How Strong is Your Case?

Judith Thompson

Mistakes by professionals can be disastrous for clients. However, these types of claims must be based upon sound and consistent evidence, otherwise the costs consequences can be catastrophic.

The high court ruled last week on a case involving the disgruntled client of an architect. The architect's client alleged that the architect hadn't designed their granny annexe as they wanted and had not properly supervised the works. The architect's client claimed against the architect for the additional costs incurred in the building of around £30,000.

The claimant has failed to keep a proper record of discussions and to preserve evidence that they wished to rely on. The judge found that the claimant had failed to prove their case, and the claimant was ordered to pay the architect’s full costs of around £90,000. 

This case demonstrates the importance of assess the facts of your case closely at an early stage, to ensure you have sufficient evidence to pursue your claim. If you are planning a house renovation or are commissioning works by a professional, the chance of dispute is minimised when your instructions are clear, where you keep detailed records, and if you can, where you keep the lines of communication open. If you fall out, you should be prepared to mediate and settle and only proceed to Court in full awareness of the consequences, win or lose.

If you have brought a claim against a professional which has failed, perhaps your solicitor should have analysed the strength of your claim at an earlier stage.

At Samuels we will not shy away from a giving you a balanced assessment of your case when you come to see us. We will discuss your different options for funding your case at the outset, so that you can access the justice you need.

So if you are in dispute with your professional, or if your previous solicitor has let you down, contact us for a free initial assessment.