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  • FIRST POST
    • saarchy
    • By saarchy 22nd Feb 17, 7:49 PM
    • 24Posts
    • 14Thanks
    saarchy
    VCS Parking - CCCF Letter Received - Defence helped needed
    • #1
    • 22nd Feb 17, 7:49 PM
    VCS Parking - CCCF Letter Received - Defence helped needed 22nd Feb 17 at 7:49 PM
    Hi guys,

    I have a few questions specific to my ongoing dispute with VCS. Hoping one of you might be kind enough to assist please!

    I worked for a company for 5 years with poor parking facilities. I used to park on a nearby road in the same industrial estate, but after it became popular, VCS moved in. They only signposted half the road (only the parking bays) and would regularly ticket every car on the road, on both sides as well. After my first few tickets, I came here and read through the newbie forums. I found the template, fired that out to VCS and both of my parking tickets were cancelled. Excellent work MSE! I still collected tickets though for parking there (often dubiously) but instead of continuing to challenge them (as I had done the previously) I started ignoring them.

    I've just had a CCCF issued to me on the 15th Feb from the CCBC for a grand total of £880. As per the newbie thread, I've submitted my AOS and now have plenty of time to prepare my defence. I've read though a few cases on here (as well as the excellent guidance on irrelevant defences) but hoped to get a few questions specific to my case answered if possible?

    I'm happy to provide whatever documents/pictures you guys feel will aid in preparing a defence, so please ask!

    Few initial questions though;

    1) Given I've had 2 previous 'invoices' cancelled by using the MSE template, should that become the leading light in my defence?

    2) VCS often ticketed cars on the road opposite to where they had put sign posts. Moreover, the signs were placed next to booths (which I never parked in) and tickets were handed to anybody that parked nearby. I can provide a picture or use Google Maps to show what I mean if easier?

    3) I'm starting to prepare my defence now given the AOS has been submitted. Any suggestions on what previous posts might be decent to read? Or any further details you would like me to provide?

    As always, massive thanks for whatever help comes my way! Apologies for brevity, happy to expand on any areas that are unclear
    Last edited by saarchy; 23-05-2017 at 9:02 PM.
Page 2
    • Loadsofchildren123
    • By Loadsofchildren123 16th Mar 17, 10:13 AM
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    Loadsofchildren123
    If it's too late, bung it in your Witness Statement when you come to do that.
    • saarchy
    • By saarchy 16th Mar 17, 2:29 PM
    • 24 Posts
    • 14 Thanks
    saarchy
    Yes, send it to litigation@vehiclecontrol.co.uk and copy in info@vehiclecontrol.co.uk to make sure they get it. Also copy in you own email address so you know (and can prove) it's been sent successfully. the subject is the claim No.

    You should give them your correct address and ensure your correct address is stated on any documents submitted.

    In court the judge may ask you to confirm your details....

    "Can you confirm you are 'Saarchy' of [address], [postcode]"

    You must not give inaccurate information to the court. if the address you give the court doesn't match what VCS have then they'll attack your credibility.

    There's going to be very important documentation exchanged over the coming weeks and months with response deadlines. Not sure why you'd want them going to and address you don't live at.

    Also if you address is not up to date on the DVLA database then you are committing an offence.
    Originally posted by Lamilad
    I'll get the e-mail sent out to VCS today with myself on copy for confirmation.

    The address that the DVLA have is still valid (it's my parents address from when I first bought this car almost 10 years ago) but they're almost always out of the country so it can takes weeks/months for mail to arrive. It's no big deal though and I'll get it updated today before sending out my defence.

    It's obviously not your main defence, but I would put it in:
    "On or about x date and x date the Claimant issued the Defendant's vehicle with parking charge notices, when it was parked in the same area. The Defendant complained to the Claimant that there had been no contract with the driver and the driver had not been parked in an area marked by any/sufficient signage. The Claimant agreed to cancel both notices. The Defendant relies on this as an admission by the Claimant that its signage was insufficient and displayed in such a manner that no contract can have been created between it and the driver.
    Originally posted by Loadsofchildren123
    If you look at point 9 of my defence, that part is applicable for when I had 2 tickets overturned. Are you suggesting I amend point 9 to the above? Is the wording you've prepared my suitable for court than mine? Happy to adjust if so.

    Just a few final musings as well...

    The area in question has been used as an overflow car park by my old employer for as long as I worked there (circa 5 years). VCS only showed up in early 2014 and in that time, must have issued hundreds of tickets to my colleagues. Sadly, not all of them are as vociferous in their distaste for PPC and often get paid. Should this case go to court and I win, is it worth informing my old employer so they can contact anyone with outstanding tickets to use my case as precedent to get their tickets overturned? VCS must make a fair bit of cash from my old employer, and given my defence is based on hard facts & solid logic, I'd be interested to know what ramifications they will have should they lose....

    On the above point, this road has been used daily for 5+ years by colleagues & myself as overflow parking for our adjacent office. VCS have also seemingly stopped issuing tickets on this road from mid 2015 on wards, despite the same volume of people parking in the area, which might indicate a rift between the landlord & the PPC. Given the above, is it worth even mentioning this in court to aid my defence (helps cement the fact that I genuinely do believe I had every right to park on that part of the road) or should I just ignore this....
    • saarchy
    • By saarchy 16th Mar 17, 4:21 PM
    • 24 Posts
    • 14 Thanks
    saarchy
    Updated defence below, will be submitted by 6PM today unless anyone has any pressing concerns?

    Part 9 adapted as per above and typo removed.

    In the County Court Business Centre
    Claim Number: D0QZ924M
    BETWEEN:
    Vehicle Control Services Ltd (Claimant)
    vs
    Saarchy (Defendant)
    __________________________________________________ _________________________
    Statement of Defence
    I am Saarchy of Address, Postcode defendant in this matter.
    It is admitted that the defendant was the registered keeper of the vehicle noted at the date of alleged breaches. However, the claimant has no cause of action against the defendant on the following grounds: -
    1. Notwithstanding that the claimant claims no right to pursue the defendant as the registered keeper under The Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 (PoFA 2012); the Claimant has failed to meet the conditions of the Act and has never acquired any right to pursue the Defendant in this capacity if they cannot identify the driver.
    2. It is denied that the Claimant served the required documents with statutory wording as prescribed under the POFA and as such, there can be no keeper liability in any event.
    3. The Claimant alleges that parking charges notices were given for “failure to adhere to the advertised terms and conditions” but no terms are given nor is any valid breach established.
    4. The place of the alleged breach is given as “development known as Globeside Business Park Infrastructure Marlow and Unit 3 Globeside Business Park” which contains many registered parcels of land as well as registered leaseholds on parts of these parcels of land, therefore strict proof is required as to the exact site of the breach.
    5. Vehicle Control Services Ltd are not the lawful occupier of any land around Globeside Business Park Infrastructure Marlow and Unit 3 Globeside Business Park. Absent a contract with the lawful occupier of the land being produced by the claimant, or a chain of contracts showing authorisation stemming from the lawful occupier, I have reasonable belief that they do not have authority to issue charges on this land in their own name and that they have no right to bring action regarding this claim.
    6. The Defendant was employed at the time of the alleged breaches at a company operating from leasehold properties at the Business Park which including parking allowances in adjacent parcels of land within the Business Park. These were signposted, including specific parking signs for the Defendant’s office near where parking charge notices were issued.
    7. If it does transpire that the claimant is entitled to issue charges on the private land, certain parking spaces do not and cannot include spaces which are covered under the leases without specific authority being proved to be held from the owners of leases for each of those spaces.
    8. The signage present in the area is woefully inadequate and at no point can be considered suitable for “Terms and Conditions” to be breached, or any form of contract whatsoever. This includes, but is not limited to, signage obstructed by hedgerow, ambiguously placed alongside parking bays, no parking signs on entry to Business Park etc.
    9. On or about the 2nd September and 26th September 2014, the Claimant issued the Defendant's vehicle with parking charge notices, when it was parked in the same area. The Defendant complained to the Claimant that there had been no contract with the driver and the driver had not been parked in an area marked by any/sufficient signage. The Claimant agreed to cancel both notices. The Defendant relies on this as an admission by the Claimant that its signage was insufficient and displayed in such a manner that no contract can have been created between it and the driver.
    10. At no point were any significant signage changes made between September 2014 and September 2016, or further information supplied to leaseholders on the Business Park, by Vehicle Control Services Ltd. As such, any further tickets can be considered erroneous given the implied parking permission by the Claimant on appeal, as well as the Defendant’s employer occupying adjacent office space.
    11. PoFA 2012 only allows the recovery of the parking charge stated on the Notice to Keeper and not court fees, damages, indemnity costs or legal representative’s costs.
    12. No contract, terms and conditions or sum payable were accepted by any driver.
    13. The claimant’s notices attempt to make a forbidding offer, which isn’t an offer at all, therefore no contract exists.
    14. The particulars of claim do not meet the requirements of Practice Direction 16 7.5 as there is nothing which specifies how the terms were breached. Indeed, the particulars of the claim are not clear and concise as is required by CPR 16.4 1(a).
    15. The claimant failed to include a copy of their written contract as per Practice Direction 16 7.3(1) and Practice Direction 7C 1.4(3A). No indication is given as to the Claimants contractual authority to operate there as required by the Claimants Trade Association's Code of Practice A7.1 which says that If you do not own the land on which you are carrying out parking management, you must have the written authorisation of the landowner (or their appointed agent). The written confirmation must be given before you can start operating on the land in question and give you the authority to carry out all the aspects of car park management for the site that you are responsible for. In particular, it must say that the landowner (or their appointed agent) requires you to keep to the Code of Practice and that you have the authority to pursue outstanding parking charges.
    16. The Defendant believes that his personal details have been obtained unlawfully by the Claimant and asks that the Court does not to assist the Claimant to benefit from a wrongdoing. (Ex turpi causa non oritur actio).
    The facts stated in this defence are true, to the best of my knowledge and belief.
    Signed,
    Saarchy
    • Lamilad
    • By Lamilad 16th Mar 17, 6:13 PM
    • 684 Posts
    • 1,489 Thanks
    Lamilad
    Updated defence below, will be submitted by 6PM today unless anyone has any pressing concerns?
    Originally posted by saarchy
    No brownie points for submitting early so may as well hang on a bit longer to see if anyone has any last minute advice on tweaks/ builds.

    As long as you email it to the court by 4pm on the 20th then you're fine.
    • Loadsofchildren123
    • By Loadsofchildren123 17th Mar 17, 10:12 AM
    • 893 Posts
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    Loadsofchildren123
    Sorry I didn't look at this last night, and I'd assumed you'd left the issue out of your defence as others had advised.


    I think 9 should be an amalgamation of your version and mine. My wording is more formal because I work in the legal profession, that's all. I think you should add that the signage was "confusing". So:




    9. On or about the 2nd September and 26th September 2014, the Claimant issued the Defendant's vehicle with parking charge notices, when it was parked in the same area. The Defendant complained to the Claimant that there had been no contract with the driver and the driver had not been parked in an area marked by any/sufficient signage and that the signage was confusing and misleading. The Claimant agreed to cancel both notices. The Defendant relies on this as an admission by the Claimant that its signage was insufficient and misleading/confusing and displayed in such a manner that no contract can have been created between it and the driver.


    Lamilad is right - no need to file it early, that just brings everything forward by a few days.
    • Loadsofchildren123
    • By Loadsofchildren123 17th Mar 17, 10:14 AM
    • 893 Posts
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    Loadsofchildren123
    If you've already filed it my changes aren't really that crucial, just deal with this in your witness statement when you come to make one.
    • saarchy
    • By saarchy 19th Mar 17, 7:08 PM
    • 24 Posts
    • 14 Thanks
    saarchy
    Defence submitted today. Amended point 9 to the above (thank you) and sent to both the CCBCAQ email and VCS separately.

    Any further thoughts on this one being pursued by VCS directly as opposed to BWLegal? I just checked the original claim form and it's signed by SRS himself. Not sure if that's unusual or standard practice....
    • Lamilad
    • By Lamilad 19th Mar 17, 7:26 PM
    • 684 Posts
    • 1,489 Thanks
    Lamilad
    Defence submitted today. Amended point 9 to the above (thank you) and sent to both the CCBCAQ email and VCS separately.

    Any further thoughts on this one being pursued by VCS directly as opposed to BWLegal? I just checked the original claim form and it's signed by SRS himself. Not sure if that's unusual or standard practice....
    Originally posted by saarchy
    VCS/Excel do do their own litigation and they're generally more organised than BWL. They will meet deadlines and serve documents (usually) well in advance, which is good because you may get to see their WS before you have to submit yours.

    Their WS will likely be written by Jake Burgess or Anita Dile. If it's JB it'll probably be half decent. If it's AD then let Coupon Mad have a look at it - she'll tear it to shreds and probably be chuckling to herself in the process.
    • saarchy
    • By saarchy 19th Mar 17, 9:43 PM
    • 24 Posts
    • 14 Thanks
    saarchy
    VCS/Excel do do their own litigation and they're generally more organised than BWL. They will meet deadlines and serve documents (usually) well in advance, which is good because you may get to see their WS before you have to submit yours.

    Their WS will likely be written by Jake Burgess or Anita Dile. If it's JB it'll probably be half decent. If it's AD then let Coupon Mad have a look at it - she'll tear it to shreds and probably be chuckling to herself in the process.
    Originally posted by Lamilad
    Jake Burgess wrote the PoC, so could very well be him taking this one forward.

    Either way, will update this thread as/when the next steps appear.
    • saarchy
    • By saarchy 29th Mar 17, 4:02 PM
    • 24 Posts
    • 14 Thanks
    saarchy
    Just sending back the N180 form now. Do I have to send back via letter or can I send to the same e-mail address I sent my initial defence?

    It also mentions sending a copy to the defendant. Is that a letter or can I send via e-mail as well?
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 29th Mar 17, 7:07 PM
    • 47,054 Posts
    • 60,429 Thanks
    Coupon-mad
    Send a scan of the signed form, attached to an email if you prefer, making sure 'Defendant's N180 form - re Claim Number xxxxxxxx' is in the subject line. Ring next week and check it is received, if MCOL doesn't update.
    PRIVATE PCN in England/Wales? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT

    Click on the trail, top of this page: Home>>Forums>Household & Travel>Motoring>Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking - read the 'NEWBIES' FAQS thread!
    DON'T read old advice to ignore, unless in Scotland/NI.

    • saarchy
    • By saarchy 8th Apr 17, 7:52 PM
    • 24 Posts
    • 14 Thanks
    saarchy
    My case has now been assigned to my local court after the DQ submission, but I'm contemplating sending the below e-mail to VCS... Can I please have some feedback on this draft?

    Dear Sir,

    I am writing in regard of claim:#

    This claim has now progressed to a stage where a court date seems inevitable. It is, in my opinion, an invalid claim and therefore a waste of time for everyone involved. This opinion is based on many factors; photographic evidence, previously overturned tickets & advice from those well versed in this area to name but a few.

    This claim has forced me to halt planning travel aboard and that is jeopardising my livelihood. As such, despite the frivolous nature of the claim, I am of the mindset to propose a ‘drop hands’ offer in order for this matter to reach a quick conclusion.

    I dispute all parking charge notices as per, but accept VCS have incurred £60 of costs to date for submitting this claim to the CCBC. Despite this being no fault of the Defendant whatsoever, I will offer to pay 50% of the court cost to resolve this, a total of £30. This is dependent on VCS cancelling the aforementioned claim and all outstanding PCN for vehicle “REG”

    Should this offer be rejected, the Defendant will be forced to take legal guidance on submitting a counter claim for loss of earnings.

    I await your response,

    Saarchy
    The fact that this could take months to reach a court date is causing me some major issues in my personal life and I would rather this was resolved ASAP, despite my case being pretty bullet proof. I appreciate £30 is a bit of a light sum given their demanding £880, but I really do think I would win this one in court and don't want to waste 2/3 months to find out....
    • Lamilad
    • By Lamilad 8th Apr 17, 8:39 PM
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    Lamilad
    I understand you want this to go away but it's not going to. Your letter would not make a blind bit of difference - you're assuming that they have an ounce of humanity or the ability to listen to reason - they DO NOT!

    I am not exagerating when I say they are devoid of any sense of decency, honour or fairness. They are rotten to the core, complete and utter scum. They want your money, they don't care about anything else; and they will stoop to any level, they will twist your words, manipulate information and lie to to the court, to get it.

    They would only try to use this letter against you either by twisting into ad admission of guilt or by exploiting it as a sign of weakness on your part.

    If you were to make them a 'drop hands' offer then that offer would be zero. It would have to be far more assertive/ borderline aggressive and be along the lines of "I have a very strong case backed up by statute law, you have a very weak case that will certaily fail as is the case on almost every occassion against a well prepared defendant. I will be seeking costs for my ordinary expenses as well additonal costs for your unreasonable behaviour under CPR 27.14(g). Unlike your company - who is well known as a serial litigant and issuer of 'roboclaims' - I prefer not to waste the courts time with this pointless exercise. i am therefore offering you this one-off opportunity on a 'drop hands' basis, to save your company the hearing fee and the costs that I will be awarded. It is open for 14 days only and must be confirmed in writing to the defendant and the court through a 'notice of discontinuance' ...blah... blah.... so on and so forth"
    • beamerguy
    • By beamerguy 8th Apr 17, 10:35 PM
    • 5,340 Posts
    • 6,801 Thanks
    beamerguy
    LISTEN TO LAMILAD

    He has first hand experience dealing with these vermin

    VCS are the lowest form of life you can get and are to be treated as such
    RBS - MNBA - CAPITAL ONE - LLOYDS

    DISGUSTING BEHAVIOUR
    • Johnersh
    • By Johnersh 8th Apr 17, 11:24 PM
    • 136 Posts
    • 192 Thanks
    Johnersh
    Saarchy FWIW you should not write to anyone stating that you have no legal advice. Try the below. Less emotion, more formality.

    You need a letter stating at the top Without Prejudice Save As To Costs and then simply state:

    the defendant believes the claimant's claim is without merit. The defendant will claim his costs of any successfully defended proceedings to include the cost of and occasioned by court hearings.

    Nevertheless, With a view to saving costs and avoiding protracted litigation, the defendant will accept a drop hands settlement. If accepted each party will discontinue these proceedings and bear their own costs.

    This offer has settlement value to the Claimant, with the opportunity to avoid both an adverse judgment and costs order.

    I look forward to hearing from you.

    When you win, show it to the court and request your costs on an indemnity basis - stamps, letters, daily attendance at court, petrol expenses etc....
    • Lamilad
    • By Lamilad 9th Apr 17, 3:26 AM
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    Lamilad
    When you win, show it to the court and request your costs on an indemnity basis
    Where does​ the CPR discuss claiming costs on an 'indemnity basis'?

    You can either request ordinary costs - petrol , parking loss of a day's leave or costs for unreasonable behaviour under CPR 27.14.2(g)
    • Johnersh
    • By Johnersh 9th Apr 17, 3:59 PM
    • 136 Posts
    • 192 Thanks
    Johnersh
    In principle the court could do so under its general powers relating to costs. Part 27 does not disapply part 44. However, we are agreed that the costs are codified by part 27, so the difference wouldn't be massive in any event. Such that such an order would only assist in relation to claiming expenses such as mileage if the claimant challenged the distances/rate claimed or reprographics costs per page.

    It'd be nice to think that unreasonable conduct costs would be awarded, but I can see the DJ would be reluctant to award them in many cases.
    • saarchy
    • By saarchy 9th Apr 17, 5:01 PM
    • 24 Posts
    • 14 Thanks
    saarchy
    Thanks for the feedback. I'll redraft a more strongly worded e-mail and post again here for feedback.

    The main issue is that I need to urgently book flights and know there will be costs involved should the court date conflict. You guys seem to only mention travel costs to/from the court as what I could get back, but what about rebooking travel/lose of earnings?

    Most frustrating is I feel my case is about as solid as they come. If they want to waste 2/3 month of my time putting this WOT through the system, what can I do to punish that? I'd like to make this point abundantly clear in my 'drop hands' offer and trust they'll pull the claim.

    I know for a fact they are also pursuing my colleagues for parking on the same road. Many of them did not appeal like I did and likely won't put in as much effort in their defence. In fact, some might just pay because they fear the court summons. I believe I was targeted first though, and when I win, would that judgement affect the other claims they're progressing? Given they'll have wasted my time, it's also highly likely I'll directly help my colleagues in fighting their individual claims...

    If so, surely that's a woeful mistake and I need to make that abundantly clear in my e-mail....
    Last edited by saarchy; 09-04-2017 at 6:09 PM.
    • saarchy
    • By saarchy 13th Apr 17, 4:59 PM
    • 24 Posts
    • 14 Thanks
    saarchy
    I've put together the below based on the responses from Lamilad and Johnersh. It's an amalgamation of both your responses so I'm hoping it will cover all bases and ensure the offer is accepted. Are there any changes/amendments I should be making on the below?

    Without Prejudice Save As To Costs

    Dear Sir,

    I am writing in regard of claim:#

    I have a very strong case backed up by statute law, you have a very weak case that will certainly fail as is the case on almost every occasion against a well-prepared defendant. I will be seeking costs for my ordinary expenses as well additional costs for your unreasonable behaviour under CPR 27.14(g). Unlike your company - who is well known as a serial litigant and issuer of 'roboclaims' - I prefer not to waste the courts time with this pointless exercise.

    The Defendant believes the claimant's claim is without merit. The defendant will claim his costs of any successfully defended proceedings to include the cost of and occasioned by court hearings.

    Nevertheless, with a view to saving costs and avoiding protracted litigation, the defendant will accept a drop hands settlement. If accepted each party will discontinue these proceedings and bear their own costs.

    This offer has settlement value to the Claimant, with the opportunity to avoid both an adverse judgment and costs order.

    I look forward to hearing from you within 14 days of the date of this e-mail.
    Saarchy
    Last edited by saarchy; 13-04-2017 at 5:11 PM.
    • Umkomaas
    • By Umkomaas 13th Apr 17, 5:04 PM
    • 13,234 Posts
    • 20,697 Thanks
    Umkomaas
    I look forward to hearing from you
    ...... within 14 days of the date of this letter.
    We cannot provide you with a silver bullet to get you out of this. You have to be in for the long run, and need to involve yourself in research and work for you to get rid of this. It is not simple. We will help, but can't do it for you.

    Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day; show him how to catch fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.
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