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Bailiff enforcement: Motor vehicles....defining 'ownership'.


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This week yet another person has been found guilty in court of cutting off a vehicle clamp and unfortunately this case is yet another one where the 'ownership' of the vehicle is highly questionable.

 

In brief, the individual attempted to justify his action on the basis that he claimed to be the 'owner' of the vehicle that had been clamped. He stated that he had not received any documentation in relation to the contravention. On this point he would have been telling the truth given that all statutory notices are by law sent to the 'registered keeper' (this is the person whose name appears on the V5c....commonly called the log book). For reasons that are very unclear, the defendant transferred his vehicle into the name of his flatmate and both he and his flatmate were recored as joint drivers on the vehicle insurance!!!

 

It is cases such as this one that are the root cause of enforcement companies and local authorities viewing 'interpleader' and 'third party' claims with such suspicion.

 

The legal position is that unless clear proof is provided, the registered keeper is deemed to be the owner of the vehicle. I will post details of the relevant legislation in the next post.

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The last paragraph could be very interesting for those that have Mobility cars as they (the renters) are named on the V5

 

If its a mobility car the name on the v5 is followed by 044441 so its easily identifiable

None of the beliefs held by "Freemen on the land" have ever been supported by any judgments or verdicts in any criminal or civil court cases.

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The starting point is the Road Vehicles (Registration and Licensing) Regulations 1971. Over the years a few amendments have been made to this legislation but Regulation 3 remains unchanged.

 

In 1996, the regulation was examined in the Court of Appeal and the judge stated the following:

 

I must next turn to the regulations made pursuant to section 22. They are the Road Vehicles (Registration and Licensing) Regulations 1971; under Regulation 3 it is provided:

 

"In these Regulations, unless the context otherwise requires, the following expressions have the meaning hereby respectively assigned to them, that is to say ....

 

'owner' in relation to a vehicle means the person by whom the vehicle is kept and the expression 'ownership' shall be construed accordingly.

 

 

In addition:

 

Section 82 (2) of the Road Traffic Act states as following:

 

For the purposes of this Part of this Act,
the owner of a vehicle shall be taken to be the person by whom the vehicle is kept
.

 

 

Part 1 of Section 2 (2) and (3) of The London Authorities & Transport for London Act 2003 states as follows:

 

(3) Subject to the said paragraph 1(8), in determining, for the purposes of this Act, who was the owner of a vehicle at any time,
i
t shall be presumed that the owner was the person in whose name the vehicle was at that time registered under the Vehicle Excise and Registration Act

 

Section 92 of the Traffic Management Act 2004 states as follows:

 

The “owner”, in relation to a vehicle, means the person by whom the vehicle is kept, which in the case of a vehicle registered under the Vehicle Excise and Registration Act 1994 (c. 22)
is presumed (unless the contrary is proved) to be the person in whose name the vehicle is registered;

 

PS: I have not checked the regs for some time. If I have made any errors please do let me know.

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The starting point will be the Road Vehicles (Registration and Licensing) Regulations 1971. Over the years a few amendments have been made to this legislation but Regulation 3 remains the same as it was in 1971.

 

In 1996, the regulation was examined in the Court of Appeal.

 

The case is on Bailii but the forum software gremlins throw out links to Bailii. I will get a pdf on the forum shortly.

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The starting point will be the Road Vehicles (Registration and Licensing) Regulations 1971. Over the years a few amendments have been made to this legislation but Regulation 3 remains the same as it was in 1971.

 

In 1996, the regulation was examined in the Court of Appeal and the judge stated the following:

 

I must next turn to the regulations made pursuant to section 22. They are the Road Vehicles (Registration and Licensing) Regulations 1971; under Regulation 3 it is provided:

 

"In these Regulations, unless the context otherwise requires, the following expressions have the meaning hereby respectively assigned to them, that is to say ....

 

'owner' in relation to a vehicle means the person by whom the vehicle is kept and the expression 'ownership' shall be construed accordingly.

 

 

In addition:

 

Section 82 (2) of the Road Traffic Act states as following:

 

For the purposes of this Part of this Act,
the owner of a vehicle shall be taken to be the person by whom the vehicle is kept
.

 

 

Part 1 of Section 2 (2) and (3) of The London Authorities & Transport for London Act 2003 states as follows:

 

(3) Subject to the said paragraph 1(8), in determining, for the purposes of this Act, who was the owner of a vehicle at any time,
i
t shall be presumed that the owner was the person in whose name the vehicle was at that time registered under the Vehicle Excise and Registration Act

 

Section 92 of the Traffic Management Act 2004 states as follows:

 

The “owner”, in relation to a vehicle, means the person by whom the vehicle is kept, which in the case of a vehicle registered under the Vehicle Excise and Registration Act 1994 (c. 22)
is presumed (unless the contrary is proved) to be the person in whose name the vehicle is registered;

 

PS: I have not checked the regs for some time. If I have made any errors please do let me know.

 

The above is taken from an article that I wrote for CCR public sector a couple of years back. I will see if I can get permission to publish the full article.

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Am I right in thinking that the code also appears on the warrant of control?

 

Yes, I believe so

None of the beliefs held by "Freemen on the land" have ever been supported by any judgments or verdicts in any criminal or civil court cases.

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Yes, I believe so

 

The code does appears on many of the warrants that I have seen (but missing on a few). By it appearing it should at least assist with enforcement agents identifying 'vulnerable' debtors at the earliest possible stage.

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The last paragraph could be very interesting for those that have Mobility cars as they (the renters) are named on the V5

 

My Motability car is not registered to me, Motability now hold the log books.

 

Also, DVLA Print on log books that they are not proof of ownership .... Surely this is in direct contradiction of the legislation above ?

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I think there is a misunderstanding regards to the term proof. Proof is not an absolute unless it is stated as proof positive, it is a relative value in regards to evidence. The legislation gives an indication that the standard of proof regarding the licensing document is high, it does not mean that it is absolutely the case.

 

When motorblity print that the document is not proof what it means that it is not absolute proof it does not mean that the legislation is contradicted.

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Something so simple ends up so confusing, why is nothing simple like breathing?

 

I think it depends how deeply you want to understand a subject. Breathing in and out is simple I agree, the human respiratory system isnt.

DO NOT PAY UPFRONT FEES TO COLD CALLERS PROMISING TO WRITE OFF YOUR DEBTS

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That is the problem. I don't think you can define ownership.

 

You can state the legislation which gives guidance on who is likely to be the owner, but you cannot quote anything that says this person is definitely the owner. at least nothing I am aware of.

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Incidentally I think that the above is entirely intentional. if there was a provision which stated that the person on the log book was to be the owner, it would be far to narrow and restrictive and remove the rights of anyone who fell into the category where the log book owner was not.

DO NOT PAY UPFRONT FEES TO COLD CALLERS PROMISING TO WRITE OFF YOUR DEBTS

DO NOT PAY UPFRONT FEES FOR COSTLY TELEPHONE CONSULTATIONS WITH SO CALLED "EXPERTS" THEY INVARIABLY ARE NOTHING OF THE SORT

BEWARE OF QUICK FIX DEBT SOLUTIONS, IF IT LOOKS LIKE IT IS TO GOOD TO BE TRUE IT INVARIABLY IS

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Incidentally I think that the above is entirely intentional. if there was a provision which stated that the person on the log book was to be the owner, it would be far to narrow and restrictive and remove the rights of anyone who fell into the category where the log book owner was not.

 

As is the case with Personal Contract Hire, where the keeper will never be the owner, merely have the Beneficial Interest in it that due to that case for Injunction, EA's believe they can take the vehicle. Or Motability.

 

Wonder if they would be facey enough to if the debtor had no car; go after that large Mobility Scooter that requires registration so is a vehicle albeit not requiring a license to drive it and tax at £0 being bought on HP from Motability bearing in mind the EA could argue the debtor could use a manual wheelchair, or would the part about equipment for the use of a disabled person still hold in that circumstance the debtor being on the V5 and the scooter on HP rather than hire?

Edited by brassnecked
typo

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Wonder if they would be facey enough to if the debtor had no car; go after that large Mobility Scooter that requires registration so is a vehicle albeit not requiring a license to drive it and tax at £0 being bought on HP from Motability bearing in mind the EA could argue the debtor could use a manual wheelchair, or would the part about equipment for the use of a disabled person still hold in that circumstance the debtor being on the V5 and the scooter on HP rather than hire?

 

Since the new regulations came into effect I have not received or come across any case yet (and I hope that it stays that way) where a bailiff attempted to take control of a vehicle 'displaying a blue badge'. A little known fact is that vehicles registered under the Motability Scheme should have a code number number on the warrant. This identifies the vehicle as belonging to Motability and should act be a warning to enforcement agents.

 

If a bailiff were to step out of line by taking control of a Motability vehicle he not only faces a complaint to the court about his actions, he also puts his employer's contract with the relevant local authority at risk.

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Incidentally I think that the above is entirely intentional. if there was a provision which stated that the person on the log book was to be the owner, it would be far to narrow and restrictive and remove the rights of anyone who fell into the category where the log book owner was not.

 

In my detailed post below, I have attempted to explain how various government agencies view 'ownership' of vehicles.

 

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?453629-Bailiff-enforcement-Motor-vehicles....defining-ownership-.&p=4803329&viewfull=1#post4803329

 

 

When a car is purchased, the registration requirements come under the Road Vehicle Registration & Licensing Regulations 1971.

 

When purchasing a road fund licence, the regulations will be the Vehicle Excise and Registration Act 1994.

 

When incurring a local authority issued penalty charge notice, the Traffic Management Act 2004 will be the relevant legislation

 

If a fixed penalty notice is issued by either TfL or one of the 33 London boroughs, or a vehicle causing an obstruction is moved from the street, by the London Authorities & Transport for London Act 2003 would be relevant.

 

Common amongst all of the above is that the person in whose name the vehicle is REGISTERED is considered to be the vehicle OWNER. Accordingly, if a local authority issues a penalty charge notice, the statutory requirement is that a Notice to Owner will be sent to the person in whose name the vehicle is registered at DVLA.

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Doesnt it say unless proven otherwise.

If the registration indicated that it was always the owner there would be no caveat; No "presumption", it would just be.

DO NOT PAY UPFRONT FEES TO COLD CALLERS PROMISING TO WRITE OFF YOUR DEBTS

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BEWARE OF QUICK FIX DEBT SOLUTIONS, IF IT LOOKS LIKE IT IS TO GOOD TO BE TRUE IT INVARIABLY IS

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Doesnt it say unless proven otherwise.

If the registration indicated that it was always the owner there would be no caveat; No "presumption", it would just be.

 

You have raised an important point. Despite the fact that all the legislation points towards the registered keeper being the vehicle owner, this does not mean that this cannot be challenged (rebutted) because it can and legislation is very clear on this.

 

With local authority issued penalty charge notices, a Notice to Owner will be sent to the name and address of the person in whose name the vehicle is registered. Once again, this person is assumed by law to the vehicle owner (hence the name of the statutory notice.....the Notice to Owner).

 

If the person (or company) receiving that notice was not the owner, then quite simply he needs to read the reverse of the NtO and he will see that he may challenge the PCN. The 'grounds' on which he may appeal are clearly outlined in legislation (detailed below) and must appear on the NtO. Two most common grounds are that:

 

The recipient: 


 

never was the owner of the vehicle in question;

had ceased to be its owner before the date on which the alleged 
contravention occurred; or 


 

became its owner after that date.
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Rereading the thread and having a question re ownership it is thus: You take a log book loan out and during that time who is the owner? The registered keeper or the Logbook loan company until the loan is paid off? This answer could have impact on recovering the debt if it not paid... Just one of a few scenarios' but not limited to HP as well. Sorry for this question BA... (previously discussed different thread)

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On a log book or bill of sale agreement the title of the goods is transferred to the creditor on execution for the term of the agreement(the creditor owns the goods, however the debtor can continue to use them) as long as the agreement is not breached, if it is the goods are immediately recoverable by the creditor.

DO NOT PAY UPFRONT FEES TO COLD CALLERS PROMISING TO WRITE OFF YOUR DEBTS

DO NOT PAY UPFRONT FEES FOR COSTLY TELEPHONE CONSULTATIONS WITH SO CALLED "EXPERTS" THEY INVARIABLY ARE NOTHING OF THE SORT

BEWARE OF QUICK FIX DEBT SOLUTIONS, IF IT LOOKS LIKE IT IS TO GOOD TO BE TRUE IT INVARIABLY IS

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