Court victory for PR consultant over unpaid publicity bill

PR handler Claire Barber who has won a legal dispute over a bill she is owed by Katie Cutler, outside Newcastle County Court. (Photo: PA)
PR handler Claire Barber who has won a legal dispute over a bill she is owed by Katie Cutler, outside Newcastle County Court. (Photo: PA)
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An Alnwick PR consultant has thanked her family, friends and clients for their support after winning a legal dispute against a woman who raised more than £300,000 for a disabled mugging victim.

Claire Barber, of Claire Barber PR, won last week’s court case regarding an unpaid publicity bill.

It came after Katie Cutler, 23, of Gateshead, raised the six-figure sum to help Alan Barnes, 68, who is 4ft 6in and registered blind.

Miss Barber said she agreed a £550 daily fee with Miss Cutler for publicity, but was not paid. A Newcastle County Court judge ordered Miss Cutler to pay £6,200.

Miss Cutler claimed the fees were to be paid from a planned charitable foundation that subsequently failed to take off, and not out of her own pocket.

During the hearing it emerged Mr Barnes wrote a cheque for Miss Barber in October for the full amount owed but she refused to cash it because she felt he had been pressured. She added she had tried to avoid suing but had to act after Miss Cutler gave interviews describing her firm as ‘rogue’.

Miss Barber acted for Miss Cutler for four months and told the court she probably worked ‘triple’ the 14-and-a-half hours that she billed her client.

Deputy District Judge Nathan Adams said the disputed bill came down to contract law and he turned down Miss Cutler’s application to challenge a previous County Court judgment in favour of Miss Barber.