Many thanks for your patience, I am pleased to be able to
continue assisting with your query now. First of all, I am sorry to hear about
this situation and any associated issues.
The first thing you need to check is whether the cheque you
sent was ever cashed as that will allow you to challenge them over the alleged
non-payment claims they have made.
Secondly, you can challenge them over the lack of any terms
and conditions being issued and make it clear that they have failed to provide
you with the requirement to provide you with certain terms in a durable medium in
contravention of the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and
Additional Charges) Regulations 2013.
Finally, whilst a party can make demands for payment,
instruct debt collectors or threaten legal action, it is important to note that
they can only really force someone to pay if they actually go to court, submit
a claim and are successful with it.
There is, however, no guarantee that they will actually ever
go that far. Many people issue threats and demands, without ever having the
intention of taking the matter to Court. This is done in the hope that the
scare the other party into complying with their demands to avoid the risk of
being taken to Court. However, until a formal notification of a Court claim has
been issued, there is never a guarantee that a claim will actually be made and
it could always remain just a threat, rather than reality.
Even if a claim was made, due to the value of compensation
sought, this matter would be assigned to the Small Claims Court. This is a
relatively low-risk option because it is specifically aimed at the smaller,
legally unrepresented parties. The costs of claiming are not that high, there
is no need to have a lawyer and incur further costs as a result and even if a
party loses the claim, they will not be liable to pay the other side’s legal
fees. All they would have to pay is the court fees, which at most will be
several hundred pounds and whatever the Court has decided should be paid to the
claimant as a result of their original claim.
Also, once judgment has been issued, on the assumption you
lose, the judgment is entered on the Register of Judgments, Orders and Fines,
where it will remain for 6 years. This is what is known as ‘having a CCJ’ and
can impact your credit rating. However, if payment of the judgment is made
within one month, the record will be removed from the Register and will no
longer be visible. If payment is made after one month has passed, it will still
remain on the Register for the 6 years, but will be marked as ‘satisfied’.
To conclude, it is possible to wait and see how far the
other side is willing to take this before deciding on how to respond and even
if a claim is made, it is possible to proceed and defend the claim in the
knowledge that the financial risks of doing so will not be astronomically high
and if any judgment made against you is paid within a month, there will be no