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JGM
JGM, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 11422
Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor.
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We had a self employed HGV Driver do driving and he

Customer Question

We had a self employed HGV Driver do driving for us and he would invoice us for the hours worked. To cut a long story short he smashed 1 tyre on a forklift he borrowed to do something personal on. Then he wrecked 3 tyres on the lorry making the same mistake each time, the last 2 times being on one day and doing exactly the same thing the next morning when he drove out to do the deliveries we had not done the day before due to the tyre being replaced. We told him when he smashed the 3rd tyre that he would have to pay for it and he just grinned and left. When he did the same thing the next morning we told him that he would have to pay for the 2 tyres he got angry and left. We duly invoiced him for the tyres and contra'd our invoice against what we owed him when we paid his invoice. Now he is taking us to court, plus interest, for non payment of his invoice, stating that he would not have worked for us if he knew that was our company policy to charge for damages. (We would not have used him if we had known what a bad driver he was.) He cost us a lot more in down time and irate customers for non-delivery as well as lorry tyres (they are not cheap) and fitting - you have to call experts out to fit them. We have defended the case but we do not want a CCJ, what should we do?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  JGM replied 2 years ago.
You should defend his claim and also counterclaim for the damage he has cost you. As he was self employed you are entitled to say that the contract entitled you to a competent and workmanlike service from him and from what you say you didn't get that. Remember this is a commercial contract, not a contract of employment and there are implied terms of quality that you are entitled to expect from a professional driver. To deal properly with the court procedures I advise that you instruct a solicitor but the law is certainly on your side here and you should not be intimated by his court claim.
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Customer: replied 1 year ago.

We have another case where we supplied waste wood pellets to a client. He knows the industry and we told him the specifications of our product. He never paid for them and later said that his client could not burn them in their boiler. He then wanted us to collect them for refund. We said we would collect if we got another sale in his area, otherwise he could return them to us. We never got another sale near him nor did he return them to us. The pellets have disappeared and we have still not been paid for them. We have taken him to court for it but he says because we did not collect them he is not liable to pay. We have a notice of allocation to the Small Claims Track (Hearing) which is payable by the 11 Nov 15. We also have to give the other party any evidence we will be using in court as he will have to do with us. What advice can you give us? Most of the conversations where by phone. What evidence can we give to support our claim. It is not our responsibility what he did with the goods after we supplied. We told him they were waste wood and he knows full well what it means as he has been in the industry for many years.

Expert:  JGM replied 1 year ago.
Of course he is liable to pay. He didn't return the goods to you. You will have to produce your invoice and any other written documents or emails you have on file and will also have the oral evidence of witnesses that can be put in statement form in the first instance to state the order and the nature of the phone calls throughout the transaction and afterwards.