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Talk to the phone, not the face

#1 User is offline   anonymousey 

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Posted 25 March 2018 - 08:44 PM

Quote

Talk to the phone, not the face

PIERS FULLER
Last updated 05:00, March 25 2018

ACC phone into dispute hearings despite a judge ruling this method was ineffective.

ACC set up a Resolution Services team last July. Staff are based in Dunedin, Lower Hutt, Hamilton, and Auckland, and generally teleconference into local meetings.

Furthermore, the Government agency does not consistently file pre-hearing submissions. Claimants have technical jargon thrown at them in the dispute resolution meetings they cannot prepare for, feeling like the system is stacked against them.

District Court judge Paul Barber made clear his disdain for the use of teleconferencing at hearings as early as 2008, describing the method of participation as "ineffective".

"In at least one other fairly recent decision I have deplored the practice of ACC staff expecting to be involved in a Review Hearing by telephone," he said in his ruling.

Dunedin barrister and researcher Warren Forster specialises in access to justice for ACC claimants, and said procedural fairness had long been an issue at these hearings.

He suspects one reason for ACC's failure to sometimes file submissions in advance and failure to enforce that requirement may be because of excessive workload on contracted independent dispute resolution service and the resolutions team.

"This problem was entirely predictable," Forster said.

"The system is fully loaded and bulging at the seams. My impression is that the current staffing numbers at ACC...cannot manage their significant workload."

Masterton advocate Mike Dixon-McIver said a previous practice of holding hearings with an independent reviewer and a local ACC technical claims manager from the local branch in person was much preferable to the current teleconferencing situation.

Dixon-McIver participated in two hearings recently where ACC had not made a written submission prior to the hearing.

"Nobody from ACC is actually at these hearings.

"When ACC is presenting its submission, how could a claimant follow a telephone conversation which could be 30 minutes long on technical points without their written submissions in front of them?"

ACC spokesman James Funnell said written submissions were "normally" provided to the claimant prior to the hearing, but admitted that was not always the case.

"It is very unusual for ACC not to provide written submissions before a review hearing. However, before all reviews clients, or their advocates, receive a copy of their file from us, and this includes all the information about that claim."

Claimant Bruce Van Essen of Dunedin is deeply suspicious of ACC's propensity to phone in representation for these critical review hearings on decisions that can have deep and long-lasting impacts on people's lives.
"I am totally against ACC attending by teleconference, especially when district court rulings have criticised this form of dealing with the review."

Funnell said it had used teleconferencing for review hearings for years because of the logistics of having staff travelling around the country.

"However when a review is complex, or the client has hearing difficulties, we endeavour to attend face to face."

"We are currently exploring video conference as another option for both ACC and claimants/advocates to use."

The latest figures from ACC show there were 7,223 reviews lodged in 2016/17, up from 6,533 in 2015/16, but not as high as five years ago when they conducted 8,538 reviews.

ACC said it has hired temporary staff to clear a backlog.

In an explanatory video on ACC's website they call the hearings "an informal process", but in actuality they can be very formal court-like proceedings that are a claimant's best shot of getting ACC's decision overturned.
Van Essen felt the description of the hearings as "informal" was misleading.

"A review is a very daunting process if you have not been involved in one before and for ACC to bluff people into attending and saying let's sit and talk to try and resolve the problem is not far short of devious tactics in my opinion."

In some cases claimants have no idea of the the case against them until it is thrust upon them at the eleventh hour, he said.

"ACC will play it down and say 'let's go to a review, we can talk about it and try and resolve it' and when the claimant turns up, ACC has full-on submissions, and the claimant has nothing of the sort, not even any submissions and in the end the result is a fail."


- Sunday Star Times
https://www.stuff.co...ne-not-the-face



Some good media attention showing excellent progess and great commentary from some known successful forum members :wub:
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#2 User is offline   Tish 

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Posted 25 March 2018 - 09:44 PM

Our experience was that the reviewer sat in a conference room with shit acoustics, with ACC on a poor quality audio box phone system that was hard to hear and then the ACC bod at the other end rattled it all off so blindingly fast and so inaudibly that about the only one that got it was the reviewer and her microphone set right by it. We missed more than 50% of what they said at ACC.

Useless.

I had to ask Fairways for the audio file, and I had to ask ACC for the transcript at the first Appeal CM conference 3 months later.
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#3 User is offline   Alan Thomas 

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Posted 25 March 2018 - 10:01 PM

View Postanonymousey, on 25 March 2018 - 08:44 PM, said:

Some good media attention showing excellent progess and great commentary from some known successful forum members Posted Image


You need to read the article.
You speak of progress when the trending is the exact opposite to the extent that access to judicial processes are continuously and steadily being eroded
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#4 User is offline   Alan Thomas 

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Posted 25 March 2018 - 10:04 PM

View PostTish, on 25 March 2018 - 09:44 PM, said:

Our experience was that the reviewer sat in a conference room with shit acoustics, with ACC on a poor quality audio box phone system that was hard to hear and then the ACC bod at the other end rattled it all off so blindingly fast and so inaudibly that about the only one that got it was the reviewer and her microphone set right by it. We missed more than 50% of what they said at ACC.

Useless.

I had to ask Fairways for the audio file, and I had to ask ACC for the transcript at the first Appeal CM conference 3 months later.


With the large number of review hearings that conducted in this way and in this environment that you have described it cannot be said that it is accidental. In fact what you have experienced is by way of design.

What you should do is record the proceedings and when it comes time to you to talk play the tape back piece by piece and address your recording in response to the ACC submissions.
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#5 User is offline   anonymousey 

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Posted 25 March 2018 - 10:50 PM

View PostAlan Thomas, on 25 March 2018 - 10:01 PM, said:

You need to read the article.
You speak of progress when the trending is the exact opposite to the extent that access to judicial processes are continuously and steadily being eroded


You need to read my comment again Alan. :rolleyes:

I was giving a high five to successful members for their ongoing efforts highlighting significant claimant issues within the public media Alan.

Also I consider that these members are establishing a much greater favourable profile with their expert opinions relating to the struggle genuine claimants face. IMHO this sort of positive reporting will help counter the negative impacts which come from adverse publicity which appears with reports relating to fraudsters & abusers etc.

I look forward to more ongoing positive coverage with these members sharing their insights and suggestions on a wide range of issues and topics to our Communities and mainstream media Alan.
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#6 User is offline   Alan Thomas 

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Posted 26 March 2018 - 10:06 AM

The evidence is that over the entire period the ACC has had responsibility for maintaining an informal environment to hear perceived grievances concerning their decisions or delay processes ACC has tampered with that process so as to affect an environment in their own favour.

Any human being that seeks to orchestrate an advantage over an invalid can only be described as a despicable individual that has reached the threshold of being called evil.
Any human being that seeks to argue that everything is okay and under control has likewise reached that threshold of being called evil. This includes those who attempt to create the illusion that this matter is being resolved or is of little consequence.

Unfortunately the reality is that those who have very bravely sought to correct these wrongs generated by the acc with regards to the appeal process have not at this stage been able to affect any difference or any improvement whatsoever.
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#7 User is offline   Tish 

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Posted 26 March 2018 - 10:59 AM

View PostAlan Thomas, on 25 March 2018 - 10:04 PM, said:

With the large number of review hearings that conducted in this way and in this environment that you have described it cannot be said that it is accidental. In fact what you have experienced is by way of design.

What you should do is record the proceedings and when it comes time to you to talk play the tape back piece by piece and address your recording in response to the ACC submissions.


The first one I did, but it was only short, the reviewer was running late and there was only 45 minutes left to do it in, reviewer hadn't received ACC submissions yet (I had, and handed them to the advocate at the start because he didn't have them yet, they had been in my email at close of business the day before) and it was adjourned but the reviewer was unhappy at my asking and made her displeasure known. The second time, I already knew the sound quality on the line and in the room was crap, she had two microphones running beside her so I let it slide in case it pissed her off again for no advantage for my purposes. In the end the audio from Fairways did what I wanted and gave a decent enough quality to pull quotes out of as wanted.
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#8 User is offline   anonymousey 

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Posted 26 March 2018 - 08:42 PM

View PostAlan Thomas, on 26 March 2018 - 10:06 AM, said:

The evidence is that over the entire period the ACC has had responsibility for maintaining an informal environment to hear perceived grievances concerning their decisions or delay processes ACC has tampered with that process so as to affect an environment in their own favour.

Any human being that seeks to orchestrate an advantage over an invalid can only be described as a despicable individual that has reached the threshold of being called evil.
Any human being that seeks to argue that everything is okay and under control has likewise reached that threshold of being called evil.
This includes those who attempt to create the illusion that this matter is being resolved or is of little consequence.

Unfortunately the reality is that those who have very bravely sought to correct these wrongs generated by the acc with regards to the appeal process have not at this stage been able to affect any difference or any improvement whatsoever.


Just the fact that there is media coverage occurring in order to inform the general public &or encourage other claimants to share their stories about these problems will be making a difference IMHO

Plus as I indicated above, having such helpful media coverage from a claimant POV to try and balance out the PTB stories about various fraudsters and abusers is always welcome in my experience. Most especially when it helps to reduce the negative opinions &or hardship faced by the majority of claimants who may be directly or indirectly penalised due to crimes of a few bad apples ...

Lastly while your contributions to this subject matter may or may not be useful Alan, your minimisation of the efforts of other proactive claimants & forum members achieving favourable recognition within mainstream media again is appearing to be petty jealousy again IMHO
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#9 User is offline   anonymousey 

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Posted 26 March 2018 - 08:49 PM

View PostAlan Thomas, on 25 March 2018 - 10:04 PM, said:

... What you should do is record the proceedings and when it comes time to you to talk play the tape back piece by piece and address your recording in response to the ACC submissions.



hhhhmmmm I would consider this to be a waste of the Judges valuable time Alan ...

IMHO producing quality submissions is far more constructive use of this opportunity and we have recently had another experienced member provide excellent assistance and caselaw illustrations on how to put together a winning composition within another thread. Obviously if there is any significant revelation or fact disclosed within the Review tape, highlighting it for the Judge to listen to himself if he wishes could then become a portion of the evidence if needs be etc
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#10 User is offline   anonymousey 

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Posted 26 March 2018 - 08:53 PM

View PostTish, on 26 March 2018 - 10:59 AM, said:

The first one I did, but it was only short, the reviewer was running late and there was only 45 minutes left to do it in, reviewer hadn't received ACC submissions yet (I had, and handed them to the advocate at the start because he didn't have them yet, they had been in my email at close of business the day before) and it was adjourned but the reviewer was unhappy at my asking and made her displeasure known. The second time, I already knew the sound quality on the line and in the room was crap, she had two microphones running beside her so I let it slide in case it pissed her off again for no advantage for my purposes. In the end the audio from Fairways did what I wanted and gave a decent enough quality to pull quotes out of as wanted.



I am not sure but in another thread, I think this has happened before for somebody else tish. However if I remember the discussion right, the claimant proceeded and the Review went in their favour because ACC had dropped the ball so badly. Basically with no ACC submissions so they were the ones in the dogbox with the reviewer .ie no adjournment.
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#11 User is offline   Tish 

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 01:21 PM

View Postanonymousey, on 26 March 2018 - 08:53 PM, said:

I am not sure but in another thread, I think this has happened before for somebody else tish. However if I remember the discussion right, the claimant proceeded and the Review went in their favour because ACC had dropped the ball so badly. Basically with no ACC submissions so they were the ones in the dogbox with the reviewer .ie no adjournment.


Reviewer wasn't particularly phased and said she wouldn't continue and was going to adjourn to a two hour slot, now she was allowed to make her own appointments and choose when and how long they would be and notified ACC on the phone that she was proceeding that way unless they had any objection, which they couldn't really do so under the circumstances.
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#12 User is offline   anonymousey 

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 11:01 PM

View PostTish, on 27 March 2018 - 01:21 PM, said:

Reviewer wasn't particularly phased and said she wouldn't continue and was going to adjourn to a two hour slot, now she was allowed to make her own appointments and choose when and how long they would be and notified ACC on the phone that she was proceeding that way unless they had any objection, which they couldn't really do so under the circumstances.



I do not know if there are any meaningful statistics kept Tish but I would be interested to see how many claimants win or lose ... specifically when ACC are the problem because there is *no shows* with their submissions to the Reviewer. It is appalling when the claimant is getting them at the last minute IMHO ... but if or when ACC are overlooking or forgetting the Reviewer ... this tells me that any casual or lackadaisacal approach may just continue to continue, especially if there is no auditing &or zero financial consequences etc

IMHO if a claimant has arrived to a Review and provided their submissions and evidence as required ... then EVERY Reviewer should show the courtesy and respect of continuing the hearing! I am not sure if there is a type of deemed result process which could be enacted by Fairway but in courts if the claimant is a no show then usually thats it unless there are extenuating circumstances ie ACC should themselves face the disadvantages and penalties which come with being so unprofessional if they are inadequately performing etc BTW I am not sure if secondary costs borne by the claimant are reimbursed when adjournments are being made for ACC or not Tish :unsure:
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#13 User is offline   Huggy 

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Posted 28 March 2018 - 09:41 AM

Just in the process with Fairway now on why I request Fairway to deny ACC attendance by teleconference.


Please forward this onto the reviewer.

Dear Reviewer

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to provide submissions on why I believe ACC should be denied to participate in the review by way of teleconference.

I have canvassed my objection in my earlier emails, however, for reference, I will list these in brief, along with some other points.

I strongly object to ACC attending by teleconference because :

1. This is a significant issue that involves weekly compensation (ERC).
2. It is established in law that it is unacceptable that ACC, and in fact, any party, attend by teleconference.
3. His Honour Barber J is extremely critical of parties attending by teleconference (P v ACC and Gale v ACC).
4. His Honour Barber J has commented that it appears teleconferencing hearings do not comply with s.141 of the AC Act (Gale v ACC).
5. It appears in contradiction of the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990 at s.27(1) the rights to natural justice.
6. The actual decision maker could attend as he is based in Dunedin where the review will take place.
7. ACC has other representatives based in Dunedin that can be the attendee if required.
8. I opine ACC attending by teleconference doesn’t conform with natural justice.
9. It makes the review process an unfair playing field.
10. This is not a meeting, it is a hearing where parties may be required to provide evidence.
11. The reviewer has commented that he/she would “prefer” that all parties attend in person.
12. The reviewer has the discretion and ability by way of s140 of the AC Act to deny ACC participation by teleconference.
13. If ACC is denied participation by teleconference, ACC can still provide written submissions to the review.
14. In a previous review hearing for myself, and in attendance at other review hearings as a support person, I have struggled to hear and understand ACC through the speaker when they have participated by teleconference.
15. It is my view that ACC attending by teleconference is to my disadvantage. ACC could have, unbeknown to myself and to the reviewer access to their computer system along with having staff assisting the presenter during the review process, in order to submit further information that I may not be privy to.

This is a nationwide problem that has just been raised in the media where further media coverage is expected.

https://www.stuff.co...ne-not-the-face
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#14 User is offline   Alan Thomas 

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Posted 28 March 2018 - 10:27 AM

View PostHuggy, on 28 March 2018 - 09:41 AM, said:

Just in the process with Fairway now on why I request Fairway to deny ACC attendance by teleconference.


Please forward this onto the reviewer.

Dear Reviewer

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to provide submissions on why I believe ACC should be denied to participate in the review by way of teleconference.

I have canvassed my objection in my earlier emails, however, for reference, I will list these in brief, along with some other points.

I strongly object to ACC attending by teleconference because :

1. This is a significant issue that involves weekly compensation (ERC).
2. It is established in law that it is unacceptable that ACC, and in fact, any party, attend by teleconference.
3. His Honour Barber J is extremely critical of parties attending by teleconference (P v ACC and Gale v ACC).
4. His Honour Barber J has commented that it appears teleconferencing hearings do not comply with s.141 of the AC Act (Gale v ACC).
5. It appears in contradiction of the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990 at s.27(1) the rights to natural justice.
6. The actual decision maker could attend as he is based in Dunedin where the review will take place.
7. ACC has other representatives based in Dunedin that can be the attendee if required.
8. I opine ACC attending by teleconference doesn’t conform with natural justice.
9. It makes the review process an unfair playing field.
10. This is not a meeting, it is a hearing where parties may be required to provide evidence.
11. The reviewer has commented that he/she would “prefer” that all parties attend in person.
12. The reviewer has the discretion and ability by way of s140 of the AC Act to deny ACC participation by teleconference.
13. If ACC is denied participation by teleconference, ACC can still provide written submissions to the review.
14. In a previous review hearing for myself, and in attendance at other review hearings as a support person, I have struggled to hear and understand ACC through the speaker when they have participated by teleconference.
15. It is my view that ACC attending by teleconference is to my disadvantage. ACC could have, unbeknown to myself and to the reviewer access to their computer system along with having staff assisting the presenter during the review process, in order to submit further information that I may not be privy to.

This is a nationwide problem that has just been raised in the media where further media coverage is expected.

https://www.stuff.co...ne-not-the-face


Huggy are you able to help with some information?
What is the basis in law for a owner operator company, fairway resolution Ltd, to employ the reviewers themselves and orchestrate matters that serves the interests of the ACC and themselves while at the same time disadvantage using claimants who because of their physical disabilities suffer increased difficulties by these changes and arrangements. I don't see anything in legislation that permits the transference the decision-making responsibilities concerning the arrangement of a reviewer, review hearing location and time and suchlike from the ACC to a private owner operator company which inherently has a right to act in its own interests.
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#15 User is offline   Huggy 

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Posted 28 March 2018 - 10:32 AM

Alan I probably cant help you on that, however, I understand that this is an issue that could possibly change in the near future.

I know where you are coming from and that now that it is in public hands something needs to change.

I wonder if Fairway still have access to the ACC computer systems to access claimants files, if so, then how can this be with them being a private entity ????

Perhaps Fairway should be transferred to the MoJ
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#16 User is offline   Alan Thomas 

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Posted 28 March 2018 - 11:39 AM

View PostHuggy, on 28 March 2018 - 10:32 AM, said:

Alan I probably cant help you on that, however, I understand that this is an issue that could possibly change in the near future.

I know where you are coming from and that now that it is in public hands something needs to change.

I wonder if Fairway still have access to the ACC computer systems to access claimants files, if so, then how can this be with them being a private entity ????

Perhaps Fairway should be transferred to the MoJ


As you know Hagi the public have no power to make any changes of any sort and that it is the legislation that provides the authority for any changes. I'm simply trying to find out on what basis the changes that have been made to transfer duties and authority from the ACC to a privately owned company? If our rights have been hijacked by a private company for personal profit I want to be able to bring about criminal prosecutions against the individuals involved. I don't want a media event, I want something close-up and personal with the actual individuals.

My experiences that both Fairway and the reviewers have full access to our entire claim files as confirmed by management staff of Fairway. I have written to both ACC and Fairway for the purposes of expressly forbidding any of Fairway staff from having access to my private information which includes the reviewers. All information going before a reviewer should come from either the ACC or the claimant in the form of submissions and exhibits.

I don't know who all why it has come about that private matters and particularly judicial matters have gone into the hands of a limited liability company. This in itself is outrageous and cannot possibly stand. The situation has clearly got worse once the staff members gained ownership of this private company. How is it come about that ACC reviewers are currently being employed by this private company? How can reviewers be independent if they are employees?

As you know the legislation requires that ACC be responsible for the arrangements of an independent reviewer and that will law on this matter has not changed. What should be taken place is an immediate correction so as to reflect the legislated criteria for such matters. As the changing to a Ministry of Justice based system of course this should always have been the case but given many governments have been given the opportunity to do this for us and have not I don't see any changes coming any time soon as this issue has been canvassed many times over the last three or four decades without change.
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#17 User is offline   Tish 

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Posted 28 March 2018 - 01:58 PM

View Postanonymousey, on 27 March 2018 - 11:01 PM, said:

I do not know if there are any meaningful statistics kept Tish but I would be interested to see how many claimants win or lose ... specifically when ACC are the problem because there is *no shows* with their submissions to the Reviewer. It is appalling when the claimant is getting them at the last minute IMHO ... but if or when ACC are overlooking or forgetting the Reviewer ... this tells me that any casual or lackadaisacal approach may just continue to continue, especially if there is no auditing &or zero financial consequences etc

IMHO if a claimant has arrived to a Review and provided their submissions and evidence as required ... then EVERY Reviewer should show the courtesy and respect of continuing the hearing! I am not sure if there is a type of deemed result process which could be enacted by Fairway but in courts if the claimant is a no show then usually thats it unless there are extenuating circumstances ie ACC should themselves face the disadvantages and penalties which come with being so unprofessional if they are inadequately performing etc BTW I am not sure if secondary costs borne by the claimant are reimbursed when adjournments are being made for ACC or not Tish :unsure:/>/>/>


The downside to automatically proceeding is that, if the reviewer doesn't have time to cover everything that is required and insists on finishing on time, regardless of when they started, should the claimant be unsuccessful they might have no come back if they allowed it to happen without raising a reasonable objection to the proceedings continuing without all submissions being provided, or if ACC made an issue, and ditto missing or late ACC submissions. So far, we haven't yet met a reviewer with two brain cells to rub together, so I have little faith in there being any intellectual justice contained within the review process.

20/20 hindsight is nice, but it doesn't win battles and it sure as hell doesn't automatically win against ACC lol
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#18 User is offline   MINI 

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Posted 28 March 2018 - 02:07 PM

View PostTish, on 25 March 2018 - 09:44 PM, said:

Our experience was that the reviewer sat in a conference room with shit acoustics, with ACC on a poor quality audio box phone system that was hard to hear and then the ACC bod at the other end rattled it all off so blindingly fast and so inaudibly that about the only one that got it was the reviewer and her microphone set right by it. We missed more than 50% of what they said at ACC.

Useless.

I had to ask Fairways for the audio file, and I had to ask ACC for the transcript at the first Appeal CM conference 3 months later.


Hi Tish

It is handy to know that they didn't say 'No' to you for a copy of the transcript. Usually you cant get that until you take it to District Court. Mind you having said that I have actually received two different transcripts for the same Review hearing, which fact was ignored at the DC.

By the sounds of it, I, personally would much rather pay for Judicial Review on a point of law, than go thru the gaff they have now with Fairways, Reviewers, and ACC all combined, BUT individual entities. It is much to hard to miss something to one of them. What are they all supposed to do for one so-called 'less formal' way than DC.

I hope your audio file and the transcript were the same. They should have been as they are the same thing, from where I sit.

Cheers

MINI
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#19 User is offline   MINI 

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Posted 28 March 2018 - 02:20 PM

View PostTish, on 26 March 2018 - 10:59 AM, said:

The first one I did, but it was only short, the reviewer was running late and there was only 45 minutes left to do it in, reviewer hadn't received ACC submissions yet (I had, and handed them to the advocate at the start because he didn't have them yet, they had been in my email at close of business the day before) and it was adjourned but the reviewer was unhappy at my asking and made her displeasure known. The second time, I already knew the sound quality on the line and in the room was crap, she had two microphones running beside her so I let it slide in case it pissed her off again for no advantage for my purposes. In the end the audio from Fairways did what I wanted and gave a decent enough quality to pull quotes out of as wanted.


Tish

They didn't type it up into a transcript for you?? Far out, I would have been bugged in that case. I feel the only case for me is to go Judicial Review through High Court on point of law.

Mini
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#20 User is offline   MINI 

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Posted 28 March 2018 - 02:32 PM

View Postanonymousey, on 26 March 2018 - 08:49 PM, said:

hhhhmmmm I would consider this to be a waste of the Judges valuable time Alan ...

IMHO producing quality submissions is far more constructive use of this opportunity and we have recently had another experienced member provide excellent assistance and caselaw illustrations on how to put together a winning composition within another thread. Obviously if there is any significant revelation or fact disclosed within the Review tape, highlighting it for the Judge to listen to himself if he wishes could then become a portion of the evidence if needs be etc


mousey

You are calling a Reviewer a Judge and they are no such thing. You only have a judge when you get past the Reviewer and onto the District or High court. Calling a Reviewer a judge makes it hard to understand what level of Judisury you are at. Those with a lot of usage of the system should be able to sort out what you mean, but the newbies may find it a bit harder.

Just a wee hiccup, but very important. Others should take note as well. It would make the understanding of a submission very difficult. Otherwise, I agree with what you say in that the publicity is good for those who have these types of issues in very high hands at the moment should be pleased even though they have not been noted.

Mini
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