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F E Smith
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 9187
Experience:  I have been practising for 30 years.
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What is the legal position of a person Who asks people to

Customer Question

What is the legal position of a person
Who asks people to sign a petition and does not deliver the petition but throws it away?
Submitted: 13 days ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  F E Smith replied 13 days ago.

Thank you for your question - can you explain what has happened please?

Customer: replied 13 days ago.
We signed a petition against a planning application to carry out work on woods next to where I live. The man concerned did not forward the petition that had a number of signatures on it to the planning department of our local county council. I live in a retirement complex.Some of the residents are quite elderly and trusted the man concerned to deliver the petition. Unfortunately this has meant that the views of residents will not be heard by East Riding of Yorkshire Council. The land is owned by a local estate agents.
Expert:  F E Smith replied 12 days ago.

I cannot think of any criminal offence which they have committed. They have not committed fraud. They have not obtained goods or services by deception. By all means go to the police in case they can think of an offence but I don’t think that they are going to be interested.

There is potentially a civil claim here if the individuals entrusted this person to do a job (deliver the petition) and the person failed to do so. However the individuals would have to suffer a loss would have to prove that had the petition arrived, the development would not have gone ahead. They would also have to prove that the development going ahead has caused them to suffer loss. It’s certainly not a claim (or claims) that I would be rushing to court over. Sorry

I can tell you however that a petition against the planning application (or anything else for that matter) is a very little effect. If anyone wants to make a objection to something, then an individual letter is taken far more seriously. The reason is that anyone who has a petition thrust in front of them will normally sign it.

I don’t know whether it’s too late for each of the individuals to write letters or if they are not able to do so, sign a common piece of paper/petition themselves but as I said earlier, if they want the objections to be taken into account, they are going to have to make individual formal objections.

Can I clarify anything else for you?

Please take a moment to look at the top right hand corner of the page and rate my service by clicking one of the stars at the top of the screen. Then press Submit. Thank you. If you still need any point clarifying, I will still reply because the thread does not close.

Best wishes.


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