Horrid time in court

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    Horrid time in court

    I have just had the most horrendous time in court. The judge seemed to have no idea of how I and my T felt about being there. She took the TA, S8 and S21 off me and then asked me about dates and net rent, assuming that I knew the dates off the top of my head in a very stressful situation. She demanded that we all switch our mobiles off which we immediately did and were reprimanded for not switching them off before we came in. I pointed out to her that we had been ushered in so quickly that we had been unable to switch them off beforehand.

    My Ts b/f was so scared he forgot how to switch his phone off and left the courtroom. poor bloke.

    My tenant and I became completely overwhelmed by this domineering and bullying woman.

    Neither of us could say anything - she was so abrupt.

    After the appearance my T started to cry, not because she had been 'evicted' but because of the attitude of the judge. I ended up giving her words of comfort as we left the court together, united in our humiliation, and walked to the carpark.

    I cheered her up with the old joke 'How do you tell the difference between the judge and a Rottweiler? The judge is wearing lipstick'. Poor T laughed and cried at the same time.

    So just beware if you are going to court. And remember to take a box of tissues.

    #2
    I had a horrible experience in court once, quite a few years ago - but not tenant related. I had a barrister acting for me and the judge was AWFUL, she would not let him speak and she was trying to bully me into taking a settlement without even reviewing the case. My ex husband hadn't paid child support for about 3 months and because we live 250 miles apart he could pretend to be out of work. His bank statements told a very different story with his wages going in every week without fail. The poor barrister asked her to look at the bank statements and she said 'if he says he was out of work, he was out of work!!!'

    I dug my heels in, dismissed the barrister and acted for myself at the next hearing and it paid off dividends. There are truly some horrid judges out there. I've since seen her name appear in the papers - she is really controversial.

    Mind you, I'd probably be quite happy if a judge made my tenant cry if they owed me rent!

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by Claymore View Post
      My ex husband hadn't paid child support for about 3 months and because we live 250 miles apart he could pretend to be out of work. His bank statements told a very different story with his wages going in every week without fail. The poor barrister asked her to look at the bank statements and she said 'if he says he was out of work, he was out of work!!!'
      That sounds like sheer incompetence on the part of the judge.

      Berlingogirl, sorry to hear about your bad experience I(and your T's). Being in court is stressful enough already, without that kind of aggression.
      'Pause you who read this, and think for a moment of the long chain of iron or gold, of thorns or flowers, that would never have bound you, but for the formation fo the first link on one memorable day'. Charles Dickens, Great Expectations

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        #4
        Originally posted by Berlingogirl View Post
        The judge seemed to have no idea of how I and my T felt about being there.
        Sorry, but court time is really pressured these days and the judge isn't there to consider the parties' feelings.

        She took the TA, S8 and S21 off me and then asked me about dates and net rent, assuming that I knew the dates off the top of my head
        You should have provided several copies of all documents.

        She demanded that we all switch our mobiles off
        Hardly unreasonable.

        After the appearance my T started to cry, not because she had been 'evicted' but because of the attitude of the judge. I ended up giving her words of comfort as we left the court together, united in our humiliation, and walked to the carpark.
        Did you also offer not to enforce the possession warrant?

        Don't blame the judge for making an order you applied for.

        Comment


          #5
          Agree with Westminster judges under pressure, on saying that judge should have taken into account fact litigants in person were acting.

          The worst district judge I ever appeared before was also a female perhaps same person.

          Write a formal letter to the court about the way you were treated if it gets it off your chest.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Berlingogirl View Post
            She demanded that we all switch our mobiles off which we immediately did and were reprimanded for not switching them off before we came in.
            That's normal.
            Most people have no 'mobile phone etiquette'...

            Comment


              #7
              A court is no place for the unprepared, and a Judge will quickly dispose of such cases. You are actually lucky that they have argued your case for you, by taking control, and did not adjourn, with costs, or give judgement in favour of the tenant.

              As to knowing off by heart maybe not but you should have it all written down, otherwise how do you explain it to someone, like a Judge?

              You may feel roughed up, but frankly, you were very lucky.
              Based on the information posted, I offer my thoughts.Any action you then take is your liability. While commending individual effort, there is no substitute for a thorough review of documents and facts by paid for professional advisers.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by leaseholdanswers View Post
                A court is no place for the unprepared, and a Judge will quickly dispose of such cases. You are actually lucky that they have argued your case for you, by taking control, and did not adjourn, with costs, or give judgement in favour of the tenant.

                As to knowing off by heart maybe not but you should have it all written down, otherwise how do you explain it to someone, like a Judge?

                You may feel roughed up, but frankly, you were very lucky.
                When I went to court, the judge wasn't horrible, just firm and wanted me to tell her the relevant dates, such as when 2 months rent became outstanding and when Section 8 issued, things that should have been at my fingertips, but I had to dig around in my copy of paperwork to find. I assumed that because the judge had a copy of the file, she would dig around for it herself. Once she had the information all ticked off and found to be in order, possession was granted. A stressfull but salutory lesson. The courts are really busy and it helps if a judge can just see the important bits straightaway. Now, if I ever have to go to court again, I will have an overview of the relevant facts.

                Comment


                  #9
                  I think the OP knows the difference between a judge being firm, and one being unecessarily rude.
                  Allow tenants to protect their own deposits. I want free money when they do it wrong

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by thesaint View Post
                    I think the OP knows the difference between a judge being firm, and one being unecessarily rude.
                    Wasn't suggesting that she didnt or that the judge was being firm rather than just rude. I have only had one experience in court and glad it went ok in the end. Only responded, because I thought others may gain something from both our experiences.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      you can be held in contempt of court for using mobile phones/left switch on and it goes off in a courts.

                      Fines Prison or both ....
                      Thunderbirds are go

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by jjlandlord View Post
                        That's normal.
                        Most people have no 'mobile phone etiquette'...
                        For sure. My wife's a GP and says it's quite common for people to answer their mobiles (and for nothing more than social arrangements) in the middle of a consultation.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          At Dartford CC the case before us was a repossession. As it was Xmas the Judge was granting suspended orders for 4 to 6 weeks, but the brain donor in that case answered his phone while on the stand, "finger of pause" up to the judge, and not surprisingly " order for immediate possession as soon as bailiffs can call."

                          I am not sure if the OP measured the rudeness or firmness on the their scale and what is normal for a court. That said Judges do vary in style and character. I have sat in the cells, with a barrister, for an hour as he disliked us whispering at the back of a court room of a lot of people.
                          Based on the information posted, I offer my thoughts.Any action you then take is your liability. While commending individual effort, there is no substitute for a thorough review of documents and facts by paid for professional advisers.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            I won a case in a SCC court many years ago, as we were leaving the opposing party started to call me names, he was promptly called back and held in contempt, I dunno what punishment he got. On the other hand, I won another case against someone that did have a legitimate complaint at least, although I was in the right, as we were leaving the building I told him I was still willing to sort out the problem he had (it was with a carburettor) he said it was too late because he had sold the car, I did get full payment of the judgment two weeks later though, a rare happening.
                            I offer no guarantee that anything I say is correct. wysiwyg

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Thank you Westminster #4 but although the judge might be under pressure surely a little human compassion if not required under the law is part and parcel of all human interactions. I used to be a teacher, if I taught without consideration of the 'parties' ie children's feelings, and only thought about the curriculum then I wouldn't be considered to have done my job properly.

                              You're right I should have provided sufficient copies of documents. Perhaps the judge should have suggested this for next time. I'm a human. Not infallible. And open to learning. A little kindness would have been appreciated.

                              yes she demanded that our phones were switched off. And she was right. But the court was 45 mins late and we were not advised to do so. People are nervous before a court appearance. Notices in the waiting room would be helpful. And it was the way she talked to us all like naughty year 9s.

                              The judge gave me the order I applied for, which was fair and correct.

                              I was shocked by the attitude of the judge. If I were a judge I would never treat anyone like this. If a judge ever treated me like this again I would challenge their behaviour. She was in a position of power and authority and it wasn't right that she should have belittled us in the way that she did.
                              Last edited by Berlingogirl; 13-02-2013, 21:01 PM. Reason: dylslexia - words missing and spelling

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