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JGM, Solicitor
Category: Scots Law
Satisfied Customers: 12076
Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor.
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My ex partner sent me a letter threatening to sue me for

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My ex partner sent me a letter threatening to sue me for £30,000 for an event that took place over 4 years ago. This event did happen although the outcome was not expected and he has been pursuing a solicitor in Scotland ever since.
I engaged in conversations and emails with him and eventually sent him three cheques totaling £15,000 together with the jewellery he had bought me over time and a letter saying this money was in full and final settlement. He responded and said he wanted the whole amount and was not accepting these cheques as settlement and that he would return them but he would not return the jewellery.
After this I emailed his legal advisor and said I would pay the full amount but only after I had received a signed letter to say I would never be pursued in the future for any other payment. An agreement was sent which I rejected as totally inappropriate and have asked for something much simpler and to the point to be drawn up. I repeated I was not going to send any further cheques until this signed document was in my hand.
My ex cashed the first cheque as I discovered today when I looked at my bank account so my question is:-
As a cheque has been cashed before any agreement is reached has he brought into force my letter stating full and final settlement?

This is an unusual situation as you offers to pay £15000 in full and final settlement, he wanted £30000 and you agreed to this subject to a further qualification of your receiving a discharge of your liability. So what you have is an offer to settle, a qualified acceptance and a further qualified acceptance, in other words a series of events from your first offer non of which make up a binding agreement. However, he has encased one of your chequers which was tendered on a particular basis, namely that the encashment is deemed to be in full and final settlement. I think that they will argue against you but I do think that you have a stateable case that he has accepted the cheque in part settlement of your offer of £15000 and so is deemed to have accepted that sum in settlement of his claim. I have to say, however, that the point is arguable either way and I've looked to see if there's any authority in case law which would assist. I have found nothing which is why I've argued it for you simply on the basis that there was no concluded contract therefore your earlier unilateral condition applies. I hope that helps. Please leave a positive rating so that I am credited for my time.

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