Without Prejudice

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What does 'without prejudice' mean ?



-- Jessie (jessie01@talk21.com), June 06, 2002


In legal terms it does not mean a lot.

But, it is a common term used by solictors and legal staff in an attempt to imply that while matters are being discussed, nothing is being admitted or agreed, and the letter is certainly not an offer.

In law this statement is of little value, but there is no harm in you using the very same statement on all your letters to them.

Good Luck.

-- Harry (pearson_harry@hotmail.com), June 06, 2002.

I have to disagree with the previous posting.

Without prejudice means that the party which wants to negotiate a settlement can do so 'without prejudice' so that they are not embarassed by any admission that they need to make to try and broker a deal during the course of negotiations.

The idea is to get people to settle their differences out of court rather than fight in court. It also excludes details of any settlement negotiations from being disclosed in court.

I have seen a solicitor write a 'without prejudice' letter trying to broker a deal, but reserving the right to produce that letter in court if I refused to accept their offer. In this matter, I was very confident that I was going to win and refused to negotiate - that letter was never produced in court as the other solicitor knew his client hadn't a leg to stand on.

WP can get a bit more complicated, but this is the general idea. Hope this helps.


-- pendle (pendle_666@yahoo.co.uk), June 06, 2002.

I went to see a solicitor yesterday and after thinking about what he said later, confused me. He told me to title any letters sent to Addleshaws with 'without prejudice' but also stated that if a settlement is agreed on a 'without prejudice' basis it means that they could actually come back to me at a later date. Also mentioned, was the fact that my previous partner has made a settlement with them, he has recently been promoted, and basically left me with the remainder of the debt, if his settlement was based on 'without prejudice' they could actually go back to him. Am I getting the two things confused here? Sorry to sound thick but my head is so full of all this and I am struggling to understand this legal stuff.

Thanks again


-- Jessie (jessie01@talk21.com), June 07, 2002.

You need to have a legally watertight final settlement agreement and it might be worth engaging a solicitor to draft this. Such an agreement should not carry the words WITHOUT PREJUDICE and should achieve closure

-- Gordon Bennet (arsenewhinger@hotmail.com), June 10, 2002.

Addleshaw again.Certainly looks like The Royal Bank Of Scotland have started to increase the repo and chase up rate.

-- glen (glenj70@hotmail.com), July 01, 2002.


Take a look at the repo site (Repossessions under 'Do Lenders have 6 or 12 years to chase me?') then go to "The Solicitors Journal produced a very good analysis of mortgage limitations law on 17 September 1999. Click here to download it." It gives some interesting info by a barrister Jeremy Callman, In which he states that "the mere use of the words 'without prejudice' ought not to be relied upon" amongst other things. I also believe you need a certificate or deed of satisfaction once you settle the debt, so they can't make any more demands later.


-- M Amos (idgroms@hotmail.com), July 02, 2002.

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