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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71051
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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We had a dispute with our neighbour, he came around, swore

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We had a dispute with our neighbour, he came around, swore at us and broke our front door. The police was called, he admitted breaking our door and agreed to pay £150 to cover the damages. The PCSO who was supposed to collect the money couldn't on the day agreed. Since then, the neighbours have spoke to his sergeant who says he can't collect the money as the damage he to be proven to be caused by criminal intent and we have to go visit small claims court.

If they have admitted causing the damage and accepted to pay, do we still have to go via the courts, when even the courts ask to mediate first and the PCSO HD done that! Help please!

Thank you for your question. My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will try to help with this.

What would you like to know about this?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I would like to know if the PCSO was correct and the police should assist us in collecting the money as planned or if it is worth us going to small claims court and the process please.

Did the police actually agree to collect the funds?

Normally they would not.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Yes. The PCSO was due to collect the £150 last weekend, however for several reasons he did not make it. The neighbours called the police trying to get hold of him. Spoke to his sergeant who has said we have to prove his intent was criminal and go via small claims court.


It is really quite difficult to tell what has happened here!

The police should not be collecting funds. That is what the sargeant meant. That turns them into debt collectors which is not their remit.

However, I can think of no apparent reason that they could not be picked up for a criminal damage here. You don't mention how he broke the front door but it isn't something that normally happens lawfully! If he has caused damage to your door intentionally or recklessly then that is criminal damage.

It might be worth complaining about that to a more senior officer or possibly the IPCC.

You can, however, recover by suing at the small claims court here

I do see the point that the sargeant is making here. The police are not empowered to collect civil disputes. But I don't see any reason at all that they couldn't act over this.

Can I clarify anything for you?

Jo C. and 3 other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The patio door was smashed by him punching into the glass. We have photos taken and he admitted doing it to the PCSO.


The PCSO has just acted as a mediator and was never meant to collect any money. He was supposed to ask them to post it through our letter box, but as the front door was broken, to let us know when they would so we could collect. I assume he thought it would be easier for him to deliver.


1. Would the courts not prefer this to be solved outside through mediation, even if that is the police a ting as the mediators?


2. If I have to take it to court, what do I have to do to prove he 'intentionally' broke the door?

3. Do I have to attend court opposite him and answer questions etc? What is the process?

4. What are the fees involved for going to court? How much are court fees? Solicitors fees? Any other fees?


Could I recover these as part of the damages?

6. What are my chances of succeeding? How long does the courts process take?

7. In your opinion, is it worth taking to court?


I all this incredibly stressful and want it to be over with. At the same time, I can't let Anyone get away with breaking my door! I'm scared they will feel they can damage my property and their will be no consequences for them.


Thank you.

I wouldn't bother with mediation. Just sue him.

No, you don't have to prove intent to claim. Punching the glass is intentional anyway

If he contested it then you would have to go to court.

On the facts that you present you should win at court.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Would you kindly answer my questions 4 a d 5, regarding fees And whether I can reclaim them from him.


Thank you.

You can reclaim from him but small claims court fees are very low.

It depends on the sum of the claim but usually under £100.