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  • FIRST POST
    • denchgang9
    • By denchgang9 22nd Jul 17, 5:10 PM
    • 7Posts
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    denchgang9
    Wright Hassall CEL (Letter of Claim) HELP!
    • #1
    • 22nd Jul 17, 5:10 PM
    Wright Hassall CEL (Letter of Claim) HELP! 22nd Jul 17 at 5:10 PM
    Hello all!

    Drafted a letter to respond to WH below. Just for ease and transparency, here's a summary of the current situation and the particulars of this case:
    • Never received the initial PCN from CEL which claims to have been submitted end of 2016... My first ever correspondence came over 2 months later as a "final reminder before legal action" from CEL
    • I have since received letters from ZZPS (all ignored) and I'm now on my 2nd letter from Wright Hassall which is the "Formal Letter of Claim" @ £236
    • FYI, not stating that I was the driver, simply registered keeper - fyi they're claiming "Payment was not made in accordance with terms displayed on signage" - does this affect this case any differently to those who overstayed for example?
    • The "incident" occurred on a Bank Holiday... though the sign in smallprint (having revisited the site) shows parking needs to paid all year round - should this be mentioned in defence?
    • we do not actually know who was driving at the time, the parents have access to vehicle too (albeit driving on 3rd party 'driving other cars' cover under their own insurance). PCN has been sent to the RK
    • ANPR technology used, no pictures have been sent to me to prove this of my vehicle/driver however

    My response to WH, please comment / modify where appropriate, I'm very mindful I don't have a legal background and this could be nonsense!:


    Thank you for your letter dated ..... .

    First, the alleged debt is disputed and any court proceedings will be vigorously defended.

    Second, I deny any debt with you. The driver is not identified in your letter and your client has failed to meet the requirements of The Protection of Freedoms Act to pursue me as the registered keeper of this vehicle. I am under no legal obligation to name the driver and therefore your client cannot legally hold me responsible for this charge as the registered keeper.

    CEL failed to meet the requirements of POFA schedule 4 to hold the keeper liable. Namely, but not limited to, failed to deliver the notice to keeper within 14 days. The claimant did not comply with the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 (“POFA 2012”) and give the registered keeper opportunity at any point to identify the driver.

    A Notice to Keeper can be served by ordinary post and the Protection of Freedoms Act requires that the Notice, to be valid, must be delivered no later than 14 days after the vehicle was parked; the first correspondence received regarding this matter is dated XXX (the PCN was supposedly issued December 2016, I received first correspondence over 2 months after this date…?! – is this a valid point? No original PCN was received, only a “final reminder before legal action” over 2 months after the alleged incident)

    No ticket was left on the windscreen and no notice to keeper was sent within the 14 days required to comply with POFA 2012 only a speculative invoice which was sent outside of the 14 day period, which did not comply with POFA 2012. This would exclude the registered keeper being liable for any charges. The following are some of the reasons the speculative invoice was not a notice to keeper and did not comply with POFA 2012:
    a) It was not a notice to keeper but a “Parking Charge Notice” as detailed in the title of the invoice.
    b) It did not advise that the driver is liable for the parking charge and that it has not been paid in
    full.
    c) It did not warn the keeper that if the parking charges remains outstanding after 28 days and the
    name and address of the driver has not been given, or otherwise known to the person entitled to the
    parking charge, that “creditor” will be entitled to recover the parking charge from the registered
    keeper.
    d) It did not state the means of how the parking ticket was issued, it simply quoted dates and times of the alleged offence.
    e) It was a speculative invoice titled “Parking Charge Notice” and not a notice to keeper and was not
    sent within the 14 day period to comply with POFA 2012 even if it was deemed to comply with
    POFA 2012.

    Third point, your letter does not comply with the Pre Action Protocol, I refer to Para 4 (5) of the Act regarding the additional amount charged. Your client cannot recover a sum greater than the original parking charge. The charge must be proportionate and commercially justifiable. CEL failed to take legal action following its Letter Before Action for £100. It has not only failed to mitigate its costs but artificially inflated the amount in an attempt at double recovery.

    In order to prepare my evidence I require you to provide me with evidence on how the charge is calculated. You should note that Civil Procedure rules state that your 'legal fees' are not recoverable. The defendant has claimed legal costs that cannot be recovered in the Small Claims Court (CPR 27.14). The solicitor, Wright Hassall, was in any case engaged by ZZPS, not the Claimant that is a stranger to the arrangement.

    Fourth, if you decide to instigate court proceedings, please make it clear for me who the actual creditor making the parking charge demand is and in what capacity. Are ZZPS Limited the creditor? If so do they have legal capacity to take out this action? [CEL is not the land-owner and therefore has no legal capacity unless in accordance with the British Parking Association Code of Practice, it is specifically authorised. The Defendant has the reasonable belief that the Claimant, in fact, has no contract with the land-owner and puts it to proof of the chain of authority.] – not sure if this is correct in my case? It was a small private parking lot outside a restaurant.

    Please also explain why you are accepting instructions from ZZPS Ltd. It has no legal capacity to pursue a payment through the courts and instructing a solicitor on behalf of a third party is a reserved legal activity and offence under the Legal Services Act 2007 Part 14.

    Fifth, I require a detailed list of all essential documents you will use in the court so I can prepare my defence. Including time date stamped photos of signage and where the car was parked and for how long.

    I have visited the site recently and believe the current signage is not sufficiently prominent for someone to be fully aware of the contract they are entering into and in particular the core term of the contract, being the £100 parking charge, is lost in the small text below other information. I am interested to find out if the signage was the same on the date of the incident, which I believe fail to meet the requirements of the British Parking Association Code of Practice.

    [Sixth, I have read the Pre Action Protocol in detail and it states that you should seek out other options before court proceedings in the form of Alternative Dispute Resolution. Please issue me with a POPLA code so I can resolve this dispute through this method. Should you reject this, I would like to remind you of your duty to mitigate loss and not to incur additional losses unnecessarily. I will make this point known to the court that Alternative Dispute Resolution was offered, as every effort should be made to reach a settlement rather than use court proceedings.] – is this still applicable at this stage?

    I await your response to the above points in this acknowledgment which I expect within 14 days. I will then provide you with my full and final reply as required by the Practice Direction on pre-action conduct and I would wish to remind you of your duties under it.



    Thanks in advance for any pointers for this response to WH's "letter of claim"
Page 1
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 22nd Jul 17, 8:15 PM
    • 52,862 Posts
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    Coupon-mad
    • #2
    • 22nd Jul 17, 8:15 PM
    • #2
    • 22nd Jul 17, 8:15 PM
    Look at Jonersh's example response if the letter comes from Tim Hawker, the debt collector man:

    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?p=72802210#post72802210

    And however you write your version in the end, personally I would NEVER thank them for their letter!

    I would start:

    'I refer to your unsolicited, misleading and aggressively-worded letter dated ....'
    Last edited by Coupon-mad; 22-07-2017 at 9:44 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.

    • denchgang9
    • By denchgang9 22nd Jul 17, 9:10 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    denchgang9
    • #3
    • 22nd Jul 17, 9:10 PM
    • #3
    • 22nd Jul 17, 9:10 PM
    Thank you for the guidance! Great example.

    My only concern here is that it seems that example is in response to the initial letter from Wright Hassall whereas I've now received a second letter, a "Formal Letter of Claim" - is this example from Jonersh still the appropriate response?

    I can't attach an image so dropbox link to the scanned copy of the letter I refer to here: I've got 10 days left to respond! Perhaps someone can upload this as an image for ease if needs be:

    dropbox.com/s/222z89rgx5h5il6/Wright%20Hassall%20Letter%20of%20Claim.jpg?dl=0

    Jonersh disputes the points which come in the letter prior to the one I've attached above (re: the credit rating / bailiffs / future borrowing threats..)

    Thank you in advance (note, I will no longer be thanking them for their letter! I'm too soft sometimes haha)
    • denchgang9
    • By denchgang9 22nd Jul 17, 9:15 PM
    • 7 Posts
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    denchgang9
    • #4
    • 22nd Jul 17, 9:15 PM
    • #4
    • 22nd Jul 17, 9:15 PM
    Ignore my above post, I was being dense - they still make the same threats in this letter....


    My draft below, any tweaks appreciated!

    Am I right in thinking to send this to the managing partner of WH (Sarah Perry) ? Assuming Tim Hawker is useless to email as he isn't even on their site...


    Draft with a slight change in intro, feedback would be fantastic:

    I refer to your correspondence of [date]. First, the alleged debt is disputed and any court proceedings will be vigorously defended.

    Second, I deny any debt with you. The driver is not identified in your letter and your client has failed to meet the requirements of The Protection of Freedoms Act to pursue me as the registered keeper of this vehicle.

    I wish to make a complaint on the basis that your letter is threatening, misleading as to the law and an abuse of the process of debt recovery. I refer to Law Society Warning Notice 11/06/2013 ("the Warning Notice").

    To the extent that the correspondence may have been sent by a third party, the letter is on Wright Hassall letterhead and the firm is responsible for the content. I wish to raise the following points:

    1. Your letter states you or agents on behalf of your client will seek to obtain a CCJ which may affect
    1.1. My ability to obtain credit
    1.2. My ability to borrow funds
    1.3 My ability to obtain employment
    1.4. Be subject to bailiff enforcement or an attachment of earnings order.

    All of the above points are misleading as to the position and may impair access to justice. The Court will determine any dispute if proceedings are commenced. In the event that a Judgment is awarded in your client's favour none of the above will occur provided that the Judgment is paid promptly. This is not made clear precisely to prompt the recipient into early payment and to discourage any defence of the action (however meritorious).

    2. The full extent of Court enforcement is set out within the letter in a manner which is aggressive and intimidation without making the process of debt recovery clear (in clear disregard of the Warning Notice).

    3. Your correspondence gives rise to no consideration of the recipient's position or any defence of the proposed action or consideration of negotiated settlement, only payment of the debt, which is neither admitted nor proven

    4. At £236 the debt sought would appear to be set at a level beyond that which is likely to be recoverable in the small claims court (or at all) and may therefore misstate the correct legal position regarding the recovery of the parking charge in this matter, were your client to be successful.

    5. The letter received appears to come from an individual who purports to be Head of Debt Recovery at Wright Hassall. Despite this, he is not listed on the firm's website and is not a registered solicitor. It is unclear as to what his position is or if he exists. It is further not clear that Wright Hassall have appropriately represented their status as required by the Warning Notice.

    We expect you to accurately and openly represent your authority/status in all communications, and to convey in those communications the correct legal position with regard to debts and the debt recovery process.

    I look forward to hearing from you.
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 22nd Jul 17, 9:58 PM
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    Coupon-mad
    • #5
    • 22nd Jul 17, 9:58 PM
    • #5
    • 22nd Jul 17, 9:58 PM
    Your WH letter of misleading drivel is here:

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/222z89rgx5h5il6/Wright%20Hassall%20Letter%20of%20Claim.jpg?dl=0

    It's clearly a debt collector letter from ZZPS again, so yes I would address your reply to a Managing Partner, and copy in your MP and Trading Standards too, please, as we need to raise awareness every time about this scam, and now is a GOOD time!

    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?p=72869191#post72869191

    Make it clear that your MP, and local Council Trading Standards, have been copied in by listing all recipients at the top.

    I would start:

    I refer to your correspondence of [date] which suggests to me that either a quantity of Wright Hassall headed notepaper has been purloined by ZZPS, or that the writer (if an employee of Wright Hassall) has had no training as regard UK law applying to debt recovery.

    First, the alleged debt is disputed and any court proceedings will be vigorously defended. I note that Wright Hassall does not appear to act for Civil Enforcement in any court claims to date that are in the public domain. This letter is littered with falsehoods and misleading and aggressive statements, yet I understand that your firm do not act for the purported creditor, at all.
    and at the end, give them a timescale:

    I look forward to hearing from you and expect a proper response befitting a firm of solicitors replying to a formal complaint about such a serious neglect of your duty to consumers and to the courts, within 14 days of the date of this letter. You will note that I have copied in my MP and local Trading Standards.
    In the copy you post to your MP and to Trading Standards, attach a copy of both WH letters you received, and the ZZPS letter chain too, so they can see the entire threatogram chain and how ZZPS fit into this. Also show them the Hansard record about the proposed Bill and make it clear to your MP that you are relying on him/her to help kill off the scam of private parking firm rip-offs once and for all.

    To Trading Standards, you will need a covering letter to explain the complaint about the parking firm and the misleading threats their agents are sending, contrary to consumer law and debt collection regulations.
    Last edited by Coupon-mad; 22-08-2017 at 11:24 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.

    • denchgang9
    • By denchgang9 23rd Jul 17, 12:42 PM
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    denchgang9
    • #6
    • 23rd Jul 17, 12:42 PM
    • #6
    • 23rd Jul 17, 12:42 PM
    Thank you so much for this! I will get this finalised and sent out today.

    I saw your post on another thread: forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5673397

    Is it worth me firing off this same letter you drafted to Civil Enforcement too at this stage in response to their earlier letters which I initially ignored, simply to prevent them from proceeding to claims and me having to draft a defence etc which will take longer? (Obviously I'd have to remove the last paragraph re: the disabled passenger)

    Thanks again, I struggled to sleep when I got that last letter but the guidance on these threads are giving me hope!!
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 23rd Jul 17, 7:47 PM
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    Coupon-mad
    • #7
    • 23rd Jul 17, 7:47 PM
    • #7
    • 23rd Jul 17, 7:47 PM
    Yes, go for it, CEL don't seem to like that sort of letter!

    Send it direct to CEL and include a sentence or two explaining that:

    I consider the pseudo debt collector letter chain including fake solicitors letters to be harassment and am writing to you to as the originator, to demand that you cease and desist.

    By continuing to pursue me for this disputed debt, you are in breach of the Protection from Harassment Act 1997. If any more contact is made, from you or your worthless agents, I reserve the right to sue you for damages under the Act, relying upon Ferguson v British Gas Trading Ltd [2009] EWCA Civ 46, as part of my claim.
    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.

    • denchgang9
    • By denchgang9 9th Aug 17, 5:26 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    denchgang9
    • #8
    • 9th Aug 17, 5:26 PM
    Response received from CEL!
    • #8
    • 9th Aug 17, 5:26 PM
    Hello!

    Hope this finds you well

    Just fyi, I received a response finally from CEL upon actioning the above posts.

    Simply, just wondered if this means I'm in the clear or if "court proceedings" could still be in the pipeline?

    The letter from CEL:
    "We refer to your recent correspondence.
    This Enforcement Notice has been passed over to a Debt Recovery agent as Civil Enforcement Ltd are no longer dealing with the PCN. Please contact the Debt Recover agent directly in regards to PCN. All further communication in regards to this must be directed to ZZPS only."

    If I understood correctly from past threads, ZZPS don't really have any power here?!

    Wright Hassall have acknowledged my complaint about the misleading letters etc, haven't had a conclusion from their complaint team yet however.

    Where do I stand now?!
    • Johnersh
    • By Johnersh 9th Aug 17, 6:51 PM
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    Johnersh
    • #9
    • 9th Aug 17, 6:51 PM
    • #9
    • 9th Aug 17, 6:51 PM
    Noted. Let us know when you hear from ZZPS and what they have to say. They are merely a debt collection arm and linked to Wright Hassall. For now, I would continue to wait and see.

    One might expect a response from WH before you hear from ZZPS substantively or get a proper letter of claim. Obviously if they do pursue it to court, you will make sure the complaint (and any response) is in the trial bundle, won't you?
    • denchgang9
    • By denchgang9 22nd Aug 17, 3:26 PM
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    denchgang9
    So Wright Hassall have now responded to my complaint! (still nothing from ZZPS)

    In a nutshell, they've just dismissed any complaint and said they won't reply to me anymore (hahaha)

    Looks like they aren't backing down though, was hoping I wouldn't have to prep a defence but looks like they may still make a claim

    Still can't upload images but I've scanned their response and put on dropbox here: dropbox.com/sh/t71q5rd2b2esneu/AADB-zOroNqgrM_r6un34b_aa?dl=0

    Of course there's no use in responding to them now - assuming I just wait for if/when a proper "letter of claim" comes through... If there's anything I should be doing now please let me know!

    Thanks again for all the guidance guys, what a world we live in! You are legends.
    • Johnersh
    • By Johnersh 22nd Aug 17, 6:00 PM
    • 781 Posts
    • 1,467 Thanks
    Johnersh
    Well it's not a matter for them is it? It's more a matter for the regulator (SRA) and the Court to determine whether that letter was threatening.

    Actually there is no duty on them to provide legal advice to you at all or caution that they may end up with a CCJ. Further to suggest that enforcement action would be taken before they have secured judgment is pretty misleading.

    Nothing in my letters (before anyone amends them) has ever suggested anybody's actions are illegal (unless they are). Here the allegation is a potential breach of conduct rules, nothing more.

    Going forward....
    1. Do be sure to provide to the Court all automated template correspondence from the Defendant - particularly all failures to respond to questions and documents.

    2. Assuming you get template Particulars of Claim sent to you in due course, you may wish to rely on the Wright Hassall letter to point out to the Court that this is the very approach (use of templates) that they object to and suggest is worthy of strike out, so you do so on the basis that it cannot possibly be good enough. To do otherwise would be to compromise principles of equality between the Parties.

    3. Distasteful though it may be for them, as an individual without a legal qualification you might want to get some help; it does not follow that seeking advice on the internet immediately disqualifies you from pursuit of an appropriate defence
    • denchgang9
    • By denchgang9 8th Jan 18, 4:48 PM
    • 7 Posts
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    denchgang9
    Hello friends,

    Do I need to reply to this?!
    (unable to post links but I've uploaded it to dropbox - dropbox.com/s/g1dulew0eketbc9/CEL%20letter%20of%205%20Jan%202018.jpg?dl=0 )

    Any guidance on whether I need to start prepping defence would be helpful, not looking forward to doing this at all but I've read MANY recent posts on here and I refuse to be an annoying "pls spoon feed me" newbie.

    If there's any links that you think may be of use at this stage in my process, please do point me in the right direction - appreciate you guys will see plenty of repetitive messages on here and I'll do my best to learn all I can from previous threads and keep my posts minimal.

    Many thanks
    • IamEmanresu
    • By IamEmanresu 8th Jan 18, 4:52 PM
    • 1,940 Posts
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    IamEmanresu
    Do I need to reply to this?!
    No but file it.
    Idiots please note: If you intend NOT to read the information on the Notice of Allocation and hand a simple win to the knuckle dragging ex-clampers, then don't waste people's time with questions on a claim you'll not defend.
    • Umkomaas
    • By Umkomaas 8th Jan 18, 5:21 PM
    • 16,344 Posts
    • 25,431 Thanks
    Umkomaas
    https://www.dropbox.com/s/g1dulew0eketbc9/CEL%20letter%20of%205%20Jan%202018.jpg?dl=0%20)

    IamEmanresu’s advice is good.
    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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