From Consumer Wiki

Some courts are sending claimants a form for the Mediation service

This may seem a good idea and the thought of avoiding court may be attractive, but this is a good way for the banks to delay things.

It is a bad idea - it will cost you and is expensive, it will also not get your case settled. Use this letter to refuse:


Dear Sir/Madam

I respectfully refuse the offer of mediation in this claim. My reasons for refusing to mediate are as follows

1. I have entered into meaningful dialogue with the defendant prior to issuing a court claim, but have received in response to my requests for further information template letters and standard leaflets from the defendant.

2. We are litigants in person and to meet the cost of mediation would put us at severe further financial hardship.

3. It will be settled out of court and therefore produce no useful decision from a higher court.

4. It is further submitted that the defendant in the instant case has no intention of going to a hearing.

5. It is submitted that the pattern of cases settled so far suggests very strongly that the banks and financial institutions are merely using the justice system as a publicly funded means of intimidating their customers and dissuading them from pursuing their legitimate right. This is further evidenced by the defendants counterclaim to which a defence is submitted with this allocation questionnaire

6. It is submitted that the Overriding Objective requires that my case is allowed to proceed speedily so that a just settlement may be obtained by the parties to this case. There is no complicated issue of law. The common law relating to contractual penalties is settled law since the late 1800s and has been reinforced as recently as the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999 which itself is the result of a European directive.

7. It is submitted that this is abusive of the justice system and of the public resource.

8. As submitted above, mediation favours the bank by delaying the claimant’s pursuit of his legitimate remedy without placing any restriction upon the banks activities which the claimant submits are unlawful and/or retaliatory.

The OFT and their powers under the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999 The Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999 gives the power to the Office of Fair Trading to seek injunctions to prevent the use of unfair terms in consumer contracts. More than that, the UTCCR specifically prevents the private citizen from pursuing this remedy on his own behalf.

It is not at all clear why the OFT has not now proceeded to seek injunctions in the face of the financial institutions refusals to comply. This is particularly serious when the Regulations have prevented the citizen from doing so.

It is submitted that an order for standard disclosure will assist greatly in bring these and other similar claims to a speedy and just conclusion.

The matter is suitable for the Small Claims Track as it involves no issue of law – the law is well established. It only involves questions of fact – in particular the true costs of the Early Redemption Charges system. The OFT has already formed its conclusion about this. Standard disclosure will put the matter beyond doubt. I submit that these financial institutions do not act in good faith in relation to me or their other customers in the matter of penalty charges.

Yours faithfully