District Judge R James on "Set Aside" - CPR 3.1(7)
Update! And the Horse Finally Learned to Sing - just a bit Update
The most visited page on this web site is the Leigh Page. It seems the public are very keen to hear how the "big judgements", from the Court of Appeal, are applied in the "lesser" family Courts.
This page relates to a seemingly seldom used part of the CPR - the Court's ability to Set Aside an earlier judgment. Unlike Appeal, it would seem there are no time limits... and in many ways this makes sense... if a Court has been misled, say by a lying solicitor, it seems only right that the Court MUST have the power to rectify things.
At one point the Judge remarked, something along the lines of, (this is NOT an accurate quote, my notes are not that good) "I think it would come as a surprise to MANY District Judges that they have this power" I believe that what I have to say here is VERY MUCH in the public interest. Who knows, it MAY even come as a surprise to some Legal Professionals and Judges?
OK, this is NOT a Court of Appeal Precedent - but (in my view) it is still a significant judgement that may help many folks.
Firstly, the line up (please ignore "Equality of Arms" arguments)
Electronics Engineer - Litigant in Person (£9.25/hr)
David Curwen - Barrister (£££'s / hr) See "Extra Extra" below
Patricia Wayman, (solicitor) former senior partner of FDC Law (Client Rate £80.00hr, claimed £165/hr)
Ben Whelan - (solicitor) partner FDC Law (£223.25/hr)
Elaine Pitman (here) - legal executive (ILEX) (£203.28/hr)
Nigel Long (here) - costs draughtsman (£123.38/hr)
District Judge R James, normally of Aldershot and Farnham County Court, sitting as Regional Costs Judge. I think there are only 6 Regional Costs Judges in the country. D J James was called in to the Bath County Court at the request of D D J Goddard after D J Rutherford (Bath) dismissed my "Set Aside" Application of 25th April 2007, saying "This needs to be by way of appeal to a Circuit Judge" - how WRONG he turned out to be.
FDC Law was desperate to have my Application dismissed because they had managed to keep their lies and misconduct (largely) under wraps for over 5 years. 22 (out of 23) points in Mr. Curwen's Skeleton Arguments argued that the District Judge did NOT have the power to make the order I was seeking.
It seems that the Litigant in Person was RIGHT and the "crack legal team" above was WRONG!
"Set Aside" (under CPR 3.1(7)) is NOT a "backdoor to appeal" but it DOES give a District Judge the necessary powers - or so says D J James.
If anyone would like a copy of David Curwen's Skeleton Arguments (and mine) then please drop me a line and I will email you a copy. I can also provide the whole judgement.
I am NOT entirely sure if I am permitted to publish these, but nobody can object to me sending them to "friends" via private email. If these arguments help you I will be more than satisfied.
I think that a Judge is a public person employed by Her Majesty's Government. I also believe that Article 6 of the Human Rights Act entitles me to a "Judgement handed down in public". Therefore, I will risk publishing the part of D J James's draft judgement, dated 15th April 2008, that deals with CPR 3.1(7) - this is pages 11 through 15 only.
Currently only in PDF format
If anyone would like any further information on this subject then please email me:
The CPR http://www.justice.gov.uk/civil/procrules_fin/menus/rules.htm
Part 3 in particular http://www.justice.gov.uk/civil/procrules_fin/contents/parts/part03.htm
Collier Vs Williams http://www.hrothgar.co.uk/YAWS/reps/06a20.htm
Enron Vs Clapp http://alpha.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWHC/Comm/2005/401.html
Lloyds Investment (Scandinavia) http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWHC/Ch/2003/1740.html
Paragon Finances plc Vs Pender http://www.hrothgar.co.uk/YAWS/frmreps/03h2834.htm
Human Rights - Family http://www.jsboard.co.uk/family_law/fbb/mf_05.htm#intro
Recent Cinpres Gas Vs Melea http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/law/reports/article3456104.ece
Whatever you do, I wish you the best of luck unless, of course, you are a mal-practicing solicitor, costs draughtsman, legal executive or bent judge. If you ARE then go to hell!
Extra Extra - Update 05/06/2008
So, what of costs of the hearing on 07/03/2008? So far the judge is sitting on his (draft reserved) judgement which is dated 15th April 2008 - we don't even have a listing date. On 4th March 2008, Ben Whelan of FDC Liar signed another statement of costs claiming that their Client must pay them another £19,599.29 in costs for their "extreme defense". Of course, this was ENTIRELY in FDC Law's best interest and NOTHING to do with their Client at all - but this happens when lying solicitors are on the defensive - they will try and hide behind ANYONE.
So far there has been no "debate about costs" - so who pays?
Under the CPR the Court will only allow costs that were "reasonably incurred". Also under the CPR the court has a right and a duty to make Wasted Costs Orders against the so-called profession. When we finally DO get a Judgement, I feel another article coming on Regional Costs Judge on Wasted Costs - consider the following items...
Brief fee (Curwen) for hearing 26.10.07 £500 (£587.50)...
...and all he did there was to argue (quite wrongly) that the District Judge did NOT have the power to hear this. Is this reasonable costs I wonder?
Paid for Skeleton Arguments £450 (£528.75) - 22 point out of 23 (wrongly) argued the SAME point. What a wanker? Is this reasonable costs I wonder?
His brief fee for hearing 07.03.08 £1500 (£1762.50)
22 out of 23 points wrongly arguing the judge had no powers
1 point - an empty statement amounting to "There was no breach of the Indemnity Principle"
Curwen produced two witnesses regarding his ONLY "argument":
First Witness, Patricia Wayman, actually admitted her guilt!!!!! In the witness box she backed up her written statement
Second Witness, Nigel Long - D J R James found that he deliberately misled the court - here
That's IT! Curwen, does THAT represent value for money, do you feel?
So, is Nigel Long's bill for attendance (to lie to the Judge) a reasonably incurred cost? £810 (£951.75)
Who pays? Me? FDC Law's Client? FDC Law? Wasted Costs?
Hey... why did Curwen NEED a witness to mislead the Court? Come to that, why does he have to represent dishonest law firms whilst pretending to represent their Client? David Curewn is based in Unity Street Chambers in Bristol... he was drafted in when their previous Council (Catriona Duthie) deserted them. Read here about "The Curwen Ruse"
Opinion: At best David Curwen is a POOR Barrister. At worst he is a liar that is forced to defend negligent solicitors using witnesses who lie to the Court. Avoid him at ALL COSTS! You may wish to consider extending this advice to ALL at Unity Street Chambers, Bristol.
Whatever ELSE you do... I suggest you avoid FDC Law like the plague.
ANY bill from this firm should be subjected to the closest scrutiny - check out the Elaine Pitman Page.
New! Nigel Douglas Long, The Boulevard, Weston-Super-Mare - AVOID at ALL costs - click here. Why would ANY competent and honest law firm want to employ such? Come to that, why would any "competent and honest" law firm NEED a witness to deliberately mislead the Court? New!
Interesting link? http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/law/reports/article3456104.ece
[Home] [More Firms to Avoid?]
Footnote to the footnote: It looks like a couple of the above links are broken already. My guess is that Rick is currently reorganising his Name and Shame website - www.solicitorsfromhell.co.uk - you can, of course go there directly yourself and search... or use this or this or this <--- those are mine... this one ISN'T - so it's not JUST me :-)
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