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  • FIRST POST
    • Millz12
    • By Millz12 19th Jun 17, 3:21 PM
    • 7Posts
    • 2Thanks
    Millz12
    Civil Enforcement Parking Charge Defence
    • #1
    • 19th Jun 17, 3:21 PM
    Civil Enforcement Parking Charge Defence 19th Jun 17 at 3:21 PM
    I have received court letter from Civil Enforcement for a parking charge in November 2016, which I have been trying to resolve beforehand with the solicitors the debt was passed on to.

    I never received the first PCN letter from CEL so never had chance to appeal as I was using the car park only for the facilities there, I did overstay but wasn't aware of the maximum time limit at that time.

    I have even offered a settlement payment as it has been causing me stress throughout my exam period.

    I have proof I was in the shop on the site by further from that, the solicitors told me the original PCN was £140 (which I was unaware of having not received the first letter) but the sign in the car park says there is a charge of £100. (I went to check out the signs after becoming aware of the charge)

    Also you can stay any time in the car park if you enter your reg plate inside the shop which I am now aware of and have used since as I visit regularly.

    I've read templates on here but feel a lot go off unclear signage, even though I didn't notice the signs last year after looking since, they are quite low down etc.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated please before I decide whether to defend or just pay the £300+ !!
Page 1
    • Redx
    • By Redx 19th Jun 17, 4:15 PM
    • 16,480 Posts
    • 20,634 Thanks
    Redx
    • #2
    • 19th Jun 17, 4:15 PM
    • #2
    • 19th Jun 17, 4:15 PM
    personally I would just look at the most recent june 2017 defences already submitted by several members on here and find a close match and adapt it to suit

    should take less than 20 minutes to do this , you can then post the final draft on here for critique before emailing it as an attachment to the court centre in Northampton

    bear in mind you are just one of dozens that have these spurious claims recently, CEL generally fold when they see a good defence
    Newbies !!
    Private Parking ticket? check the 2 sticky threads by coupon-mad and crabman in the Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking Board forum for the latest advice or maybe try pepipoo or C.A.G. or legal beagles forums if you need legal advice as well because this parking forum is not about debt collectors or legal matters per se
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 19th Jun 17, 6:24 PM
    • 51,427 Posts
    • 65,029 Thanks
    Coupon-mad
    • #3
    • 19th Jun 17, 6:24 PM
    • #3
    • 19th Jun 17, 6:24 PM
    Too many CEL threads, no need. Just copy another one and they'll crawl back under their stone.
    PRIVATE PCN? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT TWO Clicks needed for advice:
    Top of the page: Home>>Forums>Household & Travel>Motoring>Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking - read the 'NEWBIES' FAQS thread!
    Advice to ignore is WRONG, unless in Scotland/NI.

    • Millz12
    • By Millz12 20th Jun 17, 9:42 AM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Millz12
    • #4
    • 20th Jun 17, 9:42 AM
    • #4
    • 20th Jun 17, 9:42 AM
    Ok thank you both! I'll have another look today and see what I come up with
    • Millz12
    • By Millz12 13th Jul 17, 4:34 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Millz12
    • #5
    • 13th Jul 17, 4:34 PM
    darft defence
    • #5
    • 13th Jul 17, 4:34 PM
    PLEASE ADVISE ON MY DEFENCE DRAFT BELOW:
    (I need to send this by tomorrow)
    Previously have accepted being in the car park on said incident date.


    In the County Court Business Centre

    Claim Number:

    BETWEEN

    CIVIL ENFORCEMENT LIMITED
    V
    -------------------

    DEFENCE STATEMENT

    I am ---------, the defendant in this matter and registered keeper of vehicle registration --------. I currently reside at ---------------------------.
    I deny I am liable for the entirety of the claim for each of the following reasons: -

    1. The Claim Form issued on the 12th of June 2017 by Civil Enforcement Limited was not correctly filed under The Practice Direction as it was not signed by a legal person but signed by “Civil Enforcement Limited (Claimant’s Legal Representative)”

    2. The Claimant failed to meet the Notice to Keeper obligations of Schedule 4 of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012. Absent of such a notice served within 14 days of the parking event and with fully compliant statutory wording, this Claimant is unable to hold me liable under the strict ‘keeper liability’ provisions.
    Schedule 4 also states that the only sum a keeper can be pursued for, is the sum on the Notice to Keeper. They cannot pluck another sum from thin air and bolt that on as well when the signs do not mention a possible £236 for outstanding debt and damages

    3. This Claimant has not complied with pre-court protocol, as an example as to why this prevents a full defence being filed at this time - a parking charge can be for trespass, breach of contract or a contractual charge. All these are treated differently in law and require a different defence. The wording of any contract will naturally be a key element in this matter, and a copy of the alleged contract has never been provided to the Defendant

    a) There was no compliant ‘Letter before County Court Claim’, under the Practice Direction. The last letter received was advising that the defendant’s account had been ‘returned’ to ZZPS limited.

    Due to stress caused by Civil Enforcement Ltd’s debt collecters towards the defendant throughout university dissertation and examinations, the defendant tried to resolve this by offering a settlement payment before the court claim was filed.

    Defendant did accept that the driver was in the car park on the date of the incident, after looking through evidence; the entirety of the time was spent within the Costa Coffee store on site, spending money.

    b) This is a speculative serial litigant, issuing many identical 'draft particulars'. The badly mail-merged documents contain very little information

    c) The Schedule of information is sparse of detailed information

    d) The Claim Form Particulars were extremely sparse, and divulged no cause of action nor sufficient detail. The Defendant has no idea what the alleged contract was on this incident date; nothing that could be considered a fair exchange of information. The Claim Form Particulars did not contain any evidence of contravention or photographs

    e) The Defence therefore asks the Court to strike out the claim as having no reasonable prospect of success as currently drafted

    f) Alternatively, the Defendant asks that the Claimant is required to file particulars which comply with Practice Directions and include at least the following information;

    i. Whether the matter is being brought for trespass, breach of contract or a contractual charge, and an explanation as to the exact nature of the charge

    ii. A copy of any contract it is alleged was in place at the time (e.g. copies of signage)

    iii. How any contract was concluded (if by performance, then copies of signage maps in place at the time)

    iv. Whether keeper liability is being claimed, and if so copies of any Notice to Driver / Notice to Keeper

    v. Whether the Claimant is acting as Agent or Principal, together with a list of documents they will rely on in this matter

    vi. If relying on Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) data, then Installation record of the ANPR system with location, showing the height and angle of the camera and a record of maintenance of the system

    vii. If charges over and above the initial charge are being claimed, the basis on which this is being claimed

    viii. If Interest charges are being claimed, the basis on which this is being claimed

    ix. Why the original parking charge amount before incurring further charges was the sum of £140

    x. Why all correspondence received from ZZPS and Wright Hassall solicitors never stated the breach of the car parks terms, no entry/exit time specified, only a time regarding the issue date.

    Once these have been filed, the Defendant asks for reasonable time to file another defence.

    4. The Claimant has added unrecoverable sums to the original parking charge. It is believed that the employee who drew up the paperwork is remunerated and the particulars of claim are templates, so it is simply not credible that £50 'legal representative’s (or even admin) costs' were incurred. I deny the Claimant is entitled to any interest whatsoever

    5. This case can be distinguished from Parking Eye v Beavis [2015] UKSC 67 (the Beavis case) which was dependent upon an undenied contract, formed by unusually prominent signage forming a clear offer and which turned on unique facts regarding the location and the interests of the landowner. Strict compliance with the BPA Code of Practice (CoP) was paramount and Mr. Beavis was the driver who saw the signs and entered into a contract to pay £85 after exceeding a licence to park free. None of this applies in this material case. The defendant did not see the signs on the date of incident and therefore did not enter a contract. A 'parking charge' can only be binding where that charge was agreed/the bargain made, at the time the contract was formed.


    6. In the absence of any proof of adequate signage that contractually bound the Defendant then there can have been no contract and the Claimant has no case.

    a) The Claimant is put to strict proof that at the time of the alleged event they had both advertisement consent and the permission from the site owner to display the signs

    b) In the absence of strict proof, I submit that the Claimant was committing an offence by displaying their signs and therefore no contract could have been entered, between the driver and the Claimant

    c) Inadequate signs incapable of binding the driver - this distinguishes this case from the Beavis case:


    i. It is believed the signage and any terms were not transparent or legible; this is an unfair contract, not agreed by the driver and contrary to the Consumer Rights Act 2015 in requiring a huge inflated sum as 'compensation' from by an authorised party using the premises as intended

    ii. No promise was made by the driver that could constitute consideration because there was no offer known nor accepted. No consideration flowed from the Claimant

    iii. The signs are believed to not be at eye level, unlit and under trees. The date of this particular incident was in November when the sun would have set and therefore lit signs would certainly be necessary in this case.

    d) BPA CoP breaches - this distinguishes this case from the Beavis case:

    i. the sum pursued exceeds £100. The defendant was only made aware of the orginal parking charge amount of £140 via Wright Hassall solicitors, yet after returning to inspect the signage in the car park, Civil Enforcement propose a charge of £100.

    ii. there is / was no compliant landowner contract known to the defendant

    7. No legitimate interest – no proof has been given that Civil Enforcement have a contract with this land. This distinguishes this case from the Beavis case: This Claimant files serial claims regarding sites where they have lost the contract, known as revenge claims. It is not a legitimate reason to pursue a charge out of proportion with any loss or damages the true landowner could pursue.

    9. The Beavis case confirmed the fact that, if it is a matter of trespass (not breach of any contract), a parking firm has no standing as a non-landowner to pursue even nominal damages

    10. The charge is an unenforceable penalty based upon a lack of commercial justification. The Beavis case confirmed that the penalty rule is certainly engaged in any case of a private parking charge and was only disengaged due to the unique circumstances of that case, which do not resemble this claim

    The Defendant denies any liability whatsoever to the Claimant in any matter and asks the Court to note that the Claimant has:

    A. Failed to disclose any cause of action in the incorrectly filed Claim Form issued on 12th June 2017

    B. Sent a template, well-known to be generic cut and paste 'Particulars' of claim relying on irrelevant case law (Beavis) which ignores the fact that this Claimant cannot hold registered keepers liable in law, due to their own choice of non-POFA documentation

    The vague Particulars of Claim disclose no clear cause of action. The court is invited to strike out the claim of its own volition as having no merit and no reasonable prospects of success

    I confirm that the above facts and statements are true to the best of my knowledge and recollection.






    Defendant ac
    Signed
    Date
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 13th Jul 17, 4:37 PM
    • 51,427 Posts
    • 65,029 Thanks
    Coupon-mad
    • #6
    • 13th Jul 17, 4:37 PM
    • #6
    • 13th Jul 17, 4:37 PM
    This needs to go to the CCBC by email by tomorrow morning as you are pushing it re the date.

    I have even offered a settlement payment as it has been causing me stress throughout my exam period.

    I have proof I was in the shop on the site by further from that,
    When you offered settlement, you didn't admit who was driving/an overstay did you?


    Do not say this, don't talk about offering money or accepting that the overstay happened:

    Due to stress caused by Civil Enforcement Ltd’s debt collecters towards the defendant throughout university dissertation and examinations, the defendant tried to resolve this by offering a settlement payment before the court claim was filed.

    Defendant did accept that the driver was in the car park on the date of the incident, after looking through evidence; the entirety of the time was spent within the Costa Coffee store on site, spending money.

    Here you should be saying that no Notice or PCN was ever received, either, so no chance to appeal was offered:
    a) There was no compliant ‘Letter before County Court Claim’, under the Practice Direction. The last letter received was advising that the defendant’s account had been ‘returned’ to ZZPS limited.
    Last edited by Coupon-mad; 13-07-2017 at 4:40 PM.
    PRIVATE PCN? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT TWO Clicks needed for advice:
    Top of the page: Home>>Forums>Household & Travel>Motoring>Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking - read the 'NEWBIES' FAQS thread!
    Advice to ignore is WRONG, unless in Scotland/NI.

    • Millz12
    • By Millz12 13th Jul 17, 4:44 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Millz12
    • #7
    • 13th Jul 17, 4:44 PM
    • #7
    • 13th Jul 17, 4:44 PM
    Yes I know I should've got this done sooner!!

    Yes unfortunately I said 'I accept I overstayed the limit' but did say I was unaware (which I was).

    Should I not mention anything regarding offering settlement then?
    Just worried as I'm now defending all but I did try to offer payment before.

    Shall I say no notice was received on a seperate line, for instance b) or on that particular sentence?

    Thanks again
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 13th Jul 17, 4:54 PM
    • 51,427 Posts
    • 65,029 Thanks
    Coupon-mad
    • #8
    • 13th Jul 17, 4:54 PM
    • #8
    • 13th Jul 17, 4:54 PM
    Yes unfortunately I said 'I accept I overstayed the limit'
    Oh dear. OMG. That means you can't use any of the paragraphs about the POFA or 'no keeper liability', of course, so #2 is in the bin and your position is weaker. I hoped you were defending this as the keeper (no driver admission) who CEL could NOT have held liable.

    I am not telling you to give up or pay! Just saying so you know, your position is weaker than others here, and if it's about an overstay in a retail park it's also very similar to ParkingEye Ltd v Beavis, that Mr Beavis lost in the Supreme Court.

    Still submit the defence but without the bit I quoted (no admission, nor talk about a settlement, in the defence) and without #2.
    PRIVATE PCN? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT TWO Clicks needed for advice:
    Top of the page: Home>>Forums>Household & Travel>Motoring>Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking - read the 'NEWBIES' FAQS thread!
    Advice to ignore is WRONG, unless in Scotland/NI.

    • Millz12
    • By Millz12 13th Jul 17, 4:59 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Millz12
    • #9
    • 13th Jul 17, 4:59 PM
    • #9
    • 13th Jul 17, 4:59 PM
    Ahhhhhh that's not good news.
    I have deleted that part now.

    Wasn't the Beavis case where he accpeted the terms before parking though?
    I would never ever have over stayed knowing the limit.
    • Millz12
    • By Millz12 13th Jul 17, 5:08 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Millz12
    I have copied my updated version:

    It now has no mention that I have evidence of being at Costa (my sole purpose of using the car park) and my reasons for trying to resolve beforehand. Will I still be able to bring them up if in court?

    In the County Court Business Centre

    Claim Number:

    BETWEEN

    CIVIL ENFORCEMENT LIMITED
    V
    -------------------

    DEFENCE STATEMENT

    I am ---------, the defendant in this matter and registered keeper of vehicle registration --------. I currently reside at ---------------------------.

    I deny I am liable for the entirety of the claim for each of the following reasons:

    1. The Claim Form issued on the 12th of June 2017 by Civil Enforcement Limited was not correctly filed under The Practice Direction as it was not signed by a legal person but signed by “Civil Enforcement Limited (Claimant’s Legal Representative)”

    2. This Claimant has not complied with pre-court protocol, as an example as to why this prevents a full defence being filed at this time - a parking charge can be for trespass, breach of contract or a contractual charge. All these are treated differently in law and require a different defence. The wording of any contract will naturally be a key element in this matter, and a copy of the alleged contract has never been provided to the Defendant

    a) There was no compliant ‘Letter before County Court Claim’, under the Practice Direction. The last letter received was advising that the defendant’s account had been ‘returned’ to ZZPS limited.

    b) No Parking Charge notice was ever received from the claimant; therefore there was no chance or offering for the Defendant to appeal the charge.

    c) This is a speculative serial litigant, issuing many identical 'draft particulars'. The badly mail-merged documents contain very little information

    d) The Schedule of information is sparse of detailed information

    e) The Claim Form Particulars were extremely sparse, and divulged no cause of action nor sufficient detail. The Defendant has no idea what the alleged contract was on this incident date; nothing that could be considered a fair exchange of information. The Claim Form Particulars did not contain any evidence of contravention or photographs

    f) The Defence therefore asks the Court to strike out the claim as having no reasonable prospect of success as currently drafted

    g) Alternatively, the Defendant asks that the Claimant is required to file particulars which comply with Practice Directions and include at least the following information;

    i. Whether the matter is being brought for trespass, breach of contract or a contractual charge, and an explanation as to the exact nature of the charge

    ii. A copy of any contract it is alleged was in place at the time (e.g. copies of signage)

    iii. How any contract was concluded (if by performance, then copies of signage maps in place at the time)

    iv. Whether keeper liability is being claimed, and if so copies of any Notice to Driver / Notice to Keeper

    v. Whether the Claimant is acting as Agent or Principal, together with a list of documents they will rely on in this matter

    vi. If relying on Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) data, then Installation record of the ANPR system with location, showing the height and angle of the camera and a record of maintenance of the system

    vii. If charges over and above the initial charge are being claimed, the basis on which this is being claimed

    viii. If Interest charges are being claimed, the basis on which this is being claimed

    ix. Why the original parking charge amount before incurring further charges was the sum of £140

    x. Why all correspondence received from ZZPS and Wright Hassall solicitors never stated the breach of the car parks terms, no entry/exit time specified, only a time regarding the issue date.

    Once these have been filed, the Defendant asks for reasonable time to file another defence.

    3. The Claimant has added unrecoverable sums to the original parking charge. It is believed that the employee who drew up the paperwork is remunerated and the particulars of claim are templates, so it is simply not credible that £50 'legal representative’s (or even admin) costs' were incurred. I deny the Claimant is entitled to any interest whatsoever

    4. This case can be distinguished from Parking Eye v Beavis [2015] UKSC 67 (the Beavis case) which was dependent upon an undenied contract, formed by unusually prominent signage forming a clear offer and which turned on unique facts regarding the location and the interests of the landowner. Strict compliance with the BPA Code of Practice (CoP) was paramount and Mr. Beavis was the driver who saw the signs and entered into a contract to pay £85 after exceeding a licence to park free. None of this applies in this material case. The defendant did not see the signs on the date of incident and therefore did not enter a contract. A 'parking charge' can only be binding where that charge was agreed/the bargain made, at the time the contract was formed.

    5. In the absence of any proof of adequate signage that contractually bound the Defendant then there can have been no contract and the Claimant has no case.

    a) The Claimant is put to strict proof that at the time of the alleged event they had both advertisement consent and the permission from the site owner to display the signs

    b) In the absence of strict proof, I submit that the Claimant was committing an offence by displaying their signs and therefore no contract could have been entered, between the driver and the Claimant

    c) Inadequate signs incapable of binding the driver - this distinguishes this case from the Beavis case:

    i. It is believed the signage and any terms were not transparent or legible; this is an unfair contract, not agreed by the driver and contrary to the Consumer Rights Act 2015 in requiring a huge inflated sum as 'compensation' from by an authorised party using the premises as intended

    ii. No promise was made by the driver that could constitute consideration because there was no offer known nor accepted. No consideration flowed from the Claimant

    iii. The signs are believed to not be at eye level, unlit and under trees. The date of this particular incident was in November when the sun would have set and therefore lit signs would certainly be necessary in this case.

    d) BPA CoP breaches - this distinguishes this case from the Beavis case:

    i. the sum pursued exceeds £100. The defendant was only made aware of the orginal parking charge amount of £140 via Wright Hassall solicitors, yet after returning to inspect the signage in the car park, the charge is said to be only £100.

    ii. there is / was no compliant landowner contract known to the defendant

    7. No legitimate interest – no proof has been given that Civil Enforcement have a contract with this land. This distinguishes this case from the Beavis case: This Claimant files serial claims regarding sites where they have lost the contract, known as revenge claims. It is not a legitimate reason to pursue a charge out of proportion with any loss or damages the true landowner could pursue.

    9. The Beavis case confirmed the fact that, if it is a matter of trespass (not breach of any contract), a parking firm has no standing as a non-landowner to pursue even nominal damages

    10. The charge is an unenforceable penalty based upon a lack of commercial justification. The Beavis case confirmed that the penalty rule is certainly engaged in any case of a private parking charge and was only disengaged due to the unique circumstances of that case, which do not resemble this claim

    The Defendant denies any liability whatsoever to the Claimant in any matter and asks the Court to note that the Claimant has:

    A. Failed to disclose any cause of action in the incorrectly filed Claim Form issued on 12th June 2017

    B. Sent a template, well-known to be generic cut and paste 'Particulars' of claim relying on irrelevant case law (Beavis) which ignores the fact that this Claimant cannot hold registered keepers liable in law, due to their own choice of non-POFA documentation

    The vague Particulars of Claim disclose no clear cause of action. The court is invited to strike out the claim of its own volition as having no merit and no reasonable prospects of success

    I confirm that the above facts and statements are true to the best of my knowledge and recollection.






    Defendant ac
    Signed
    Date
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 13th Jul 17, 5:11 PM
    • 51,427 Posts
    • 65,029 Thanks
    Coupon-mad
    Wasn't the Beavis case where he accpeted the terms before parking though?
    I would never ever have over stayed knowing the limit.
    Originally posted by Millz12
    True, that's worth arguing and the signs are always an issue, see lafferdog's thread (not CEL, but he won in court today and the Judge found the signage was wanting).

    I would submit the defence as it now stands.

    Be ready to submit the DQ when you get that in a few weeks, and come back at Witness Statement stage. Not all CEL cases are likely to go to a hearing but yours might just be more likely because you can't use the POFA to say you are not liable (which is annoying, because you unpicked that strong position yourself - you are not the first).
    PRIVATE PCN? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT TWO Clicks needed for advice:
    Top of the page: Home>>Forums>Household & Travel>Motoring>Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking - read the 'NEWBIES' FAQS thread!
    Advice to ignore is WRONG, unless in Scotland/NI.

    • Millz12
    • By Millz12 13th Jul 17, 5:26 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Millz12
    what is a DQ? When I email this defence to the court, is there anything on mcol that I have to submit to?
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 13th Jul 17, 7:52 PM
    • 51,427 Posts
    • 65,029 Thanks
    Coupon-mad
    what is a DQ?
    Directions Questionnaire - you need to read bargepole's summary of what happens when, linked in the NEWBIES thread post #2. It also tells you about submitting the defence.
    PRIVATE PCN? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT TWO Clicks needed for advice:
    Top of the page: Home>>Forums>Household & Travel>Motoring>Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking - read the 'NEWBIES' FAQS thread!
    Advice to ignore is WRONG, unless in Scotland/NI.

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