A pensioner from Bexhill was left disgusted after reading a solicitor calling her ‘a complete nightmare’ in a note sent to her on Monday (June 20).
Brenda Kerr, of Buckhurst Road, went to Gaby Hardwicke Solicitors last month after being rebuffed in her claims against a dentists for ruining her denture.
After four weeks of silence, the 73-year-old wrote to the Eversley Road lawyers to see if it would take her case but received her files back.
Within the document she found an ‘attendance note’ calling her ‘a complete nightmare to deal with’ and ‘incredibly strident’, as well as describing her evidence as ‘rants’.
Gaby Hardwicke said it has no record of Ms Kerr as one of its clients and apologised for any offence caused as it was not meant personally, but the grandmother was not pleased.
“They have shot themselves in the foot as they didn’t want to take my case – that’s really nasty,” Ms Kerr said.
“They forgot to take that out and that’s absolutely appalling to talk like that behind my back.”
The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman rejected her claims against a dentists for ruining her denture that she believed should have been fixed routinely but ended up costing her £500.
The grandmother turned to a solicitors to fight her corner and handed her documents to Gaby Hardwicke’s receptionist in early May, hoping she would get the compensation she wanted.
But she wrote to them a month later asking for an update but received her case files back, including the note with the initials solicitor she had been dealing with, Rosemarie Close, and dated May 14.
It outlines her first impressions of Ms Kerr as ‘a complete nightmare to deal with’, ‘incredibly strident’ and that she is ‘reluctant’ to act for her but felt there may be a case there.
Ms Close wrote she thought Ms Kerr expected the NHS to pay for her denture, which she denies.
The solicitor also says the grandmother would not want to supply correspondence with the ombudsman and this could be used to ‘give them a way to tell her we cannot act’.
Ms Kerr told the Observer the only thing she has from the ombudsman are slips acknowledging her letters, which she had supplied.
“I can’t believe they would be so nasty about a client behind their back,” she said.
“I went to them in good faith expecting them to sort my case out for me.
“I was just trying to give them all I could to solve my case.”
Gaby Hardwicke managing partner David Getty said Ms Kerr is not a client of the firm and never has been according to its records, and she has never spoken to or met one of its solicitors.
“Our impression of her case was based on papers supplied by her, and the wording used in our assessment was not intended to relate to Ms Kerr personally,” he said.
“We can understand how she might have thought otherwise and apologise for any offence given.”
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