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DCB Legal Claim letter

Hi All, first post, be kind :) 

I have just received a claim letter from DCB Legal for a sum of £326 for overstaying in a moto services on the M4 (Delamare west) 5 years ago. I had just come back from Morocco after being very ill & on a 5hr long drive home through the middle of the night, i was absolutely shattered so stopped at a services & fell asleep. Woke up went into moto to get a coffee & then started the drive back again. I have been getting threat letters from all their different 'legal' teams for years but felt this was so unethical given the 'tiredness can kill' & i was quite frankly almost nodding off before pulled in. Upon finding this seems what great community i find myself writing this post for some help.

The civil national Claim letter has a date of 06/12/23 (i have only just received this today). I am out of the country from this Saturday & wont be back in the country till 26/12/23 so am a little bit nervous of what to do for this with missing any chance or dates to respond & or pay (i know the latter is some what frowned upon here). But the thought of a CCJ is rather unappealing. I have read through numerous posts & newbies thread however as time is of the essence thought to start this thread to ask the experts for help. 

Do i need to fill out the Dispute form & defence section using the template? 

Thanks 

SL


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Comments

  • Coupon-mad
    Coupon-mad Posts: 129,359
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    edited 12 December 2023 at 1:39PM
    You don't fill out any forms.

    Please see the second post of the NEWBIES thread.

    Do the AOS as shown in the NEWBIES thread then that buys you the time so that you can then do the Defence in the week after your return.

    You will not get a CCJ as long as you do the AOS then defend in time. And you won't pay a penny.
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT (except N.Ireland).
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    Forum Home»Motoring»Parking Tickets Fines & Parking - read the NEWBIES THREAD
  • KeithP
    KeithP Posts: 37,104
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    The civil national Claim letter has a date of 06/12/23 (i have only just received this today). I am out of the country from this Saturday & wont be back in the country till 26/12/23...
    With a Claim Issue Date of 6th December, you have until Thursday 28th December to file an Acknowledgment of Service but 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. Suggest you file an Acknowledgment of Service before you go away - should only take a few minutes.
    Having filed an Acknowledgment of Service in a timely manner, you have until 4pm on Monday 8th January 2024 to file your Defence.
    That's almost 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'.
  • Hi, filed the AoS etc & i am now writing out my defence letter, some help on this would be great, i have trawled through many posts here & have found one which has won with a similar situation to myself, although many others go down a much more vague/legal speak route. Please see below first points in letter which on newbies thread state to amend. 

    Also do i need to copy & paste in the photos of which i have seen on others defence letters? i.e Mr Yamba, Wakefield etc?


    The facts known to the Defendant:

     

    2. It is admitted that the Defendant was the registered keeper and driver of the vehicle in question.

    3. On the material date the defendant was returning home from being away in Morocco where he had fallen ill from an allergic reaction to food. Whilst driving back from London Gatwick to 'hometown' approximately 4 hour drive, the defendant felt dangerously tired so stopped at the nearest services 'xretail park' to rest in accordance with the government's Tiredness Kills and Take a Break campaign, warning motorists not to drive when tired.

    4. The defendant pulled into a parking bay close to the entrance of the main building at the back of the carpark, went inside for a coffee, returned to the car and fell asleep for a short while to allow the caffeine to stimulate. On waking, the defendant continued his journey home.

    5. No signs with parking contractual terms limiting the time a motorist should rest when tired were present where the defendant's vehicle was parked, and the claimant is put to strict proof that the contrary is true.

    6. The defendant was surprised later to receive a parking charge notice (PCN) from a company called CP Plus, but did not respond because they believed this to be a scam since forcing a tired motorist to drive whilst tired directly contradicted the Department for Transport's “THINK! Fatigue” driving tiredness campaign encourage motorists to “take breaks and rest rather than drive when tired” and to “Make time for a break”.

    7. The facts in this defence come from the Defendant's own knowledge and honest belief.  Conversely, the Claimant sets out a cut-and-paste incoherent and sparse statement of case. The POC appear to be in breach of CPR 16.4, 16PD3 and 16PD7, and fail to "state all facts necessary for the purpose of formulating a complete cause of action". The Defendant is unable, on the basis of the POC, to understand with certainty what case, allegation(s) and what heads of cost are being pursued, making it difficult to respond. However, the vehicle is recognised and it is admitted that the Defendant was the registered keeper and driver.

    8. Parking terms & conditions (whatever they may be because the POC fail to specify the alleged breach) were not stated on the basic welcome signs at the entry to the XRetail Park, nor were there adequately prominent signs or terms communicated near many of the spaces inside the car park.


    Any help would be greatly appreciated. 

    Thanks 

    Ludes
  • Coupon-mad
    Coupon-mad Posts: 129,359
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    Looks good but show us the POC.
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT (except N.Ireland).
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  • Looks good but show us the POC.
    I take it you mean this?

    Thanks

    L



  • Coupon-mad
    Coupon-mad Posts: 129,359
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    OK so clearly you use the hharry version linked in the Template Defence third paragraph.
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT (except N.Ireland).
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  • SendLudes911
    SendLudes911 Posts: 8
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    Thanks @Coupon-mad Does this look better?


    1.  The Defendant denies that the Claimant is entitled to relief in the sum claimed, or at all.  It is denied that any conduct by the driver was in breach of any term.  Further, it is denied that this Claimant (understood to have a bare licence as agents) has standing to sue or form contracts in their own name. Liability is denied, whether or not the Claimant is claiming 'keeper liability', which is unclear from the boilerplate text in the Particulars of Claim ('the POC').

     

    The facts known to the Defendant:

    2. The Defendant draws to the attention of the allocating Judge that there is now a persuasive Appeal judgment to support striking out the claim (in these exact circumstances of typically poorly pleaded private parking claims, and the extant PoC seen here are far worse than the one seen on Appeal).  The Defendant believes that dismissing this meritless claim is the correct course, with the Overriding Objective in mind.  Bulk litigators (legal firms) should know better than to make little or no attempt to comply with the Practice Direction.  By continuing to plead cases with generic auto-fill unspecific wording, private parking firms should not be surprised when courts strike out their claims based in the following persuasive authority.

    3. A recent persuasive appeal judgment in Civil Enforcement Limited v Chan (Ref. E7GM9W44) would indicate the POC fails to comply with Civil Procedure Rule 16.4(1)(e) and Practice Direction Part 16.7.5. On the 15th August 2023, in the cited case, HHJ Murch held that 'the particulars of the claim as filed and served did not set out the conduct which amounted to the breach in reliance upon which the claimant would be able to bring a claim for breach of contract'. The same is true in this case and in view of the Chan judgment (transcript below) the Court should strike out the claim, using its powers pursuant to CPR 3.4. 

     

    'insert MING TAK CHAN Image'


    4. The facts in this defence come from the Defendant's own knowledge and honest belief.  Conversely, the Claimant sets out a cut-and-paste incoherent and sparse statement of case. The POC appear to be in breach of CPR 16.4, 16PD3 and 16PD7, and fail to "state all facts necessary for the purpose of formulating a complete cause of action". The Defendant is unable, on the basis of the POC, to understand with certainty what case, allegation(s) and what heads of cost are being pursued, making it difficult to respond. However, the vehicle is recognised and it is admitted that the Defendant was the registered keeper and driver.

     

    5. On the material date the defendant was returning home from being away in Morocco where he had fallen ill from an allergic reaction to food. 
    Whilst driving back from London Gatwick to ;Home' approximately 4 hour drive, the defendant felt dangerously tired so stopped at 
    the nearest services 'X-RETAIL PARK’ to rest in accordance with the government's Tiredness Kills and Take a Break campaign, warning motorists not to drive when tired.

    The defendant pulled into a parking bay close to the entrance of the main building at the back of the carpark, went inside for a coffee, returned to the car and fell asleep for a short while to allow the caffeine to stimulate. On waking, the defendant continued his journey home.

    No signs with parking contractual terms limiting the time a motorist should rest when tired were present where the defendant's vehicle was parked, and the claimant is put to strict proof that the contrary is true.

    The defendant was surprised later to receive a parking charge notice (PCN) from a company called CP Plus, but did not respond because they believed this to be a scam since forcing a tired motorist to drive whilst tired directly contradicted the Department for Transport's “THINK! Fatigue” driving tiredness campaign encourage motorists to “take breaks and rest rather than drive when tired” and to “Make time for a break”.

    Parking terms & conditions (whatever they may be because the POC fail to specify the alleged breach) were not stated on the basic welcome signs at the entry to the XRetail Park, nor were there adequately prominent signs or terms communicated near many of the spaces inside the car park.

     

    6.  The Claimant will concede that no financial loss has arisen and that in order to impose an inflated parking charge, as well as proving a term was breached, there must be:

    (i). a strong 'legitimate interest' extending beyond mere compensation for loss, and

    (Ii). 'adequate notice' of the 'penalty clause' charge which, in the case of a car park, requires prominent signs and lines.

    5. The Defendant denies (i) or (ii) have been met. The charge imposed, in all the circumstances is a penalty, not saved by ParkingEye Ltd v Beavis [2015] UKSC67 ('the Beavis case'), which is fully distinguished.


    Exaggerated Claim and 'market failure' currently being addressed by UK Government

    6. The alleged 'core debt' from any parking charge cannot exceed £100 (the industry cap).  It is denied that any 'Debt Fees' or damages were actually paid or incurred.


    'Remainder of template unchanged ECT.'


    Thanks 


    Ludes

  • SendLudes911
    SendLudes911 Posts: 8
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    OK so clearly you use the hharry version linked in the Template Defence third paragraph.



    Did you have anymore thoughts on this before send?.

    Thanks
  • Coupon-mad
    Coupon-mad Posts: 129,359
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    All paragraphs need a number. The rest is good!
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT (except N.Ireland).
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  • SendLudes911
    SendLudes911 Posts: 8
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    All paragraphs need a number. The rest is good!
    Ok thanks, is it best to just condense Para 5 into one large paragraph then rather than separate?
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