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DVLA / Inter-credit Fine
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# 1
dvr80
Old 02-05-2009, 4:03 PM
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Default DVLA / Inter-credit Fine

Hi All

The short story is I received a letter from Inter-Credit International informing me they'd been appointed to collect £80 from me for a car I owned over 2 years ago. Basically the DVLA claim I didn't inform them when I p/ex'd the car back to the dealer I'd bought if from 6 months earlier and it was not declared SORN so the road tax went unpaid although the car was not in my posession.

I have no proof I sent the change of keeper slip back and although I've written to the DVLA and the debt agency, the DVLA did not reply and have refused to speak to me full stop and ICI have responed saying I'm still liable.
I called them yesterday and re-itterated I was not prepared to pay the fine as I had sent the slip off to the DVLA to which they said they would go ahead and issue a court summons.

At first I was tempted to fight it but now I'm wondering if my case would stand up against somebody like the DVLA as the small print does state that the previous keeper should check with them after 4 weeks that they received the change of keeper notification.

Could I call ICI's bluff and wait for the summons to arrive and they pay it off before it gets to court (assuming it would) or is this a risky strategy?

Thanks in advance for your help
Andy
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# 2
TangledMemories
Old 02-05-2009, 4:20 PM
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Unfortunately, 9 times out of 10 you will not be able to successfully appeal the DVLA's decision as it clearly states on the V5 that you should receive a notice of disposal from the DVLA within 5 weeks of sale and if you do not receive it, you should contact them.
Can you prove you sent the slip off?
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# 3
dvr80
Old 03-05-2009, 9:25 AM
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thanks for the responses, I don't think DVLA will even consider the appeal as I mentioned in my post, I sent them correspondance which they have not acknowledged and are not prepared to discuss on the phone.

I'm still considering waiting to see what Inter-Credit International's next move will be. There seems be be a heck of a lot of stories on the net similar to mine so I'm thinking they might be out to make a quick buck out of the people who pay up through fear.

Getting back to my other question, does anybody know if you can settle a fine / dispute once a court summons has been raised but before the case is heard? As I said before, if it got to this stage, I'm not sure whether I'd attend court to contest it or just pay up.

Thanks
Andy
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# 4
dvr80
Old 04-05-2009, 2:31 PM
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Anybody know? -
Getting back to my other question, does anybody know if you can settle a fine / dispute once a court summons has been raised but before the case is heard? As I said before, if it got to this stage, I'm not sure whether I'd attend court to contest it or just pay up.
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# 5
MX5huggy
Old 04-05-2009, 6:11 PM
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Yes you can you will get some papers that will come from the court service saying how much is being claimed. You can then pay there and then there will be a legal fee added to the amount you pay for my unpaid water bill (an oversite, on my part but only got 1 reminder before court papers!) £50 if I remember correctly. If you lose in court and still pay up straight away (7? 14? 28? days) you still would not get a CCJ agaist you.
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# 6
yarpsnehpets
Old 29-06-2009, 3:01 PM
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Default I'm in the same boat!

I’ve also had a similar letter over the weekend from Inter-Credit International Ltd (ICIL). They are demanding that I pay them £80.00 immediately.

I do actually have a good deal of legal knowledge and experience and I have already noticed a good number of potential errors in the DVLA / ICIL procedures which could leave them in a potential no win situation.

The ICIL letter which I have in front of me is clearly marked, “Debt Recovery Notice”. Technically I believe this to be incorrect since I am not sure that any ‘debt’ actually exists yet since there has been no court case regarding my alleged failure to procure a SORN. Unbelievably the ICIL letter goes onto state that the DVLA might be about to take action against me but, if I send them an £80 out of court settlement, they (the DVLA) will drop the case. It therefore appears that ICIL are attempting to force me to make the out of court settlement on the grounds that the potential £80 fine is already a debt. This of course cannot be the case ; the out of court settlement of £80 is purely ‘an offer’ in legal terms. An offer is not enforceable unless they can show that I ‘accepted’ that offer which is not the case.
Therefore, if ICIL took this matter to court, you could defend yourself by simply claiming that you were exercising your right in not accepting their offer of an out of court settlement. There is no obligation for you to settle out of court. If you do not accept the £80 offer to settle then it is not a debt. Legally speaking I would suggest that they have acted incorrectly in calling their letter a “debt recovery notice” and as such a recipient might have cause to claim that he or she was being harassed or mislead in some way.

In my particular case I sent my SORN declaration to the DVLA by post as soon as I received the reminder for it. Initially I tried to do it online but I got a notice along the lines of, “We are unable to process your request at the moment.” About three months later I received a notice from the DVLA demanding that I pay £80 (£40 if I paid quickly) to avoid legal action.

In my opinion the DVLA are also exceeding their powers. In each case each person has the right to a fair and impartial hearing. That is statute law. The DVLA appears to breach this right via its use of its bullying tactics both through the way it deals with cases and how it portrays the law via the various methods of media which is uses from time to time. For example, in one advert the DVLA claims that, “we only have to look on our computer” – the suggestion being that they no longer have to detect if a crime is being committed (in terms of excise duty evasion). What they are trying to paint is a picture where they don’t need ‘evidence’ in order to convict. This is of course nonsense – a tax collectors utopia which would never stand a chance of flying if challenged in a high enough court.

What I also find misleading is how the DVLA word certain documents. When they send paperwork they write about ‘out of court settlements’ yet when you speak with them on the phone they say that you have been charged a ‘penalty’. It’s hard, from a legal perspective, to know exactly what the DVLA are claiming. In letters they say things like, “you maybe contravening Section ABC of the XYZ Act” but they never specify that you are. Instead they only appear interested in collecting your hard earned cash and describing the methods that you can use to pay in order to “prevent further legal action.”
As one of my mates (legally trained) says, it makes you think that they are scared to let some of these cases go to court for fear of a decision going against them. There is a massive risk for the DVLA on this since it would only take one person to pursue them on the basis of breach of statute rights (or breach of human rights) – if that person won then potentially the DVLA could be looking at having to refund every SORN fine it’s ever issued.

For the moment I am basically ignoring them. I’m more interested about this than worried. ICIL are just piddling into the wind sending me letters like the one they sent at the weekend. I’m going to enjoy reading the wording if they try to serve a summons. Of course in that instance it’s just best to save you evidence and arguments for the courts. Don’t give them a sniff of your defence in advance. It’s always the best way to get them tied in knots!

Good luck,
Yarps.
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# 7
dvr80
Old 14-12-2009, 5:54 PM
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just to follow up on my own situation with Inter Credit, I wrote back to them threatening action (can't remember how i worded it exactly but I cited intimidation and bullying) against them if they failed to supply me with evidence for their case. I made it clear that the only correspondance I wanted from them was this and anything else would mean I would commence proceedings against them.
This was the last time I heard from them - sometime late May or June so I think they've gone away - either that or they rely on people being scared when they get these letters and the revenue from this covers them sufficiently not to go after the arguementative types like me
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# 8
BexBB
Old 20-05-2010, 5:16 PM
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I just want to thank you for your posts, I have just received a letter about my car supposedly being unlicensed. I have filled in forms and paid everything straight away so I have no idea what they have dreamt up. I have just composed a letter based on all of your comments, I am currently studying law so have thoroughly enjoyed writing it!

Fingers crossed it scares them off, thanks again!
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# 9
Paradigm
Old 20-05-2010, 5:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TangledMemories View Post
Unfortunately, 9 times out of 10 you will not be able to successfully appeal the DVLA's decision as it clearly states on the V5 that you should receive a notice of disposal from the DVLA within 5 weeks of sale and if you do not receive it, you should contact them.
Makes no difference what it says on the V5 unless it's a legal requirement & this bit isn't. There is nothing in legislation demanding you chase up a confirmation letter, it's a little something the DVLA have added by themselves!

Quote:
Originally Posted by TangledMemories View Post
Can you prove you sent the slip off?
Although it's handy to have sent recorded delivery it's not necessary. It's a case of them having to prove you didn't send it, not you having to prove you did.

A google search on this will turn up many cases where the DVLA have lost in court, so much so that they have now resorted to using PPC tactics by employing a Debt collecting agency.




I would simply send a letter stating that the car was sold to xxxxx on xxxx date & the correctly filled in V5 was posted to them as required by road vehicles (registration & licencing) regulations 2002 & you have therefore fulfilled your legal obligation.

It's up to them to prove it wasn't sent, not for you to prove it was!
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# 10
Hammyman
Old 20-05-2010, 6:03 PM
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You need to read this:
theregister.co.uk/2010/05/03/dvla_court/

DVLA have been taken to court by several people over SORN notifications and lost, the judge saying that the owners didn't have to send it recorded or even provide proof of postage and that the whole system at DVLA was a shambles.

The best part is the debt collection agency the DVLA employ has been under investigation for unlawful conduct.

Last edited by Hammyman; 20-05-2010 at 6:14 PM.
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# 11
property.advert
Old 20-05-2010, 6:27 PM
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I think the law on postal rules could come into play here. If the post is deeded to be the normal method of communication, then it is deemed to have been delivered the second it is placed in the post box. There are variations and other rules to consider but I believe that to be the basic premise and I am not sure small print can be used as a get out.
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# 12
Paradigm
Old 20-05-2010, 6:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by property.advert View Post
I think the law on postal rules could come into play here. If the post is deeded to be the normal method of communication, then it is deemed to have been delivered the second it is placed in the post box. There are variations and other rules to consider but I believe that to be the basic premise and I am not sure small print can be used as a get out.
You are absolutely correct I think you are referring to the Interpretation Act 1978 section 7... this is the very act the DVLA lost it's court cases on!

Worth a read for anyone in the OP's situation.
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# 13
Strider590
Old 21-05-2010, 9:19 AM
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Your screwed, the DVLA are a bunch of ****s for these stupid little fines and they've got every single loophole covered, if you present a valid case they fine you for something else and if you contest that, they'll have something else to get you on.

Send every correspondence with them by recorded and signed for post, because they like claiming you haven't sent them something and then fining you for that too!

Also, check your drivers license expiry card (the card section 4B), because they fine you for that expiring and try to extort money from you to stop them reporting you for driving without a license (which carry's a heavy fine).

In my opinions they're a bunch of criminals who are fully protected by the law.
Having the last word isn't the same as being right.......

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# 14
Paradigm
Old 21-05-2010, 6:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Strider590 View Post
Your screwed, the DVLA are a bunch of ****s for these stupid little fines and they've got every single loophole covered, if you present a valid case they fine you for something else and if you contest that, they'll have something else to get you on.
Sorry but you're wrong It took me 30 seconds to find this http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk...otify-new.html

They certainly haven't got this "loophole" covered as they have also lost in court.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Strider590 View Post
In my opinions they're a bunch of criminals who are fully protected by the law.
I agree with the 1st part of the statement but they are not protected by the law on the issue lost V5's etc & any failure to contact them if a confirmation letter isn't received... it's not a legal requirement.
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# 15
machinaj
Old 27-05-2010, 12:19 PM
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Hi guys,
I too have just revieved one of these SORN letters from ICI, and the advice from you guys on here has been invaluable. I intend to write to them challenging their claim. Has anyone actually been taken to court yet, or even a response from ICI to any of the letters sent?

Does anyone have any key lines of wording that's particularly effective, or even a template I could use?

Cheers
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# 16
Paradigm
Old 27-05-2010, 12:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by machinaj View Post
Hi guys,
I too have just revieved one of these SORN letters from ICI, and the advice from you guys on here has been invaluable. I intend to write to them challenging their claim. Has anyone actually been taken to court yet, or even a response from ICI to any of the letters sent?

Does anyone have any key lines of wording that's particularly effective, or even a template I could use?

Cheers
Assuming you did actually post the sorn notification & the DVLA lost it??? then read here http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk...otify-new.html

Send a copy of the amended letter to ICI telling them you dispute the debt & ask them to refer back to DVLA. Also a copy directly to DVLA stating you are willing to go to court on this issue.
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# 17
Paradigm
Old 27-05-2010, 12:40 PM
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For anyone interested BBC watchdog at 8 pm tonight is supposed to be investigating DVLA complaints... may/may not be worth a watch.
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# 18
bosseyed
Old 27-05-2010, 12:48 PM
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Well this is a timely bump of an old thread!

Had this letter this morning regarding my old vehicle which I part ex'd at Nissan back in July 2009.



What previous letters? Why aren't the DVLA writing direct? I call bullsh*t on the whole thing frankly. Fail to see how they can clamp and impound a car I don't own. So I'm assuming its a scam of some description and will be ignoring the letter.
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# 19
rev_henry
Old 27-05-2010, 12:52 PM
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I was just going to put the link to the Reg article. I would have said the DVLA are a law unto themselves and can get away with whatever the hell they want, but in light of recent events this is not the case, with regards them claiming to have not received documents. Despite the wording on the V5 there is NO legal obligation on anyone to:
1. Send documents (change of vehicle ownership etc) by recorded/special delivery services.
2. To even get proof of postage of sending such documents in normal 1st/2nd class post.
3. To call the DVLA 5 weeks later or whatever it says to ask whether they've bothered to do their jobs or not, or if they've just decided to 'loose' your documents.

As long as you put up a decent argument in court the judge will throw the case out. Meantime, tell the debt collectors the debt is disputed; as such they are BREAKING THE LAW if they contact you further about collecting it, until the dispute has been sorted out.
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# 20
rev_henry
Old 27-05-2010, 12:59 PM
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bosseyed - Its not a scam (well it is really but its legitimised by the DVLA, iyswim), but obviously they can't do anything to a car you don't own anymore. Follow Paradigm's advice:

'I would simply send a letter stating that the car was sold to xxxxx on xxxx date & the correctly filled in V5 was posted to them as required by road vehicles (registration & licencing) regulations 2002 & you have therefore fulfilled your legal obligation.

It's up to them to prove it wasn't sent, not for you to prove it was!'

Maybe add that you are therefore in dispute over the debt and they must not attempt further recovery until said dispute is resolved.
I'm so glad to see that at last the autocracy that is the DVLA is starting to be taken down, slowly, by county court judges.
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