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Defence Deadline Help Please

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking
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Familyguy28Familyguy28 Forumite
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edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking
Hi All,

I received a Claim Form for unpaid PCN's - The issue date was 26th July 2019 and I completed the Acknowledgement of Service on 9th August 2019 (14 days later)... Am I right in thinking tomorrow 23rd August 2019 is the deadline for the defence or do i add on 5 service days?

Please help me :(
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  • Coupon-madCoupon-mad Forumite
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    Add on 5 days.

    And please show us your draft defence and tell us about the PCN, the site, what happened, whether you appealed, etc.
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT (except N.Ireland).
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  • waamowaamo Forumite
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    Hi All,

    I received a Claim Form for unpaid PCN's - The issue date was 26th July 2019 and I completed the Acknowledgement of Service on 9th August 2019 (14 days later)... Am I right in thinking tomorrow 23rd August 2019 is the deadline for the defence or do i add on 5 service days?

    Please help me :(

    Have you constructed a defence? If so post it up here we may be able to help. It's last minute stuff but you never know.

    Hopefully KeithP will be along soon
    This space for hire.
  • KeithPKeithP Forumite
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    I received a Claim Form for unpaid PCN's - The issue date was 26th July 2019 and I completed the Acknowledgement of Service on 9th August 2019 (14 days later)... Am I right in thinking tomorrow 23rd August 2019 is the deadline for the defence or do i add on 5 service days?
    With a Claim Issue Date of 26th July, and having done the AoS in a timely manner, you have until 4pm on Wednesday 28th August 2019 to file your Defence.

    That's nearly a week away. Plenty of time to produce a Defence, but please don't leave it to the very last minute.


    When you are happy with the content, your Defence should be filed via email as suggested here:
      Print your Defence.
    1. Sign it and date it.
    2. Scan the signed document back in and save it as a pdf.
    3. Send that pdf as an email attachment to [email protected]
    4. Just put the claim number and the word Defence in the email title, and in the body of the email something like 'Please find my Defence attached'.
    5. Log into MCOL after a few days to see if the Claim is marked "defence received". If not chase the CCBC until it is.
    6. Do not be surprised to receive an early copy of the Claimant's Directions Questionnaire, they are just trying to keep you under pressure.
    7. Wait for your DQ from the CCBC, or download one from the internet, and then re-read post #2 of the NEWBIES FAQ sticky thread to find out exactly what to do with it.
  • Hi,

    Thank you both for getting back to me. The Claim is for two PCN's between 02/06/15 and 08/06/15.

    I am the registered keeper and my car was parked without a permit on a private carpark for housing which is located at the back of my house which I had a key to the gated car park. There are absolutely no markings on the floor indicating any parking spaces. The signage is unclear and small and had been erected one day shortly after the housing block changed hands. (And has not been renewed or replaced since).

    There are two PCN's which relate to this claim, on one occasion I was the driver and on the other I was not driving.

    There is a complex situation behind this which is why I have not been able to draft my defence as I don't know how best to explain the situation. In short, I had been given a key to the gate and permission to park in the carpark but do not have this in writing and am not able to prove this.

    I understand I have left this to the last minute and am unsure if i am able to prepare a strong defence at this stage. I have not responded to any correspondence from BW Legal or Premier Park and have only completed an Acknowledgement of Service (09.08.2019).

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you.
  • waamowaamo Forumite
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    Hi,

    Thank you both for getting back to me. The Claim is for two PCN's between 02/06/15 and 08/06/15.

    I am the registered keeper and my car was parked without a permit on a private carpark for housing which is located at the back of my house which I had a key to the gated car park. There are absolutely no markings on the floor indicating any parking spaces. The signage is unclear and small and had been erected one day shortly after the housing block changed hands. (And has not been renewed or replaced since).

    There are two PCN's which relate to this claim, on one occasion I was the driver and on the other I was not driving.

    There is a complex situation behind this which is why I have not been able to draft my defence as I don't know how best to explain the situation. In short, I had been given a key to the gate and permission to park in the carpark but do not have this in writing and am not able to prove this.

    I understand I have left this to the last minute and am unsure if i am able to prepare a strong defence at this stage. I have not responded to any correspondence from BW Legal or Premier Park and have only completed an Acknowledgement of Service (09.08.2019).

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you.

    Get a defence compiled quick!
    This space for hire.
  • KeithPKeithP Forumite
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    There are seventeen examples of winning Defences linked from post #2 of the NEWBIES thread. There's a link to that thread in my earlier post.

    Pay particular attention to the concise Defences by Bargepole that you'll find there and adjust one to fit your circumstances.
  • Coupon-madCoupon-mad Forumite
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    There is a complex situation behind this which is why I have not been able to draft my defence as I don't know how best to explain the situation. In short, I had been given a key to the gate and permission to park in the carpark but do not have this in writing and am not able to prove this.
    Yes you can. Your later WS can include among the evidence, a photo of the key fob and a site plan showing that this is at the back of your house. Then at the hearing you can show you have a key fob and if asked, say that a resident gave you the key and permission to park there (or whatever the situation is).

    Anyway no evidence is needed yet and clearly you can simply adapt the keyfob example defence from the NEWBIES thread, to suit. Might need some tweaking if your house is not actually within the car park site as such, because you can't argue primacy of contract as a resident.

    And you would also need to state that you do not believe that you were the driver for both parking events and put the Claimant to strict proof, and that in 2015 Premier Park failed to use the statutory wording in their NTKs to hold a registered keeper liable.

    Then copy the wording Johnersh wrote in his residential defence example about the POFA and how a keeper cannot be held liable outside of that law.
    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
  • Hi All,

    Many thanks for getting back to me so quickly, I really do appreciate it :)

    I had tweaked and saved the below defence previously but now I think it may be worth elaborating on the whole situation...

    Do you guys think it's worth mentioning the car was parked outside the fire exit to my house (not part of the carpark)? We had a loft conversion and a back door had to be added to our garden which leads out onto the private carpark. This was one of the fire regulations of the loft conversion and is one of the reasons why we had obtained a key to the gate and permission from the caretaker, landowner and residents to park there. As I cannot prove this in writing I chose to leave it out.

    The other complication to the situation is that my family owns a security installation business (I was employed by them at the time) they were renting one car parking space through the landowner and had paid yearly I believe. They had also carried our repairs/ replacement locks and keys and had even quoted for replacement gates on the carpark. Therefore, we were somewhat connected to them and had a good relationship with the residents and the caretaker at the time. My father passed away in 2013 and he was the person who initially dealt with the rental of the parking space, during this time my mum took a step back from the business and she did not continue to pay for the parking space (I believe it was paid up until 2014 sometime).

    When we received the PCN's we wrote (emailed) to the new landowner and called them (they had changed hands) to try and reinstate our parking space in light of the working relationship we previously had. They denied this on the basis that we had not paid for around a year and they had now taken over the carpark and building and advised the spaces were required for residents - Even though no one else used to park there other than one car!

    I appreciate this situation is complex and that is why I have left it out of the defence so far, please advise if you think it its worth mentioning in further detail?



    Alternatively, please advise me if I am along the right lines with the below?

    Thank you all again :)


    IN THE COUNTY COURT

    CLAIM No: xxxxxxxxxx

    BETWEEN:

    PREMIER PARK LIMITED (Claimant)

    -and-

    xxxxxxxxxxxx (Defendant)

    1. The Defendant denies that the Claimant is entitled to relief in the sum claimed, or at all.

    2. The facts are that the vehicle, registration XXXX, of which the Defendant is the registered keeper, was parked on the material date at xxxxxxx.

    3. The Particulars of Claim state that they believe the Defendant was the registered keeper and/or the driver of the vehicle. These assertions indicate that the Claimant has failed to identify a Cause of Action, and is simply offering a menu of choices. As such, the Claim fails to comply with Civil Procedure Rule 16.4, or with Civil Practice Direction 16, paras. 7.3 to 7.5.

    4. The terms on the Claimant’s signage are also displayed in a font that is too small to be read from a passing vehicle, and in such a position that anyone attempting to read the tiny font would be unable to do so easily. The signs are not lit and are not visible from all parking bays (there are no parking bays). It is, therefore denied that the Claimant’s signage is capable of creating a legally binding contract. The signs are also completely invisible at night due to poor lighting.

    5. In addition it is denied that the signs at this location met the mandatory test of transparency of terms that are ‘bound to be seen’ as set out within the Consumer Rights Act 2015. For a driver any terms relating to a parking contract would have had to have been extremely clear in all places within the site, in very large letters to ensure all drivers were ‘bound to see’ the terms.

    6. Since the material date the signs have not been maintained or updated and have fallen into a state of disrepair.

    7. It is denied that there was agreement to pay a parking charge.

    8. The Claimant is put to strict proof that it has sufficient proprietary interest in the land, or that it has the necessary authorisation from the landowner to issue parking charge notices, and to pursue payment by means of litigation.

    9. The signage was erected without prior warning or notice in the period of May to June 2015. The Claimant failed to highlight this change of contract terms as demanded by British Parking Association Approved Operator Code of Practice (version 7 January 2018, Clause 18.10 ) "Where there is a change in the terms and conditions that materially affects the motorist then you must make these terms and conditions clear on your signage. Where such changes impose liability where none previously existed then you must consider a transition to allow regular visitors to the site to adjust and familiarise themselves with the changes. Best practice would be the installation of additional/temporary signage at the entrance and throughout the site making it clear that new terms and conditions apply. This will ensure such that regular visitors who may be familiar with the previous terms become aware of the new ones.”
    IPC Code of Practice (Part E, Schedule 1 - Signage. Changes in Operator’s Terms and Conditions) also states "Where there is any change in the terms and conditions materially affecting the motorist you may place additional (temporary) signage at the entrance making it clear that new terms and conditions/charges apply, such that regular visitors who may be familiar with the old terms do not inadvertently incur parking charges. This signage should be in addition to the signage ordinarily required."

    10. The Protection of Freedoms Act 2012, Schedule 4, at Section 4(5) states that the maximum sum that may be recovered from the keeper is the charge stated on the Notice to Keeper, in this case £200. The claim includes an additional £120, for 'contractual costs pursuant to the Contract and PCN terms and conditions, together with statutory interest' which appears to be an attempt at double recovery.

    11. Further to point 8 above I believe this to be an abuse of process from the claimant to issue a knowingly inflated claim for an additional sum which it is not entitled to recover.

    12. CPR 44.3 (2) states: ''Where the amount of costs is to be assessed on the standard basis, the court will –
    (a) only allow costs which are proportionate to the matters in issue. Costs which are disproportionate in amount may be disallowed or reduced even if they were reasonably or necessarily incurred; and
    (b) resolve any doubt which it may have as to whether costs were reasonably and proportionately incurred or were reasonable and proportionate in amount in favour of the paying party.

    13. Whilst quantified costs can be considered on a standard basis, this Claimant's purported costs are wholly disproportionate and do not stand up to scrutiny. In fact it is averred that the Claimant has not paid or incurred such damages/costs or 'legal fees' at all. Any debt collection letters were a standard feature of a low cost business model and are already counted within the parking charge itself.

    14. The Parking Eye Ltd v Beavis case is the authority for recovery of the parking charge itself and no more, since that sum (£85 in Beavis) was held to already incorporate the minor costs of an automated private parking business model. There are no losses or damages caused by this business model and the Supreme Court Judges held that a parking firm not in possession cannot plead any part of their case in damages. It is indisputable that the alleged 'parking charge' itself is a sum which the Supreme Court found is already inflated to more than comfortably cover the cost of all letters.

    15. According to Ladak v DRC Locums UKEAT/0488/13/LA a Claimant can only recover the direct and provable costs of the time spent preparing the claim in a legal capacity, not any administration costs allegedly incurred by already remunerated administrative staff.

    16. The Protection of Freedoms Act 2012, Schedule 4 (POFA) makes it clear that the will of Parliament regarding parking on private land is that the only sum potentially able to be recovered is the sum in any compliant 'Notice to Keeper' (and the ceiling for a 'parking charge', as set by the Trade Bodies and the DVLA, is £100). This also depends upon the Claimant fully complying with the statute, including 'adequate notice' of the parking charge and prescribed documents served in time/with mandatory wording. It is submitted the claimant has failed on all counts and the Claimant is well aware their artificially inflated claim, as pleaded, constitutes double recovery.

    17. Judges have disallowed all added parking firm 'costs' in County courts up and down the Country. In Claim number F0DP201T on 10th June 2019, District Judge Taylor sitting at the County Court at Southampton, echoed an earlier General Judgment or Order of DJ Grand, who on 21st February 2019 sitting at the Newport (IOW) County Court, had struck out a parking firm claim. One was a BPA member serial Claimant (Britannia, using BW Legal's robo-claim model) and one an IPC member serial Claimant (UKCPM, using Gladstones' robo-claim model) yet the Order was identical in striking out both claims without a hearing: District Judge Taylor stated "IT IS ORDERED THAT The claim is struck out as an abuse of process.” The claim contains a substantial charge additional to the parking charge which it is alleged the Defendant contracted to pay. This additional charge is not recoverable under the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012, Schedule 4 nor with reference to the judgment in ParkingEye v Beavis. It is an abuse of process from the Claimant to issue a knowingly inflated claim for an additional sum which it is not entitled to recover. This order has been made by the court of its own initiative without a hearing pursuant to CPR Rule 3.3(4) of the Civil Procedure Rules 1998…"

    18. There are several options available within the Courts' case management powers to prevent vexatious litigants pursuing a wide range of individuals for matters which are near-identical, with meritless claims and artificially inflated costs. The Defendant is of the view that private parking firms operate as vexatious litigants and that relief from sanctions should be refused.

    19. The Court is invited to make an Order of its own initiative, dismissing this claim in its entirety and to allow such Defendant's costs as are permissible under Civil Procedure Rule 27.14 on the indemnity basis, taking judicial note of the wholly unreasonable conduct of this Claimant, not least due to the abuse of process in repeatedly attempting to claim fanciful costs which they are not entitled to recover.

    20. In summary, the Claimant's particulars disclose no legal basis for the sum claimed and it is the Defendant's position that the poorly pleaded claim discloses no cause of action and no liability in law for any sum at all. The Claimant's vexatious conduct from the outset has been intimidating, misleading and indeed mendacious in terms of the added costs alleged. It is the Defendant's position that the claim discloses no cause of action, is without merit, and has no real prospect of success. Accordingly, the Court is invited to strike out the claim of its own initiative, using its case management powers pursuant to CPR 3.4.

    I believe the facts contained in this Defence are true.
    Name
    Signature
    Date
  • RedxRedx Forumite
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    all the detail goes into the WS later in the process PLUS EXHIBITS and THE COSTS SCHEDULE too


    the defence should be legal points only, not the backstory, but do address the POC on the claim form, and query the added costs as abuse of process
    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
  • Coupon-madCoupon-mad Forumite
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    Do you guys think it's worth mentioning the car was parked outside the fire exit to my house (not part of the carpark)? We had a loft conversion and a back door had to be added to our garden which leads out onto the private carpark. This was one of the fire regulations of the loft conversion and is one of the reasons why we had obtained a key to the gate and permission from the caretaker, landowner and residents to park there. As I cannot prove this in writing I chose to leave it out.
    Add it near the start as you do not have to 'prove' everything you say, just be open & honest with these facts.

    It is the Claimant's case to prove, not for you to prove.

    You still need to add the words I suggested:
    And you would also need to state that you do not believe that you were the driver for both parking events and put the Claimant to strict proof, and that in 2015 Premier Park failed to use the statutory wording in their NTKs to hold a registered keeper liable.

    Then copy the wording Johnersh wrote in his residential defence example about the POFA and how a keeper cannot be held liable outside of that law.
    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
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