What we can help you with
- Estate Agents
- Surveyors and valuers
- Builders and other trades
Whether you are a consumer or a business owner, sometimes you might experience problems with professionals or trades that you engage to carry out services for you. There might be poor workmanship which is immediately apparent, or problems might not come to light for many years.
There are a number of important considerations, which is why you need experienced lawyers on your side who can identify the issues involved. Different duties might be owed under your contract with the other party, than might be owed under the ‘common law tort of negligence’. There may also be differences in the remedies and damages available to you depending on whether the claim is brought under contract or tort. And the timescales by which you need to bring your claim under the provisions of the Limitation Act can also differ. If you are a consumer, your protection under the Consumer Rights Act will also need to be considered.
Sometimes just because something seems to have gone wrong, it does not necessarily mean the other party is liable. The extent of their duty will depend on the circumstances, and could be limited by the terms of your contract with them. In some cases it may be necessary for us to obtain evidence from an expert in a similar field to provide an opinion on whether what went wrong did amount to negligence or breach of contract. And even if there is a breach of contract or duty, you also need to establish whether this breach caused the damage you have suffered. These “causation” issues can also be problematic.
As with all disputes, litigation (or Court action) will be a last resort. We must comply with relevant Pre-action Protocols and will also look at whether it is appropriate to refer the matter to the relevant Ombudsman or professional body, or whether some kind of Alternative Dispute Resolution procedure is preferable, or indeed compulsory.