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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 47377
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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Had a service done on my computer and they have lost all my

Customer Question

Had a service done on my computer and they have lost all my work documents . Ie job details,quotes.invoices.money paid to me. Contact numbers etc etc also emails lost including insurance policies. Also 1 USB port does now not work.what can I do
Submitted: 12 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 12 months ago.

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 12 months ago.

Were you provided with an agreement prior to them fixing it, regarding back up of your data?

Customer: replied 12 months ago.
No. To be honest I only gave him computer to sort out the emails. I didn the know he was going to do a service. Next thing he sends me a picture with my laptop in bits. He then broke keypad which he replaced. That's when the USB port must have got damaged. 3 years of documents is my real concern
Customer: replied 12 months ago.
He was setting up Web page originally which I am happy with.
Customer: replied 12 months ago.
After the service the computer came back and he had changed everything including operating system. Again he was never asked to do it.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 12 months ago.

Thank you for your response. I will review the relevant information and laws and will get back to you as soon as I can. Please do not respond to this message as it will just push your question to the back of the queue and you may experience unnecessary delays. Thank you

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 12 months ago.

Many thanks for your patience. In the circumstances it is likely that the person would be guilty of negligence because through their negligent actions they have caused you damages or losses. He could have tried to avoid liability by firstly telling you what work he was going to carry out and seeking your consent, next issuing you with an exclusion notice that states he has no legal liability if you lose any work as a result and suggest that you back up any important documentation. That would have at least put you on notice that you need to back up any important data so that in the event it is lost, you would still have it. Not only did he not do this but he also failed to advise you that he was going to carry out such work.

The issue is what you can about this. Whilst there may be a claim, how do you quantify compensation for the loss of documentation. Usually you can work out what something is wroth if it is a tangible item with a value, such as the USB port damage, but the documents will have to be determined by a court. So you do have the option of taking this further under negligence but obviously try to resolve it informally with him first. You have 6 years in which to make a claim so no immediate rush.

This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the steps you need to take if you wish to pursue this further, which I wish to discuss so please take a second to leave a positive rating for the service so far (by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars) and I can continue with that and answer any further questions you may have. Don’t worry, there is no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you

Ben Jones and 2 other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 12 months ago.

Thank you. Whenever a dispute arises over compensation owed by one party to another, the party at fault can be pursued through the civil courts. As legal action should always be seen as a last resort, there are certain actions that should be taken initially to try and resolve this matter informally and without having to involve the courts. It is recommended that the process follows these steps:

1. Reminder letter – if no reminders have been sent yet, one should be sent first to allow the party at fault to voluntarily settle this matter.

2. Letter before action – if informal reminders have been sent but these have been ignored, the party at fault must be sent a formal letter asking them to resolve this amicably within a specified period of time. A reasonable period to demand a response by would be 10 days. They should be advised that if they fail to do contact you in order to resolve this matter, formal legal proceedings will be commenced to pursue the compensation due. This letter serves as a ‘final warning’ and gives the other side the opportunity to resolve this matter without the need for legal action.

3. If they fail to pay or at least make contact to try and resolve this, formal legal proceedings can be initiated. A claim can be commenced online by going to www.moneyclaim.gov.uk. Once the claim form is completed it will be sent to the other side and they will have a limited time to defend it. If they are aware legal proceedings have commenced it could also prompt them to reconsider their position and perhaps force them to contact you to try and resolve this.

Whatever correspondence is sent, it is always advisable to keep copies and use recorded delivery so that there is proof of delivery and a paper trail. The court may need to refer to these if it gets that far.

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Hi Ben thanks for your quick response.He says he has a back up. I have requested this and will give him 10days.what i don't understand is he said he bought a external drive which was 64gb and yet he tells me the back up is 100gb. Like I say I will give him 10 days to produce the backup ,which I will open in front of someone else incase he says I have deleted it from the backup drive. I will then write to him as you suggested by recorded post. Will he also be liable for any costs I incur like postage and the time it has taken to sort this out?
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 months ago.

You won't be able to claim for much of your time, maybe just for any appearances in court but it is a given that disputes will take up someone's time unfortunately. Same with postage, there is no point in claiming for little things like stamps but if there was a clear large shipment that required courier charges and it was unavoidable then that could be included