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  1. From the Guardian today. https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/sep/10/boot-out-bailiffs-debt-collection-councils-ethical-schemes HB
  2. Sorry for the long post: I have been busy looking for ways to keep as much money as I can in MY pocket. By this I mean I always pay my bills on time and often in credit. I wanted to save money on my water rates and looked in to getting my supply from the water companies directly. Currently my bill is £10.35pw. Not a lot you may think! But this is paying the Council directly as they get a discount for being a huge customer. They appear not to pass this saving on to their tenants.... The interesting point on this matter is that you will be paying a share of other peoples debts and voids. This is explained within the case listed below. Let me explain. 1st of all you need to find out if your LA is overcharging you, how you may ask. This is easy to find out by using a tool most water companies use to decide what your bill could be if on a metered supply. Will you save money? Umm a very good question to ask. Depending on where you live and whom is supplying your area you will need to find this for yourselves. In my area this is Essex and Suffolk water. They have a tool you can fill in and it will give you what you could pay if you changed to a meter. I did this and found out that I could potentially save upwards of over £300pa. A huge saving by any standards. My savings is based on the fact I do not have a bath and a single occupant and that I have a wet room. So I would save by switching supplier and going directly to them and not my LA. Now the interesting part of my post: There has recently been several important cases heard including a hearing at the High Court. The links are as follows. 1. http://www.localgovernmentlawyer.co....d=56&Itemid=24 2. http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWHC/Ch/2016/457.html From the long read you may discover that you can ask your LA to allow you to switch supplier. I made this information known to my LA and they are already beginning to filter out letters to their tenants. I am what is known as a block voice for my estate and asked if I could get my supply metered and at a reduced rate from the main suppliers directly. their response was a resounding NO! But then I linked them to these cases above and they had a change of mind. If it turns out that residents may have been overcharged, then they may be able to argue a refund against the different prices you had to pay. This I am currently looking in to and will update as and when anything comes to light. There is so much more to this issue but would make the initial read far to long so have just given basic information this far. What are your thoughts on this subject please? Note to admin not sure if this is the right area to post if not please feel free to move.. Similar thread here >>http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk...ht=water+rates with no replies MM
  3. Under the 2104 Children and Families Act 2014 Councils have certain Statutory directives regarding children who are not in education, for whatever reason. My daughter has been out of education for three years with separation anxiety brought about by her mother's domestic violence. Under the Act the Council are supposed to have provided 'alternative education' for her. The Act says they must work with schools/colleges to identify children in need and consult with them/their parents and other professional to provide alternatives suitable to their needs. Under the Equality Act and SEN regulations she is now classed as 'disabled and with SEN needs. However to date the Council have not followed any of the statutory directives. They have not even contacted me about her. I have complained to them. No result. I have complained to the Local Government Ombudsman. No result. I have complained to the Ministry of Education, told it was not their remit. How can I get them brought to task and get my daughter compensation for loss of education resulting from their not following the law? All over the UK there are families in the same situation.
  4. https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/290903/response/710349/attach/html/2/Green%20response%20FOI%202015%2057.pdf.html https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/money_owed_by_the_british_parkin#comment-62932 Revealed first on the Pranksters comments section: http://parking-prankster.blogspot.co.uk/2015/09/parkingeye-anpr-blunders-again.html#comment-form
  5. Saw this story on the news this morning - http://www.credittoday.co.uk/article/17947/online-news/dcas-in-crackdown-on-foreign-driver-parking-fines But the news piece didn't really give much of an explanation and nor does the above story. So currently, councils cant access foreign car data (unlike our UK DVLA system), but they are going to employ DCAs (who we all know have zero powers even in the UK) to track down these foreign car owners (how ??), and ask them nicely to pay ? I cant see the success rate being very how, surely it will only end up costing councils ?
  6. I received the following via a National Debtline twitter feed link http://www.stoptheknock.org/ Click on the map for your area and it will give you the stats for that particular Local Authority. Out of interest I clicked on Peterborough to see what information would be given. Very interesting. And Oxford
  7. SIGOMA Special Interest Group of Municipal Authorities (outside London) within the LGA (SIGOMA) is a grouping of 45 urban authorities in the Northern, Midland and South-Coast regions of England. SIGOMA’s membership compromises of 33 metropolitan districts and 12 major unitary councils with similar characteristics. We are the collective voice across these regions and embody the opportunities and potential of the communities who live there. The combined population of SIGOMA councils amounts to over a quarter of the population of England and its member account for over 25% of English local government expenditure
  8. According to the Telegraph councils are having their wings clipped to prevent overzealous collection and issue of PCNs including possible banning of collection by bailiffs. Sadly it won't prevent Parking Eye, now part of Capita, et.al from ripping people off http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/road-and-rail-transport/11453090/Motorists-will-be-given-10-minute-grace-period-when-parking-tickets-run-out.html
  9. Hi Hope someone can help. I am reading conflicting accounts regarding councils sending out summons for court appearances re council tax. On one hand, I'm reading it's illegal and, on the other, just came across this piece on the web which seems watertight. Please can someone clarify the situation? Many thanks. "There is no statute which authorises (or prevents) a council preparing a summons on the court’s behalf. Under section 51 of the Magistrates’ Court Act 1980 (http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1980/43/section/51), a person can apply to the Magistrates’ Court for a summons. If it is granted, it is customary that the person applying drafts their own summons, which in the case of Council Tax is the Local Authority. There is no statute which authorises a summons to be issued by the Local Authority. The summons is issued by the court when the application is approved and endorsed by a Legal Adviser and the Council informed of the outcome of their application. The summons may then be printed by the complainant and that is now the normal custom in relation to all summonses. It is the responsibility of the person applying for a summons to serve it on the respondent and Rule 99 of the Magistrates’ Courts Rules 1981 sets out how that may be done, which includes by post. There is no agreement between courts and local authorities to do this, as it is the legal duty of the local authority in every case".
  10. Anglia councils plan own bailiff service Seven councils are planning to launch a revenues enforcement service, allowing them to bypass commercial bailiff firms. Breckland, East Cambs, Fenland, Forest Heath, St Edmundsbury, Suffolk Coastal and Waveney Councils. The Cabinet report (Anglia Revenues Partnership (ARP) - Internal Enforcement Agency Proposals) at paragraph 4.6 shows there's a financial benefit of doing away with their contractors.
  11. I stopped in a loading bay at Hammersmith to load items in my car, their traffic management Order states clearly that "if you are disabled or are injured you can stop for as long as it takes to set down or pick up with your bags/luggage, no time limit. The council lied at the tribunal and refused to give a copy of this traffic management Order. The tribunal Judge referred the decision to the council who still wanted the money from me. The tribunal is aware that they lied but will not do anything about it, I tried judicial review but they said the tribunal had no case to answer so they did not deal with it. I have contacted the ombudsman but they said to write to the council again and have this investigated first before they will deal with it, but the council will not investigate because the tribunal has found in their favor so they still want this injustice to continue. They have now applied for a recovery Order again and I need to apply for a TE7 extension of time in order to have this dealt with by the ombudsman. Any one has any help and or advice? TNX
  12. This is quite amusing, and also annoying. After the media just shafted the people of Scotland and god knows what kind of malpractice went on to stop Scotland leaving the UK, now locals councils are saying they are going to chase people for unpaid Poll Tax, based on people who only just signed the electoral register for the first time! Having a bit of a debate with people over whether they have 6 years or 20 years to take you to court over this. Can anyone confirm this? In any case it was abolished >20 years ago and I personally didn't pay a penny of it, which I am assuming means I also didn't acknowledge the debt. I think people need to be informed about this as they will likely send out threatening letters and some people might pay it not realising they don't have to, and there's nothing any council can do to force you to. Right?
  13. Well Mr Jones the councillor and I went to see the council yesterday about the Hedder H fee and the Attendance to remove fee being charged the same day as the levy we agreed that the Hedder H fee was a controversial fee and there were different opinions they stated the south Ribble case and agreed that there were several LGO reports saying it couldn't be charged I said it was an advertising fee introduced in 1993 and can only be charged if goods are removed Council said No its not just for advertising its for other expense's couldn't tell us what other expense's or why some bailiffs charge it and some don't but its something to do with the Walking possession agreement I argued my case and said the levy fee covers their expense's I mentioned Regulation 10 of The distress for rent rules 1988 and was told that does apply to council tax only rent I asked if they had taken legal advice and spoke to there solicitors and they said NO they will however consult them now and get back to us there was further conversation about it but that was the jist of it they ask what we wanted and I said if im correct return the money and remove the fee They gave me some paperwork with the information they are relying on to charge the fee (outlawla will you please post it on this thread please) I told them that I still think they are wrong and I wont be going away I then got on to the Van attendance fee being charged the same day as the levy They didn't think they were discussing that today well they thought wrong I asked why Rossendales bailiffs had charged the fee 197 times from 209 and why neither Jacobs or excel had provide the information MR Jones the councillor then commented about the lack of information and why the council cant provide the info asked for information before the next audit committee I was told that as they hadn't planed to discuss it they would have to check legislation on that I stated that there would be no argument with this fee as I know im right and had they read the FOI they would have noticed the comment from Excel who hadn't actually checked there records but state the answer would be none as an ATR fee cant be charged the same day as a levy I went on to say how many bailiffs is this 5/10 more than 10 is it the same few bailiffs Systematically defrauding us because make no mistake that's what it is and it must be looked into and if its the same bailiffs all the time then at the very least I would expect a form 5 to be sent to there certificating court however it is fraud and the police should be involved Council told me I was getting ahead of myself said I wasn't because I am correct there is no contravention as to when this fee can be charged
  14. Hi Hope someone can help with my question. I have been in dispute with my council re council tax and when I asked for a breakdown of years owed, bailiffs charges had been added to individual years as well. In one case, a total charge of roughly £270.00 had been added for bailiff charges for 1 year and in total over £1,000 has been added over a couple of years. Having done some research, I believe bailiffs can only charge a statutory £24.50 for a visit and a second one too. Bailiffs have never gained access to my property and I believe, according to the law, I am only liable for statutory fees and nothing else. There has never been Walking possession or whatever. Yes, I have had the "van" letter about being in my area but again goods have never been seized or taken. I believe these "charges" are unlawful and could be classed as fraud! If you have had any experiences like this, would be very grateful if you could give advice on what to do next! Thank you.
  15. http://www.credittoday.co.uk/article/14089/online-news/councils-acting-illegally-on-bailiff-fees-
  16. http://www.credittoday.co.uk/article/14089/online-news/councils-acting-illegally-on-bailiff-fees- Local authorities desperate to drive down costs may be acting illegally when it comes to debt collection. Colin Naylor, executive committee member of the Civil Enforcement Agency (CIVEA) and managing director of Dukes Bailiffs says council’s policy of “fees last” should be outlawed from local authority tenders. The practice involves bailiffs tendering for local council work appearing to be providing free of charge services to the authority with the fees then loaded onto the debtors after the debt has been paid. Naylor said: “We can all understand the pressure on local authorities to reduce costs but there is no doubt in my mind this type of arrangement falls outside the regulations.” Naylor went on to explain the “worrying trend” has four unwelcome consequences. Firstly, it opens local authorities up to legal challenges on contract awards. Secondly, it loads disproportionate costs onto debtors. Thirdly, it mitigates against bailiffs who are tendering for work on the correct basis. Fourthly, it encourages bailiffs to adopt a more aggressive stance towards debtors, which is strictly against government policy.
  17. £582m to Scottish Councils for affordable homes As well as providing this funding, the Scottish Government has also published a new Affordable Housing Supply Programme guidance below. http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Built-Environment/Housing/investment/guidancenotes/GuidanceNotes2012/HSGN201206 With thanks to SG Landscope
  18. According to a report following FOI requests to 71 councils. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/money/cars/article-2149731/A-parking-fine-handed-4-6-seconds.html
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