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  • FIRST POST
    • clare7
    • By clare7 17th Oct 16, 4:55 PM
    • 9Posts
    • 7Thanks
    clare7
    Parking charge notice- now received county court claim form
    • #1
    • 17th Oct 16, 4:55 PM
    Parking charge notice- now received county court claim form 17th Oct 16 at 4:55 PM
    Hi all,

    There is a SIP car park near my office and I park on there when I go to the office, they offer pay by phone parking which is how I always pay.

    One day in May I parked in the car park and tried to pay via the pay by phone app and it was not working- I kept getting an error message that said 'parking not available at this time please refer to current signage' of which there was none. I didn't have any change on me for the meter so parked and kept trying. I finally managed to get the app to work a few hours later and paid the normal day rate of £2.20. Then I returned to my car to find a parking charge notice. I read that you should not give your address to companies (scammers) so instead of emailing or calling I wrote a letter, explaining that i'd paid the day rate, they hadn't technically lost any money, problem with their provider for the app, the fact i'd parked there over 60 times etc etc etc. I thought that would be the end of it and the on 20th September I received a Letter before claim from a solicitors. Again not wanting to disclose any of my details I ignored this and hoped that would be the last i'd hear. Then today i've received a county court business centre claim form, claiming:

    Amount claimed £153.39
    Court fee £25
    Legal costs £50.00
    Total £228.39

    I've read through various threads but there's so much information i'm struggling to determine what is the best option.

    Do I pay the £228.39 and learn a lesson that I should have communicated better with SIP- maybe sent the letter recorded delivery?

    Do I try and appeal to the court business centre as previously tried with SIP?

    I don't know if it's worth noting that I have had an issue with the Pay by Phone app before resulting in a penalty charge notice from a local authority that was reversed upon appeal. I also have a screen shot of the error message from the app that day.

    Any information anyone could provide would be much appreciated.

    Many thanks
    Clare
Page 1
    • bargepole
    • By bargepole 17th Oct 16, 5:16 PM
    • 1,855 Posts
    • 5,022 Thanks
    bargepole
    • #2
    • 17th Oct 16, 5:16 PM
    • #2
    • 17th Oct 16, 5:16 PM
    Do I pay the £228.39 and learn a lesson that I should have communicated better with SIP- maybe sent the letter recorded delivery?

    Do I try and appeal to the court business centre as previously tried with SIP?
    Originally posted by clare7
    You do neither of those. You have no need to pay the scammers, and the time for appealing is long gone.

    You first need to Acknowledge Service of the claim, saying that you will defend in full. Don't put anything in the Defence text box at this stage.

    That will give you 28 days from the date on the Claim Form to file a defence. For that, you need to burn some midnight oil and research suitable defences on these forums - only look at recent threads, ie 2016.
    Speeding cases fought: 24 (3 of mine, 21 for others). Cases won: 20. Points on licence: 0. Private Parking Court Cases: Won 18. Lost 5.
    • Half_way
    • By Half_way 17th Oct 16, 5:32 PM
    • 2,953 Posts
    • 3,951 Thanks
    Half_way
    • #3
    • 17th Oct 16, 5:32 PM
    • #3
    • 17th Oct 16, 5:32 PM
    Never ever send anything to parking scum bags via recorded delivery, if communicating by post keep a copy of the letter and send it 1st class from inside the post office and ask for a free certificate of postage, if E-mailing look for an option called Bcc and add your own email address ( that will email a copy to yourself)
    From the Plain Language Commission:

    "The BPA has surely become one of the most socially dangerous organisations in the UK"
    • The Deep
    • By The Deep 17th Oct 16, 7:30 PM
    • 5,561 Posts
    • 4,272 Thanks
    The Deep
    • #4
    • 17th Oct 16, 7:30 PM
    • #4
    • 17th Oct 16, 7:30 PM
    They cannot claim the court fee until a judge has found in their favour and awards costs. The cannot claim their legal costs until ditto. I am not sure what the £53.39 is for but it is almost certainly ultra vires.

    If a solicitor, (Miah, Wright Hassel? BWL), is asking for this, they are almost certainly attempting to obtain monies to which they have no entitlement - fraud?

    All three firms are being investigated for this and a complaint should be lodged with Duncan Allen

    http://www.sra.org.uk/consumers/problems/report-solicitor.page

    Hopefully these low rent firms will be put out of business soon as they are bringing their profession into disrepute. Your complaint may be the final straw.
    Last edited by The Deep; 17-10-2016 at 7:32 PM.
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 18th Oct 16, 12:26 AM
    • 40,629 Posts
    • 52,498 Thanks
    Coupon-mad
    • #5
    • 18th Oct 16, 12:26 AM
    • #5
    • 18th Oct 16, 12:26 AM
    Sounds like you gave away who was driving in the first appeal which wasn't a good plan, but no point crying over spilt milk.

    Do not pay this, not least because even if you lost at a hearing (and it is not inevitable that this will proceed all the way) you would likely be told to pay LESS than £200. So you can see why not to pay more now! May as well have the experience & try to beat it. They can't add a random £50 in legal costs in the small claims track, for starters.

    Pay-by-phone is a distance contract which requires certain information to be supplied to you in advance. Can you show us the PCN and the signs? Do the signs stipulate a certain time by which pay-by-phone must be concluded during the parking event? I doubt it.

    And tell us, did you definitely appeal as driver?

    Tell us as well once the claim is acknowledged as bargepole explained to do first. You will have then extended the time to defend this, to 28 days from service of those court papers. Plenty of time to show us the signs & PCN and to work on a decent defence to try to see these aggressors off.

    This cannot affect your credit rating as long as you don't miss a deadline. So fight back!
    PRIVATE PCN in England/Wales? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT

    Click on the breadcrumb trail, top of page: Household & Travel > Motoring > Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking & READ THE 'NEWBIES' FAQS THREAD.
    DON'T read old advice to ignore, unless in Scotland/NI.

    • clare7
    • By clare7 18th Oct 16, 10:44 AM
    • 9 Posts
    • 7 Thanks
    clare7
    • #6
    • 18th Oct 16, 10:44 AM
    • #6
    • 18th Oct 16, 10:44 AM

    You first need to Acknowledge Service of the claim, saying that you will defend in full. Don't put anything in the Defence text box at this stage.

    That will give you 28 days from the date on the Claim Form to file a defence. For that, you need to burn some midnight oil and research suitable defences on these forums - only look at recent threads, ie 2016.
    Originally posted by bargepole
    Thanks Bargepole- I will do just that and work on a draft containing suitable defences, which I will post back on here for review and for reference to other people in future.
    • clare7
    • By clare7 18th Oct 16, 10:53 AM
    • 9 Posts
    • 7 Thanks
    clare7
    • #7
    • 18th Oct 16, 10:53 AM
    • #7
    • 18th Oct 16, 10:53 AM
    Sounds like you gave away who was driving in the first appeal which wasn't a good plan, but no point crying over spilt milk.

    Pay-by-phone is a distance contract which requires certain information to be supplied to you in advance. Can you show us the PCN and the signs? Do the signs stipulate a certain time by which pay-by-phone must be concluded during the parking event? I doubt it.

    And tell us, did you definitely appeal as driver?

    Tell us as well once the claim is acknowledged as bargepole explained to do first. You will have then extended the time to defend this, to 28 days from service of those court papers. Plenty of time to show us the signs & PCN and to work on a decent defence to try to see these aggressors off.

    This cannot affect your credit rating as long as you don't miss a deadline. So fight back!
    Originally posted by Coupon-mad
    Coupon-mad thank you for your reply. Looking back at the letter I sent to them I did not admit at any point that I was the driver, I read something at the time that advised not to disclose this information so I was very careful never to write I or me, instead writing 'a ticket was purchased, rather than I purchased a ticket' etc.

    I will acknowledge service of the claim online this morning and start preparing my defence. I do not have pictures of the signage in the car park but I can get a picture of it later this week, although last time I drove past the car park is now a permit holders car park only so I wonder if the signs that would have been relevant to this case are still there- anyway I'll get as much information as I can and get researching. the PCN states nothing about Pay by Phone parking terms. Reason: No ticket displayed, the driver is therefore required to pay a PCN of £100. The PCN is a bit tatty now (being almost 5 months old) but when I've got some pictures of the signage I will scan all in and post back here.

    Again thanks for your time replying- much appreciated.
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 18th Oct 16, 1:25 PM
    • 40,629 Posts
    • 52,498 Thanks
    Coupon-mad
    • #8
    • 18th Oct 16, 1:25 PM
    • #8
    • 18th Oct 16, 1:25 PM
    So glad to hear you didn't say who was driving. Seeing the PCN would be useful then as we can help you spot the omissions in wording that can help you argue 'no keeper liability under the POFA' as one of several points of defence.

    A keeper defendant is in the best position - and even if the case ends up lost (rare with a small PPC), you'll get no repercussions nor CCJ nor solicitor's costs if you then paid when a Judge told you to...not even any time sitting on the naughty step, ZILCH!

    Oh, and on this forum and/or on pepipoo do not reply to any private message from a poster with less than 1000 posts to their name here. We deal with these issues openly on the forum and any pm could be from anyone at all (even the parking firm) and any private message about this is not recommended to be replied to/read.

    You can do this with our help. Also complain to your MP and Mrs May and that guy Corbyn as well:

    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5524754&page=6

    Please do take time to make those complaints once you've read a few threads and can see the wood for the trees. Is the solicitor Gladstones? If so, then take heart from the fact that we've never seen a case v Gladstone proceed to a hearing, after a defence from this forum was submitted! Gladstones DO take some cases to hearings but often muck them up (but on here, we've seen them off so far, it all goes quiet).

    So I have every confidence as long as you follow the process and do not miss any deadlines.

    Your priorities are these:
    I will acknowledge service of the claim online this morning and start preparing my defence.
    Last edited by Coupon-mad; 18-10-2016 at 1:32 PM.
    PRIVATE PCN in England/Wales? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT

    Click on the breadcrumb trail, top of page: Household & Travel > Motoring > Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking & READ THE 'NEWBIES' FAQS THREAD.
    DON'T read old advice to ignore, unless in Scotland/NI.

    • Carthesis
    • By Carthesis 18th Oct 16, 1:32 PM
    • 481 Posts
    • 839 Thanks
    Carthesis
    • #9
    • 18th Oct 16, 1:32 PM
    • #9
    • 18th Oct 16, 1:32 PM
    Do you have any proof of the £2.20 paid for the day rate? Does the app you used on your phone show the payment on that date?

    If so, this would seem to be a slam-dunk as no loss has been incurred right? It's simply an issue of timing?

    Why on EARTH would you consider forking out 10,000% of the original parking cost that you've ALREADY PAID ANYWAY?
    • clare7
    • By clare7 19th Oct 16, 10:52 PM
    • 9 Posts
    • 7 Thanks
    clare7
    Hi all,

    I've been and taken some pictures of the signage. I'm not sure if I will be able to use this in my defence as the car park has recently changed to a permit holder only car park- so the signs when I parked would have been different and unfortunately I didn't take pictures at the time.

    I've also taken some pictures of the PCN- it is a bit blurry due to it being a few months old now, if there are any parts you can't make out please let me know and I will type up as it's more visible to the eye than on computer screen.

    There is a copy of my pay by phone receipt for that day too.

    hxxp://s86.photobucket.com/user/clare710/library/

    Thanks in advance for any advice
    • leeda84
    • By leeda84 19th Oct 16, 11:52 PM
    • 57 Posts
    • 135 Thanks
    leeda84
    Street view on Google Maps is your friend - Jersey St car park, Manchester taken in June 2015.

    https://www.google.com/maps/@53.4855527,-2.2238352,3a,57.5y,330.15h,79.84t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sRE0oaYR-QrK81d0MRlvgJA!2e0!7i13312!8i6656

    Does that look a little more familiar?
    • clare7
    • By clare7 20th Oct 16, 12:47 PM
    • 9 Posts
    • 7 Thanks
    clare7
    Street view on Google Maps is your friend - Jersey St car park, Manchester taken in June 2015.
    Originally posted by leeda84
    Hi Leeda84,

    Yes that's the one, althought google maps street view doesn't let me into the car park to zoom in on the signs- i'm not sure how much use the big sign at the front will be?

    Thanks for your help
    • leeda84
    • By leeda84 20th Oct 16, 1:07 PM
    • 57 Posts
    • 135 Thanks
    leeda84
    Hi Leeda84,

    Yes that's the one, althought google maps street view doesn't let me into the car park to zoom in on the signs- i'm not sure how much use the big sign at the front will be?

    Thanks for your help
    Originally posted by clare7
    Even if you can't see the signs actually in the car park, I would suggest that the signs at the entrance would be of use. There is nothing obvious or clear on any of these signs that invites the driver to read the terms and conditions of the car park. In fact, there is nothing to suggest on these signs that there are any T&Cs, only costs to pay depending on the amount of time you wish to park.

    If they can put that MASSIVE sign up with just a number taking up half of it, I would imagine they could have inserted some more text in a large, easy to read font to tell drivers they were entering in to a contract by parking there.
    • clare7
    • By clare7 7th Nov 16, 9:30 PM
    • 9 Posts
    • 7 Thanks
    clare7
    Hi all,
    I'm just finalising my draft defence and there is something i'm a little unclear on. Is a notice to keeper the ticket that was issued on my windscreen? From reading I think the ticket on my windscreen is Notice to Driver- which should have been followed up with a Notice to keeper? All I have is the PCN ticket dated 25/5 and Letter before claim dated 20/9? (and of course the court claim form)

    Thanks in advance for your help
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 7th Nov 16, 9:39 PM
    • 40,629 Posts
    • 52,498 Thanks
    Coupon-mad
    From reading I think the ticket on my windscreen is Notice to Driver- which should have been followed up with a Notice to keeper?
    You are right, because you did not appeal as the driver, you appealed as the keeper, so the Act says they have to issue a (compliant) NTK in order to hold a keeper liable. They cannot miss that step out - look at paragraph 8 of Schedule 4.

    So yes, you can have in your defence that the Claimant failed to serve the required documents to establish keeper liability under the POFA Schedule 4 (be a bit vague like that at this stage).

    You can also have that the driver did pay as soon as the phone app was working.

    You can also have that pay-by-phone which involves an exchange of more than one text, falls under the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013 and the 'contract' failed the requirements of those regulations in more than one way (no need to spell out how yet).

    http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2013/3134/made

    Show us your draft defence and if it's a Gladstones one, base it on others you see that were written recently, by searching 'Gladstones incoherent'. You want that wording...
    PRIVATE PCN in England/Wales? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT

    Click on the breadcrumb trail, top of page: Household & Travel > Motoring > Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking & READ THE 'NEWBIES' FAQS THREAD.
    DON'T read old advice to ignore, unless in Scotland/NI.

    • clare7
    • By clare7 7th Nov 16, 11:12 PM
    • 9 Posts
    • 7 Thanks
    clare7
    Show us your draft defence and if it's a Gladstones one, base it on others you see that were written recently, by searching 'Gladstones incoherent'. You want that wording...
    Originally posted by Coupon-mad
    right here goes...

    1. It is admitted that the Defendant was the authorised registered keeper of the vehicle in question at the time of the alleged incident.

    2. The identity of the driver of the vehicle on the date in question has not been ascertained.

    a. The Claimant did not identify the driver
    b. The Defendant has no liability, as they are the Keeper of the vehicle and the Claimant must rely upon the strict provisions of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 in order to hold the defendant responsible for the driver’s alleged breach.
    c. The Claimant's demanding letter failed to evidence any contravention or clear/prominent signage

    3. The Claimant has at no time provided an explanation how the sum has been calculated, the conduct that gave rise to it or how the amount has climbed from £100 to £150. This appears to be an added cost with no reason and an attempt at double recovery, which the POFA Schedule 4 specifically disallows.

    a. The Protection of Freedom Act Para 4(5) states that the maximum sum that may be recovered from the keeper is the charge stated on the Notice to Keeper.

    4. The signage was inadequate to form a contract with the motorist

    a. The signage on this site is inadequate to form a contract. It is barely legible, making it difficult to read, it is only visible on foot and not in direct line of site meaning you have to go out of your way to look for the sign

    5. The driver did not enter into any 'agreement on the charge', no consideration flowed between the parties and no contract was established.

    a. The Defendant denies that the driver would have agreed to pay the original demand of £100 to agree to the alleged contract had the terms and conditions of the contract been properly displayed and accessible
    b. The car park in question is one which I am completely familiar with and I know the ticket machine is subject to frequent malfunctions, meaning users have to rely on the pay by phone mobile app, which again is subject to frequent malfunctions. The parking cost was paid for in full as soon as the app was working again, so the claimant has not lost out financially meaning the driver is not liable for further charges. The pay-by-phone app which involves an exchange of more than one step , falls under the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013 and the 'contract' failed the requirements of those regulations in more than one way
    c. In Jolley v Carmel Ltd [2000] 2 EGLR 154, it was held that a party who makes reasonable endeavours to comply with contractual terms, should not be penalised for breach when unable to fully comply with the terms


    6. I researched the matter online, and discovered that the Claimant is a member of the Independent Parking Committee (IPC), an organisation operated by Gladstones Solicitors. They also operate the Independent Appeals Service (IAS), the allegedly independent body appointed by the Claimant’s trade body, the IPC. My research revealed that the IAS, far from being independent, is a subsidiary of the IPC, which in turn is owned and run by the same two Directors who also run Gladstones Solicitors. The individuals in question are John Davies, and William Hurley. Such an incestuous relationship is incapable of providing any fair means for motorists to challenge parking charges, as well as potentially breaching the SRA Code of Conduct. As such, the Claimant does not come to this matter with clean hands.

    7. The claimant has not provided enough details in the particulars of claim to file a full
    defence. In particular, the full details of the contract which it is alleged was broken
    have not been provided.

    a. The Claimant has disclosed no cause of action to give rise to any debt.
    b. The Claimant has stated that a parking charge was incurred.

    8. The Claimant has given no indication of the nature of the alleged charge in the
    Particulars of Claim.
    a. The Claimant has therefore disclosed no cause of action.
    b. The Particulars of Claim contains no details and fails to establish a cause of action which would enable the Defendant to prepare a specific defence.
    It just states “parking charges” which does not give any indication of on what basis the claim is brought.
    c. There is no information regarding why the charge arose, what the original charge
    was, what the alleged contract was nor anything which could be considered a fair
    exchange of information.
    d. The Particulars of Claim are incompetent in disclosing no cause of action.
    e. On the 20th September 2016 another relevant poorly pleaded private parking
    charge claim by Gladstones was struck out by District Judge Cross of St
    Albans County Court without a hearing due to their ‘roboclaim’ particulars being incoherent, failing to comply with CPR. 16.4 and ‘providing no facts that could give rise to any apparent claim in law.’
    f. On the 27th July 2016 DJ Anson sitting at Preston County Court ruled that the very similar parking charge particulars of claim were efficient and failing to meet CPR 16.4 and PD 16 paragraphs 7.3 – 7.6. He ordered the Claimant in that case to file new particulars which they failed to do and so the court confirmed that the claim be struck out.


    I can no longer see the wood for the trees, there is so much useful information on this site it really is great, but taxing on the old brain cells!

    Any feedback on the above would be very much appreciated, hopefully i'm not too far off the mark.

    Thanks for your support
    • The Deep
    • By The Deep 8th Nov 16, 8:08 AM
    • 5,561 Posts
    • 4,272 Thanks
    The Deep
    Have you complained to the SRA yet? You should, they are surely trying to defraud you.

    Who knows, your complaint could be the final straw.

    http://www.sra.org.uk/consumers/problems/report-solicitor.page
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 8th Nov 16, 1:20 PM
    • 40,629 Posts
    • 52,498 Thanks
    Coupon-mad
    You need to decide if you are not going to ID the driver - i.e. if the NTK was definitely not compliant or sent in time/at all, then that is recommended, OR if in a hearing you would rather say that you were the driver but rely upon the honest fact that you DID pay and rely on Jolley v Carmel (glad to see you got that in there, did you get that from Bargepole's personally written defence?).

    If you are definitely defending as 'the keeper' because you are sure SIP's NTK was never served/served too late/was definitely woeful re compliance for keeper liability, then edit stuff like this which implies who was driving:

    The car park in question is one which I am completely familiar with and I know the ticket machine is subject to frequent malfunctions, meaning users have to rely on the pay by phone mobile app, which again is subject to frequent malfunctions.
    I think this should be a separate defence point not mixed up with 'machine failure' (you don't need to go into detail yet):

    The pay-by-phone app which involves an exchange of more than one step, falls under the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013 and the 'contract' failed the requirements of those regulations in various ways in terms of what is required to be provided by a trader before conclusion of such a contract.
    Last edited by Coupon-mad; 08-11-2016 at 1:24 PM.
    PRIVATE PCN in England/Wales? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT

    Click on the breadcrumb trail, top of page: Household & Travel > Motoring > Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking & READ THE 'NEWBIES' FAQS THREAD.
    DON'T read old advice to ignore, unless in Scotland/NI.

    • clare7
    • By clare7 9th Nov 16, 9:49 PM
    • 9 Posts
    • 7 Thanks
    clare7
    You need to decide if you are not going to ID the driver - i.e. if the NTK was definitely not compliant or sent in time/at all, then that is recommended, OR if in a hearing you would rather say that you were the driver but rely upon the honest fact that you DID pay and rely on Jolley v Carmel (glad to see you got that in there, did you get that from Bargepole's personally written defence?).:
    Originally posted by Coupon-mad
    Hi Coupon-mad,

    I'm really torn with which stance to take- I certainly have not received a notice to keeper but on the other hand I have also paid for the parking anyway! I was struggling to find any defence points for the latter so i'm maybe thinking i'll have more behind me if I go with the not ID'ing the driver. Do you have any further points to defend my case for actually paying after the app malfunction?!

    I did indeed get the Jolley v Carmel from Bargepole's defence- I hope that's ok?!

    Thanks again for your support
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 9th Nov 16, 11:30 PM
    • 40,629 Posts
    • 52,498 Thanks
    Coupon-mad
    I did indeed get the Jolley v Carmel from Bargepole's defence- I hope that's ok?!
    Yes it is fine and I'm glad (so will bargepole be, I'm sure) that you read his example defence, picked out the relevant case law to use for your defence but didn't just try to use the entire appeal, which he was at pains to point out was relevant to a certain case in many ways.

    I would go for defending as keeper, as it gives you the POFA Schedule 4 to use...however in any hearing you would have to be well primed with how to state your case 'as keeper'. You'd be armed with a copy of Schedule 4 printed out, also the Regulations re distance contracts - and photos if you have them, plus a comparison pic of the Beavis case sign (to show clarity and brevity of terms).

    Do you have any further points to defend my case for actually paying after the app malfunction?!
    Only to say that if the signs do not say WHEN in the parking period the pay-by-phone app must be completed then you can't be bound by terms that are (presumably?) simply not there. After all the car wasn't moved, you hadn't made off without paying, you paid and complied after your 'best endeavours' in the end as soon as the system worked - and did not in fact contravene the terms as drafted.
    PRIVATE PCN in England/Wales? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT

    Click on the breadcrumb trail, top of page: Household & Travel > Motoring > Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking & READ THE 'NEWBIES' FAQS THREAD.
    DON'T read old advice to ignore, unless in Scotland/NI.

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