John Pugh's Chambers
3 Shrewsbury Road
CH43 1UU

Specialist in consumer credit litigation

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John Pugh LLB (Hons)

Eileen Ashton JP LLB (Hons)
Practice Manager.

Suzanne Thomas

The work I do for litigants in person under public access

Defending claims by Debt Purchasers

Defending claims by debt purchasers on purchased consumer debts e.g. stale credit card debts, overdrafts and loan agreements purchased by third parties from banks, for a few pence in the pound and sued on for their full value, especially if you are a home owner.

This work involves scrutinising the right of purported assignees of debts to sue on debts to which they were never a party; scrutinising their authorisation to exercise lenders rights under regulated credit agreements (especially if they if they are off shore debt purchasers), checking agreements for enforceability, examining their evidence of regulatory compliance. 

With debt purchasers the question is not so much a question of what you owe, as one of what they can prove they are entitled to which, in law, is a completely different issue.

If a debt purchaser is going to buy your stale debts for a few pence in the pound and then enforce it against you for 100% and interest and legal costs on top and then enforce it against your home, let them work for it.

Defending claims by banks arising from regulated credit card agreements, overdrafts and term loans.

Defending claims by creditors you did contract with by reference to statutory bars on enforcement of regulated credit agreements arising from failure to comply with pre-contract duties, and afterwards whether necessary regulatory requirements have been complied with. Defending claims includes settling claims on advantageous terms, or if there is no viable defence, making the debt manageable.

Applications to set aside statutory demands (especially under agreements made in the Gulf)

The Financial Conduct Authority takes a dim view of the use of bankruptcy procedure to enforce payment of debts under regulated credit agreements, but such cases crop up with some regularity, especially in respect of credit card and other loan agreements made in the gulf states. In such cases it is very important to apply to set aside the statutory demand within the time limit set out in the demand.

The work I do

I am a barrister specialising in consumer protection work, primarily consumer credit defence work and financial mis-selling claims. I do not usually act for banks or other financial institutions.  Most of my work is done in the County Court and is unreported.  My Cases page shows you the sort of work I do in appeals, which are reported.

I welcome instructions direct from the public in particular when defending claims under credit agreements. If you are being sued on a regulated credit agreement and need advice or representation I can advise you and represent you direct. Please read my Public Access page for more information about this.

The work I do for solicitors

Financial Mis-selling

If your clients believe they have been missold swaps, insurance, a mortgage,  banking services or other financial investments, I am can advise you as to their remedies and the merits of their claim.

Unfair Relationship

Seeking statutory relief from unfair relationships between lenders and borrowers. As my Cases page shows I have been involved in this area of law, even at appellate level for some time. Unfair Relationship legislation is very widely drafted. Paradoxically it is construed by the courts very narowly. Hidden and secret commissions can often be recovered with this legislation but the courts are often very reluctant to find a relationship which has been honestly conducted by a creditor to be unfair. Before embarking on such claims I advise caution and taking advice. A relationship with your creditor that you perceive to be unfair may not be what a court regards as an unfair.

Secret and semi secret commissions

Agency is a fiduciary relationship. Agents are often paid for their services by commission. S uch commission may come from their client or from the person they place their client's business with. None of that is exceptional so long as you clients, their principals are made aware of and consent to the fact of the payment of commission, its source and amount. Financial Institutions are past masters at hiding commissions in calculations. Some are very substantial and worth recovering with interest. I can assist you with this type of case.

Data Protection Act Abuses

Claims for damages for breach of the Data Protection Act connected with unfair and improper reporting to credit reference agencies, so blighting inability to obtain credit longer than the law deems fair, the usual example being companies which repeatedly report arrears without reporting a default, so postponing indefinitely even the start of the six-year limitation period. Again accountancy evidence is often needs to quantify losses and such claims are best dealt with by solicitor and counsel.

Actions on Guarantees

The person who guarantees a debt may or may not benefit by so doing. The law does require certain formalities to be complied with and the entitlement to the guaranteed debt to be properly proved. I can scrutinise documentation relied upon and advise as to your liability.

Bankruptcy Funding: If your clients have been persuaded to procure the annulment of their bankruptcy by the promise of a short term loan followed by long term mortgage funding following on from the annulment and have then found the long term mortgage not forthcoming and the short term loan and swinging charges and interest provisions being enforced against their house I may be able to help you.

Recovery of improperly entered judgment sums:

This is not an area of work presently being pursued. the law is in its development phase with disparate decisions at District Judge Level. Claims arise from the suit and entry of judgment by debt purchasing companies which are not authorised by the FCA but claim to be exempt from the general prohibtion by reason of exemption regulations which were introduced in 2014 for securitisation special purpose vehicles. Any solicitors interested in such work please contact me. I have fiught a number of these actions but not, to date, before a higher court.

Tel: 0151 236 5415        Email:        DX 14182 Liverpool 1