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  1. Hi, my name is Vanessa. Can please anyone give me some guidance regarding this problem that I'm going through? Please see the full story below: Last year I went to London and parked my car. I didn't have any change with me, so used the application "Pay by Phone" to pay for the whole morning car park. 12£. When I got back to the car, I had a penalty notice on the windscreen. I came home and I was sure that I had paid for it, so I appealed for it online. I thought this "paybyphone" app was something new and that the officer maybe didn't check my car plate online. I asked if you could please check their online records because I did pay for it. I'd a reply from Lambeth council saying that there was nothing on their online records and so they were rejecting my appeal. I should then wait for a formal appeal, the Notice to Owner. I checked my online records and realised that unfortunately I made a mistake on one letter of my plate, that's why they couldn't find it online. Instead of an "A", I put an "S" which is exactly the letter next to the A. My screen is broken and with the light from the sun, I didn't realise my mistake until I saw the receipt. I was waiting the notice to the owner, but I never got it. Instead, I received a letter from the Bailiffs saying that I owe them nearly 800£. I couldn't believe...I read a lot online and phoned the Traffic Enforcement Court and was advised to fill in TE7 and TE9. First thing they asked me was my address and I realised that they had my old address in their records. I filled in the TE7 and TE9, send it to the TEC and they send that to Lambeth Council. The court told me that the Bailiffs would be put on hold while the process was being investigated. I received a letter from Lambeth Council rejecting my TE7 and TE9. They said that I reply to them the first time, by writting, when I was appealing informally. After that, my address was requested to the DVLA and several notices were sent to my address and I never replied to any... Unfortunately when I moved I forgot to change my address, so obviously all the letters went to the wrong address. I phoned Lambeth Council and asked if they keep a record of the letters that were sent to me. The confirmed it. I asked to see a copy of the Notice to the Owner that was sent but the Council said "you have no right to see the letters, we send them to you once and that's it. You appealed to the Court, we as a Council also have the right to appeal against it. We have to wait for the judge to decide"... This weekend I've got a call from the Bailiffs asking me why I haven't paid yet. I told them that I filled in all the forms to the court and that I was told that the Bailiffs would be on hold. The Bailiff told me that they had no notification and that I have until Wednesday to pay everything... She also said that not changing my address with the DVLA was an offence and so I had to pay for the full bill. This started with a simple mistake made in one letter of the car plate when paying the car parking and it got so wrong and completely out of control with Bailiffs requesting me nearly 800£ to pay within days. I'm sorry is such a long text. I am so lost and stressed and I don't know where to go from here... Any suggestions or anyone that has been through the same situation please? Many thanks, Vanessa
  2. Hi all. A few days ago I was travelling on a train and caught without a ticket. it was not by a normal inspector and instead an enforcer of some kind who took matters more seriously. I had come from a small station where the ticket machine often does not work and so I said that was the reason i didn't have a ticket and was not intending to complete the journey without paying. He said that I had ample time at the station where I changed to go and buy a ticket. He also said that because the station i got on at and the one i would leave at did not have barriers that i could have intended to do the journey without paying. I apologised and said that i had planned on paying on the train, but after research its clear this isnt good enough. The whole conversation was recorded and he asked my details etc and i think he said i would be receiving a letter with an admin fee. I have done some research my question is will the letter offer an admin fee because i'm quite scared of the prospect of a court hearing and potential criminal record? Is there a way they could find out the ticket machine was in fact working (i'm not sure it was) and prosecute further or will they just want a quick penalty fee? Thanks in advance for you help.
  3. Shaking as I type this. HMRC have just charged me a penalty for their own mistake. Basically they ignored my letters stating that my childcare had gone down, then demanded a repayment. I wrote appealing the repayment. They passed my complaint on to the disputes department (whatever the difference is). Then this morning I wake up to a letter demanding a penalty of £1500 or so stating that I had been negligent in not telling them about the change to my childcare. Surely if I have sent them all my letters AND my proofs of posting showing them that I have written to them, then I haven't been negligent? I guess this is a pre-emptive attack / counter claim to try and wriggle out of cancelling the overpayment because THEY have been negligent. A kind of attack is the best form of defence. So stressed about this now. Can't even afford to pay back the overpayment, let alone this. What do I do?
  4. I hardly ever use my BT landline because I'm paying Three.co.uk £30.00 for 2000 minutes and endless texts etc. So - today I get my online BT bill and for the first time I've discovered that I'm charged a total of £3.70 for not using my phone twice in one month and not calling their 1571 answer service twice in one month. I have contacted BT about this on the phone. Are you surprised that the response was not "yes, we will provide you with a full justification of the size of the cost"? They've been given 14 working days to provide what I request. Else? I draw my sword. Some will recall that I won a punch up with British Gas for some £800, and since then have won against certain large foodstores on other consumer issues. Yes - I'm confident. A sizeable proportion will - as BT did - jump to the contractual clauses that allow them to bleed me and which it will be said allow me to be bled. Well - like me or not - I'm not interested in the clauses, I'm interested in finding out how BT arrive at £3.70 as a reasonable penalty charge, because this is what it is. Why not £5, or £10, or £200!! Sure enough £200 would appear to be ridiculous, compared to £3.70. For any level of penalty charge, customers should be provided with a full costing of penalty charges on request [not a defensive response which hides behind contractual clauses]. Yes - I could dream up reasons for penalty charges. I'm not interested. I want to know how they care calculated. The issue is related to a similar one where certain airlines are bleeding people up to a tenner to use a credit card online, whilst my local cinema may charge a mere 75p. How are we (in general) as conusmers to be shielded from big muscle businesses, driven by greed and profiteering? Something is fundamentally wrong with the way business works in this country.
  5. My car brokedown on Saturday night (16/01/2011). I called the AA.. They came within an hour.. The agent couldnt fix the car and diagnosed it as a broken timer belt with possibly bent valves. The car was dead and immobile. The car was recovered by tow truck and left outside the garage.. The car was set down by the AA agent in whatever space was available near the garage. He parked it with the near-side two wheels on the footpath. It was dark and raining heavily. The garage was closed on Sunday.. On Monday morning (18/01/2011), I met the garage guys and handed over the keys and they then took a day or so (due to bad weather, incessant rain and lack of staff) to move the car and start work on it.. They had the car for the rest of the week and I picked up the car on the Saturday. When I picked the car there was a PCN stuck on the windshield. Here I must clarify there was a sign allowing parking on one side of the sign and my car was parked on the other side. The sign at the location indicates, using an arrow, the direction and point from which you can park with wheels on the footway. I appealed against the PCN and also had attached the garage bills. Soon after my appeal, I got a letter from Redbridge Parking asking for proof in the form of a letter from the AA. I called the AA and got a letter which I sent them. Now I have got a letter from them rejecting my appeal. Redbridge say that they cannot cancel the PCN because the AA moved the vehicle to the location where it received the PCN therefore the vehicle should have been parked correctly. I have two options now.. Pay the reduced amount £50 within 14 days.. If I do not use this option, a Notice to Owner will be sent to me, the Registered Keeper, at the full penalty of £100.00. I am then entitled to a further representation to the Council’s Appeal Services. Should your representation not be accepted then I will have the option to make a further representation to the Parking and Traffic Appeals Services (PATAS). As I have indicated, the circumstances were not normal. I was not in charge of the vehicle when the alleged violation happened.. The car was dead and wouldn't start.. There was no place to park near the garage. This infuriates me.. This is greed, opportunism and a frantic way by the council to make more money out of me. Any help would be appreciated. Should I fight, what chance to do I have of winning this case with PATAS.. Am I better off paying the reduced amount. Sincerely
  6. I recently received a parking ticket for parking in a red route bay outside my house in south east London. However, I am convinced that when I parked my car there it was not inside the red route bay. In other words, I believe that the bay has been extended around my car while it was parked there. Looking on the road, there is a clearly visible line where the bay used to go up to. I'm very conscious of this are as it's right outside my house. I challenged the ticket on this basis (firstly, that the car was not in a red route bay when I parked it there; secondly, that as a resident of the street and in the property directly opposite the bay, I was not informed of the change to the bay). However, Transport for London have rejected my challenge on the grounds that there have been no recent changes to the bay area. I have photos of the clearly visible old boundary, the spray paint marking the new size for the bay, and also an image from Google Streetview, taken in 2008, showing the previous, smaller size of the bay. However, I don't have any proof that the bay size was recently changed - in other words while my car was parked there. So it's my word against there's until they can prove when the extension took place. My questions are: 1) Does anybody know how I can find out the date when this extension to the bay was made? I know the red route bay was originally installed in December 2007, and that it was still in the smaller size in Spring 2008 according to Google Streetview. Should I contact my local council (Lewisham) or should I contact Transport for London as they manage the red routes? Are either of them likely to give me the date? 2) Does anyone think I've got a chance of winning my appeal??
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