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1. in october 2012
2. negligent valuation on residential property
3. my solicitor thought the other side may enter into negotiations but the reality was a) my solicitor had trouble identifying the correct defendant and b) where the correct valuer was identified my solicitor sent the poc to the wrong address(i.e. not the surveyors current address which i had notified him of)
4. solicitors have been sacked. i have informed them that the defendants are seeking their costs of 10k plus
5. my first knowledge of the negligent valuation was june 2011 hence the protective proceedings. solicitor always indicated i had a good claim and the damages were calculated at over 400k. the only issue would be if the court found i did not rely on the valuation. property has been retrospectively valued at 410k. the original valuer was a good 65% over!
letter of claim sent to defendant, we also issued protective proceedings.
hi letter of claim set approximately 1 month before we issued proceedings. defendants instructed solicitors to act for them and reply to letter of claim
thanks for that....
a couple of further issues. my solicitors were unsure who the correct defendant was. i had identified the correct valuer and his name and current address. the other 2 defendants were thought to be the correct defendant. at the time the other 2 defendants had requested disclosure of documentation and within 1 document was a reference to the correct trading name who carried out the valuation. unfortunately i had not noticed this as i had received the document some 18 months before and was part of a 500 page dsar request from my lender. the document was sent to my solicitor in october last year some 3 weeks before they drew up the poc. it seems my solicitor also did not read the document and as a result the defendant was named as the company to whom we all thought was responsible.
the problem then arose that not only did my solicitors send the poc late they also sent the poc to the correct surveyor but they sent it to an address which was incorrect. both defendants have indicated in writing that the poc was served out of time and also that the surveyor was served late and not at his last or usual address.
with respect to costs one defendant is quoting 16k so far and will accept 8k. the other side (surveyor) is saying discontinue or we will apply to the court to strike out claim and seek costs against me.
the defendant whose entity is disputed has provided a letter outlining why they are not the correct defendant but that is all.
my question is still 'if both sides are saying there has been incorrect service re names & times then when do i become liable for any of their costs?' if the service is invalid who notifies the court?
just to let you know i have now sent a preliminary notice to my old solicitors re a potential claim against them for the negligent mishandling of the above claim.
3 in total. 1 surveyor and 2 entities who the sols thought were the correct legal entities ultimately responsible for the valuation.
i did approach my old sols with a view to them continuing with my claim but they replied saying that as i may bring a claim against them in the future there is now a conflict of interest. that i must admit confused me?
thanks for your answers. having just spent over 16k on my formed solicitor's which got me nowhere funds are now extremely tight. indeed when all of the above problems started appearing they asked for another 5k to progress matters. if i didn't pay they would simply stop acting for me!! there is also 6k outstanding of their bills which they threatened legal action but they haven't taken any as of yet. furthermore i had interim bills along the way but never a full and final bill.
one last point, if i did have a good original claim and the solicitors by their actions lost any chance of pursuing it, how is a claim against the solicitors advanced?
original estimate £1800.00 following that some revisions but no proper explanation as to the large increases.
what i was trying to ask you was if i have a case against my former solicitors for negligence then how does that exactly work. in essence i am saying i have lost the chance to sue a surveyor for a negligent valuation?
hi kas ref your third paragraph, if and when i issue against the solicitors primarily it will be on the basis they got the defendant wrong, served out of time and served at the correct defendants wrong address then how would the claim progress. firstly from the paper trail it is plain to see the sols got it wrong even bringing the claim. now with respect to whether i had a good claim, lets assume it went all the way to trial the only issue the court would have to decide is whether or not i relied on the valuation. just for your information the valuation was 70% out!!
and finally (he says) i am still not sure where i stand on the issue of liability of the other sides costs i.e to date. if all the defendants have indicated at some stage that service has not been correct, yet they have sent some form of defence then what will the court do if 1. i do not discontinue service or more to the point if the defendants apply to the court to strike out the claim would they be awarded costs up to now. as i mentioned before one defendant is saying they have already incurred 16k and will accept 8k...that seems high to me!
thanks for that.
one item which i think i mentioned above was an error on my behalf where i did not inform my solicitors of the original trading name of the surveyor's company who carried out the original valuation. as a result 2 of the defendants were incorrect and were entered on the poc. however as i previously mentioned i sent the letter identifying the correct legal entity some 3 weeks before my solicitors even drew up the poc. my quick question is if my solicitors were aware of the correct defendants (apart from the original surveyor) before they served the poc what should they have done before serving the poc. it must be remembered that the original letter before claim and the claim form would have had the wrong defendants.
i fully understand and that maybe a 'high level' of criticism may be directed at me for not providing the correct entity which carried out the valuation. however as you have pointed out my solicitors had almost 3 weeks to make an application to simply amend 2 of the defendants. if i remember correctly when i sent my solicitor the documentation 3 weeks before the poc was served i did not point out specifically the document in question which identified the correct entity. the documents sent through to my solicitor at the time were in fact following a request for information by the defendants. obviously my solicitors didn't read them before disclosing them, in actual fact it was the defendant who pointed out the obvious mistake to my solicitors!!! i may also add that following an earlier disclosure of documentation to my solicitor they did initially inform me that some of the information should not be disclosed to the defendant at such an early stage at it may undermine my case, but guess what they sent it all by mistake. the solicitors, following my complaint, accepted responsibility and knocked £200.00 off my bill. now looking at the whole situation everything to do with my case seemed rushed or rather no one really cared. they simply gave a very low estimate and it kept on going up and up and i had no option but to keep on paying!!
going back to the correctly identified defendant, my thoughts are that if my solicitors had dropped him a letter before claim, say a year ago, i am sure he would have been only too quick to identify his original employer, their insurers etc etc