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Chiltern Law & Darren Rogers boasts a 100 percent success rate with exceptional hardship arguments.

It pays dividends to prepare this argument carefully and meticulously. I have seen so many decent arguments being lost because of sloppy and lazy preparation. When advising someone and going through the material it is often the case that there is more relevant information that they haven’t volunteered. They might mention a neighbour who they help. On further enquiry the neighbour is most certainly vulnerable and dependant on the client’s ability to drive. Loss of income is sometimes advised that it isn’t “exceptional”. It usually is as the loss of income results in the failure to meet monthly liabilities especially mortgage repayments. A mortgage default can have many financial consequences in future years and immediately can result in proceedings to repossess. This will undoubtedly effect the while family and cause disruption at critical times – bringing it in to the “exceptional bracket”. A close look at when you drive and who it benefits is the first stage. The Magistrates’ will always look at whether public transport is possible and whether there is a third party who can replace you. Quite often your partner will drive but has his or her own commitments to fulfill so won’t be able to help you all of the time. His or her evidence will be required.

I spend the first meeting going through all of the information and assessing the quality to see if we need anything else to bring it up to the right level. The next stage is to gather that evidence and put it into an admissible format. The next stage is to draft the client’s evidence and make sure he/she is confident and well prepared, go through the procedure on the day as a lot depends on that evidence. The final stage is a handout for the Magistrates’ highlighting all of the relevant information which together we say affords exceptional hardship. This is to drive the points home and make sure nothing is missed. It also doubles as a handy note for the court file as to why EH was found.

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