IMPORTANT: Please make sure your posts do not contain any personally identifiable information (both your own and that of others). When uploading images, please take care that you have redacted all personal information including QR codes, number plates and reference numbers.

DCBLegal - McDonalds Birstall, Leeds. Letter before action?

wolfycat786
wolfycat786 Posts: 12
First Post First Anniversary Name Dropper Photogenic
Forumite
edited 8 October 2023 at 8:00PM in Parking tickets, fines & parking
Hi all,

I'll try and summarise the order of events concisely. The registered keeper:

- 4th Feb '23, Overstayed at McDonalds car park in Leeds, Birstall (around the corner from Tim Hortons/Showcase) by 17 minutes. No purchase was made at the time. This was at midnight, so naturally dark. Don't recall seeing any signs but potentially were there. UKPC parking operator.

- 8th Feb '23 (dated), Received a PCN for £50. Appealed this right away with the wording in the newbies thread.

- 15th Mar '23 (dated), Received a letter from UKPC asking the registered keeper to confirm full name, address of the driver to appeals department however wording of the letter seemed clear that there was no intention to consider. Typical patronising language of checking for signs when entering a parking area as one would when driving on motorway. Ignored.

- 6th Apr '23 (dated), Received a letter from UKPC saying as no information has been received as part of the 'appeal' to either pay the £50 or the £100 at POPLA. Ignored.

- Between Apr - Sept - The 'debt' was passed to Debt Recovery Plus (DRP) and DCB Legal with subsequent letters chasing the 'debt' and threatening legal action. As per the newbie thread, ignored all letters.

- 7th Oct '23 (received) - An envelope with a letter inside along with previous correspondence including my initial appeal and UKPC responses.. I don't remember responding on 22/09/2023 but in my frustration I may have online, doubling down saying I refuse to pay and inviting them to take me to court if they disagree.

"
We write in response to your correspondence received in our office dated 22/09/2023. We now respond to the same as follows.

The parking charge notice (PCN) was issued because the vehicle remained on private property in breach of the parking contract. The British Parking Association (BPA) approved signage clearly stated, "90 MINUTES MAXIMUM STAY". Your vehicle was recorded on the private property for 1 hour 47 minutes on 05/02/2023. Therefore, the PCN was issued correctly.

When parking on private land, the contractual terms of the site are set out on the signs. You are entering a contract and agreeing to the terms by parking and staying on site. Parking in breach of the terms as stipulated on the signage means you are then breaking the terms of the contract. As payment was not made, our client was entitled to instruct DCB Legal to pursue payment and is entitled to recover the costs of doing so. It would have been made clear in the terms and conditions set out in the signs that additional enforcement costs may be incurred in the event of non-payment.

Pursuing a legally owed debt is not harassment. You may wish to seek independent legal advice in this regard. Our client pursuing this matter through the Small Claims Court is the correct course of action.

You now have 30 days from the date of this letter to make payment of £170.00. Failure to make payment will result in a Claim being issued against you without any further reference.

You must quote the correct case reference (Case Reference Redacted) when making payment. If you do not, we may be unable to correctly allocate the payment. If further action is taken by us as a result of an Incorrect reference being quoted, you will be liable for any further fees or costs incurred."

The envelope includes a scan of the sign, supposedly on the location.

Just wanted to clarify, does this seem like they're getting ready to take me to court? Can I hopefully expect DCBLegal to follow this pattern? 
https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/discussion/6377263/dcb-legal-record-of-private-parking-court-claim-discontinuations/p1

Is this just another letter I can ignore as another threat? Just wanted to double check with you lovely people. Thank you in advance for all the guidance you've provided to many people so far.

Comments

  • KeithP
    KeithP Posts: 37,113
    Name Dropper First Post First Anniversary
    Forumite
    To me, that looks very much like a Letter of Claim.

    The first few paragraphs of the second post in the NEWBIES thread explains how to react upon receipt of a Letter of Claim.
  • Thanks Keith. Lengthy read. I've sent the SAR to UKPC and informed DCB Legal. I can't forsee getting through to anybody at McDonalds in Birstall regarding a complaint about this. Will see what happens next and if I get a letter, we do the dance.
  • Coupon-mad
    Coupon-mad Posts: 129,425
    Name Dropper First Post Photogenic First Anniversary
    Forumite
    The bit about LBC stage is a tiny read.
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT (except N.Ireland).
    CLICK at the top of this/any page where it says:
    Forum Home»Motoring»Parking Tickets Fines & Parking - read the NEWBIES THREAD
  • If it is a Letter of Claim, it must include all the annexe documents/forms (that you do not fill in) as per the PAP:

    https://www.justice.gov.uk/courts/procedure-rules/civil/pdf/protocols/debt-pap.pdf

    Did it include all those additional documents/forms? I note that you have sent a SAR to UKPC which, unfortunately, should not be done when dealing with DCB Legal claims, at least until after a claim is received. However, you are correct in that this is just another case that will probably end up being discontinued if you follow all the advice as per the Newbies/FAQ thread.
  • wolfycat786
    wolfycat786 Posts: 12
    First Post First Anniversary Name Dropper Photogenic
    Forumite
    Back again. Thanks all for the help so far.

    Looks like a Claim Form has arrived today. 

    Issue date: 5th Feb 2024
    DCB Legal

    Amount claimed: £183.32
    Court fee: £35
    Legal rep costs: £50
    Total: £268.32

    Original PCN (plus damages) was £170 + 8% per annum in interest.

    It includes a 'response pack' (acknowledgement of service), an  admission form and defence/counterclaim form.

    I've been reading through the Newbie thread (2nd post) and getting a bit turned around (perhaps slightly panicked) as to how I should respond at this point. 

    Is this what I should be looking to do next? https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/discussion/6108153/suggested-template-defence-to-adapt-for-all-parking-charge-cases-where-they-add-false-admin-costs/p1
  • KeithP
    KeithP Posts: 37,113
    Name Dropper First Post First Anniversary
    Forumite
    Looks like a Claim Form has arrived today. 
    Issue date: 5th Feb 2024

    With a Claim Issue Date of 5th February, you have until Monday 26th February to file an Acknowledgment of Service.  Do not file an Acknowledgment of Service before 10th February, but otherwise there is nothing to be gained by delaying it. 
    To file an Acknowledgment of Service, follow the guidance in the Dropbox file linked from the second post in the NEWBIES thread.

    Having filed an Acknowledgment of Service in a timely manner, you have until 4pm on Monday 11th March 2024 to file your Defence.
    That's over four weeks away. Plenty of time to produce a Defence, but please don't leave it to the last minute.
    To create a Defence, and then file a Defence by email, look again at the second post on the NEWBIES thread - immediately following where you found the Acknowledgment of Service guidance.
    Don't miss the deadline for filing an Acknowledgment of Service, nor that for filing a Defence.

    Do not try and file a Defence via the MoneyClaimOnline website. Once an Acknowledgment of Service has been filed, the MCOL website should be treated as 'read only'.
  • wolfycat786
    wolfycat786 Posts: 12
    First Post First Anniversary Name Dropper Photogenic
    Forumite
    Understood. Thank you KeithP, especially for putting so succinctly and clearly.

    I'll post a draft of my defence here some time next week. To be honest with you the only thing I can think at the time is that it was a very dimly lit winter night and I definitely don't remember seeing the signs but I'm sure they're there. My friend and I used the McDonalds bathrooms and that was all. I'll use the newbie thread to help me with my defence. 
  • Coupon-mad
    Coupon-mad Posts: 129,425
    Name Dropper First Post Photogenic First Anniversary
    Forumite
    Dark unlit signs is a solid basis of defence. Be confident!
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT (except N.Ireland).
    CLICK at the top of this/any page where it says:
    Forum Home»Motoring»Parking Tickets Fines & Parking - read the NEWBIES THREAD
  • Le_Kirk
    Le_Kirk Posts: 21,951
    First Anniversary First Post Photogenic Name Dropper
    Forumite
    Understood. Thank you KeithP, especially for putting so succinctly and clearly.

    I'll post a draft of my defence here some time next week. To be honest with you the only thing I can think at the time is that it was a very dimly lit winter night and I definitely don't remember seeing the signs but I'm sure they're there. My friend and I used the McDonalds bathrooms and that was all. I'll use the newbie thread to help me with my defence. 
    But just the paragraphs you add to or change from the standard defence template, we don't need to see it all.
Meet your Ambassadors

Categories

  • All Categories
  • 341.8K Banking & Borrowing
  • 249.7K Reduce Debt & Boost Income
  • 449.2K Spending & Discounts
  • 233.9K Work, Benefits & Business
  • 606.1K Mortgages, Homes & Bills
  • 172.5K Life & Family
  • 246.8K Travel & Transport
  • 1.5M Hobbies & Leisure
  • 15.8K Discuss & Feedback
  • 15.1K Coronavirus Support Boards