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  • FIRST POST
    • glosandy
    • By glosandy 5th Jul 18, 11:24 PM
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    glosandy
    Court Claim - has the Defendant blundered?
    • #1
    • 5th Jul 18, 11:24 PM
    Court Claim - has the Defendant blundered? 5th Jul 18 at 11:24 PM
    Appreciate any advice on this one - I am assisting with a Gladstones/PCM claim (thread "Court Claim - PCM (UK)/Gladstones") at Whittle Way, Gloucester. I have been approached by a friend who is in an identical situation.

    They ignored all previous correspondence until they received the court papers. Without advice, they have engaged with Gladstones to try and settle, offering to pay 60 instead of the claimed 240. Gladstones came back and said they'd accept 180 to halt proceedings. After looking at the arguments I've put forward, the friend now wants to go to court and argue!

    So, are their bridges burnt by the fact that they have engaged with Gladstones, or is it possible to say "thanks, but no thanks - now take me to court!"

    Many Thanks

    Glosandy
Page 1
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 6th Jul 18, 12:54 AM
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    Coupon-mad
    • #2
    • 6th Jul 18, 12:54 AM
    • #2
    • 6th Jul 18, 12:54 AM
    Their bridges are not burnt by attempts to settle.

    What might be a problem is if they haven't done the AOS on time?!
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT UNLESS IN SCOTLAND OR NI
    TWO Clicks needed Look up, top of the page:
    Main site>>Forums>Household & Travel>Motoring>Parking Tickets Fines & Parking - read the NEWBIES THREAD
    • glosandy
    • By glosandy 6th Jul 18, 7:46 AM
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    glosandy
    • #3
    • 6th Jul 18, 7:46 AM
    • #3
    • 6th Jul 18, 7:46 AM
    Thank you.. I think their AOS was done in time. Does the schedule still hold though i.e. 28 days from service of papers to submit the defence?
    • IamEmanresu
    • By IamEmanresu 6th Jul 18, 7:59 AM
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    IamEmanresu
    • #4
    • 6th Jul 18, 7:59 AM
    • #4
    • 6th Jul 18, 7:59 AM
    28 days from service of papers to submit the defence?
    Or 33 days from the date on the top right of the form. As the MCOL computer doesn't know when actual service happened, it is set to 33 days from the MCOL date.
    If you want to win - avoid losing first. Here are a few examples
    1. Failing to Acknowledge or Defend https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5760415
    2. Template defences that say nothing https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5818671&page=5#86
    3. Forgetting about the Witness Statement
    • waamo
    • By waamo 6th Jul 18, 8:18 AM
    • 4,670 Posts
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    waamo
    • #5
    • 6th Jul 18, 8:18 AM
    • #5
    • 6th Jul 18, 8:18 AM
    Courts will encourage negotiation before a hearing. It in no way looks bad to try and avoid a hearing.

    Confidential negotiations are a normal part of the process and the judge shouldn't draw any inference from them at all as paying is sometimes a purely commercial decision rather than indicating any admittance of wrongdoing.
    This space for hire.
    • The Deep
    • By The Deep 6th Jul 18, 8:38 AM
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    The Deep
    • #6
    • 6th Jul 18, 8:38 AM
    • #6
    • 6th Jul 18, 8:38 AM
    They are daft imo not to settle for 180. They are likely to get a lot less than that after paying the fees and hiring a solicitor. Gladstones are quite likely to muck it all up in court anyway, read some of these.

    https://www.bing.com/search?q=parking+prankster+you+ve+been+Gladstoned& form=EDNTHT&mkt=en-gb&httpsmsn=1&refig=3380346aa41547d8cdffa81baf7cfa 60&PC=ACTS&sp=-1&pq=parking+prankster+you+ve+been+gladstoned&sc =0-40&qs=n&sk=&cvid=3380346aa41547d8cdffa81baf7cfa60

    This is an entirely unregulated industry which is scamming the public with inflated claims for minor breaches of contracts for alleged parking offences, aided and abetted by a handful of low-rent solicitors.

    Parking Eye, CPM, Smart, and another company have already been named and shamed, as has Gladstones Solicitors, and BW Legal, (these two law firms take hundreds of these cases to court each year). They lose most of them, and have been reported to the regulatory authority by an M.P. for unprofessional conduct

    Hospital car parks and residential complex tickets have been especially mentioned.

    The problem has become so rampant that MPs have agreed to enact a Bill to regulate these scammers. Watch the video of the Second Reading in the HofC recently.

    http://parliamentlive.tv/event/index/2f0384f2-eba5-4fff-ab07-cf24b6a22918?in=12:49:41

    and complain in the most robust terms to your MP. With a fair wind they will be out of business by Christmas.
    You never know how far you can go until you go too far.
    • glosandy
    • By glosandy 6th Jul 18, 11:05 AM
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    glosandy
    • #7
    • 6th Jul 18, 11:05 AM
    • #7
    • 6th Jul 18, 11:05 AM
    Court papers are dated 8th June, so I make the defence submission by the 11th July.
    Gladstones say the offer stands until 12th July.
    The AOS was completed as "part defence" - does this have any bearing?
    I take it if we want to disregard Gladstones offer, we just submit the defence by MCOL before the 12th?
    Many thanks.
    • KeithP
    • By KeithP 6th Jul 18, 12:28 PM
    • 10,523 Posts
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    KeithP
    • #8
    • 6th Jul 18, 12:28 PM
    • #8
    • 6th Jul 18, 12:28 PM
    ...we just submit the defence by MCOL before the 12th?
    Originally posted by glosandy
    Do not submit the Defence via MCOL.
    Post #2 of the NEWBIES FAQ stick thread explains why.

    Your Defence must be filed by 4pm on Wednesday 11 July 2018.

    When you are happy with the content, your Defence should be filed via email as described here:

    1) print your Defence
    2) sign it
    3) scan the signed document back in and save it as a pdf.
    4) send that pdf as an email attachment to CCBCAQ@Justice.gov.uk
    5) 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'.
    .
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 6th Jul 18, 7:14 PM
    • 63,817 Posts
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    Coupon-mad
    • #9
    • 6th Jul 18, 7:14 PM
    • #9
    • 6th Jul 18, 7:14 PM
    So show us the draft defence, this weekend, and ignore Gladstones useless communication.
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT UNLESS IN SCOTLAND OR NI
    TWO Clicks needed Look up, top of the page:
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    • Johnersh
    • By Johnersh 6th Jul 18, 7:30 PM
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    Johnersh
    All court timescales will ALWAYS apply in accordance with the court rules. You can negotiate howsoever you wish, but it will not obviate the need for a defence or "buy time."

    In some cases short time extensions can be agreed. That requires exchange of emails/letter (confirmation in writing) and cannot be longer than 28 days.
    "The best advice I ever got was that knowledge is power and to keep reading."
    DISCLAIMER: I post thoughts as & when they occur. I don't advise. You are your own person and decision-maker. I'm unlikely to respond to DMs seeking personal advice. It's ill-advised & you lose the benefit of a group "take" on events.
    • glosandy
    • By glosandy 8th Jul 18, 12:08 AM
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    glosandy
    Draft defence posted below, pretty much a cut & paste from my other thread. Any feedback appreciated.
    • glosandy
    • By glosandy 8th Jul 18, 12:09 AM
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    glosandy
    IN THE COUNTY COURT BUSINESS CENTRE

    CLAIM No. XXXXXX

    Between:

    Parking Control Management (UK) Limited (Claimant)
    -and-
    XXXXXXX (Defendant)

    DEFENCE

    Preliminary

    1. The Defendant denies that the Claimant is entitled to relief claimed in the sum of 244.30, or at all, for the reasons stated in the following paragraphs.

    2. The Particulars of Claim lack specificity and are embarrassing. The Defendant is prejudiced and is unable to prepare a full and complete Defence. The Defendant reserves the right to seek from the Court permission to serve an Amended Defence should the Claimant add to or expand their Particulars at a later stage of these proceedings and/or to limit the Claimant only to the un-evidenced allegations in the Particulars.

    2.1 The Claimant!!!8217;s solicitors are known to be a serial issuer of generic claims similar to this one, with no due diligence, no scrutiny of details nor even checking for a true cause of action. HMCS have identified thousands of similar poorly pleaded claims.

    2.2 The Defendant believes the term for such conduct is !!!8216;robo-claims!!!8217; which is against the public interest, demonstrates a disregard for the dignity of the court and is unfair on unrepresented consumers. I have reason to believe that this is a claim that will proceed without any facts or evidence supplied until the last possible minute, to my significant detriment as an unrepresented Defendant.

    3. The Particulars of Claim fail to refer to the material terms of any contract and neither comply with the CPR 16 in respect of statements of case, nor the relevant practice direction in respect of claims formed by contract or conduct.

    3.1 The Defendant further notes the Claimant's failure to engage in pre-action correspondence in accordance with the pre-action protocol and with the express aim of avoiding contested litigation.

    Background

    4) It is admitted that the Defendant is/was the Registered Keeper of the vehicle in question on the material date.

    5) It is denied that any "parking charges or indemnity costs" (whatever they might be) as stated on the Particulars of claim are owed and any debt is denied in its entirety.

    6) It is denied that the Claimant has standing to bring any claim in the absence of a contract that expressly permits the Claimant to do so, in addition to merely undertaking 'parking management'. The Claimant has provided no proof of any such entitlement.

    7) The basis of the claim purports to be related to !!!8220;Parked Within a Restricted Area!!!8221; but the facts and images prove that this is not a restricted area at all.

    7.1) The vehicle in question was observed to be parked at Whittle Square, Gloucester. It is not challenged that the vehicle in question was parked in the area in front of the David Lloyd Health Club, Whittle Way, Gloucester. The vehicle was parked off the highway in an area commonly used for parking. The vehicle was in no way contravening any Highway Regulations, and was parked safely without obstructing or obscuring any vehicular traffic.

    7.2) The Claimant asserts that the vehicle was parked within a restricted area. The Defendant denies this, as there is no indication that the area in question is restricted. There are no signs adjacent to this area prohibiting parking.

    7.3) The Claimant asserts via the signage that !!!8220;Vehicles must park fully within the confines of a marked bay!!!8221;. The Defendant would argue that the parking area used by the vehicle is within a marked bay, in the context of the markings/definitions of parking bays at the front of the David Lloyd Health Club, Whittle Way, Gloucester.

    The area in question does not have any painted bay markings (save for one disabled marking in the end bay) to clearly and unequivocally define the parking bays, which would be the accepted and reasonable way to identify parking bays. The wider area in question is of modern construction using a wide range of hard landscaping materials such as block pavers, stone slabs and setts in a variety of colours and finishes. There are no raised kerbs to define restricted areas or deter parking. There are no road markings (single or double-yellow lines) that might even suggest that the area in question was not fit for parking.

    The area the car was parked on is of the same colour and construction as other !!!8220;official!!!8221; parking bays adjacent, therefore it would be reasonable to assume, in the absence of specific signage, that these areas are the same.

    8) It is noted by the Defendant that since the date of the alleged offence, subsequent alterations have been carried out to area in front of the David Lloyd Health Club, Whittle Way, Gloucester. This has included the addition of steel bollards to restrict vehicular access, the addition of painted markings to identify emergency access and the erection of signage to notify parking restrictions.

    8.1) It is further noted that none of these changes have been applied to the area in question, where the vehicle was parked. It is also noted that the area continues to be used as a parking bay on a regular basis by other patrons.

    On that basis, the Defendant argues that either:
    !!!8211; the area is considered to be, and is in common usage as, a parking bay
    !!!8211; or the Claimant is deliberately obscuring the fact it is not, in order to generate spurious Parking Charge Notices for monetary gain

    9) The Defendant avers that, as the vehicle was parked within an area that does not have restricted access, and is not identified as such, the vehicle was parked in compliance with the signage and as such no penalty can be levied by the Claimant.

    10) It is submitted that the conduct of the Claimant in pursuing this claim is wholly unreasonable and vexatious. As such, the Defendant is keeping careful note of all wasted time/costs in dealing with this matter and should the case continue to trial (or in the event of the Claimant filing a Notice of Discontinuance) the Defendant will seek further costs, pursuant to Civil Procedure Rule 27.14(2)(g).

    11) The Defendant respectfully suggests that parking companies using the small claims track as a form of aggressive, automated monetary demands against motorists, is not something the Courts should be seen to support.

    12) The Court is invited to take Judicial Notice of the fact that the Claimant's solicitors, Gladstones, is engaged in a course of conduct which involves issuing tens of thousands of totally meritless Claims, which are routinely dismissed by District Judges sitting in this Court, and other County Court hearing centres in all parts of England & Wales. The Court is therefore invited to refer the matter to the Designated Civil Judge, for consideration of the issuing an Extended Civil Restraint Order against the Claimant, pursuant to CPR Practice Direction 3.1(3).

    20) There has been recent discussions at the House of Commons about the Parking (Code of Practice) Bill, and the rogue industry, which can be read here:
    ttps://hansard.parliament.uk/commons/2018-02-02/debates/CC84AF5E-AC6E-4E14-81B1-066E6A892807/Parking(CodeOfPractice)Bill

    21) The Defendant denies the claim in its entirety, voiding any liability to the Claimant for all amounts due to the aforementioned reasons. The Defendant asks that the court gives consideration to exercise its discretion to order the case to be struck out under CPR Rule 3.4, for want of a detailed cause of action and/or for the claim having no realistic prospects of success.

    22) If the court is not minded to make such an order, then when Directions are given, the Defendant asks that there is an order for sequential service of witness evidence (rather than exchange) because it is expected that the Claimant will use its witness statement to provide the sort of detail which should have been disclosed much earlier, and the Defendant should have the opportunity to consider it, prior to serving evidence and witness statements in support of this defence.

    I confirm that the above facts and statements are true to the best of my knowledge and recollection.

    Signed

    Date
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 8th Jul 18, 5:03 PM
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    Coupon-mad
    I would swap 21 and 22 round so your final word is asking for a strike out:

    21) When Directions are given, the Defendant asks that there is an order for sequential service of witness evidence (rather than exchange) because this Claimant's solicitor is connected to the IPC Trade Body and routinely ambushes Defendants with new information at Witness Statement stage. It is expected that the Claimant will use its Witness Statement to provide the sort of detail which should have been disclosed much earlier, and the Defendant should have the opportunity to consider it, prior to serving evidence and witness statements in support of this defence.

    22) The Defendant asks that the court gives consideration to striking out the claim on the Court's own initiative, as having no merit, no particulars of claim, no reasonable prospects of success, and given that the claim is based on an alleged contractual parking charge of 100. The amount claimed on the claim is 244.30 and the Defendant avers that this inflation of the considered amount is a gross abuse of process.
    I have also changed the wording.
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT UNLESS IN SCOTLAND OR NI
    TWO Clicks needed Look up, top of the page:
    Main site>>Forums>Household & Travel>Motoring>Parking Tickets Fines & Parking - read the NEWBIES THREAD
    • glosandy
    • By glosandy 10th Jul 18, 3:59 PM
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    glosandy
    Defence submitted...
    • glosandy
    • By glosandy 10th Jul 18, 9:28 PM
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    glosandy
    The defence has been returned by the CCBC, on the basis that the Defendant completed the AOS with a partial defence...

    It mentions completing the N244 Application Notice to get the defence amended or substituted. Any one done this? (Quick post, as I'll now check the forums)
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 10th Jul 18, 9:31 PM
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    Coupon-mad
    You did whaaaat? Don't tell us you put something in the defence box at AOS stage?

    I am sorry but that is a disaster.
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT UNLESS IN SCOTLAND OR NI
    TWO Clicks needed Look up, top of the page:
    Main site>>Forums>Household & Travel>Motoring>Parking Tickets Fines & Parking - read the NEWBIES THREAD
    • glosandy
    • By glosandy 10th Jul 18, 9:41 PM
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    glosandy
    Well, to clarify, the person in question did - I wasn't aware he'd entered information in the partial defence section when he did his AOS... gutted, as I think we'd have walked this one.

    I take it there's now way of getting that defence altered? I'm just looking at the N244 papers, not making much sense this late in the evening...

    Looks like the answer to the thread title is "yes"...
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 10th Jul 18, 9:43 PM
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    Coupon-mad
    What did he put, anything useful that can be expanded on at WS stage?

    The N244 comes with a hefty court fee to amend a defence, not sure if it's 100 or 255!!
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT UNLESS IN SCOTLAND OR NI
    TWO Clicks needed Look up, top of the page:
    Main site>>Forums>Household & Travel>Motoring>Parking Tickets Fines & Parking - read the NEWBIES THREAD
    • Umkomaas
    • By Umkomaas 10th Jul 18, 9:47 PM
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    • 31,856 Thanks
    Umkomaas
    I'm just looking at the N244 papers, not making much sense this late in the evening...
    Does it mention 255 to add to/change a defence?

    Sometimes Judges allow litigants in person, who are naive about the court processes, to add to/replace an existing defence f.o.c., but you need better advice on this than from me - Loadsofchildren123 and Johnersh are practising solicitors and may pick this up and comment on the prospects of doing this. Coupon-mad May have some advice too.
    Please note, we are not a legal, residential or credit advice forum, rather one that helps motorists fight private parking charges, primarily at the 'front-end' of the process.
    Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day; show him how to catch fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.
    • glosandy
    • By glosandy 10th Jul 18, 9:50 PM
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    glosandy
    He has suffered from Ulcerative Colitis from a young age, which means he can get "caught short" rather horrifically, if he can't use a toilet. He's a member of the gym adjacent to the parking area, so made a mad dash to use their loo...

    Text on the AOS is pretty poor, but gets the points across...

    Sounds like N244 is a non-starter then, better to take a chance in Court, and with the WS. I take it the WS part will only allow us to expand on this aspect, as opposed to bringing in the status of the space itself?
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