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Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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I'm in arrears fees property I own. My

Customer Question

I'm in arrears for maintenance fees for a property I own. My regular arrangement is that I get invoiced via emails. Last year in Feb, I asked when the maintenance fee was due - ignored. Last December I asked if I had any outstanding fees to pay - ignored.
I asked again last week if I have any fees to pay and I get this response.
"As your account is in arrears, your matter has ben passed to ourselves to take action and county court proceedings have now been issued. Please find attached all documents sent to date."
bla bla bla details of all the costs I need to pay
More importantly I'm worried about this paragraph:
"Should we fail to receive full payment as above within 5 days of the date of this e-mail then we will have no alterative but to continue action against you. Should further action or correspondence be necessary then the legal costs and interest will be recalculated as a result of the time and work carried out in this matter."
I'm trying everything I can to fight this myself claiming that I've chased the maintenance office for payment but they've never responded in the past as well as a history of all communications done via email.
When I messaged the office initially they had this reply back:
"Hi Arrun
I hope you are okay.
Can you please see the e-mails below regarding an outstanding account – again where invoices / correspondence is not being e-mailed like it used to be.
Can you deal with the case below?"
It sounds like something also went wrong on their end. But the problem is, I keep emailing back almost immediately but I Get no response from anyone. Can someone please offer any advice?
Should I suck it up and pay all the fees to make this go away? Or do I have a chance to fight this if they do take legal action?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you with this.How much are the fees please?Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
In view of the above the amount outstanding stands in the sum of £2561.66 and is broken down as follows:
Arrears: £1322.76
Interest: £26.90
Legal Costs: £840.00 + VAT
Fixed Solicitors Costs on Issue: £80.00
Court fee: £115.00
Disbursements: £9.00
Total: £2561.66
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Do you accept the arrears? Have Court proceedings been issued?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The arrears are fine. I've already told them that I am willing to settle this to pay the all the arrears back - I've had this money for a long time coming anticipating the invoice but not the legal costs.As far as I'm aware, court proceedings have not been issued. They've said this:Should we fail to receive full payment as above within 5 days of the date of this e-mail then we will have no alterative but to continue action against you.Today is that 5th day.
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Ok - then you need to pay:Arrears: £1322.76Interest: £26.90Legal Costs: £840.00 + VATDisbursements: £9.00You dont need to pay the Court fee or Fixed costs. This is because it has not yet been issued. But sadly if you are in arrears then you do have to pay the legal costs.Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
But my point is that none of this would be needed if the maintenance office contacted me in the first place. I already said that I regularly pay my invoices via email.I've contacted them in the past TWICE asking if I needed to pay anything - once in feb last year and again on 14 December. They've ignored both of those queries which has led us to this. The invoices were due to be paid by 4 December. This is what I'm contesting - that my account should never have been passed to the solicitors or that I have to pay these legal costs because the maintenance office failed to disclose what I owed when I asked them both times.
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
I agree. But if they issue proceedings then the costs go up and up.You should pay it and then sue the Landlord for failure to disclose what was owed to you. But I would stop the clock to prevent further costs.Does that clarify?Alex