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Tribunal win makes the news

(97 Posts)

www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-suffolk-22663448

Saw this story on the BBC news website. Surprised it made the news. Wonder if they're MNers?

2006hildy Sat 25-May-13 15:53:12

Good for them.

I want publicity for our tribunal (Refusal tp Assess) too but so far no-one has replied.

Anyone got a spare £27k ?

hmm

Tribunals need to be able to award costs. Given that the parents won, presumably this placement is only 'adequate' and the LA were refusing it.

It took 18 months. What happened to the boy during that time?

Disgraceful.

Even if you HAVE £27k, it is STILL Hell out there.

inappropriatelyemployed Sat 25-May-13 16:02:58

Great to see someone's victory reported but what an outrage that it cost 27k!!! Who on earth is racking up costs like that for parents??

inappropriatelyemployed Sat 25-May-13 16:09:12

I agree. Legal aid in the childs name would put an end to alot of this.

But it does annoy me that 'experts' charge 2-3k to do anything and many solicitors charge for everything and then instruct barristers anyway!

Everyone's a winner bar the family and child. Yet they walk away feeling like 27k in costs is a victory cos they've managed to get their child an appropriate education - ie what he was entitled to in the first place!

What a f***ed up system'

Grey24 Sat 25-May-13 16:12:14

I was pleased to see BBC News making people aware that these kind of battles are going on all the time and that they cost parents so much.

Very well done those parents - and how sad it took so long to achieve for their son.

inappropriatelyemployed Sat 25-May-13 16:13:18

Might have guessed!

PolterGoose Sat 25-May-13 16:15:29

Can someone please explain how they could have spent £27k?

18 months of £40 per letter, email, received or sent. Time spent reading it at £100 per hour. 2 hours meeting with barrister £2k (there are likely to have been a few). Billing for time for solicitor and barrister communications. Likely tribunal-imposed telephone hearing or two requiring barrister and solicitor. Expert witnesses to attend hearing at around £1k each. In 18 months that will also be 3 reports each to keep them within the 6 months freshness.

I think there were two tribunals. One to assess and one for placement.

And please don't forget £300 just to get that legal firm to look at your paperwork in the first instance whilst refusing so much as a telephone conversation before cheque cashed.

MareeeyaDoloures Sat 25-May-13 16:27:44

So... could they have won for £10k if they'd done it themselves? Or £15k using an advocate?

The disadvantage of letting tribunals award costs is it might encourage vast platoons of expensive but shoddy solicitors to try to cash in <ducks>

inappropriatelyemployed Sat 25-May-13 16:28:26

I don't know why solicitors don't do these hearings themselves. It's crazy that clients pay for solicitor and barrister.

Think that barrister is closer to £4k for a 2 hour meeting.....

PolterGoose Sat 25-May-13 16:30:34

It's just wrong angry

Okay, so legal aid would be a better arrangement!?

And a banning from LA's from being represented (they are after all supposed to KNOW the bloody law).

MareeeyaDoloures Sat 25-May-13 16:32:19

See, that £300. It could be so much better handled.

A deposit. Refunded in full if they decide you're too complex to bother with. Or as a voucher to submit against your overall case costs if you go ahead (or even if you drop out after £300/ worth of phone calls).

No idea of retailing, these people.

Well they don't need to presumably they get the work without having to bother with the parents who quibble the £300 who simply won't be as likely to keep your winning stats up by hiring your overpriced preferred tribunal EP and SALT.

So wrong that it takes relatively wealthy parents to ensure a DC like their DS gets an adequate education. I'm sure they feel it was worth it, but it's so completely out of the reach of most families, financially and many more just don't have the knowledge.

People don't believe this is what it is though.

I met a Primary Teacher at a party recently. She had 'heard' that my ds had ASD hmm and sought me out deliberately to tell me to make sure that now I'm in this part of the country to stay away from SOSSEN because they are encouraging very wealthy parents to seek dx and then take LA's to court for independent schools to be funded when there isn't really much wrong with them in her and her colleagues opinion, they are just struggling a bit and could do with a bit more discipline.

I had NO words.

MareeeyaDoloures Sat 25-May-13 16:46:59

Taking a wild guess, a regular solicitor good at claiming care home fees back off the NHS ought to be able to runrisings round an LA for a fraction of the costs above. Cardiff example

It's superficially very similar:
National criteria are translated into local ones (often illegal)
People argue over severity of the condition and it's effects
And who is qualified to help, how many hours it takes etc.
NHS & LA in cahoots (or occasionally, scrapping like cats)
Finally a big row about the costings.

So what is that cost?

MareeeyaDoloures Sat 25-May-13 19:32:47

I think it's around £3-7k. But that is a guess on sketchy information.

MareeeyaDoloures Sat 25-May-13 19:38:04

The LA which encourages staff to say that dc with complex SEN are just 'struggling a bit and in need of more discipline' openly, must surely be in desperate need of some extra training. Unless they somehow like sounding totally ignorant and have no problem with that level of manifest stupidity meaning they lose every tribunal for an uber-expensive independent specialist school.

lougle Sat 25-May-13 19:59:33

See, this is why I didn't retrain. I was going to do a law degree, etc., then specialise in SEN law. I couldn't do it. I couldn't make money off the backs of vulnerable parents trying to get provision for their vulnerable children.

I need to make money from the knowledge I have, somehow, but I can't do it by exploiting more vulnerable people.

rosielou678 Sat 25-May-13 20:05:50

This case and its result fills me with great joy. To answer how can it cost £27k - if you have both refusal to assess AND a crap Statement that's not worth the paper it's written on then you can easily get this figure. Throw into the mix a LA which is acting illegally, then it's soo so simple for everyone but the child and parents to win win win. I am not the parent involved in this case but everything about it is virtually the same as my DC's case. I would not say we are a relatively wealthy family - just a family who has not had any option but to push this on to its only conclusion.

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