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The Small Claims Court is a viable option for claims up to £5,000, for which you shouldn’t need a lawyer. If you’re successful the court will award you damages – in other words, the retailer will be ordered to make a payment to you. To claim the cost of replacement or repair you’ll need an invoice or estimate. If the fault is due to a manufacturing flaw that occurred before a reasonable time had elapsed, you’ll probably also need a report from an expert who supports that view. There are risks involved with taking court action, though. If you lose the case, you’ll also lose your court fees, and it’s likely that you will have to pay the travel expenses of the seller and the seller’s witnesses. The court will expect you to have already tried to reach an agreement with the seller. For this reason, you should write to the seller giving details of the problem. Include evidence that the fault is a manufacturing fault if the goods are more than six months old, and explain how you would like the matter to be resolved. Also say that if you do not receive a detailed response within a reasonable 80 MACWORLD • JANUARY 2017 MWJAN17.indd 80

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