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Alex J.
Alex J., Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 3557
Experience:  Solicitors 2 years plus PQE
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I have invested a large sum of money buying christmas trees

Customer Question

I have invested a large sum of money buying christmas trees from a company called EVERGREEN FARMING AND FORESTRY Ltd, Mr. SCOTT LEVY is the managing director. The trees are on two sites, one in Bishop Stortford and the other in the largest site in Powys N. Wales. I have been unable to get in touch with him,(Scott Levy) since Jan. and have since found out that he has not paid his bills to the maintenance company ,CADBEY TREE TRUST. I have no idea what my situation is at the moment and if my investment is safe, the trees are growing well and could be harvested in 2018-2019 but care & maintenance has ceased until bills have been paid, there must be many investors in the same position as myself. Could you advise me on what I should do. ***** *****
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Alex J. replied 10 months ago.
Hi, Thank you for your question and welcome, my name is ***** ***** I will assist you. What did you receive for your investment? Was it shares? Or was the investment as a loan or bond? Kind regards AJ
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Scott Levy purchased 300 trees @ £12 each, these were planted in B/Stortford, I then invested in a further purchase of 1910 trees @ £11 per tree, these were planted in Powys, Wales. Yorkshire Christmas Trees were the seller and Cadbey Trust were responsible for planting and maintenance.The seedlings have been in the ground April 2014 and are growing well in protected fields. ***** *****
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
I would like an answer to my original question which was, is my investment safe and where do I go from here ? Mike
Expert:  Alex J. replied 10 months ago.
Hi, Thank you. Before I can consider whether your investment is secure I need you to confirm how the money was invested - did you lend his company the money to buy the trees? Do you physically own the trees? Are you a shareholder in his company? Thank you kindly. I look forward to hearing from you.
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
I was asked to invest £3000 which would buy me 250 Nordman xmas trees @ £12 each, these were planted at Bishops Stortford, I later invested £21000 which would buy me 1,910 Nordman xmas trees @£11 each. these were planted at Powys in north Wales, Scott Levy leased the fields for 8 years from a farmer. My wife and I were invited down to Powys in 2014 to inspect the site with Scott Levy who showed us the planted saplings all labeled with my name and in very secure ploughed fields protected by deer and rabbit fences, weed free and growing well. Since then, the company who tend the trees (Cadbey Trust) informed me that they were owed over £40000 from Scott Levy and had ceased all work until payment was forthcoming,but also suspected that he (SL) may have gone under. I have been issued with two certificates stating my ownership and the trees are numbered, That is the situation at this moment,it seems that nobody can get in touch with him to clarify what is happening and his office in Canary Wharf is empty. This is the reason for my getting in contact with you as I have no idea what to do. Mike
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
We have since found out from the land-owner that he has received no payments for rent since January, this year. Mike
Expert:  Alex J. replied 10 months ago.
Hi Thank you. The company is not currently in liquidation and does not appear to be subject to insolvency proceedings. There is also no record on the insolvency service that Scott Levy has gone bankrupt. There may be proceedings pending but that is not something I can search. If you paid money to the company that is who you will need to reclaim your investment from, a brief company search shows the company has assets, so it may be worth suing to recover your investment. Did you sign a contract that detailed the terms on which your investment could be recovered? Kind regards AJ
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
I did sign a contract that detailed terms and conditions but it was a teaming agreement stating what each parties responsibilities were. I must say here, that I do not want to sue to recover my investment but to see the trees reach maturity in a few years and reap the subsequent rewards. Your remarks about Evergreen does give me some hope for the future but only if Scott Levy steps back into the picture and takes up the burden of responsibility and there-in lies the nub of the problem. I have no contact with any other client so it is difficult to co-ordinate any action on the way forward. Mike
Expert:  Alex J. replied 10 months ago.
Hi, Thank you. Do you have any idea where SL lives. I can tell you he is 25 years old, so it may be worth using the Census to find his home address and see if you can contact him directly. If you have ownership of the trees (and not shares) can you take steps in the mean to mark off your investment? Who owns the land the trees sit on?
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
I am having difficulty getting further information apart from where he was born, I am not that good on a pc. I have been in contact with the landowner, and they are in the same position as myself and have been unable to contact him.
The trees are numbered and have my name on the start of the row and at the end of the rows, these correspond with the numbers on my ownership certificate.
Expert:  Alex J. replied 10 months ago.
Thank you. Can you tell me what relationship MR SL has with the landowner? Is it a lease? I would be most grateful if you could provide some feedback on my answer at this stage, I will of course continue to assist you in any event. Kind regards AJ
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
As far as I am aware, SL has an eight year lease with the land-owner. M
Expert:  Alex J. replied 10 months ago.
Hi, Thank you. ***** goes bankrupt, he may forfeit the lease, it may be worth tacitly speaking to the landowner to see if you can identify your trees and keep them on the land in the event that the lease disappears. Kind regards AJ
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
k, will try to contact landowner and see what he has to say. M
Expert:  Alex J. replied 10 months ago.
Please let me know if I can assist further. It you have a moment I would be most grateful for any feedback. Kind regards AJ
Alex J., Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 3557
Experience: Solicitors 2 years plus PQE
Alex J. and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Hi Alex, I have been in touch with the land-owner, they have heard nothing from S,L. They did receive an e-mail on 15/Feb. apologizing for late rental payments and told them he was owed money from two companies -EWEING HAYES £133,000 and MUNNELLY & DUNLEAVY £45,000, and that he was sorting it out to get them paid but heard nothing since. the land-owner may well be in his right to take possession of the trees in lieu of payment. Would it be possible to obtain a list of investors at the site of Warren Farm in Powys from HRC or some other body?
Expert:  Alex J. replied 10 months ago.
Hi, Thank you for your message. I will have a look on Companies House to see if there is a shareholder list for EVERGREEN FARMING AND FORESTRY Ltd - I will revert to you at some point today. Kind regards AJ
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Hi AJ, thank you for all your help but is this as far as you can go with this issue? I will get on to Company House myself and see if I can obtain the information I require, and continue communicating with the land-owners on how to go forward on difficult problem. Once again thank you. ***** *****
Expert:  Alex J. replied 10 months ago.
Hi, Thank you. I am happy to assist any further. Please let me know if there any developments? Kind regards AJ

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