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Possible court claim Gladstones private fine
WhiteTsBlackJean...
post Mon, 15 May 2017 - 15:54
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Hello to everyone,

So near the back end of last year I had received a couple of PCNs from UK Car Park Management Ltd for 'unauthorised parking'. As standard procedure I went through SchoolRunMums advice and sent initial appeals, maybe in error both appeals in one envelope as RK from newbies sticky to this bunch using IPC template and obtaining free proof of postage and ignored any following Debt Recovery Plus letters. I have now received a letter from Gladstones wanting payment within 14 days of the letter.

What's my best course of action now?
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post Mon, 15 May 2017 - 15:54
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WhiteTsBlackJean...
post Tue, 11 Jul 2017 - 13:56
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Right so after sending that acknowledgement I've received the following response:






Do I respond? They've not even acknowledged the 2 letters as being genuine Gladstones ones that "they" previously sent.
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ostell
post Tue, 11 Jul 2017 - 14:05
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You could write back and point out to them that Elliot v Loake has been thrown out many times as irrelevant when they have been acting for claimants and it is highly unprofessional to continue to quote it.

Also point out that there is no keeper liability so what is the point of pursuing as the registered keeper

Or just ignore.

This post has been edited by ostell: Wed, 12 Jul 2017 - 06:42
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nosferatu1001
post Tue, 11 Jul 2017 - 14:17
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You can also say that, should they be foolish enough to attempt to use EvL again in court, you will remind them that their first duty is to the court, and they should have reminded the court of their losses. THey are grossly misrepresenting a criminal case which turned on overwhelming forensic evidence.

You are wwell aware their client failed to follow te strict requirements of POFA2012, so despite their assertions oftherwise, you as Keeper have no liabiltiy.
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SchoolRunMum
post Tue, 11 Jul 2017 - 22:26
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Here's one I wrote earlier in post #4 on MSE, as Coupon-mad:

http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5678038

That person got the same template letter and I reckon a reply is in order (you will need to tweak it to suit). Up to you if you edit/correct the Gallstones to Gladstones, or not.
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Fabrio168
post Wed, 26 Jul 2017 - 17:48
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@WhiteTsBlackJeans,

What was the outcome of this?

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WhiteTsBlackJean...
post Fri, 28 Jul 2017 - 18:46
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Just recently received a county court claim form. Which bits do I fill in and send back?
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lamilad
post Fri, 28 Jul 2017 - 19:17
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QUOTE (WhiteTsBlackJeans @ Fri, 28 Jul 2017 - 19:46) *
Just recently received a county court claim form. Which bits do I fill in and send back?


You must acknowledge the claim on the MCOL website using the password on the claim form. Do not click 'start defence'

Post your draft defence on here for further advice.
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Gan
post Fri, 28 Jul 2017 - 19:20
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For now just the Acknowledgement of Service

You dispute the whole of the claim

This gives you an extra 14 days to prepare the defence statement

DO NOT put anything at all in the defence box
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SchoolRunMum
post Sat, 29 Jul 2017 - 10:55
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QUOTE (WhiteTsBlackJeans @ Fri, 28 Jul 2017 - 19:46) *
Just recently received a county court claim form. Which bits do I fill in and send back?

None, do it online.

See the NEWBIES thread post #2, on MSE, walks you through all of it and shows you how to do the AOS and how to defend:

http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=4816822

Then show us your defence, which is your main task once the AOS is done. Copy from similar ones in the links, or search both forums.
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WhiteTsBlackJean...
post Mon, 14 Aug 2017 - 00:57
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So the AOS has been done. What points should I focus on mainly for the chunk of my defence and what should I be wary of adding? Had a look through some other defences but wasn't sure if they'd be suitable for mine. Also omce completed would it be a matter of uploading online or does it have to be posted?
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nosferatu1001
post Mon, 14 Aug 2017 - 14:20
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You can print, sign scan and email a defence, as your research will have shown you

You need to present yOUR defence, so we can critique it. Instead of generic "wasnt sure...", be specific on what you dont understand. This is vital - because it shows you've read and started to understand YOUR defence to YOUR COURT CLAIM. Its imperative that you understand this.
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WhiteTsBlackJean...
post Wed, 16 Aug 2017 - 19:24
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Ok so I've done some digging and have provided the following draft to form a basis for my defence. Any criticism and help as to what things to amend or add would be welcome.

In the County Court
Claim Number:
Between
xxxx (Claimant)
and
xxxx (Defendant)


Defence Statement


Preliminary Matters.

(1). The claimant failed to include a copy of their written contract as per Practice Direction
16 7.3(1) and Practice Direction 7C 1.4(3A). No indication is given as to the
Claimants contractual authority to operate there as required by the Claimants Trade
Association's Code of Practice B1.1 which says
1.1 If you operate parking management activities on land which is not owned by you, you
must supply us with written authority from the land owner sufficient to establish you
as the ‘Creditor’ within the meaning of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 (where
applicable) and in any event to establish you as a person who is able to recover
parking charges. There is no prescribed form for such agreement and it need not
necessarily be as part of a contract but it must include the express ability for an
operator to recover parking charges on the landowner’s behalf or provide sufficient
right to occupy the land in question so that charges can be recovered by the operator
directly. This applies whether or not you intend to use the keeper liability provisions.

(2). The particulars of claim do not meet the requirements of Practice Direction 16 7.5 as
there is nothing which specifies how the terms were breached. Indeed the particulars
of claim are not clear and concise as is required by CPR 16.4 1(a). The Claimants are
known to be serial issuers of generic claims similar to this one. HM Courts Service
have identified over 1000 similar sparse claims. I believe the term for such behaviour
is roboclaims and as such is against the public interest.


Practice Direction 3A which references Civil Procedure Rule 3.4 illustrates this point:

1.4 The following are examples of cases where the court may conclude that particulars of
claim (whether contained in a claim form or filed separately) fall within rule 3.4(2)(a):
1. those which set out no facts indicating what the claim is about, for example ‘Money
owed £1000’,
2. those which are incoherent and make no sense,
3. those which contain a coherent set of facts but those facts, even if true, do not
disclose any legally recognisable claim against the defendant

(3). The Claimant has not complied with the pre-court protocol.

1. I'd refer the court to Para 4 on non-compliance and sanction, and I'd also point out
that there can be no reasonable excuse for the Claimant's failure to follow the
Pre-action Conduct process, especially bearing in mind that the Claim was issued by
their own Solicitors so they clearly had legal advice before issuing proceedings.

On the basis of the above, we request the court strike out the claim for want of a
cause of action.

Statement of Defence

I am XXXXX, defendant in this matter. It is admitted that the Defendant was the
authorised registered keeper of the vehicle in question at the time of the alleged
incident.
The Defendant denies liability for the entirety of the claim for the following reasons.

(1). The identity of the driver of the vehicle on the date in question has not been
ascertained.
1. The Claimant did not identify the driver
2. The Defendant has no liability, as they are the Keeper of the vehicle and the Claimant
must rely upon the strict provisions of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 in order to
hold the defendant responsible for the driver’s alleged breach.
3. The Claimant's increasingly demanding letters failed to evidence any contravention or
clear/prominent signage. Further, the Notice to Keeper (postal 'PCN') failed to give
the statutory warning to the registered keeper about the '28 day period' which is
mandatory wording as prescribed in paragraph 9(2)(f) of Schedule 4 of the Protection
of Freedoms Act 2012. Consequently, the Claimant is unable to rely on the 'keeper
liability' provisions of the POFA.

(3) The claimant has not provided enough details in the particulars of claim to file a full
defence. In particular, the full details of the contract which it is alleged was broken
have not been provided.
1. The Claimant has disclosed no cause of action to give rise to any debt.
2. The Claimant has stated that a parking charge was incurred.
3. The Claimant has given no indication of the nature of the alleged charge in the
Particulars of Claim.
The Claimant has therefore disclosed no cause of action.
4. The Particulars of Claim contains no details and fails to establish a cause of action
which would enable the Defendant to prepare a specific defence.
It just states “parking charges” which does not give any indication of on what basis
the claim is brought.
There is no information regarding why the charge arose, what the original charge
was, what the alleged contract was nor anything which could be considered a fair
exchange of information.
The Particulars of Claim are incompetent in disclosing no cause of action.
5. On the 20th September 2016 another relevant poorly pleaded private parking
charge claim by Gladstones was struck out by District Judge Cross of St
Albans County Court without a hearing due to their ‘roboclaim’ particulars being
incoherent, failing to comply with CPR. 16.4 and ‘providing no facts that could
give rise to any apparent claim in law.’
f) On the 27th July 2016 DJ Anson sitting at Preston County Court ruled that the very
similar parking charge particulars of claim were eficient and failing to meet CPR 16.4
and PD 16 paragraphs 7.3 – 7.6. He ordered the Claimant in that case to file new
particulars which they failed to do and so the court confirmed that the claim be
struck out.


(4) The Claimant has not complied with the pre-court protocol.
1. I'd refer the court to Para 4 on non-compliance and sanction, and I'd also point out
that there can be no reasonable excuse for the Claimant's failure to follow the Pre-
action Conduct process, especially bearing in mind that the Claim was issued by their
own Solicitors so they clearly had legal advice before issuing proceedings.

(5) The defendant wrote to the claimant on xxxxx asking for:
a) Full particulars of the parking charges
b) Who the party was that contracted with UK Car Park Management.
c) The full legal identity of the landowner
d) A full copy of the contract with the landholder that demonstrated that UK Car Park Management had
their authority.
e) If the charges were based on damages for breach of contract and if so to provide
justification of this sum
f) If the charge was based on a contractually agreed sum for the provision of parking
and If so to provide a valid VAT invoice for this 'service'.
g) To provide a copy of the signs that UK Car Park Management can evidence were on site and which
contended formed a contract with the driver on that occasion, as well as all
photographs taken of the vehicle in question.

The claimant has not responded.

(6) Withholding any relevant photos of the car, particularly the windscreen and
dashboard, and the signage terms, despite being asked for by the Defendant at the
outset, is against the SRA code as well as contrary to the ‘overiding objective’ in the
pre action protocol.
As Gladstones are a firm of solicitors whose Directors also run the IPC Trade Body
and deal with private parking issues every single day of the week there can be no
excuse for these omissions.

The Defendant asks that the court orders Further and Better Particulars of Claim and
asks leave to amend the Defence.


(7). UK Car Park Management are not the lawful occupier of the land. I have the
reasonable belief that they do not have the authority to issue charges on this land in
their own name and that they have no rights to bring action regarding this claim.
1. The Claimant is not the landowner and is merely an agent acting on behalf of the
landowner and has failed to demonstrate their legal standing to form a contract.
2. The claimant is not the landowner and suffers no loss whatsoever as a result of a
vehicle parking at the location in question
3. The Claimant is put to proof that it has sufficient interest in the land or that there are
specific terms in its contract to bring an action on its own behalf. As a third party
agent, the Claimant may not pursue any charge

(8)
1. The Claimant has at no time provided an explanation how the sum has been
calculated, the conduct that gave rise to it or how the amount has climbed from £100
to £160. This appears to be an added cost with apparently no qualification and an
attempt at double recovery, which the POFA Schedule 4 specifically disallows.
2. The Protection of Freedom Act Para 4(5) states that the maximum sum that may be
recovered from the keeper is the charge stated on the Notice to Keeper.

(9) The signage was inadequate to form a contract with the motorist
1. The signage on this site is inadequate to form a contract. It is barely legible, making it
difficult to read.
2. The sign fails because it must state what the ANPR data will be used for. This is an
ICO breach and contrary to the Code of Practice.
3. The sign does not contain an obligation as to how to ‘validly display’ the ticket in the
windscreen, therfore there was no breach of any ‘relevant obligation’ or ‘relevant
contract’ as required under Schedule 4 of POFA.
4. In the absence of ‘adequate notice’ of the terms and the charge (which must be in
large prominent letters such as the brief, clear and multiple signs in the Beavis case)
this fails to meet the requirements of Schedule 4 of the POFA.
(10) The driver did not enter into any 'agreement on the charge', no consideration flowed
between the parties and no contract was established.
The Defendant denies that the driver would have agreed to pay the original demand
of £100 to agree to the alleged contract had the terms and conditions of the contract
been properly displayed and accessible.

(11)
1. The Claimant has sent threatening and misleading demands which stated that
further debt recovery action would be taken to recover what is owed by passing the
debt to a ‘local’ recovery agent (which suggested to the Defendant they would be
calling round like bailiffs) adding further unexplained charges of £25 to the
£100 with no evidence of how this extra charge has been calculated.
No figure for additional charges was 'agreed' nor could it have formed part of the
alleged 'contract' because no such indemnity costs were quantified on the signs.
Terms cannot be bolted on later with figures plucked out of thin air, as if they were
incorporated into the small print when they were not.
2. The Defendant also disputes that the Claimant has incurred £50 solicitor costs.
3. The Defendant has the reasonable belief that the Claimant has not incurred £50 costs
to pursue an alleged £100 debt.
4. Not withstanding the Defendant's belief, the costs are in any case not recoverable.
5. The Claimant described the charge of £50.00 "legal fees" not "contractual costs".
CPR 27.14 does not permit these to be recovered in the Small Claims Court.

(12). The Defendant would like to point out that this car park can be fully distinguished
from the details, facts and location in the Beavis case. This site does not offer a free
parking licence, nor is there any comparable 'legitimate interest' nor complex
contractual arrangement to disengage the penalty rule, as ParkingEye did in the
unique case heard by the Supreme Court in 2015. Whilst the Claimant withheld any
photos of the signs on site, the Defendant contends these are illegible with terms
hidden in small print, unlike the 'clear and prominent' signs which created a contract
Mr Beavis was 'bound to have seen'.





I believe the facts stated in this defence are true.


(Name) (Signature) (Date)
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nosferatu1001
post Thu, 17 Aug 2017 - 06:22
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Do you have any questoins? any elements you dont understand, or arent sure on?

This post has been edited by nosferatu1001: Thu, 17 Aug 2017 - 06:23
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WhiteTsBlackJean...
post Thu, 17 Aug 2017 - 22:26
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Yeah so for example what other things would the claimant not complied with in terms of fulfilling the pre court protocol expected of them?
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WhiteTsBlackJean...
post Tue, 22 Aug 2017 - 01:59
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I know you guys might be busy and all but would appreciate any suggestions for change to the defence I have as it's due really soon. Also is it required to include a WS at this stage before submitting?
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bargepole
post Tue, 22 Aug 2017 - 04:41
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That Defence is fine for now, given the sparse Particulars of Claim and non-compliance of the Claimant with the Pre-Action Protocols. You've also left it open to file further Defence points in the event that they file more detailed Particulars.

The WS comes much later in the process, normally 14 days before the hearing date.


--------------------
We'll fight them on the roads, we'll fight them in the courts, and we shall never, ever, surrender
Cases Won = 20 (17 as McKenzie Friend) : Cases Lost = 4. Private Parking tickets ignored: 3. Paid: 0.
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nosferatu1001
post Tue, 22 Aug 2017 - 09:57
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Yes, your research should have shown you exactly when WS are submitted.
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WhiteTsBlackJean...
post Tue, 22 Aug 2017 - 12:11
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Oh btw forgot to add in this was their Particulars of Claim they used on the claims form:

The driver of the vehicle registration XXXXXXX (the 'Vehicle) incurred the parking charge(s) on XX/XX/XXXX for breaching the terms of parking on the land at XXXXXXX. The Defendant was driving the Vehicle and/or is the Keeper of the Vehicle. AND THE CLAIMANT CLAIMS £160 for Parking Charges / Damages and indemnity costs if applicable, together with interest of £7.51 pursuant to s69 of the County Courts Act 1984 at 8% pa, continuing to Judgment at £0.04 per day.
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nosferatu1001
post Tue, 22 Aug 2017 - 18:07
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Yep, their standard PoC. Useless aren't they!
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WhiteTsBlackJean...
post Sun, 27 Aug 2017 - 15:51
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I'm having issues logging into MCOL, can anyone confirm the e-mail address I can send claim through to on?
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