PePiPoo Helping the motorist get justice

Welcome Guest ( Log In | Register )

Court Summary PCM v Dean (will be moved to completed once all files uploaded)
littleguy123
post Sun, 14 Jan 2018 - 12:37
Post #1


New Member


Group: Members
Posts: 3
Joined: 14 Jan 2018
Member No.: 95,960



Court Report

PCM (UK) Ltd v Dean (D1GF7K0F)

Heard in Watford County Court on Thursday 11 January 2018

Background
Dean had received a parking charge notice for…well…he wasn’t really sure. The PCN stated “02 – Parked outside of a marked bay/ on a restricted roadway/landscaped/paved areas or causing an obstruction or inconvenience to others” - Suitably vague. Dean ignored all correspondence due to not seeing the point in appealing. No letter before action was received, none was provided as part of the submissions process, and Dean does not recall having ever received one.

On 29 July 2017, a claim was served at Northampton.

The Claim
PCM were claiming for the usual amounts (artificially inflated). The claim form stated that the ‘driver/keeper was not parked in accordance with signage’.

Dean asked PCM for further and better particulars but this was ignored. PCM claimed to have not received this correspondence at the hearing.

A skeleton defence was provided and a further request asking for better and further particulars was requested. There was also no response to this and a further claim of non-receipt.

The usual documents only request was put forward and rejected.

A hearing was set for 11 January 2018.

A defence was put forward, explaining the difficulties in making a full defence due to not knowing the exact basis of the claim. The defence points were, in brief;

1) no contract between landowner and PCM
2)Breach of Code of Practice
3) Poor signage
4) Forbidding Signage
5) Vehicle was parked correctly
6) Distance Selling Regulations applied
7) Failure to comply with POFA2012
8) Lack of Advertising Consent
9) Incorrect additional costs
10) Incorrect solicitor’s costs

PCM did not send a claimant’s pack. The court confirmed lack of receipt on 8 January 2018.

The day before, a significant Defendant’s Schedule of Costs was provided to all parties (for info, I e-mailed leanne@gladstones), on the presumption that they would not attend.

The Hearing
Strangely, Dean and I bumped into the Solicitor’s advocate in the car park, although neither of us knew who each other were at this point. I attended to support my mate and acted as lay rep. It’s a little different from what I do as my normal hangouts are arbitration and the High Court.

We checked in with the court, which was unlike my local court. I’m used to full on metal detectors, this was two floors of rooms on the top floor of a 1970s office block with a much more informal feel.

The advocate came over and introduced himself, and was a thoroughly lovely chap. We went to discuss the case in a side room. I asked if he was the solicitor and he explained that he was a solicitor’s advocate. I replied “so not a solicitor and no right of audience then?” He was unhappy at my aggressive tone, perhaps understandably so, but his client had not turned up (and he stated that they “never turn up” for these hearings) and hadn’t supplied a pack. I asked about the lack of pack and he said that one had been sent in to the court and to ourselves, and offered to give us a copy. I declined and said that would need to be given to the judge.

In we went to chambers, where the judge asked about the lack of a claimant’s pack. The advocate claimed it had been sent in, yet ‘mysteriously’, had not been received by either Dean or the court – just like they hadn’t received our letters. The judge stated that he was very disappointed to have not received the document. Upon reading, he further commented that it was simply a witness statement with attached documents, rather than a Statement of Case. The judge was also unhappy at our Schedule of Costs, which was “several multiples of the amount claimed” (it was!).

The judge gave us the witness statement and sent us out to have a read through it in order to consider the contents. I was very unhappy at the lack of attendance of the witness (Georgina Philpott) and the solicitor’s advocate indicated that he would not oppose an adjournment.

Having discussed the matter with Dean, we decided to proceed anyway – although I cannot pretend that I would not have liked to have had Ms Philpott there.

The papers indicated that the PCN was for ‘not parking within a marked bay’, which rendered parts of our defence pointless.

Back in we went and the judge went through a summary of each of our cases. He then looked at the claimant’s case, studied the photos, and asked a lot of questions in relation to the marked bay. The advocate argued that the photographs showed the vehicle parked outside of the marked bay and started pointing to imaginary white lines, which didn’t exist. I offered to ask Dean a further question in relation to the white lines but the judge felt that this would be leading (it would). The judge also made the point that he could contact the Resident’s association, but proportionality must be exercised and “it’s only a parking ticket”.

The judge was unconvinced the car was parked outside of the parking bay, and dismissed the claim.

The judge rejected the claim for costs aside from loss of earnings.

Thoughts
The judge was clearly disinterested in the case from the off, but then this is understandable taking into account the amounts involved. He had clearly seen this several times and had dealt with many parking tickets.

It’s a shame I didn’t get to present my case fully, but getting the matter dismissed early on is definitely a win.

The judge wasn’t hugely impressed with the amount for schedule of costs but that’s the way it goes. I still feel that PCM acted unreasonably by the lack of correspondence, lack of LBA, lack of attendance, but that’s the way it goes.


Other points to note
There were 12 hearings in the court that day. Half were for private parking.

Sorry for the poorly written summary but it’s a Sunday morning. When I get back into the office I will upload all documents for public consumption.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
 
Start new topic
Replies (1 - 11)
Advertisement
post Sun, 14 Jan 2018 - 12:37
Post #


Advertise here!









Go to the top of the page
 
Quote Post
kommando
post Sun, 14 Jan 2018 - 13:10
Post #2


Member


Group: Members
Posts: 3,758
Joined: 6 Oct 2012
Member No.: 57,558



Congrats, a win is a win, pity the Judges do not devise a simple strategy for getting their courts clear of parking claims, simply rule 80% of claimants unreasonable and award the defendant extra costs, just like the IPC rule 80% for the PPC's. Only difference would be the Judges 80% would be accurate.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Jlc
post Sun, 14 Jan 2018 - 13:23
Post #3


Member


Group: Members
Posts: 27,667
Joined: 25 Aug 2011
From: With Mickey
Member No.: 49,223



QUOTE (littleguy123 @ Sun, 14 Jan 2018 - 12:37) *
There were 12 hearings in the court that day. Half were for private parking.

A good use of the court's resources... Something has got to give eventually.


--------------------
RK=Registered Keeper, OP=Original Poster (You!), CoFP=Conditional Offer of Fixed Penalty, NtK=Notice to Keeper, NtD=Notice to Driver
PoFA=Protection of Freedoms Act, SAC=Safety Awareness Course, NIP=Notice of Intended Prosecution, ADR=Alternative Dispute Resolution
PPC=Private Parking Company, LBCCC=Letter Before County Court Claim, PII=Personally Identifiable Information

Private Parking - remember, they just want your money and will say almost anything to get it.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
southpaw82
post Sun, 14 Jan 2018 - 13:24
Post #4


Member


Group: Members
Posts: 28,038
Joined: 2 Apr 2008
From: Not in the UK
Member No.: 18,483



QUOTE (Jlc @ Sun, 14 Jan 2018 - 13:23) *
QUOTE (littleguy123 @ Sun, 14 Jan 2018 - 12:37) *
There were 12 hearings in the court that day. Half were for private parking.

A good use of the court's resources... Something has got to give eventually.

But I thought POFA was going to slash the number of court cases for POCs!?!?!?


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


Any comments made do not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon. No lawyer/client relationship should be assumed nor should any duty of care be owed.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
ManxRed
post Sun, 14 Jan 2018 - 19:47
Post #5


Member


Group: Members
Posts: 8,841
Joined: 20 Aug 2008
Member No.: 21,992



QUOTE (southpaw82 @ Sun, 14 Jan 2018 - 13:24) *
QUOTE (Jlc @ Sun, 14 Jan 2018 - 13:23) *
QUOTE (littleguy123 @ Sun, 14 Jan 2018 - 12:37) *
There were 12 hearings in the court that day. Half were for private parking.

A good use of the court's resources... Something has got to give eventually.

But I thought POFA was going to slash the number of court cases for POCs!?!?!?


Surely that nice man with the cameraphone wasn't fibbing?


--------------------
Sometimes I use big words I don't understand in an effort to make myself sound more photosynthesis.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
cp8759
post Mon, 15 Jan 2018 - 00:32
Post #6


Member


Group: Members
Posts: 2,305
Joined: 3 Dec 2010
Member No.: 42,618



QUOTE (littleguy123 @ Sun, 14 Jan 2018 - 12:37) *
The judge wasn’t hugely impressed with the amount for schedule of costs but that’s the way it goes. I still feel that PCM acted unreasonably by the lack of correspondence, lack of LBA, lack of attendance, but that’s the way it goes.

On what basis did you want the judge to allow costs in a small claim track case?


--------------------
I am not on the "motorists's side", nor am I on the "police/CPS/council's" side, I am simply in favour of the rule of law.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
littleguy123
post Mon, 15 Jan 2018 - 08:37
Post #7


New Member


Group: Members
Posts: 3
Joined: 14 Jan 2018
Member No.: 95,960



QUOTE (cp8759 @ Mon, 15 Jan 2018 - 00:32) *
QUOTE (littleguy123 @ Sun, 14 Jan 2018 - 12:37) *
The judge wasn’t hugely impressed with the amount for schedule of costs but that’s the way it goes. I still feel that PCM acted unreasonably by the lack of correspondence, lack of LBA, lack of attendance, but that’s the way it goes.

On what basis did you want the judge to allow costs in a small claim track case?


Unreasonable behaviour cpr 27.14

No LBC, no basis for claim, no response to correspondence, failure to adhere to directions.

All of their actions led to a considerable increase in wasted time.

(To be perfectly honest, I wasn’t expecting them to turn up, taking the above into account)
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Jlc
post Mon, 15 Jan 2018 - 08:55
Post #8


Member


Group: Members
Posts: 27,667
Joined: 25 Aug 2011
From: With Mickey
Member No.: 49,223



It's all a numbers game. Even a few cases like this have very impact to their income. If only the HMCTS would take action.


--------------------
RK=Registered Keeper, OP=Original Poster (You!), CoFP=Conditional Offer of Fixed Penalty, NtK=Notice to Keeper, NtD=Notice to Driver
PoFA=Protection of Freedoms Act, SAC=Safety Awareness Course, NIP=Notice of Intended Prosecution, ADR=Alternative Dispute Resolution
PPC=Private Parking Company, LBCCC=Letter Before County Court Claim, PII=Personally Identifiable Information

Private Parking - remember, they just want your money and will say almost anything to get it.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
nosferatu1001
post Mon, 15 Jan 2018 - 09:05
Post #9


Member


Group: Members
Posts: 16,287
Joined: 27 Nov 2007
Member No.: 15,642



Were you able to point to denton 2014? this should be used anytime "unreasonable" is argued - and how come the judge wasnt more p*****d off at the claimants behaviour?!?
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
southpaw82
post Mon, 15 Jan 2018 - 09:28
Post #10


Member


Group: Members
Posts: 28,038
Joined: 2 Apr 2008
From: Not in the UK
Member No.: 18,483



QUOTE (nosferatu1001 @ Mon, 15 Jan 2018 - 09:05) *
Were you able to point to denton 2014? this should be used anytime "unreasonable" is argued

Denton was a case about relief from sanctions, not assessing unreasonable behaviour. Besides, the Court of Appeal said in Dammermann v Landon Bowder LLP that it was doubtful whether such guidelines could be given as each case would turn on its own facts. The court went on to suggest that the test of whether the acts or omissions complained of allow for an reasonable explanation would be useful, applying Ridehalgh v Horsefield.


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


Any comments made do not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon. No lawyer/client relationship should be assumed nor should any duty of care be owed.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
littleguy123
post Mon, 15 Jan 2018 - 13:14
Post #11


New Member


Group: Members
Posts: 3
Joined: 14 Jan 2018
Member No.: 95,960



QUOTE (nosferatu1001 @ Mon, 15 Jan 2018 - 09:05) *
Were you able to point to denton 2014? this should be used anytime "unreasonable" is argued - and how come the judge wasnt more p*****d off at the claimants behaviour?!?


I think it ultimately came down to the fact that the judge looked at it, thought it was a claim for £160 and didn't really care. The only impression I received was that the judge was entirely exasperated with having to deal with these claims (and was unhappy with the quantum of the Schedule of Costs).

I suspect that had they not attended, then the outcome might have been different.

It was very clear that the judge accepted that it was usual behaviour for them to provide a witness statement without a witness.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
nosferatu1001
post Mon, 15 Jan 2018 - 13:23
Post #12


Member


Group: Members
Posts: 16,287
Joined: 27 Nov 2007
Member No.: 15,642



How big an amount was it? £19ph LIP rate?

If the judge is exasperated then awarding costs for unreasonable behaviour when clearly the claimant has lied to the D AND the court (no way that all documents in total get mislaid, by both court and D, and the C never received two entirely separate pieces of mail but got everything else? Not credible) would help! T hey have it entirely in their power to stop this. Awarding £300 a time (10 hours plus usual half day off) PLUS the C having to fork out ~£300 for a rep might swing the P/L calculation.

It might be "usual behaviour" but less weight should be attached to the WS, and any holes that can be piked up on cannot be defended or explained as the Witness is not present.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post

Reply to this topicStart new topic
1 User(s) are reading this topic (1 Guests and 0 Anonymous Users)
0 Members:

 



Advertisement

Advertise here!

RSS Lo-Fi Version Time is now: Tuesday, 22nd May 2018 - 07:51
Pepipoo uses cookies. You can find details of the cookies we use here along with links to information on how to manage them.
Please click the button to accept our cookies and hide this message. We’ll also assume that you’re happy to accept them if you continue to use the site.