How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Jo C. Your Own Question
Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 70720
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
12826847
Type Your Law Question Here...
Jo C. is online now

I have a advert on yell.com and somebody has put a dishonest

Customer Question

Hi,
I have a advert on yell.com and somebody has put a dishonest and harmful review on it.
The review not only makes obvious and easily dis-proven claims but i also have a witness who heard the reviewer admit to their lies but say they did not care about it hurting my business in fact that was the intent because they thought my prices were to high.
Feedback from my actual customers up until this point has always been 5 star excellent but i never even did any work for this person nor did they accept either the initial estimate or the revised full quote (revised due to the person adding more work and materials to the potential project).
Here is the review:
"tried to rip me off by adding an extra £100 to his already high estimate when he knew i was going into hospital next day and was worried about my dog getting out of the broken gate. shame on you, for doing that to a disabled pensioner."
All of it is a lie and total misrepresentation of the facts.
1. I did not even contact her with the final quote as i left that up to the woman who does that.
2. The initial onsite estimate i did give that was £150 was based on far less work and materials.
3. The final quote was over a week later due to waiting on the price of the gate being built from the manufacturer taking ages and was not given by me and neither i or the person who gave it had any idea that she was going into hospital (a claim i doubt is true) let alone when.
4. Her gate and all the other work has not been done and considering how cheap i was willing to do all the work for a pensioner (i have a detailed breakdown that contains prices from valid merchants like Wickes, Screwfix ETC that is a virtual GIFT no company with my reputation could come near) it never will be.
5. I have a very recent photo of the broken gate she wanted replaced as part of the work and apparently all that was needed to keep her dog safe was a wheelie bin moved in front of the hole.
6. She claims to be from Coventry but is not as she is from Rugby.
Her review clearly implies that she accepted the estimate and i tried to use knowledge of a supposed hospital visit to leverage more money when she never accepted anything and i had no idea or communication with her in regards ***** ***** final quote i simply gave it to the person who deals with them and they called her with it.
This has not only upset me but it could also harm my company if people believe it yet yell say it does not contravene their review policy so they will not take it down although it is clearly defamation and i followed their defamation proceedure.
please help.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Hi.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
Did you add £100 to the original quote?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

The original estimate was just for fitting a new gate with a simple gate latch and bolt it was £150.

She then added more work like fixing a broken post and wanted a lock on the gate that could lock/unlock from both sides and open etc.

A mortise lock like that is around £45 more than a simple bolt and latch and takes almost 2 hours to fit properly compared to the few minutes a simple bolt latch combo takes.

So yes the quote went up but it was not for the same job or materials

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Did it go up by £100?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Yes due to the additions she made.

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

but she did not accept the initial estimate or the final quote after the additions were accounted for.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
It depends what you want to do about this.
Obviously she is just a mad and unreasonable woman using age and disability as an excuse. I am always tempted to ask them if they think the law shouldn't apply to them because they are pensioners.
However, defamation is a very expensive action with high risks. Even if you won she probably couldn't pay the award especially if she is complaining about sums like £100.
Also, it would be dangerous here as whichever way you look at this the amount did increase. I realise her perception of that is wrong but there was an increase.
One fairly safe option is to get a solicitor to write to her warning her of the laws of defamation and asking her to agree to it's removal and in default that you will sue. That is cheap enough and may be effective.
If it is not though you will need to decide what action to take.
You could seek an injunction forcing either her or Yell to take it down. It is not all that cheap to do that and you would need to show that it was defamatory as you cannot have things removed just because you dislike them.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Jo
Jo C. and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I have no interest in taking any money of a old woman simply because she is spiteful i just want the review taken down because not only is it a horrible lie but it could very well harm my company.

Even her disabled claim is absurd as she tripped and hurt her ankle yet was wandering around quite well with nothing more than a elasticated bandage on it.

I really do not know what to do as i do not like the idea of taking legal action against a old lady no matter how spiteful and dishonest she is.

However i do not want to see my business harmed as i worked hard to gain a excellent reputation and many of my customers have written long detailed and glowing reviews on yell.com.

Will a local solicitor do for sending the letter?

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Yes, I understand. It is the damage to business. in fairness, I wouldn't worry too much. Most business has the occasional adverse review because some customers are mad.
Any high street firm should be able to write to her.
Alternatively you can try a barrister under public access which does actually seem to be a bit cheaper.