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Buachaill
Buachaill, Barrister
Category: Republic of Ireland Law
Satisfied Customers: 11584
Experience:  Barrister 17 years experience
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Not sure how this service works regarding the advice and

Customer Question

not sure how this service works regarding the advice and cost for that advice - can you let me know
JA: What state are you in? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: Sorry, I am in Dublin, Ireland
JA: Has anything been filed or reported?
Customer: not sure I follow the question
JA: Anything else you want the Expert to know before I connect you?
Customer: no - just how the service works
Submitted: 16 days ago.
Category: Republic of Ireland Law
Customer: replied 16 days ago.
1. Myself and my wife sold an investment property in Dublin in November 2018 – sale closed 18 November 2018
2. At the time of the sale I had received a statement from the management company for the fees due and there was a NIL balance due
3. Myself and my solicitor and I also presume the purchaser’s solicitor all assumed fees were paid up to the 18 November 2018
4. Management fees are payable from 1 June to 31 May in any given year. Purchaser’s solicitor assumed I had paid up to 31 May 2019 and therefore remitted €980 (€980 representing the period 30 November 2018 to 31 May 2019) as part of closing funds.
5. In December 2018 they sought to get these funds back (30 November 2018 to 31 May 2019) - approximately €980. I did eventually return these funds in 2019 when I finally realized what had happened
6. When I went through the statement in detail, I did realise that the NIL statement did not have the 2018/2019 i.e. (fees due for the period 1 June 2018 to 31 May 2019). Management company had not posed there to my account at the time of the sale of the property and I presume posted them after the sale and back dated them
7. The purchaser’s solicitor for some reason which is not clear to me paid the fees to the management company to cover the period 1 June 2018 to 30 November 2018. I can only assume they realized their mistake when a demand notice for the 2018/2019 fees was made to the new purchaser and this was the fastest and easiest way to remedy the situation
8. The purchaser’s solicitor is now coming after me for the fee for the period 1 June 2018 to 30 November 2018 claiming I owe them the debt as they paid it on behalf of their client. They have told be they will bring me to the district court to recover the management fees (approx. €980)
9. They wrote to me directly as they claimed they got no satisfaction from my solicitor. I was surprised to get a letter from them as I would have thought they were not allowed to write to me as I was never their client
10. I have talked to the purchaser’s and accept I did owe the management fee. I have said I would pay the management company and they could recover their money from them. I have also pointed out that this situation was not my making – they failed in the duty to their client, not me.
11. Am I legally obliged to pay the management fees to cover the period 1 June 2018 to 30 November 2018 given the management company, my solicitor and the purchasers solicitor were all at fault and not me
12. Were the solicitors entitled to write to me directly seeking recovery of the management fees?
Expert:  Nicola-mod replied 16 days ago.
Hello,

I've been working hard to find a Professional to assist you with your question, but sometimes finding the right Professional can take a little longer than expected.

I wonder whether you're ok with continuing to wait for an answer. If you are, please let me know and I will continue my search. If not, feel free to let me know and I will cancel this question for you.

Thank you!
Nicola
Customer: replied 15 days ago.
Will wait for answer - any idea when you will have an answer
Expert:  Buachaill replied 15 days ago.

Hello, and thank you for your question. I am your Expert and I will provide the answer you require.

Expert:  Buachaill replied 15 days ago.

1. The first point here, I regret to say, is that you owe the money irrespective of whether all of the other parties involved - namely the purchaser and the two firms of solicitor - were not aware that the liability lay with you at the time of sale. So, essentially, you should pay the monies, one way or another. The correct thing here would be to pay them to the party who did discharge them, as they discharged your personal liability and so you should pay them to the solicitors who did in fact pay them. Additionally, as you were person who owed the monies, the law will see nothing wrong with you being written to, so as to discharge the liability. There is no hiding behind the fact that you formerly had a firm of solicitors in the sale. The sale had been completed as the transfer had occurred. So, the law will not find fault with you being written to directly to pay over the monies as you were the person who owed them, not your solicitors. My short advice would be to simply pay the monies back to the solicitor's firm who paid them and quickly put the whole incident behind you. Draw a line under it and just move on in life as everybody makes some error in life and none of these parties, including your own solicitor, will thank you for attempting to argue your way out of it.

Expert:  Buachaill replied 15 days ago.

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