Taken to court over water leak

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    Taken to court over water leak

    I have received a money court money claim for £2150, due to a water leak from a washing machine. The water leaked into ground floor flat.

    The ground floor flat owner, is also freeholder claimed they has spoke to their insurers and were told they would be un-insurable if they made a claim. No evidence has been provided and they say they were told verbally. They got a quote from a building company and got the ceiling fixed.

    Whist there have been leaks in the past, repairs are always carried out promptly. Each flat owner insures their own flat.

    The court money claim is for £2150, which seems excessive. I don't know if this is an inflated bill, with back handers.

    The freeholder has never been co-operative, sometimes, have got blame for water leaks, which are unrelated to the flat and have come from the roof. For years, we suffered water leak from the roof and my ceiling fell down, but go no help. We have been out of pocket for thousand repairing the roof. After years of suffering, did they finally agreed to replace the roof. We were never compensated for our repair costs.


    Question
    (1) The ground floor flat owner, bluffed his way into the flat and took photos. Has he committed a trespass. We were never informed or sought permission.
    (2) Is there a way of getting their claim history. I am suspicious, if they have made claims for other things unrelated to the water leak
    (3) How can I check if the building cost is correct?
    (4) We never saw the leak, so I don't even know if it happened or even if this an old water leak.






    #2
    There's nothing you can do to stop someone making a claim.

    What they'll have to show is not only that you were responsible for the leak, but that you were negligent and that a reasonably foreseeable loss arose as a consequence.
    I am not sure how they will be able to show you were negligent, photos notwithstanding.

    You are presumably confident that you weren't negligent.

    1 - "Bluffing your way in" somewhere isn't necessarily a trespass.
    2 - No. You could ask for it and the judge could order it, but I'd say it's unlikely, because how will it help?
    3 - The claimant will have to substantiate it. There's no requirement to mitigate the costs in this kind of case, but it should be reasonable.
    4 - Was the washing machine being used by a tenant?
    When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
    Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

    Comment


      #3
      Presumably he has a picture of a leaking washing machine, he still has to show you were negligent. If you have insurance you refer it to your insurers, who decide whether to fight it or not.

      Comment


        #4
        Water in a flat is a hazardous and non natural material?
        When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
        Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

        Comment


          #5
          I suspect the fact that his insurer will withdraw cover if he claims suggests that they think they are responsible for paying the claim, not the OP or their insurers.

          Even if there were a trespass, I'm not sure that would have any impact on the claim for the water damage and I can't see that there could be a counter claim for more than £0.00. Leases typically have a clause allowing the other leases to enter a demised part in the case of an emergency, although there might be a question as to whether this was an emergency.

          Comment


            #6
            Thank your for the replies.

            [jpkeates] "You are presumably confident that you weren't negligent."

            I have not done anything wrong.


            The only concern is the long list of claims have they has made, I was not aware, until submitted the paper to the court. Almost every couple of years. The description of each claim, is "escape of water". I know there have been leaks, but certainly not every couple of year. The claim may be unrelated, but list looks bad in front of a judge. There are no details, so you cant verify. Just feel a bit stitched up.

            Data Protection does not help, as people can hide their claim history. Nor can you walk into their property and check their loss. In the email, there is always something which gets damaged in the process, e.g. laptop, TV etc...

            A few years ago, their insurer's loss adjuster wrote to us, we explained the leak and offered our insurance details. They never gave us an outcome of their investigation.

            I have a feeling they have been abusing their insurance.

            We put defended the claim and put in a counterclaim, in relation to other Freehold related issues such the roof, which they never repaired, which we paid for the repaired, but never got any money back. They have come back with a counter claim for a few more thousand pounds.



            Comment


              #7
              Not doing anything wrong is not the same as not being negligent.

              The tenant has to show that the problem was caused by negligence, not that it happened.
              Washing machines sometimes leak, or the connecting pipes sometimes fail or leak.
              The claimant has to persuade the court that it is more likely than not that their loss was caused by your negligence, not just bad luck on your behalf.

              When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
              Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

              Comment


                #8
                I would approach the insurers directly and lodge a claim.

                Comment

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