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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 32086
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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The Claimants solicitors have issued a letter (WITHOUT

Customer Question

Hi, the Claimants solicitors have issued a letter (WITHOUT PREJUDICE SAVE AS TO COSTS) in an attempt to settle a matter by consent and in the interest of saving further time and costs and have in this respect made a counter offer in full and final settlement of the claim against me. This was in response to my offer for the vehicles title and in settlement to the Claimants claims which are disputed. The Claimants solicitors have stated my offer was not acceptable to their client on the basis that it does not take into account the costs that have been incurred in dealing with this matter, although I originally made this offer at Particulars of claim (pre-court action) stage and reissued the same offer again recently and on this basis I do not believe I'm liable for their costs as the claims they have made are denied and since my amended defence it is my belief they do not now wish to go to trial. should I reject their counter offer and issue a counter offer based solely on the original offer made in settlement. thank you
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  James Mather replied 5 years ago.
Can you give me details of the case please?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Hi yes, the case involces a vehicle under an agreement with two other defendants. One of the defendants is a company who in in liquidation, the other is the director of the company in liquidation who had signed as Guarantor and Indemnity to the agreement.

The Claimants claims against me are denied and I have recently issued amended defence following an amended particulars of claim issued by the Claimants solicitors, would you like me to paste the amended defence to you as this sets out their claims and my detailed defence in response, thank you.

Expert:  James Mather replied 5 years ago.
Was the original offera part 36 offer?. Are they now asking for more or less? Can I have details of claim and offers and counteroffers please and when made?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

The original offer issued during the pre court action period in August 2012 was not issued as a part 36 offer as it was conditional on settlement by repayment over a period of time, please refer to the attached (1 - Letter to Claimants solicitors from D3, dated 02.08.2012)

The amount being claimed by the Claimant in the POC against the Third Defendant (me) is for £19,229.44, as outlined below in the amended Particulars of Claim issued at the second court hearing on the 19th December 2012 (please note all the Claimants claims are disputed as detailed in the amended defence)

(17) On 26.10.09 the First Defendant wrongfully and without the consent of the Claimant disposed of the vehicle to Mr Ashleigh Frost (the Third Defendant). The disposal of the vehicle of the vehicle by the First Defendant during the currency of the Agreement was precluded by clause 4(e).
D3 - extracted from Owners copy of the agreement - Clause 4 (e) keep the Vehicle in your possession and under your control and not sell, rent or dispose of it or attempt to do so or allow someone other than you to become registered at the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency as the Vehicle's registered keeper;
(18) The Claimant alleges that as at the time of the First Defendant’s disposal of the Vehicle to the Third Defendant, the Third Defendant had notice of the Agreement and did not act in good faith (Letters attached from the Third Defendant by way of evidence).
(19) There is attached to these Particulars of Claim two letters from the Third Defendant sent to the Claimant and the Claimants solicitors.
(20) By Letter dated 15.12.11 the Third Defendant refuses to deliver up the Vehicle to the Claimant.
(21) By letter dated 04.01.12 the Third Defendant acknowledges the existance of the agreement and his knowledge as such at 26.10.09 (being the date of the conversation), and furthermore alleges that the Agreement was transferred to him by the second Defendant. Any transfer of the Agreement is precluded by clause 10b of the agreement.
D3 - extracted from Owners copy of the agreement - Clause 10 (b) You must not transfer this agreement to anyone, as it is personal to you. We may transfer our rights and obligations under this agreement at any time without telling you first. This will not detrimentally affect your rights and obligations under this agreement.
(19) (22) By acquiring the Vehicle and or retaining the Vehicle, the First and Third Defendants wrongfully interfered with the Vehicle and/or the Claimant’s title to the Vehicle.
(20) (23) For the avoidance of doubt, the Third Defendant actions amount to both a singular and continuing acts of wrongful interference.
(21) (24) By reason of the facts referred to in paragraph 17 – 20 inclusive, the Third Defendant has wrongfully interfered and/or converted the Vehicle, causing the Claimant loss and damage.
(24.1) Amount required to discharge the agreement (aggregate of sums referred to in paragraphs 9, 12 and 16 above £18.704.83
(24.2) Market value of the vehicle as at date of conversion being 26.10.09 £15,700.00
(24.3) The Claimant is entitled to the lesser sum in order to avoid any double recovery by the Claimant, namely £15,700.00
(22) (25) The Claimant claims interest on the sum of £15.700.00 from the date of conversation until the date of issue of this claim (1029 days) which produces a figure of £3,529.44.
(23) (26) The Claimant also claims interest under Section 69 of the County Courts Act 1984 on such sums and for such period as the Court sees fit continuing at a daily rate of £3.44.

The Claimant solicitors sent a letter in December 2012 seeking acceptance of the Claimants claims or risk a summary judgement, please refer to (2 - Letter to D3 from Claimants solicitors, dated 20.12.2013)

In January 2013 I issued a response in which I set out my position and asked the Claimant to reconsider my original offer as being fair and reasonable settlement to the Claimants title of the vehicle and in settlement of their claims, please refer to (3 - Letter to Claimants solicitors from D3, dated 02.01.213)

Whilst awaiting a response, I issued an amended defence in January 2013, as requested by D3 at the amended POC hearing on the 19th December 2012 and ordered by the court , please refer to (4 - Amended defence of D3, dated 17.01.2013)

The Claimant solicitors issued a counter offer for £8,950.00 in damages plus the Claimants costs incurred in this matter being £5,100.00 split equally between the Second and Third Defendant = £2555.00, a total of £11,505.00 with £3,005.00 being paid immediately and the remainging balance being paid over 17 months x £500.00.

If I accept the Claimants counter offer by 4.00pm on 5 February 2013 the Cliamants solicitors will document the terms of settlement by way of a consent order, please refer to (5- Emailed counter offer from Claimants solicitor to D3 dated 29.01.2013)

I have since requested (by return email) a breakdown and justification as to why they consider I'm liable for a share of their costs I will not be surprised if they do not issue this information or respond at all, please refer (6- Emailed request for further information from D3 to Claimants solicitor dated 30.01.2013)

The correspondance referred to above is listed below and copies are attached as requested; (unfortunately I don't seem to be able to attach these documents so I have issued them via an external Microsoft SKYDRIVE link below which if you click on will take you directly to them for download located in the folder called "Touchwoodsden - Folder 1"!114&authkey=!AIGQzqxoWV3AWFA)

1 - Letter to Claimants solicitors from D3, dated 02.08.2012

2 - Letter to D3 from Claimants solicitors, dated 20.12.2013

3 - Letter to Claimants solicitors from D3, dated 02.01.213

4 - Amended defence of D3, dated 17.01.2013

5- Emailed counter offer from Claimants solicitor to D3 dated 29.01.2013

6- Emailed request for further information from D3 to Claimants solicitor dated 30.01.2013

I do hope this is everything you need at this time.

Kind regards Ashleigh

Expert:  James Mather replied 5 years ago.
I am going to opt out for another expert. No need to do anything because it is now open to all experts