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Hello everyone.

 

I had an appointment to attend to this morning so off I went in the car only to find it low on fuel.

I popped a bit of fuel in and queued to pay.

I didn't pay though because as you've already probably guessed I had forgotten my card.

So, when I got to the counter I explained that I couldn't pay but I'll pop back in later once I get back and have collected my card.

He said no, this isn't possible, I had to give my details and pay ForeCourt Eye instead.

 

I said I wanted to make it clear I'm not refusing to pay and that I'd be back later to pay.

I said I didn't know anything about this ForeCourt Eye and I was getting my fuel from this garage so I didn't see how they were involved.

I gave my name address and phone number and said I had to go because I needed to be somewhere for an appointment.

He said he'd call the police if I didn't fill out the rest of his form so I apologised and left.

 

About 2-3 hours later I had collected my card and went back to pay and was smugly told that it had already been passed onto ForeCourt Eye so I'd need to wait for them to contact me.

I asked if they were refusing payment and they said yes.

I called the police to explain and they called the garage because they'd been told I had refused to pay.

 

They were going to tell the garage they needed to accept payment but got back to me saying it's the first they've heard of FCE (ForeCourt Eye) but it seems they have passed it on and I should pay them direct and advised the police once I had done so.

 

FCE's website is claiming an additional £6 admin fee which, whilst is not a great amount, doesn't seem like they are really in a position to even get involved.

I have checked the pump and to the side, on the pillar, there is a slightly faded poster stuck to it that talks about FCE.

 

Am I somehow bound to their terms or can I fight this on the grounds they have no authority to request payment on behalf of the garage?

Or any other defence that I can use?

 

Your thoughts on this are appreciated.

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no you are not bound by any terms and conditions.

pers i'd write them a cheque with a letter and give it to the garage.

 

[minus the £6 ofcourse!!]

 

dx

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So, technically, you have stolen fuel.

By fueling up your pertaining that you have the means to pay for it.

You could of done a few oter things like phone a friend to make an over the phone payment etc etc.

The garage uses other "routes" to make sure its paid. They could of reported you straight to the police and you would of been arrested and possibly charged.

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I do not know if what you say is particularly true because they did report it to the police and during my conversation with the police afterwards they said the garage should have accepted payment and that would have been it.

 

By showing all the signs of being willing to pay but temporarily unable, I think you would struggle to prove it as theft and have the rozzers after me as you suggest.

 

My understanding is that it would be a civil matter that they could have sued me for but I could be wrong.

 

dx100uk said:
no you are not bound by any terms and conditions.

pers i'd write them a cheque with a letter and give it to the garage.

 

[minus the £6 ofcourse!!]

 

dx

 

I suspect they will not cash it.

Where does that leave me?

That they are waiving the cost of the fuel and providing it free on this occasion?

 

I'd still have FCE on my case demanding money.

If I can be assured it's not some legally recognised and enforceable act I can ignore them I suppose.

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By the VERY FACT of you fueling up your representing that you have the means to pay.

 

Just because the garage uses alternative means without getting the police involved means they are paid quicker and YOU have less chance of being charged.

Yes it is a criminal offence.

It Is not a civil matter if the police get involved.

 

Do not do this.

The garage will report you to the police.

 

Qouted from Kent police.

 

Non-Payment of Fuel

 

A customer has left without paying for their petrol

 

If a customer has left a petrol station or garage forecourt without making payment, (known as bilking) staff should first make a report to the police.

 

If there is evidence of a criminal offence, such as false number plates or involvement of a repeat offender, we will continue to investigate using the regular process.

 

Recover outstanding payment

 

Genuine mistakes can sometimes happen and in these cases garages and petrol stations are able to recover any outstanding payments through civil recovery.

 

This allows a garage or petrol station to obtain the vehicles details via the DVLA and contact the owner to arrange for payments to be made.

 

If after a reasonable attempt at civil recovery the fuel is not paid for, further action can be taken.

 

I have received a civil recovery letter

 

If you have received a civil recovery letter, it means the garage or petrol station that is writing to you, believe you have left without making payment for your fuel. Failure to respond or make payment may lead to further action being taken by the police.

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Sorry, but this is all sheer nonsense.

 

The theft act 1968 section 1 says that theft is the dishonest appropriation of property belonging to another with intention to permanently deprive.

 

There is no dishonesty here and there is no intention to make any permanent deprivation. The facts speak for themselves the evidence is clear.

 

Because of the problem of people going off without paying for their petrol and then later on saying that they intended to pay, section 3 of the theft act 1978 was passed which creates the offence of "making off without payment"

 

Once again, it is very clear that there has to be an intention to avoid paying.

 

The evidence is clear here that the OP tried to pay and was prevented from doing so. The garage are not entitled to refuse payment. I don't know who these new bounty hunters are – FCE - frankly you should tell them to go and do one.

 

In respect of the posts which I have quoted above, I apologise because generally speaking the quality of advice that you get on this forum is much better than this.

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I haven't bothered to follow those links but if they merely appear to confirm what you are saying then they are talking rubbish. The one that you have quoted above in an earlier post is extremely generalised and frankly misleading. It's honestly written by a policeman and not somebody who understands the law.

 

Our police are excellent and they do an excellent job but they need guidance on the law and you should not treat them as an authority.

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Then I suggest you do look at the different police forces websites.

They are written by lawyers.

 

What I'm saying is that at the time payment could not be made and yes, maybe the garage were too quick to send off the info without the involvement of the police.

BUT

If now payment is not made, as suggested by the OP, then there lies the caveat of willfully or intentionality of permanently depriving.

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I don't think he said he had no intention of paying for the fuel?

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I don't think he said he had no intention of paying for the fuel?

 

From what the OP has told us, that is very clearly the case. He has gone to reasonable lengths to pay the money and if they refuse payment then that is their lookout.

 

It doesn't mean that he stops showing it to them. He does. He should be careful to make sure that the money is in the bank to cover the cheque or the for some other reason it doesn't bounce. He could then be liable for a civil claim where he would lose and he would also find themselves liable for the claimant's costs.

 

I don't think there's anything more he could easily do. Mind you he ought to sort himself out and be a bit more careful about these kinds of things in the future. You can see the knock-on problems that this causes for everyone concerned.


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I have every intention of paying for the fuel, I went back and tried but was refused.

 

The policeman I spoke to was surprised by this and originally phoned to tell them they have to accept payment.

 

It was only when they spoke of this FCE involvement that he said to just pay them.

 

He said he would be surprised if there were any additional charges to pay but without them FCE's business model is not sustainable.

 

I am just unsure if here in my local authority this FCE has any legal standing. If not, I can send a cheque with proof of posting and that should be the end of it whether they cash it or not, it's their call.

Edited by dx100uk
Spacing

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Send a cheque

Nothing further they can do

No stupid scheme just like private parking can hurt you

 

That cost them money to sign up to that scheme probably smarting about it!!

Sour grapes times


PLEASE DONT HIT QUOTE IF THE LAST POST IS THE ONE YOU ARE REPLYING TOO.

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Before I retired I worked for a well known supermarket in thier Petrol station.

If we had a customer that had genuinely left home without his means of payment. we filled in a form with his details and had 7 days to pay

 

if they had not paid we then sent details to a collection agency who then chased him for money to which they added a large surcharge.

 

Only if they were a serial offender or bilked the garage did we approach the Police Bilked is driving off withno attempt to pay.

In the majority of case they paid within the time frame

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Go into the garage with a friend filming you, not any of the staff involved faces, just you.

 

Capture on film the garage refusing your payment and referring you to this FCE mob.

 

Re-iterate on camera that you are here to pay for the fuel you used and you do not believe you have any contract with anyone else.

 

I’d keep this video as evidence they are refusing to accept payment for the fuel and get on with your life.

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I was in a fuel station this week and witnessed a similar situation. The customer called the police who said it is not theft as he has not attempted to leave without paying and has brought it to the business's attention.

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Absolutely correct. Thank you for bringing it to our attention.


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For reference to anyone following this in the future I have dropped the garage a letter explaining a cheque will be in the post as soon as my cheque book arrives or they are welcome to contact me using my provided details if they wish me to pay sooner.

 

I have also written a letter to FCE who's first letter arrived on Friday saying I have not yet paid the balance so they've added a £60 admin fee.

 

I will be posting my letter to them tomorrow explaining I told the attendant at the garage I did not wish to sign up to their services and left my contact details with them for when they contacted the police.

 

They have signed me up to their services against my wishes and I did not sign anything.

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I once fogot my wallet and was asked to fill out a form of a similar nature. My details would have been sent on to other organisations regardless of whether i returned with a method of payment so I refused to fill out their form, left my car on their forecourt and walked the 4 miles home to get my wallet When I returned they contemplated what to do next but decided that doing anything other than accepting the payment would make things worse.

 

If you dont agree to go along with the scheme they offer that allows you credit for the sale then dont move the car, the contract isnt complete until you leave having paid or agreed to the alternative. They cant refuse payment or they risk voiding the contract themselves (see mitigating a loss). Not accepting a cheque is another matter but you can cross that bridge when you come to it.

 

as for FCE, ignore and let the garage company know that you will be after them for passing on your details without either your consent or a lawful reason to do so and the damages for doing that are already decided by the courts at £500. yo cna then tell FCE that they are unlawfully processing your data as well and go after them for the same unless they remove the unlawfully obtained personal data from their database and you expect proof of its expunging.

Edited by honeybee13
Paras

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I thought I'd come back to update this. 

 

Without reading where I left off I will quickly summarize. 

I didn't hear back from FCE but instead received a letter from,

if I recall correctly,

UCS (Ultimate Customer Solutions). 

 

I explained the same thing to them and enclosed a copy of the letter I sent to FCE and have not heard anything back. 

The cashier at the garage asked me awhile ago if I'd got everything sorted and I told them I haven't paid anyone other than sending the garage the cheque which he says they can't cash and is pinned up on a notice board in the office. 

They are not bothered because FCE reimbursed them anyway he says.

 

@ericsbrother, this is an interesting twist and whilst I am tempted to follow up with the garage I do not wish to be barred from using it's services if they decided to be an arse about it. 

 

FCE on the other hand, I may well pursue. 

 

Could you point me in the direction of some more information regarding illiegally processing personal information so I can see what my footing is in this respect.

 

Thank you to everyone that has contributed here.

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