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DCB Legal - question on SAR

Hi All

I have read as much of the forum as I can so sorry if I've failed to register any simple instructions. None of this is special from what I can see, I just have a question if anyone could help.

Background (probably not necessary but just in case, as there is some comms history with DCB):

I/we stopped at a RoadChef services in 2021 and apparently overstayed. We missed the PCN and therefore appeal period due to being (clears throat) "without fixed abode" for a period.

In August last year we heard from DCB Limited on behalf of CP Plus who wanted £170 (as usual). 

I did read the forums here but my other half thought it would be less stressful to settle. I did explain what I had read here, but we had a lot on our plate at the time so I agreed to email them, mention that we'd missed the PCN and ask if we could pay in instalments, the unsurprising response from DCB Limited was simply, cough up.

I decided to wait and see what happened next. 

An LOC from DCB Legal has now arrived in the same format as all those shared on the forum recently. I intend to defend if the claim comes through.  

Question is only - is an SAR still relevant/useful at this stage? Obviously I don't have the PCN, pictures, times etc.

The reason I ask is that section 2 of the newbie sticky mentions sending a firm rebuttal but doesn't mention making an SAR at LOC stage, if I have read it correctly, but forum helpers in more recent threads e.g. https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/discussion/6432246/dcb-legal-letter-of-claim/p2 have instructed it.

Thanks in advance

Comments

  • Fruitcake
    Fruitcake Posts: 58,011
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    The new advice is not to send an SAR until after a claim has arrived. If the PoC on the claim form are inadequate, then the CEL v Chan case can be used as part of the defence. What you don't want to do is tip the claimant's hand by asking for an SAR, the results of which might prevent the use of the Chan case.
    I married my cousin. I had to...
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  • Thank you Fruitcake, I will look into that case.
  • Coupon-mad
    Coupon-mad Posts: 129,479
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    edited 5 February at 9:51PM

    I agreed to email them, mention that we'd missed the PCN and ask if we could pay in instalments, the unsurprising response from DCB Limited was simply, cough up.
    No SAR.

    Please show us that email exchange. Cover email addresses, PCN refs and all names/data.  Interesting that no payment plan was offered and I would like to see that. Useful evidence that you OFFERED a payment plan and they refused.

    DON'T free type it, or it's just hearsay.

    Please can we see the actual emails between you & DCB, redacted.  Screenshots with black redactions should do it.

    In your reply to the LBC you can include the fact that the BPA CoP now says that a fresh PCN must be sent, when it is apparent that the PCN was not received.  Tell DCB Legal that you'll complain to the BPA, if CP Plus fail to adhere to the BPA CoP clause (Feb 2024 Code) and pause debt recovery for service of the PCN at the original rate and with appeal offered.
    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

  • I agreed to email them, mention that we'd missed the PCN and ask if we could pay in instalments, the unsurprising response from DCB Limited was simply, cough up.
    No SAR.

    Please show us that email exchange. Cover email addresses, PCN refs and all names/data.  Interesting that no payment plan was offered and I would like to see that. Useful evidence that you OFFERED a payment plan and they refused.

    DON'T free type it, or it's just hearsay.

    Please can we see the actual emails between you & DCB, redacted.  Screenshots with black redactions should do it.

    In your reply to the LBC you can include the fact that the BPA CoP now says that a fresh PCN must be sent, when it is apparent that the PCN was not received.  Tell DCB Legal that you'll complain to the BPA, if CP Plus fail to adhere to the BPA CoP clause (Feb 2024 Code) and pause debt recovery for service of the PCN at the original rate and with appeal offered.
    Hi Coupon-mad, thanks so much for the reply & advice - sorry I missed your post

    I didn't do so well with the black boxes so I copied and pasted and obscured the relevant bits, hope this works

    No awareness of what is on the PCN so far,

    -------

    Dear XXXXXX XXXXXXXX,

    We write further to your recent correspondence.

    We are instructed by our client to recover the outstanding balance in relation to the Parking Charge Notice (PCN) issued to you.

    Please note, the timeframe in which to appeal the PCN expired prior to our instruction. You were given the opportunity to lodge an appeal when the initial Notice was issued to you.

    As the person named by our client, you remain liable for the outstanding balance.

    You can pay easily by using Scan to Pay, simply scan the QR code located on our letters with your phone and pay by card. You can also pay by card on the secure payment page on the website 24 hours a day www.dcbltd.com/pay-online/.

    Alternatively, use our 24/7 Payment line: 01302 897022— Office number: 0203 434 0432 Office opening hours: Monday—Friday 8am—5pm.

    Bank Transfer
    Sort Code: 20-24-09
    Account Number: XXXXXXXX

    Please quote your DCBL reference number as the payment reference.

    Please note, should the balance remain unpaid, it would be the decision of our client on how they choose to proceed.


    Kind Regards,


    XXXXX XXXXXX

     -------------------------------------------------------------

    From: XXXXXX XXXXXXXX <[email protected]>
    Sent: Thursday, September X, 202X XXXXX PM
    To: Collections <[email protected]>
    Subject: Reference number XXXXXXXXXX
     
    XXXXXXXXXX
    XXXXXXX
    XXXXXXX
    XXXXXXX

    Reference number XXXXXX
    Parking contravention XXXX/202X Roadchef XXXXXXX


    Hi DCBL,

    I have received notice of debt recovery for the above unpaid parking charge. I was not aware of this parking charge. I would like to request if you would be amenable to me paying the original parking charge amount. I am currently in financial difficulties due to financial dependents through illness and would propose to pay this in 3 instalments. My priority bills are up to date. If so, can you let me know what the amount was and how to make the payments.

    XXXXXXXXX XXXXXXX

    -----------------------------------------------------

  • Coupon-mad
    Coupon-mad Posts: 129,479
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    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
  • Wow..  😂 

    Thanks for the link. I will keep you updated, if that's OK.
  • cyberbob0997
    cyberbob0997 Posts: 6
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    OK, I emailed them 11 days before the 30 day deadline, using the template from Newbies plus Coupon-mad's very helpful suggestions above. 

    I thought I'd done a pretty good job with the email but one omission on my part, I signed off with just my first name. I guess I was thinking they are the same firm as who I'd emailed previously because they are based at the same address, forgetting that they aren't, being a solicitors firm as opposed to DC Bailiffs who sent the first letter and email above.

    1 day after the 30-day period (which was a couple of days ago) I received an email back saying they would not discuss it over email unless I confirmed my full name. I suspect this is to try and kick it over the 30 day period, if so and I lose ground as a result that's my fault but would anyone have any thoughts on this?  

    I haven't responded yet


  • Coupon-mad
    Coupon-mad Posts: 129,479
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    Respond but stop starting letters with 'Hi' - you do know the proper salutation and sign off for a solicitor?
    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
  • cyberbob0997
    cyberbob0997 Posts: 6
    First Post
    Forumite
    Thank you, I will.

    Apparently it's "Dear Sirs" but I read elsewhere this can be outdated, so I put "Dear DCB Legal" to the solicitor.  Guessing I should have stuck with Sirs as per the template. Sign off was "yours faithfully" as per template
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