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Builders Invoice Court Claim, please help!

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  • Builders Invoice Court Claim, please help!

    Hi, I have been served with a Court Claim in respect of an invoice from my builder (over £10,000). He walked off a significant renovation job without fully completing it telling me (by email) to seek to complete the project with another contractor. Over a year later with no contact from this builder I received an invoice which I disputed immediately. 7 days later a Debt Collection Company started to pursue me. After three months and me providing them with significant evidence to substantiate my position they backed off. This Court Claim has come out of the blue after almost another year. The builder, and his Debt Recovery Company have never answered my requests to clarify how the builder has come to the amounts within the invoice as they are either never agreed as in addition to the agreed works or inflated priced from those agreed as extra works. Furthermore, I have deducted the cost of me completing and rectifying works.

    Please help, I intend to defend this claim. The Particulars of Claim are muddled and the real dispute is the invoice, the POC appear to be stating timelines of the build not addressing why they think I owe them money. I did write to the Solicitor requesting disclosure of all evidence he intends to use to substantiate his clients claim, but he has refused. I am also concerned they they are trying to use a 12 month rule for 'snagging' as there was significant faults and incomplete works.As the Builder told me to find another builder, surely this constitutes him terminating his contract and therefore why would I go back to him for snagging and he has never contacted me since.
    Tags: None

  • #2
    I've further redacted the POC and post as img below ( I could read straight through the black marker )

    image_33674.png
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    2019-01-12 13_44_55-People bar flyout.png
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    Attached Files
    “We may not win by protesting, but if we don’t protest we will lose. If we stand up to them, there is always a chance we will win.” Hetty Bower

    Any support I provide is offered without liability, if you are unsure please seek professional legal guidance.

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    Comment


    • #3
      Hmmm yes, so the actual claim is only for the final invoice - which you have a copy of. So really 3 to 8 are unecessary other than for background, and presumably your defence will simply admit those as correct. You'll want to disclose the copies of the invoices and payment details when you come to Witness Statements later, particularly if there are duplicate charges involved with the final invoice.

      The final invoice wants breaking down, defending and the claimant putting to proof of each item.

      Have you acknowledged the claim as yet ? You should get that done with intent to defend in full asap.

      You can then request further information (CPR 18) and documents mentioned in the statement of case (CPR 31.14)

      To help with that you'll need to post up the invoice which is actually the subject of the claim and the basics of your arguments against each part. Probably you've already done this in your questionning of the previous and current debt company that the builder is using.

      You have his 'find another builder' email still I assume as it seems likely you will want to evidence the date he ceased work and why any snagging wouldn't have gone to him to deal with. The snagging part sounds like an excuse at to why he waited a year before invoicing you.


      “We may not win by protesting, but if we don’t protest we will lose. If we stand up to them, there is always a chance we will win.” Hetty Bower

      Any support I provide is offered without liability, if you are unsure please seek professional legal guidance.

      If we have helped you we'd appreciate it if you can leave a review on our Trust Pilot page

      Find Solicitors offering fixed fees on our sister site - JustBeagle.com

      Comment


      • #4
        Thanks Amethyst. I have attached the letter I sent to the Debt Recovery Co along with a copy of the invoice. You can see that I have defended all serials and have evidence to back this up. I have never received answers to any of my queries. I did only receive 1 response in relation to the rectification costs. I responded to this and still no reply. All over 1 year ago then this Claim out of the blue!
        Attached Files

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by GuyB View Post
          Thanks Amethyst. I have attached the letter I sent to the Debt Recovery Co along with a copy of the invoice. You can see that I have defended all serials and have evidence to back this up. I have never received answers to any of my queries. I did only receive 1 response in relation to the rectification costs. I responded to this and still no reply. All over 1 year ago then this Claim out of the blue!
          Amethyst could you remove GuyB name and address from response letter.

          Comment


          • #6
            Plus full defence of each item on the invoice.
            Attached Files

            Comment


            • #7
              Under extra works, you have stated that the lights were left hanging down by the builder. Did you take photographic evidence before you rectified this,and was the electrics live to lights?

              Comment


              • #8
                Setmefree3. Sadly I do not have any photos of this. I naively thought at the time that he had merely walked away from the job. The electrics were live to the lights. In the big picture this item is small fry at £180. Unfortunately many figures in the invoice have either been inflated or never agreed as extra works.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Point 10 of the POC states (substantive completion of the works) the email received from the builder asks you to find another contractor to finish the project. I take it (the project) referred to includes everything that was first agreed.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Yes, that is my assumption. I intend to dispute that substantive completion has been reached. Otherwise why would I need to find another contractor?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I trust you have kept the email from the builder asking you to find another contractor. I notice the contractor states that he was forced to leave the project due to your actions after he has fulfilled substantive completion?.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Yes I have the email. And yes he states 'he was forced to leave the project after he has fulfilled substantive completion!!!! Somewhat of a contradiction!

                        He sent the email as a result of being sent a picture of wires handing out of the light-switch socket, with a message saying please come and finish the electrics as these are unsafe and it is soon to be school holidays with children in the house.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Amethyst has given you good advice on what to do next. Come back when you receive a reply. :-).

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I did send an email to the solicitor last week asking for full disclosure of all evidence he intend to use to substantiate his clients claim. He refused, saying that I was trying to waste time and cost his client more money.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by GuyB View Post
                              I did send an email to the solicitor last week asking for full disclosure of all evidence he intend to use to substantiate his clients claim. He refused, saying that I was trying to waste time and cost his client more money.
                              Keep all communication sent and received for future reference.

                              Comment

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                              SHORTCUTS

                              Pre-Action Letters
                              First Steps
                              Check dates
                              Income/Expenditure
                              Acknowledge Claim
                              CCA Request
                              CPR 31.14 Request
                              Subject Access Request Letter
                              Example Defence
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                              Directions Questionnaire



                              If you received a court claim and would like some help and support dealing with it, please read the first steps and make a new thread in the forum with as much information as you can.


                              NOTE: If you receive a court claim note these dates in your calendar ...
                              Acknowledge Claim - within 14 days from Service

                              Defend Claim - within 28 days from Service (IF you acknowledged in time)

                              If you fail to Acknowledge the claim you may have a default judgment awarded against you, likewise, if you fail to enter your defence within 28 days from Service.




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