‘Sudden closure’ mobility dealer found to be entangled in £67k court bills

Derby-based dealer, Mobility at Home, which was closed suddenly by enforcement officers around 10 days ago, has been found to be involved in a number of legal disputes, according to a report.

Mobility at Home’s premises, based in an Intu shopping centre, were shut recently after a letter appeared on its window declaring that “the premises have been secured” by a civil enforcement company.

Bosses insisted that the closure was because of a “mix up” with a supplier and maintained that the business, which set up a helpline for its customers, will remain trading and will soon open at a city centre location.

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An investigation by local newspaper Derbyshire Live found that the business has eight County Court judgements against it in the past four months, amounting to more than £67,000.

According to the Trust Online register, which is run by the Ministry of Justice, the judgments against the business are classed as “unsatisfied” with all or some of the amounts owed remaining unpaid to claimants, as far as the register is aware.

One complainant is pensioner Barbara Seale, who is owed £1,805 by the dealer, and who told Derbyshire Live that her folding scooter has not been repaired for six months after it developed a suspected battery fault.   

Mrs Seale, who has since taken Mobility at Home to court, told Derbyshire Live that the business has had her scooter for six months with “no sign of [her] getting it back”.

“Mobility At Home gave me a replacement scooter, which is unusable for me. The battery weighs more than the scooter we bought and there is just no way we can fit it in the car.”

A spokeswoman for Mobility at Home reportedly said that she is aware of the court judgments but was unsure of what arrangements were in place regarding settlement.

Mobility at Home’s boss, Nicolas Askew, insisted that the dealer has “always put our customers first and will continue to”.

He told the newspaper that the firm has had a difficult two years, which has included a dispute with its landlord and has seen the company become a victim of credit card fraud, costing Mobility at Home £34,000.

Mr Askew said: “We always strive to offer the latest products at the best prices, with all the aftercare you’d want for your nearest and dearest. Like all products that are new to any industry, there are always some that seem perfect but sometimes reality is not as perfect as we first thought.

“We have been supplying one scooter in particular for about two years that’s not worked as well as we first anticipated but, with some subtle changes, we and the manufacturers have now sorted any issues and are working together closely to make sure the valued customer receives a perfect product.”

Mr Askew said that the ongoing issue with the enforcement agent and the store closure was “embarrassing”.

He added: “Regarding our recent forced closure due to a misunderstanding with one of our manufacturers about unordered and undelivered stock, this is very embarrassing but, saying that, we will not roll over and be bullied into paying for stock we’ve not had.”

Image credit: Matt Cardy/Getty Images

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Joe Peskett

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