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Digital Marketing Company V. Online Home Service Provider

Date of Claim raised: 20/12/2022
Date of Conciliation: 22/12/2022
Date of Settlement: 22/12/2022
Digest: Mediation/Conciliation/Dispute/Claimant/Respondent/Invoice/Settlement
Case Summary

In the bustling city of Bangalore, two entities found themselves entangled in a dispute over a significant sum of money. The Claimant, an Enterprise Messaging & Digital Marketing company, had provided reliable and cost-effective services to the Respondent, a leading online home service provider in India. However, the Respondent failed to fulfill its financial obligations, resulting in a dispute.

As the Claimant's efforts to resolve the matter amicably bore no fruit, they turned to PrivateCourt as the ideal choice for both parties to seek justice. They hoped that through PrivateCourt's expertise and impartiality, a satisfactory settlement could be reached.

The Issue:

The dispute between the Claimant and the Respondent arose from the non-payment of a significant amount, totaling Rs. 30,63,900. The Claimant had delivered their exceptional messaging and digital marketing services, which played a pivotal role in enhancing the Respondent's business operations. However, despite receiving these services, the Respondent failed to honour their financial commitments.

The Claimant contended that the Respondent's non-payment had caused significant financial strain and adversely affected their business operations. They argued that the outstanding amount, Rs. 30,63,900/-, should be paid in full, without any deduction or compromise.

The Claimant contended that the non-payment had breached the agreed-upon terms and conditions of their contract. They pointed out that the payment schedule and terms were clearly defined, and the Respondent had acknowledged and accepted them. The Claimant believed that the Respondent's failure to adhere to the payment terms was a breach of contract and sought full payment of the outstanding amount.

Additionally, the Claimant argued that they had diligently followed the established protocol for integrating their Enterprise Messaging Gateway with the Respondent's software or CRM systems. They claimed that their expertise in messaging, media, and technology allowed for seamless integration, enhancing the Respondent's business processes. However, despite the successful integration and the resulting benefits, the Respondent failed to fulfill their financial obligations, causing significant frustration and financial burden for the Claimant.

Furthermore, the Claimant highlighted that they had provided progressive end-to-end solutions tailored to the specific requirements of the Respondent. They emphasised their domain expertise, profound knowledge of the latest industry trends, and a quality-driven delivery model. However, the non-payment not only undermined the Claimant's trust in the Respondent's commitment to honouring agreements but also hindered their ability to continue delivering high-quality services to other clients.

These additional reasons further underscored the Claimant's contention that the Respondent's non-payment was unjust and required a fair resolution. They sought not only financial compensation but also recognition of their professional expertise and efforts in contributing to the Respondent's growth.

On the other hand, the Respondent acknowledged their debt but cited financial constraints as the primary reason for the non-payment. They expressed their willingness to resolve the issue by offering to pay a reduced amount after a 25% waiver. This proposition aimed to find a middle ground that considered the Respondent's financial limitations while addressing the Claimant's outstanding dues.

The PrivateCourt Proceedings:

The PrivateCourt team thoroughly reviewed the case, requested necessary documents, and followed the established protocols to ensure fairness and transparency.

To facilitate communication and discussion, the Lead Sole Conciliator from PrivateCourt scheduled a Conciliation session via Zoom and audio calls as per the Notice of Conciliation. However, before the formal Conciliation process began, the Respondent expressed their willingness to resolve the issues by paying the disputed amount of Rs. 22,97,925, representing a 25% reduction from the actual amount.

Understanding the importance of reaching an amicable resolution, the PrivateCourt team engaged in discussions with both parties. They facilitated open communication, ensured all concerns were addressed, and explored potential solutions that would benefit both sides. Through their efforts, the Respondent agreed to settle the dispute by paying the reduced amount of Rs. 22,97,925 by March 31, 2023, bringing the matter to a close.

The Settlement Agreement:

In light of the agreed-upon resolution, PrivateCourt drafted a settlement agreement outlining the terms and conditions. The Respondent willingly consented to pay the settled amount of Rs. 22,97,925, which represented a 25% waiver on the actual amount of Rs. 30,63,900, by March 31, 2023. This payment would be considered as a full and final settlement of the outstanding amount.

There was clause, in case of failure to pay, the Respondent would pay the actual amount i.e. Rs. 30, 63,900/- with 18% interest from the date of default of invoices.

The settlement agreement also specified that any future claims or disputes arising from the agreement would be resolved through e-arbitration, following the rules and procedures set forth by PrivateCourt. This provision ensured a fair and efficient mechanism for resolving any potential disagreements between the parties in the future.

The Inference:

This case highlights the effectiveness of ADR services as an unbiased platform for resolving disputes. The involvement of a neutral third party allowed both parties to express their concerns and find a middle ground that accommodated their respective interests. The fair and efficient resolution process ensured that both the Claimant and the Respondent could move forward, mitigating further financial and operational challenges.