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VCS Small Claims Stage - Residential visitor

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  • aa92
    aa92 Posts: 55 Forumite
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    Just wondering if this is something I can pick on. 
    In the original particulars of claim VCS only mentioned that the vehicle was identified in [Name of the building]. They supply no address or any further information as to where this was. 
    Is this something that could be highlighted as being insufficient? Or is this moot. 
  • Coupon-mad
    Coupon-mad Posts: 135,077 Forumite
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    It is moot if you were driving and/or know where the car was, but is worth arguing if you are just the registered keeper and genuinely struggled to identify the location.
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  • aa92
    aa92 Posts: 55 Forumite
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    I have the email chain between the driver and the residential management company where he requests the permits and the price of them is clarified (he paid cash directly to them, no receipt). 
    One small problem is that in their email the residential company manager says "please make sure they [the permits] are filled in correctly". 
    Is it worth including this in the WS, given that caveat? 
  • Coupon-mad
    Coupon-mad Posts: 135,077 Forumite
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    edited 20 July 2022 at 10:39PM
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    I wouldn't. Just show the permit itself and state that the price for the permit was paid in cash to the residential management company.  Not to the Claimant.  No contract was formed with the Claimant, nor was there any relevant obligation or risk of paying an unconscionable £100 per day on top, prominently drawn to his attention (or at all).
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  • aa92
    aa92 Posts: 55 Forumite
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    Sequence of events:

    3.         The vehicle in question had been parked at X1 Aire following the application for and purchase of individual day permits covering the complete period that the vehicle was parked, in an allocated bay per the X1 Aire management directions.  These permits (exhibited AA-01) amounted to a cost of £50 which was paid to X1 Aire management.

    4.         The permits had been signed by the supplier and dated clearly to reflect the duration of parking. The vehicle was not parked for longer than the permits allowed.

    5.         Indeed, the vehicle remained in the allocated bay for the duration of the period parked, it did not exit/re-enter the car park at any such time from the beginning of the parking period until the very end. During this time the permits remained visible and this would have been clear to any individual monitoring the car park (exhibited AA-02).

    6.         The driver of the vehicle, upon return to the vehicle at the end of the parking period, identified multiple “parking charge notices” applied to the windscreen of the car. He contacted Vehicle Control Services Ltd (VCS) directly in order to appeal against these notices (exhibited AA-03), however VCS gave no reasonable explanation to dismiss this appeal.

    Keeper liability and Protections of Freedoms Act (2012) (PoFA):

    7.         It is denied that I was the driver of the vehicle during this parking period in question. Despite an initial attempt from the driver to make VCS aware that he had use of the vehicle, VCS continued to pursue me for recovery of their claimed charge.

    8.         On XXXX, I wrote to VCS explaining, in no uncertain terms, who the driver was and providing them with the driver’s serviceable address. This letter has been acknowledged by VCS as it is provided in their own document bundle provided to the court and myself (exhibited AA-04).

    9.         Additionally, in this letter, it was made clear to VCS that my own serviceable address had been updated, and they were provided with a new address. Despite clarifying who the driver was, VCS continued to pursue me, particularly by sending correspondence to my previous address – therefore demonstrating they failed in their duty to acknowledge the content of this letter completely (exhibited AA-05).

    10.       VCS cite PoFA Schedule 4 in their letter dated XXXX (exhibited AA-05), claiming that I had not supplied them with the name and address of the driver of the vehicle, and that this gives them the right to recover this charge from me. This is categorically denied and it is misleading.

    11.       Notwithstanding the time limit imposed on the keeper by paragraphs 8(2)(f) and 9(2)(f) of PoFA Schedule 4 this right is taken away from VCS as they have been provided with the drivers name and serviceable address before they began proceedings i.e., before the XXXX, when the small claim form was issued by the court. This position has been clarified by SCS Law in their publication to private parking companies (exhibited AA-06).

    12.       Paragraph 5.1 of Practice Direction 7A states “proceedings are started when the court issues a claim form at the request of the claimant but where the claim form was received in the court office on a date earlier than the date on which it was issued by the court, the claim is “brought” for the purposes of the Limitation Act 1980 and any other relevant statute on that earlier date”.

    13.       VCS is therefore attempting to mislead myself and the court about failing to receive notification of the driver of the vehicle within a specified time frame, when in fact clear instruction was provided to them regards to this and upon their own request in their letter dated XXXX (exhibited AA-07), inviting me to provide details of the driver. Should it have been the case that the keeper could no longer provide the details of the driver after a period of 28 days from their notice to keeper, then their invitation for me to provide this detail in their letter of XXXX was misleading and false in itself.


    Just checking that this is appropriately worded and along the right lines? 

    In addition to the above I am currently trying to find Henderson V Henderson to properly word it in, this argument will go below the above. 

    The remaining arguments will be as per previous cases, including ParkingEye v Beavis, Quantum - abuse of process and aggressive debt collection, per Daiapolon's WS. 

  • Coupon-mad
    Coupon-mad Posts: 135,077 Forumite
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    Ok, good stuff.

    This position has been clarified by SCS Law in their publication to private parking companies (exhibited AA-06).
    It's not SCS Law's publication.

    Parking News is the monthly official publication by the British Parking Association. Read by tens of thousands of parking employees in the sector and clearly this is the proper legal interpretation ('before action commences' is obviously 'before action commences'!).  Not 28 days, not even in the anti-consumer 'cloud cuckoo land' alternative facts universe that PPCs live in.
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT (except N.Ireland).
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  • aa92
    aa92 Posts: 55 Forumite
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    Thank you cm. Any suggestions on how to word that part, I was struggling myself, and you've picked up on it too
  • Coupon-mad
    Coupon-mad Posts: 135,077 Forumite
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    Maybe use my description. but lose the sarky 'cloud cuckoo land' phrase!
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT (except N.Ireland).
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  • aa92
    aa92 Posts: 55 Forumite
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    edited 21 July 2022 at 10:36AM
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    Ok, good stuff.

    This position has been clarified by SCS Law in their publication to private parking companies (exhibited AA-06).
    Updated to:
    This position has been highlighted by SCS Law in their article explaining the proper legal position, published in Parking News (the British Parking Association's monthly official publication) to private parking companies (exhibited AA-06).
  • aa92
    aa92 Posts: 55 Forumite
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    Is it excessive to asks for costs as: 

    DEFENDANT’S SCHEDULE OF COSTS

    Ordinary Costs

    Loss of leave through attendance at court hearing:

    £95.00 

    Further costs for Claimant’s misconduct, pursuant to Civil Procedure Rule 44.11 

    Research, preparation and drafting documents:

    (20 hours at Litigant in Person rate of £19 per hour):           

    £380 (£20 x £19)

     

    TOTAL COSTS CLAIMED:

    £475 (£380 + £95)


    From my WS: 

    Fixed witness costs - ref PD 27, 7.3(1) and CPR 27.14

    32.       As a litigant-in-person I have had to learn relevant law from the ground up and spent a considerable time researching the law online, processing and preparing my defence plus this witness statement. I ask for my fixed witness costs. I am advised that costs on the Small Claims track are governed by rule 27.14 of the CPR and (unless a finding of 'wholly unreasonable conduct' is made against the Claimant) the Court may not order a party to pay another party’s costs, except fixed costs such as witness expenses which a party has reasonably incurred in travelling to and from the hearing (including fares and/or parking fees) plus the court may award a set amount allowable for loss of earnings or loss of leave.

    33.       The fixed sum for loss of earnings/loss of leave apply to any hearing format and are fixed costs at PD 27, 7.3(1) ''The amounts which a party may be ordered to pay under rule 27.14(3)(c) (loss of earnings) ... are: (1) for the loss of earnings or loss of leave of each party or witness due to attending a hearing ... a sum not exceeding £95 per day for each person.''


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