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  • Help Im being Sued!

    After a long search I have found this excellent site and would be grateful if anyone could offer advice on my dilemma.

    This week I received a county court summons from my neighbour claiming for £5,500 damages to his property and car that he alleges my 12 year old son has done. The allegation is totally unfounded, even malicicious and has culminated from a long dispute ever since we have moved in some four years ago.

    He lives alone and continuously complains about kids playing outside, he has fallen out with the other neighbours too. His property although only twenty years old is delapidated and neglected, e.g his fence which had half fallen down when we moved in has now fallen down completely because it is so rotten, this is one of the items he is claiming for!

    I am going to see a solicitor this week regarding this summons but would like advice as what I dont want is the lawyers on both sides making a fortune out of me.

    As I believe his summons is malicious, even criminal, can I counter sue, especially has he has called my son anti-social in the summons.

    Many thanks in anticipation. :badmood:

  • #2
    Hi Alex and welcome

    This is not going to sound very helpful, but your solicitor really is best placed to advise you on this.

    What exactly is he saying that your son has done to his car etc? And does he have any proof, or do you have any to the contrary? If the allegations are malicious, you may be able to counter-sue, but again only your solicitor will be able to gauge whether it would be worth your while.

    If his fence has fallen down because it is rotten, then he's not going to be able to claim for that for starters as it sounds as if he's trying it on. £5500 is a lot of damage for a twelve year old to have allegedly caused. Out of interest, do you have any photos from when you moved in that show any of his fences etc, as they may help to show what poor condition they were in. If not, are you able to take any photos now showing rot etc? that you could take along with you this week? They may help as proof for your argument.

    Let us know how you get on

    Blue Cow


    • #3
      Hi Alex and welcome to the forum

      Sorry to hear about your problem I have to agree with Blue Cow, best wait and see what your solicitor says.

      I would imagine that unless he has witnesses who saw his car being damaged he will have a hard time proving it.

      Good luck with your solicitor, hope he has good news for you

      "Almost anything you do will seem insignificant, but it is very important that you do it. You must be the change that you wish to see in the world." Gandhi


      • #4
        Hi Alex,

        I'm sorry to hear of your problem. I know that it's a gut-churning experience to receive Court proceedings like that.

        From the brief details that you have given I don't think you have anything to worry about, but I know that it's all very well for someone to say that to you from a distance.

        Before you go to see a solicitor look at the excellent archive of legal resources on this site. Look at the County Court booklets on the procedure of disputes. It will put you more in command of the facts relevant to the law and you'll feel more in control and better able to discuss it with your solicitor.

        Your neighbour must provide you with a document called a "Particulars of Claim", setting out exactly what he complains of. You then must file another document, setting out your defence to his case. Your neighbour has the burden of satisfying the Court that he is right.

        You mentioned a 4 year continual dispute, so you might be able to counter-claim for harassment.

        Some of the points I make have already been made, so I'm just putting the same thoughts in my own words.

        Whatever the case, make sure that you have all the available evidence to prove your case. If his fence is rotten, take as many photos as you need to prove its state. Ask anyone who will help you to make a statement, saying what they know about the complaints (either way, if you counter-claim).

        I think that if you feel up to it and you can give more details of your position, there will be people on this site who can give you a lot more help because, as you can imagine, there is a lot of experience here!

        It would be very helpful to your solicitor if you could let him have a statement from you in advance of your meeting. This will focus both your, and the solicitor's, attention on the relevant issues, and save costs. You need to be confident that your solicitor is really clued up on these matters. You can ask the office manager for details of the lawyer's experience in "rotten neighbour" disputes.

        Best wishes,



        • #5
          Welcome to the forum Alex

          I have to agree with the others, hang fire there until you get some sound advice from your Solicitor. Although admittedly this is going to be a stressful time for you.

          You could maybe approach your local CAB for advice too?

          We have some free Law Links too here:

          Possibly check your insurance(s) cover to see if you are entitled to claim for legal help/support too?

          Good luck and let us know (if you can, for legal reasons) how you get on.


          • #6
            Hi Alex and welcome to the NFHiB Forum Board

            I can only go along with what everyone else has said, but please keep us posted with how you're getting on.

            We're a very friendly and supportive group of people who know exactly the sort of feelings that you're going through at the moment, having to live with a NFH.

            Good luck when you get to see your Solicitor.

            Holly :ban:


            • #7
              Hi Alex, and welcome to NFHiB

              Sorry to hear you have received a summons for this horrific amount of money! I can only reiterate what others have suggested, but best of luck with this, and I hope you can get some expert legal advice with it. If you have proof of where your son was when this alleged incident took place, it would obviously be really helpful . And I really don't see how it can be claimed that damage wrecked an already rotten fence.....have you any idea of what proof he reckons he has for any of this?




              • #8
                Ask your solicitor about seeking an All Proceedings Order (vexatious litigant order).

                It might be possible that your nfh is already subject to such an order in the first place, which needs to be established.

                Basically this stops "nutters" from wasting the time of the courts by banning them from taking anyone to any court without first seeknig and being given the written permission of a High Court Judge.

                I am not sure how you would go about getting such an order, your solicitor should be able to help.


                • #9
                  If its damage to his car and property, then why isn't he going through his insurance which is what most people would do?

                  I think you're right. Its a malicious claim. He's playing a very risky game by going down this route. Courts do not like their time being wasted.

                  Repeating Matthew, check your own home insurance policies. Most of these have the option of legal insurance especially if an action is brought against you.

                  And you can counterclaim for harassment in your defence.
                  Now, these creatures are bringers of death and misery. They will never eat, they will never sleep, and they will never stop.

                  We are part of an ancient secret society. For three thousand years we have guarded the Cities and Towns. We are sworn at manhood to do any and all in our power to stop the NFH from ever being reborn into this world.

                  So what's the plan?

                  Rescue the damsel in distress, stop the bad guys, save the world.


                  • #10
                    Many thanks for your kind words, support and advice. I didn't think there were so many nice people left in this world.

                    To put this case into perspective my 12 year old is small for his age, has Perthes disease (clicking hips), is on Disability Living Allowance and has spent significant periods of his life in a wheelchair. Whilst I know he is no angel I know he has not done this damage. The alleged damage includes the fence, his car, carport and front door, I think he hopes he will get his delapidated house rebuilt out of me!

                    I haved checked my car and house insurance for legal cover but to no avail. I have contacted my trade union who may provide me with some free advice. I am seeing a solicitor tomorrow who specialises in civil matters, I will let you know how I get on.

                    Many thanks again.



                    • #11
                      Thank you Alex, for the further information . And It's clearer how you would know that your son is very unlikely to have done the damage

                      I hope your trade union legal cover can give you some pointers (they often can), and it will be good to see what your solicitor advises at this point. Best of luck with the appointment.

                      What does this neighbour want here, blood? Do you have any idea what his problem is? And how, exactly is your son supposed to have wreaked this havoc?




                      • #12
                        Hi Alex

                        Just wanted to wish you the best of luck for tomorrow :clover: :clover:

                        I hope that your solicitor can help to put all of this into perspective and can see these allegations for what they are. I really do think that your neighbour is taking the Michael, especially in accusing your son.

                        Good luck, and let us know how it goes

                        Blue Cow


                        • #13
                          Hi everyone,

                          Just to keep you up to date, I saw a solicitor yesterday, as soon as I mentioned my neighbours name his face dropped and stated that as he had acted for this person before he could not act for me. He also said off the record that this person is "very strange".

                          Therefore I saw another solicitor who was recomended by the first, he was very honest and forthright and said the only winners out of this will be the lawyers!

                          He has replied to the court asking for this case to be struck out due to no evidence has been submitted, but warned me that this will not be the end of the matter. He also surprised me by stating that the complainant is on legal aid, I can't say too much here in case he can be identified but I know that he has a very professional job and owns his own house. So it looks like I will have to do some detective work to descredit him.

                          The most annoying thing is to have to spend lots of time and money defending myself against lowlife like him.


                          Kind regards



                          • #14
                            Hi Alex,

                            Sorry to hear that you had a fairly negative response today . It sounds as if your neighbour has a bit of a reputation! It is really irritating that this man seems to be able to waste everybody's time and money (especially yours!). I hope that you do get a positive reaction from the courts, please let us know when you hear back.

                            In the meantime, if you can, try and ignore him (easier said than done I know!!!) and if you need anyone to rant to, you know where we are!

                            I'm not sure about the legal aid situation and finding out if he is claiming it fraudulently, but I'm sure that some here will be able to come up with some good suggestions for you.

                            Take care

                            Blue Cow


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by alex@Nov 13 2003, 7:11 PM

                              He also surprised me by stating that the complainant is on legal aid, I can't say too much here in case he can be identified but I know that he has a very professional job and owns his own house. So it looks like I will have to do some detective work to descredit him.

                              Hi Alex and thanks for the update

                              Regarding the legal aid issue, I would mention this to your Solicitor (if you haven't already) just to voice your concerns.

                              It may be that his is eligible for legal help. People can be if:

                              Client's capital is not more than £3000.

                              Client's gross income is not more than £2288 per month

                              Client's disposable income is not more than £621 per month.

                              Client is therefore eligible for the following levels of service:

                              Legal Help;

                              Help at Court;

                              Legal Representation before Immigration Adjudicator or Immigration Appeals Tribunal.

                              You can check eligibility here: LSC Eligibility Calculator.

                              Don't know if that will help you along with your detecting!