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Parking Fine, boot in the door injury, Equita Baliff and vulnerability

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Hi

 

I would be most grateful if I could get some advice regarding baliff action over a parking fine.

 

I am a single parent who has been unable to work for over 2 years due to a chronic illness.

 

I have a daughter with severe learning difficulties whose behaviour can be very challenging.

 

Similar to the situation I had before I

 

received a parking ticket for not displaying blue badges one day when out with her.

Sometimes she gets out the car when we park and storms off.

I have to chase after her to keep her safe.

On this occasion this is waht happened.

 

I did not pay the pcn and the council referred the matter to Equita.

 

I wrote to Equita and sent them a postal order for £20 and offered to pay £20 per month as I was on benefit.

 

I kept receiving letters from Equita but no acknowledgement or response to my offer.

 

I rang the named baliff and left several messages and sent him several text messages which I am sure are still on my mobile.

 

On 15th October, 2012 I received a hand delivered letter from the baliff.

 

It was bizarre because even though I was at home and actually heard the letter drop through the letter box nobody knocked.

 

I then telephoned the baliff that dayto explain to him the situation.

He was very reasonable and agreed to put the matter on hold whilst I contacted the council.

 

A month later I started to get more letters from the baliff company and messages on my mobile.

I again contacted them and asked if they had received my offer and postal order.

 

They told me that they had got the postal order but refused to acknowledge my offer.

They then said that the offer was not acceptable as the fees had now gone up from £80 to £399.

 

I explained I was a vulnerable person and was on benefit and could not afford to pay the £150 per month they were demanding.

 

I queried why on earth the costs were now so high and Equita said they would send me a breakdown of costs.

 

On 19th November, 2012 I received a letter from Equita dated 12th November, 2012. The costs were as follows:

 

Debt 82

Initial letter 11.20

levy/visit fees 96.00

attendence fee 167.00

vat 54.84

 

On 21st November, 2012 a baliff knocked on my door.

I did not know who was at the door so answered the door.

 

He immediately forced the door open and stuck his boot in the door.

In doing so the steel wood door hit my toe which was really painful.

I felt really scared and frightened and told him I wanted to shut the door to ring his company.

 

I asked him if I could shut the door, he said I could try but he was not removing his boot. I

asked him for the telephone number of his company so I could call them.

He refused to give it to me.

 

I explained that I was a vulnerable person with a disability and had been long term sick and was on benefit.

He refused to acknowledge what I was saying.

He said he was not able to accept installments and he would not move his boot from the door until the debt was paid.

 

I called 999, but the police said it was civil matter and they could not assist.

 

In the end I paid the money on a debit card from my fund to pay my daughters carer.

I felt frightened and under duress.

I asked the baliff for his name, he refused to give it to me.

 

I asked him if he was registered at Northampton county court. He said no.

 

After he left I noticed that my toe was bleeding and very swollen.

I telephoned Equita and tried to make a complaint and they said they could only deal with complaints in writing.

I emailed them and asked for the baliffs details.

 

I called the balliff again and he told me his surname but refused to tell me his Christian name.

 

Yesterday I received a letter from Equita telling me his details and the surname he gave me was not the surname he gave me.

 

The day after the incident my big toe nail dropped off and the pain has been totally unbearable. I rang the police to make a complaint.

 

The police were supposed to come and see me today but instead rang to say that it was a civil matter

as once I had opened my front door the baliff had the right to do whatever he needed to to gain entry.

 

This is so frustrating as I cannot see how forcing a door open that someone is trying to shut with your boot is peaceful.

 

Can anyone tell me how I stand legally.

 

Thank you

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moved to the bailiff forum

 

first thing

 

phone your BANK NOW

 

and invoke a CHARGEBACK

 

on what you paid on your card.

 

http://whatconsumer.co.uk/visa-debit-chargeback/

 

dont take NO for an answer

 

keep asking to go up the chain until

you get someone that actions your request

immediately refunds the money

 

[they can do their 'investigation' AFTERWARDS.

 

you were forcrd under duress to pay the inflated amount.

 

again, don't the NO for an answer.

 

other will be along to sort the bailiff out

 

your household IS classed as vunerable

 

it should have immediately been passed back

 

you owe NO FEES AT ALL.

 

dx


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Would you mind letting us know which local authority this involves...

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I strongly suspect that equita were only acting as a DCA. Check with the council. and find out the state of this parking fine. Certainly get a recharge from your bank on the grounds of deception if that is the case. In any case you are vulnerable and should get the recharge anyway.

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Thanet District Council. I have tried writing to them and they dont even bother to reply. when I called them they said it was out of their hands and was between me and the baliff.

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Thank for the advice on the chargeback.

 

I am however very worried that if I do that the baliff will come back and start harrassing me or my daughter.

 

My daughter would not cope and would of been hysterically petrified.

She gets nervous anyway and needs constant reassurance.

 

If she was exposed to a baliff acting like this she would go into panic mode for weeks on end and I would struggle to cope with her.

 

I was lucky that she was at a day centre when the baliff turned up.

 

Because of her disability she has limited understanding and reasoning with her would be really difficult.

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Thanet Council are wrong. Their name appears on the warrant and the local authority are wholly responsible for the fees charged by their agents.

 

I would be interested to know whether your complaint has been rejected by the PARKING DEPT. In your case, I would have advised you to make a Formal Complaint to the Chief Executive.

 

The fees charged appear to be incorrect. You have been charged an "attending to remove" fee and I am at a complete loss to understand why this fee has been charged. Has the bailiff PREVIOUSLY levied upon your car or any goods?

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Thanet District Council. I have tried writing to them and they dont even bother to reply. when I called them they said it was out of their hands and was between me and the baliff.

 

The Council are talking total rubbish.

Have you asked to speak to someone in charge - there is a good chance you have spoken to a member of a private company who have taken over the Council's admin functions.

 

One such company is Capita who also happen to own a couple of Bailiff firms one of which is Equita.

 

The Council are 100% responsible for the actions of their appointed contractors.

 

Have you asked your local Councillor(s) to intervene.


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Thank you.

 

No this is the first time I had seen the baliff or any other baliff in connection to this matter.

 

The baliff who came around did say that he would sieze the Motability vehicle too if I did not pay, something he could legally do.

 

That sent me into panic because I would then be housebound and would not of been able to collect my daughter from her day centre.

 

The day the letter was hand delivered nobody knocked on the door.

 

I am not sure if they can levy without visiting or seeing the goods buy I have no letters from them about this.

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They cannot seize a Motability car, and they know it, he was threatening beyond his power, to put you under duress to pay him, you are also vulnerable so they shouldn't be involved anyway. time for Formal Complaint to CEO, MP etc,


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The bailiff can only "seize" goods that he knows that he can sell. He CANNOT sell a Motability Vehicle and is speaking rubbish.

 

Given your personal circumstances, it is almost certainly the case that a FORMAL LETTER OF COMPLAINT should be sent to the Chief Executive of Thanet District Council.

 

Let me think about this overnight.

 

There has been a fair amount of bad publicity on the forum lately concerning Marston Group ( which is of course a far larger company than Equita) but in your case, you are CLEARLY vulnerable and you have a Motability Vehicle.

 

Hopefully Equita Ltd will start looking at posts on the forum and if so, offer to refund your bailiff fees straight away. This is the very least that they should do....

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thank you. I will write to the council's CEO and to my MP, Laura Sandys.

 

She hass always been very helpful in the past.

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chargeback yet?

 

dx


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Why are the police refusing to take this matter seriously ?


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If the above is correct then this bailiff does not deserve to keep the certificate he has been issued with.

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This is sicking, yet again the council refuse to do anything.

 

Please write a formal complaint to the CEO of your council. I would also place a complaint to the Chief Inspector of your local police station. This turned into a criminal matter when the bailiff refused to take his foot out of the door, they are not allowed to do this. This is classed as a forced entry and a breach of the peace.

 

You are classed as a vulnerable person see link below;

http://www.justice.gov.uk/downloads/courts/bailiffs-enforcement-officers/national-standards-enforcement-agents.pdf

 

I would send a copy to your council and the chief inspector out lining your vulnerability.

 

If you are unsure what to write there are a few of us who will help you.

 

You really need to complain, I hope you do :)

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Hi

 

This is truly appalling.

 

I offer my help in composing your letters of complaint. Please post back if you want some sample letters. You should be complaining to the police, the council, the ministry of justice and your local MP.

 

This stinks.

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I hope that my recent posts can help you in this truly awful situation, please let us know how it goes

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There has been no word back from the original poster for the past 2 weeks.

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There has been no word back from the original poster for the past 2 weeks.

 

Lets hope all is well and they have seen the post :)

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The fact that the bailiff has pushed the dorr into your foot and caused you injury means it is now a criminal matter so go to the front desk of the local police station. If the officer on duty says its a civil matter and the police cant help then ask to speak to the duty inspector and make an official complaint

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The fact the bailiff shoved his hoof in the door now means he has, in all probability, invalidated the warrant. When I was in the police force and as far as I am aware now, a warrant, regardless of whatever type of warrant it is, must be followed to the letter of what is written upon it and the law. If that is not done, the warrant is invalid and all legal protections conferred by it are null and void.

 

If the OP gets no joy from the Duty Inspector at the police station, ask to speak to the Station Superintendent, who is more senior in rank.

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Hey all,

 

I'm aware the OP hasn't replied to this thread. Due to her extremely vulnerable status, do you think we should send her a PM or email to check she is okay?

 

In situations such as this, could the OP seek an injunction?

 

Cerberus

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I have reviewed this thread and identified a cause of action against the bailiff under Section 7, Health & Safety At Work Act 1974 (Failure to Comply With A Statutory Duty), and against Equita and Thanet Council under Section 3 of the Act (Failure to Ensure the Safety of the Public/Endangering the Safety of the Public). There have also been breaches by all three under Regulation 3, Management of Health & Safety At Work Regulations 1999 (Requirement to Conduct A Risk Assessment).

 

For those of you who have worked in law enforcement, you should be familiar with the Ways and Means Act. The above is the Ways and Means Act at work. For those of you who are not familiar with this, it is an unwritten law in law enforcement that goes something like, "If you can't get the buggers one way, you can always get them another way."

 

Health and Safety legislation is, probably, going to be the best way of dealing with this, especially as the OP suffered injury.

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In that case, a course of action where the circumstances lead to injury, both physical and mental, due to stress on a vulnerable debtor, the facts should be reported to the HSE to investigate, don't think Equita, and their owners Capita will want HSE size 10s stomping all over their bailiff operations for failing to carry out Risk Assessments into enforcement on vulnerable debtors now will they?


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The bailiff: A 12th Century solution re-branded as Enforcement Agents for the 21st Century to seize and sell debtors goods as before Oh so Dickensian!

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