Patricia Pearl - Small Claims Procedure - A Practical Guide


An excellent guide for the layperson in how to use the County Court - a must if you are intending to start a claim.

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BAILIFFS - The Law and Your Rights

Written by John Kruse, one of the leading experts on Bailiff Law, this consumer friendly guide is essential reading for anyone who comes into contact with a bailiff.

The book is easy to understand and clearly explains the rights a bailiff has, and also what they cannot do when collecting debts and repossessing goods etc.

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  1. #1
    Basic Account Holder mazbck Novitiate mazbck's Avatar

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    Default CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    Not sure if Im in the right place, but hoping someone can help me.

    My hubby's MR2 was in an accident 2 weeks ago, all it needs in a new driver's door, the A-pillar is slightly bent and a new drivers wing. There is no other damage than that.

    The engineer has seen it and he has classed it as a CAT-C write off due to the age of the car(J-Plate), and my OH has accepted a cash settlement and the car.

    What is the rules regarding a CAT-C write off, Ive searched high and low and I know that it needs a VIC test, but can the car be driven to get repaired, or is the MOT invalid?


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    Default Re: CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    The MOT would be invalidated at the point that the car was categorised as a cat c on the DVLA register.

    You'll need to effect repairs prior to MOT so you couldnt really be seen to be acting lawfully by booking MOT and driving to it. As for the VIC check, think its still the case that without one you won't get issued a new V5. No V5, no tax, no valid insurance.

    Best bet would be to have the thing towed to garage for repairs and let them deal with the formalities of moving it between MOT and VIC test centres under their commercial insurance.

    The DVLA website says :

    Taking the car for a VIC
    repairs must be conducted and the car must be roadworthy and capable of being driven under its own power
    if over 3 years old, the car must be covered by a valid MOT if it is to be driven to the VIC
    the person driving the car must be insured to do so
    the car must display front and rear number plates if it is to be driven to the VIC. For assistance in obtaining number plates, contact VOSA on 08706 060 440
    a car can be driven directly to and from a pre-arranged VIC without road tax



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    Basic Account Holder mazbck Novitiate mazbck's Avatar

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    Default Re: CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    How long before that shows up on the DVLA register, as I have just checked the MOT info site and the reg and MOT Test cert still says passed!


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    Default Re: CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    Anything up to a couple of months, depends how long your insurers take to pass the necessary to the DVLA.


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    Basic Account Holder gwc1000 Informative gwc1000 Informative gwc1000 Informative

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    Default Re: CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    Quote Originally Posted by gezwee View Post
    The MOT would be invalidated at the point that the car was categorised as a cat c on the DVLA register.
    Actually that is incorrect. The MoT is not invalidated.
    If the vehicle is roadworthy, with no jagged edges, but is just light panel damage, it is possible to have a VIC check done as it is. They may refuse to test it if the tester considers it not roadworthy.


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    Default Re: CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    Quote Originally Posted by gwc1000 View Post
    Actually that is incorrect. The MoT is not invalidated.
    If the vehicle is roadworthy, with no jagged edges, but is just light panel damage, it is possible to have a VIC check done as it is. They may refuse to test it if the tester considers it not roadworthy.
    I stand corrected, I was erring on the side of caution.......and the possibility of being pulled on the way to the test centre.

    I understood the MOT to only be valid if the car is in a roadworthy condition, a CAT C would (I assume) by definition question the cars roadworthiness. In this instance there is clear structual damage and the interpretation of the legalities at the point of being pulled over by plod would be a difficult one to question if faced with possible penalty points.

    If the VIC centre also considers the vehicle to be unroadworthy you would then be left with removal costs from the test centre as your insurance would also be invalidated?


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    Basic Account Holder mazbck Novitiate mazbck's Avatar

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    Default Re: CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    It is only cosmetic damage and it is roadworthy, would it be worth contacting the insurance company to get it changed to a CAT-D, as they have said it was due to the age and make of the car that it would be classed as a CAT-C.

    Its a MKII MR2 and it would require a complete re-spray.


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    Default Re: CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    Quote Originally Posted by mazbck View Post
    It is only cosmetic damage and it is roadworthy, would it be worth contacting the insurance company to get it changed to a CAT-D, as they have said it was due to the age and make of the car that it would be classed as a CAT-C.

    Its a MKII MR2 and it would require a complete re-spray.
    You could give them a try, don't see what harm it would do.... the primary basis of category is a commercial decision. Not so sure they'd look at it again though as its a cost to them to send someone out to inspect again, not sure they'd just over rule the initial loss adjusters decision without a second opinion. You would of course also run the risk of seeing the value lift as part of your settlement.

    Do you have any 'friendly' local PC's that could offer you some guidance regarding your insurance status, at least if you're taking it somewhere local for repairs and VIC they'd be aware that your intentions are genuine and they will already have the heads up on your vehicle if by any chance you get stopped.


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    Default Re: CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    Unfortunately, the car is going to be repair about 175 miles from where we live, as a specialist bodyshop. My OH says it is roadworthy (he is a mechanic) and it is mechanically sound, as the bump wasnt anywhere near the engine.

    He has checked with his own insurance and it is still insured, as the other driver admitted full liability.

    Its just the MOT side of things he is worried about and driving it down to get repaired.


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    Default Re: CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    I'd look for some clarity (in writing) from your insurers.

    Driving to any pre booked MOT would ensure you insurance remains valid.. you must ensure it is prebooked though.

    My only concern would be the distance to the repair centre you mentioned, are you sending it up on a low loader or is the intention to drive it that distance? I wouldnt want to be in your shoes arguing the finer points of law in the middle of the street with an irate copper


  11. #11
    Basic Account Holder gwc1000 Informative gwc1000 Informative gwc1000 Informative

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    Default Re: CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    Quote Originally Posted by gezwee View Post
    I understood the MOT to only be valid if the car is in a roadworthy condition,
    No. An MoT is an indication that only at the time of the MoT test the vehicle met the required standards.
    From VOSA:
    "An MoT Test pass confirms that, when the vehicle was examined in accordance with Section 45 of the Road Traffic Act 1988 it met the minimum legal requirements for those items prescribed under the Act. It does not mean that the vehicle fully meets all legal requirements or that it will continue to be roadworthy for the next year."

    If you think about it, if an MoT became invalid the moment a vehicle became unroadworthy, if your tail light should blow on a journey, your MoT would instantly become invalid. A colleague of mine is a dealer in Cat Cs and Cat Ds and many Cat Cs he sells come direct from the insurance companies with the current MoTs. The VIC check does not check roadworthiness, just the identity of the vehicle. But if the vehicle has jagged edges they may refuse to test it.


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    Basic Account Holder mazbck Novitiate mazbck's Avatar

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    Default Re: CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    So the MOT is not invalid as it is only cosmetic damage. All the lights still work, etc and it would pass an MOT at the moment. It has Road Tax and insurance, so it would still be drivable.


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    Default Re: CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    Got the insurance chq in today and according to the paperwork they have classed it as a CAT-D

    Thanks guys for all the info that in the end wasnt needed, very much appreciated.


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    Basic Account Holder Big Boss Man Novitiate Big Boss Man's Avatar

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    Default Re: CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    Quote Originally Posted by mazbck View Post
    Got the insurance chq in today and according to the paperwork they have classed it as a CAT-D

    Thanks guys for all the info that in the end wasnt needed, very much appreciated.
    Cat D is the lowest form of damaged classed by Insurers, a friend of mine bought a Cat C a number of years ago, hes still got it now, passes every MOT etc, only down side it will reflect the resale value when you decide to sell.

    Some extra info for you:

    Category C or D write-off is one that insurers consider unecomonical to repair but one that could, given enough time in the workshop, be repaired and returned to the road.

    Category A and B should never be returned to the road. A Category B write off is one that is so badly damaged it can only be used for the salvaging of spare parts, while a Category A is one that is sent to the crusher.

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    Basic Account Holder mazbck Novitiate mazbck's Avatar

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    Default Re: CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    I thought they had originally got it wrong with classing it as a CAT-C, as it is only cosmetic damage, and didnt need a VIC test, which I understand that is needed if it is badly damaged but still repairable, but ours only needs a new door and wing!

    So off to the specialist body shop on Saturday, and hopefully get the wee beastie back in a couple of weeks!!!!


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    Basic Account Holder steveieuk Novitiate

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    Default Re: CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    the VIC check is what it says - a Vehicle Identity Check, not an MOT, likewise a CAT C or D is an insurers definition of a vehicle "BER" beyond economical repair - for them, not for joe public. none of the above need actually void an MOT Insurers willingly write off cars for 1 good reason, they know that the insured will get zilch and then lose all thier NCB, my lads just lost his 3K (november 2011) and got just 760, after paying his excess and ALL his outstanding insurance instalements (600) and that INCLUDED 120 he had to spend on a bonnet after his flew off on the M5, so much for having fully comp (but unprotected NCB)


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    Basic Account Holder bethsylvester Novitiate

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    Default Re: CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    My Vauxhall Corsa has also just been written off due to a cat C write off, it needs 3 new wheels (due to light damage from being scuffed) and there is a dent in the bumper. It's the first accident my I have ever had to deal with and I am confused! I know I need to get a VIC test done but obviously I need to have work done on the car first. Does the work have to be carried out by the same garage that would do the VIC test? And does it need another MOT doing?

    Hope you can help!


  18. #18
    Basic Account Holder bethsylvester Novitiate

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    Default Re: CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    Also... could I drive it from where it is currently being stored to my driveway? I have heard that the MOT is invalid until the repairs are done etc?


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    Basic Account Holder Raykay Informative Raykay Informative

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    Default Re: CAT-C Write off and the rules?

    The VIC is carried out by VOSA, not a garage and as long as the MOT is still current, you can drive the car to the VOSA centre for the VIC. A VIC is a Vehicle Identity Check, all they are checking is the identity of the vehicle - it is the same one that had been damaged and not a stolen one with a false identity.



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