Cold-call champion is victorious again: Ambulance-chasing lawyers pay up for wasting his time
Richard Herman has won a payout after being targeted by no-win, no-fee personal injury lawyersPreviously awarded 195 plus costs from a firm promising compensation for mis-sold PPI
00:11 GMT, 22 December 2012
Invoice: Richard Herman is celebrating another victory over cold-callers
A businessman who successfully sued cold- callers for wasting his time on the phone has scored another victory.
Richard Herman, who won 195 plus court costs from a firm that promised compensation for mis-sold payment protection insurance, has received a payout after being targeted by no-win, no-fee personal injury lawyers.
After his first win in October, Mr Herman, 53, was bombarded by phone calls from ambulance chasers promising him compensation for a road accident.
Fed up, Mr Herman invoiced the law firm 10 for every minute he wasted answering their phone calls.
had not been involved in the accident and, in any event, should not
have received the calls after signing up to the Telephone Preference
Service, which protects homeowners from cold callers.
Yesterday, the company sent him a cheque for 230 for bothering him five times over two days.
a letter to Scott Rees & Co, the company behind the nuisance phone
calls, Mr Herman said: ‘I have been cold called by your telemarketing
about a supposed car accident, despite being registered with the
Telephone Preference Service for years, not being involved in a relevant
car accident, and never having opted in to any telemarketing with you
or anybody else.
notified [the caller] that if I had to deal with any other calls from
your organisation or people involved with your organisation that I would
be charging 10 per minute for my time, use of phone and electricity.
Despite making these efforts to stop being called, I was called yet
again several times.
‘I therefore enclose an invoice for the 23 minutes at 10 a minute, total 230.’
Mr Herman, of Sunbury-on-Thames, Surrey, said: ‘The number of cold calls I was receiving dramatically dropped after October. But I was very sad and annoyed when I received phone calls lying to me about this supposed car accident.’
Mr Herman was initially contacted by Furious Claims Management, which sells referrals to personal injury lawyers.
The company passed his details on to three different law firms, one of which admitted to Mr Herman that it was illegal for solicitors to cold call.
Mr Herman has said he is determined to put an end to the nuisance of cold calls
The Solicitors Regulation Authority said: ‘Solicitors cannot pay for referrals from introducers who obtain business cold calling by telephone or in person.’ In a letter to Mr Herman, Scott Rees & Co said: ‘The matters about which you complained related to an organisation entirely separate from this firm.
‘Upon receipt of your complaint, we investigated the matter promptly and in view of the seriousness with which we regarded your complaint, we took the decision to refuse to accept any future referrals of work from that organisation.
‘Notwithstanding that we had no involvement whatsoever in the matters giving rise to your complaint, please find enclosed herewith a cheque in the sum of 230 as a gesture of goodwill on our part to bring this matter to an amicable conclusion.’
Mr Herman, who is overwhelmed by his second victory, said he is determined to put an end to all cold calls.
‘The best Christmas present I could give to anybody would be that they are not cold called,’ he added. ‘I feel angry for society as a whole. Because everybody I meet says they’re oppressed by these calls and it upsets them in their own home.’
He is urging others to follow his example and has set up a website – www.saynotocoldcalls.com – to help other victims.