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    • Parker20
    • By Parker20 13th Aug 17, 1:25 PM
    • 4Posts
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    Parker20
    Gladstones County Court letter SIP
    • #1
    • 13th Aug 17, 1:25 PM
    Gladstones County Court letter SIP 13th Aug 17 at 1:25 PM
    Hello,

    Newbie here. I have been reading different forums on and off for the last couple of days.

    Basically, I have received a county court letter from Gladstones on behalf of SIP. I realise I need to acknowledge it online, which I will do shortly to get myself more time to put up a defence.
    Several months ago the claimant's claim that my car was parked in an SIP car park.

    Gladstones are claiming: £160, plus interest, plus a court fee, plus a legal representative's fee, yet .The IPC code of practise (which SIP are a member) also states the maximum parking charge should be £100. After reading several of the threads I realise this is nothing new from Gladstones.




    Thanks for taking the time to read and look forward to hearing any responses.
    Last edited by Parker20; 07-09-2017 at 9:18 PM.
Page 1
    • Redx
    • By Redx 13th Aug 17, 1:30 PM
    • 16,567 Posts
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    Redx
    • #2
    • 13th Aug 17, 1:30 PM
    • #2
    • 13th Aug 17, 1:30 PM
    remove any hint in your post as to who was driving , GLADRAGS and SIP monitor public forums so why hand them a witness statement on a plate ?

    or did you think this forum was private ?

    for now, you need to do what post #2 of the NEWBIES sticky thread tellsl you to do and draft a legal defence

    there are plenty of gladrags defences you can crib from , so should not take long to do

    the EVIDENCE and witness statement comes much later in the process , so at this stage you wont be putting any of that in at all, if you dont know why , read the BARGEPOLE walkthrough

    ps:- as SIP monitor PRIVATE land then the council issue is irrelevant
    Last edited by Redx; 13-08-2017 at 1:32 PM.
    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
    • Parker20
    • By Parker20 13th Aug 17, 1:50 PM
    • 4 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    Parker20
    • #3
    • 13th Aug 17, 1:50 PM
    • #3
    • 13th Aug 17, 1:50 PM
    Duly noted. Thanks for your swift reply. I shall crack on with that tonight!
    • Redx
    • By Redx 13th Aug 17, 1:58 PM
    • 16,567 Posts
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    Redx
    • #4
    • 13th Aug 17, 1:58 PM
    • #4
    • 13th Aug 17, 1:58 PM
    excellent

    and you can ask GALDRAGS for P.O.C. (particulars of claim) but it is unlikely that they willl reply

    see what others have done and if you think its worth doing , then do so, without giving away any hint of who the driver was

    keep your photos and any other evidence for after the DQ stage, if it gets that far
    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
    • Parker20
    • By Parker20 6th Sep 17, 4:42 PM
    • 4 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    Parker20
    • #5
    • 6th Sep 17, 4:42 PM
    • #5
    • 6th Sep 17, 4:42 PM
    Ready to send my defence off tomorrow, how does it look? Also am I right in thinking that I send the defence in email as a PDF document and don't need to do anything further on MCOL?
    P.s the name of the defendant; claimant and case number is above the 'Defence' line on my document.
    Cheers

    ________________________________________
    DEFENCE STATEMENT
    ________________________________________

    Preliminary Matters


    (1) 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 B1.1 which says:


    “1.1 If you operate parking management activities on land which is not owned by you, you must supply us with written authority from the land owner sufficient to establish you as the ‘Creditor’ within the meaning of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 (where applicable) and in any event to establish you as a person who is able to recover parking charges. There is no prescribed form for such agreement and it need not necessarily be as part of a contract but it must include the express ability for an operator to recover parking charges on the landowner’s behalf or provide sufficient right to occupy the land in question so that charges can be recovered by the operator directly. This applies whether or not you intend to use the keeper liability provisions.”


    (2) 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 claim are not clear and concise as is required by CPR 16.4 1(a). The Claimants are known to be serial issuers of generic claims similar to this one. HM Courts Service has identified over 1000 similar sparse claims. I believe the term for such behaviour is ‘roboclaims’ and as such, is against the public interest.


    Practice Direction 3A which references Civil Procedure Rule 3.4 illustrates this point:


    1.4 The following are examples of cases where the court may conclude that particulars of claim (whether contained in a claim form or filed separately) fall within rule 3.4(2)(a):


    a. Those which set out no facts indicating what the claim is about, for example ‘Money owed £5000’.


    b. Those which are incoherent and make no sense.


    c. Those which contain a coherent set of facts but those facts, even if true, do not disclose any legally recognisable claim against the defendant.


    (3) The Claimant has not complied with the pre-court protocol.


    a. No Letter of Claim was sent to the Defendant and no initial information was sent to the Defendant.


    b. I'd refer the court to Para 4 on non-compliance and sanction, and I'd also point out that there can be no reasonable excuse for the Claimant's failure to follow the Pre-action Conduct process, especially bearing in mind that the Claim was issued by their own solicitors so they clearly had legal advice before issuing proceedings.


    On the basis of the above, we request the court strike out the claim for want of a cause of action.


    Introduction


    1. I am XX, the defendant in this matter. For the avoidance of doubt on the relevant date the defendant was the registered keeper of a xx, registered number xx. The defendant can neither confirm nor deny who was driving on the dates given, as it is some time since the events.


    2. As an unrepresented litigant-in-person I seek the Court's permission to amend and supplement this defence as may be required upon disclosure of the claimant's case.


    The defendant wrote to the claimant’s solicitors, Gladstones on XXX requesting information under PART 18 OF THE CIVIL PROCEDURE RULES (CPR):

    i) Who the party was that contracted with SIP Parking and were they the landowner.


    ii) If the charges were based on damages for breach of contract.


    iii) To provide photos of the signs that SIP Parking can evidence were on site and which contended formed a contract with the driver on that occasion


    iv) All photographs taken of the vehicle in question.


    The claimant’s solicitors: Gladstones, failed to respond.

    The Defendant asks that the court orders Further and Better Particulars of Claim and asks leave to amend the Defence.


    Rebuttal of Claim


    7. It is denied that:


    a. A contract was formed.


    b. There was an agreement to pay a parking charge.


    c. That there were Terms and Conditions prominently displayed around the site which communicated any additional punitive parking charge (effectively a private ‘fine’) in large lettering, in a clear and concise way, in a par with the tariff signs where the fees were advertised in the largest font. By contrast, the ‘parking charge’ is positively buried in small print, contrary to Lord Denning’s ‘Red Hand Rule’ and contrary to the requirements of the Consumer Rights Act 2015.


    d. That in addition to the parking charge there was an agreement to pay additional and unspecified additional sums, which are in any case unsupported by the ParkingEye V Beavis case and unsupported for cases on the small claims track.


    e. The claimant company fully complied with their obligations within the International Parking Community Code of Practice of which they were member at the time.


    8. It is further denied that the Defendant is liable for the purported debt, or that any debt is in fact owed, or that any debt exists or could ever or has ever existed.


    My Defence


    9. My defence will rely principally upon the following points:


    10. The Defendant did not enter into any 'agreement', no consideration flowed between the parties and no contract was established.


    11.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.


    The amount demanded is excessive and unconscionable and especially so when compared to the level of Penalty Charge Notice issued by the local Council which is set at £50 or £25 if paid within 14 days.


    12. The signage on this site was inadequate to form a contract with the motorist.


    a. The signage on and around the site in question was unclear and not prominent and did not meet the British Parking Association (BPA) Code of Practice or the International Parking Community (IPC) Code of Practice. The Claimant was a member of the IPC at the time and committed to follow its requirements. Therefore no contract has been formed with driver to pay the amount demanded by the Claimant, or any additional fee charged if unpaid in 28 days.


    b. The size of font of the prices advised for parking is much larger than the font of the contract and the offer is not sufficiently brought to the attention of the motorist, nor are the onerous terms (the £100 parking charge) sufficiently prominent to satisfy Lord Dennings "red hand rule”.


    c. In the absence of ‘adequate notice’ of the terms and the charge (which must be in large prominent letters such as the brief, clear and multiple signs in the Beavis case) this fails to meet the requirements of Schedule 4 of the POFA.


    13. The Claimant’s representatives: Gladstones, have artificially inflated the value of the Claim from £100 to £16XX plus Court fee XX, plus legal represensative’s costs XX, total: XX. The Defendant submits the added costs have not actually been incurred by the Claimant; that these are fabricated figures and applied regardless of facts.


    a. If the “parking charge” listed in the particulars of claim is to be considered a written agreement between Defendant and Claimant then under 7.3, the particulars fail to include “a copy of the contract or documents constituting the agreement”.


    b. 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 £1XX. This appears to be an added cost with no apparently no qualification and an attempt at double recovery, which the POFA Schedule 4 specifically disallows.


    b. 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.


    Non-disclosure of reasonable grounds or particulars for bringing a claim:


    14. SIP Parking Ltd are not the lawful occupier of the land. The Defendant has reasonable belief that they do not have the authority to issue charges on this land in their own name and that they have no rights to bring action regarding this claim.


    a. The Claimant is not the landowner and is merely an agent acting on behalf of the landowner and has failed to demonstrate their legal standing to form a contract.


    b. The Claimant is not the landowner and suffers no loss whatsoever as a result of a vehicle parking at the location in question


    c. The Claimant is put to proof that it has sufficient interest in the land or that there are specific terms in its contract to bring an action on its own behalf. As a third party agent, the Claimant may not pursue any charge


    d. The Particulars of Claim are deficient in establishing whether the claim is brought in trespass. If the driver on the date of the event was considered to be a trespasser if not allowed to park there, then only the landowner can pursue a case under the tort of trespass not this Claimant, and as the Supreme Court in the ParkingEye V Beavis (2015) [2015] UKSC 67 case confirmed, such a matter would be limited to the landowner themselves claiming for a nominal sum.


    15. The Particulars of Claim fail to fulfil CPR Part 16.4 because it does not include a statement of the facts on which the claimant relies, only referring to a Parking Charge Notice with no further description; it fails to establish a cause of action which would enable the Defendant to prepare a specific defence:


    16. 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.


    c) The Claimant has given no indication of the nature of the alleged charge in the Particulars of Claim. The Claimant has therefore disclosed no cause of action.


    d) 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. 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. The Particulars of Claim are incompetent in disclosing no cause of action.


    17. The Defendant invites the court to strike out or dismiss the claim under Rule 3.4(2)(a) of PRACTICE DIRECTION 3A as having not set out a concise statement of the nature of the claim or disclosed reasonable grounds or particulars for bringing a claim (Part 16.4(1)(a) and PRACTICE DIRECTION 16 paragraphs 3.1-3.8). In C3GF84Y (Mason, Plymouth County Court), the judge struck out the claim brought by KBT Cornwall Ltd as Gladstones Solicitors had not submitted proper Particulars of Claim, and similar reasons were cited by District Judge Cross of St Albans County Court on 20/09/16, where another relevant poorly pleaded private parking charge claim by Gladstones was struck out without a hearing due to their ‘roboclaim’ particulars being incoherent, failing to comply with CPR16.4, and ''providing no facts that could give rise to any apparent claim in law''. The Practice Direction also sets out the following example which is analogous to this claim: ‘those which set out no facts indicating what the claim is about, for example ‘Money owed £5000’.’


    18. The Defendant 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. This 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. These findings indicate a conflict of interest. Such an incestuous relationship is incapable of providing any fair means for motorists to challenge parking charges, as well as potentially breaching the Solicitors Regulation Authority Code of Conduct.


    19. The Claimant’s solicitors are known to be a serial issuer of generic claims similar to this one, with no due diligence, no scrutiny of details nor even checking for a true cause of action. Her Majesty's Courts and Tribunals Service have identified over one thousand similar poorly produced claims and the solicitors conduct in many of these cases is believed to be currently the subject of an active investigation by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.


    20. The Defendant believes the terms for such conduct is ‘roboclaims’ which is against the public interest, demonstrates a disregard for the dignity of the court and is unfair on unrepresented consumers. The Defendant has reason to believe that this is a claim that will proceed without any facts or evidence supplied until the last possible minute, to their significant detriment as an unrepresented Defendant.


    21. The Defendant respectfully suggests that parking companies using the small claims track as a form of aggressive, automated debt collection is not something the Courts should be seen to support.


    22. The Defendant denies the claim in its entirety voiding any liability to the claimant for all amounts due to the aforementioned reasons. It is submitted that the conduct of the Claimant is wholly unreasonable and vexatious.


    23. The Defendant invites the court to dismiss this claim out as it is in breach of pre court protocols in relation to the particulars of claim under Practice Direction 16, set out by the Ministry of Justice and also Civil Procedure Rules (CPR) under 16.4 and to allow such Defendant’s costs as are permissible under Civil Procedure Rule 27.14.


    I believe the facts stated in this Defence Statement are true.
    • Redx
    • By Redx 6th Sep 17, 4:51 PM
    • 16,567 Posts
    • 20,719 Thanks
    Redx
    • #6
    • 6th Sep 17, 4:51 PM
    • #6
    • 6th Sep 17, 4:51 PM
    on a skim read it seems ok (but I am not judging the accuracy or content as such)

    as for when you submit it, nothing is done on the MCOL website

    you save it as a pdf , you PRINT IT , you SIGN and DATE IT at the bottom , THEN you SCAN it , you save the scan as a pdf , you attach the scanned PDF to an email and email it with name and MCOL REF in the email header, commenting SEE ATTACHED APPEAL and add name , address and claim ref as well, to the CCBC email address in Northampton
    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
    • Parker20
    • By Parker20 6th Sep 17, 4:56 PM
    • 4 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    Parker20
    • #7
    • 6th Sep 17, 4:56 PM
    • #7
    • 6th Sep 17, 4:56 PM
    Hi Redx, thanks for clearing that up. I shall keep you updated, thanks.
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