Act, not my husband, surely I can not be penalised or at a financial loss over he's Court Order, when he is willing to pay back the Claimant monthly. Also if he's appeal is refused, how can he waste more time to enable him to gather further funds to pay the Claimant back, i.e. how far can he go wight he appeal , can it be tied up for some time ?

Alex Watts :

Yes I agree it has a prospect of appeal.

Alex Watts :

But that is the only solution. If permission/appeal is granted then you could apply to intervene

Alex Watts :

Does that help?

Customer:

So at this stage, why cannot I not intervene now or if the appeal is refused, what can I do then as an intervener .

Alex Watts :

If the appeal is refused, there is nothing you can do - the case is over.

Customer:

if the appeal is refused, can he take the matter to a higher court I think I need a solicitor now to act for me alone, to pursue my case individually, can I do this ?

Alex Watts :

Yes of a[[ea; of refused you can go to the Court of Appeal.

Alex Watts :

You would need to instruct a Solicitor.

Customer:

haw long it normally take to get a reply from the court for the appeal is accepted or not

Customer:

can i use the car?

Alex Watts :

I can't say it depends on the workload, normally a couple of weeks and yes you can use it.

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything?

Customer:

Alex, Yes can you explain my rights as to the car ? The Order is g

Alex Watts :

I thought I had already done that?

Customer:

against my husband, not me, why am I not allowed a voice in this issue, surely this is contravening my rights as a individual ? I fail to understand my position here, as you are mentioning The Order but not my rights and how I can pursue this case for my benefit to keep what is to all intents my car

Alex Watts :

The reason is this:

Alex Watts :

1) there is security on the car - therefore it is owned by the company that has security

Alex Watts :

2) proceedings were issued

Alex Watts :

3) you did not intervene at that stage

Alex Watts :

4) the matter went to court

Alex Watts :

5) the judge made a final order

Alex Watts :

6) because it is a final order you can not intervene now

Alex Watts :

7) because it is a final order all that can happen is that the order is appealed

Alex Watts :

This is all because the order is final. The case is closed unless an appeal is made and won

Customer:

Ok clear, but as a lay person I do not know before the Court hearing that I could intervene, that is why I went to the hearing in the first place to confirm my ownership of the car as per my witness statement, but the Judge would not allow me to speak at the hearing, thus my case was derailed by the Judge, as surely if I had spoken a the Hearing to put my case for ownership the ownership would have been in question ( comments of first Judge ) I was at that stage an intervener ? Can I not now write this to the Court, as part of the appeal ? Or do I put that issue to the Court in my letter of Complaint, as per the procedure inconsistencies ? I need to do something now, I do not want to wait for the appeal to be refused, and then I am left with nothing, this is my financial loss and i have not been heard. Again the loan was never signed or agreed by me, so how can my car be by law a property of the claimant ? I really fail to see this issue ? Help !

Alex Watts :

You can't write to the Court because you are not named.

Alex Watts :

It makes no difference

Alex Watts :

Only your husband can appeal on the grounds I have set out before

Alex Watts :

However this can be a ground for him to appeal.

Alex Watts :

But this is the process you sadly must follow

Alex Watts :

I understand the loan was never signed by you.

Alex Watts :

But there is a final order for the return of the car.

Alex Watts :

Therefore the Court can only consider an appeal by your husband with the fact you never signed the loan as an appealable point

Alex Watts :

This is how matters must progress

Alex Watts :

Does this help?

Customer:

Yes, thanks, XXXXX XXXXX are you in this appeal ? i am so stressed by this and from myself as I I have done nothing, also once the appeal is granted, can I Then intervene ? And finally so I am on top of this how do I intervene ? Should I tell the claimants solicitor I am intervening now ? So as to worry them a bit ? Also I am going to Italy and intend to take my car can I do this ?

Alex Watts :

I can't say for sure because as I said above I haven't seen all the evidence or read the transcript. But I do think there is a prospect of an appeal.

Alex Watts :

As for taking the car abroad, I can't advise on international law such as Italy as I do not know their legal system

Alex Watts :

If this answers your question could I invite you leave feedback on my service which I hope has been excellent today, if you need more information or help then please click reply.


Please remember that I am always happy to help if you have future questions, even if I am in Court I can normally respond within a few hours. For future information, please start them with ‘For Alex W’.


 


Please bookmark my profile if you wish for future help: http://www.justanswer.co.uk/law/expert-alexwatts/

Customer:

thank you Alex, i will leave a excellent feedback, can i contact you in the future regarding this matter?

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Category: Law
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Experience: Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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