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Diamond Dog

Summoned to Court for not having a valid bus ticket - can I settle?

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Dear all,

 

I went over numerous threads here concerning fare evasion and couldn't find the answer to my question so opening a new thread, apologies if this has been asked before. 

 

I've been caught on a London bus without a valid ticket.

A simple honest mistake of forgetting my wallet at home.

 

I would have normally gotten off the bus if it wouldn't have been for my 7 year old daughter who was with me and was very tired.

We intended to travel two stops only I decided to stay on - big mistake! 

 

I was approached by a ticket inspector and apologised for not having a ticket and gave him my details.

I wasn't offered an fine on the spot

- he only said that I will be reported to which I have replied OK and asked his permission to get off the bus as we have reached our destination.

 

Next thing I know, I receive a summon to court asking me to plead guilty/not guilty and pay a £225 fine.

It is my first offence.

 

Needless to say, I was horrified and worried.

I'm also broke which doesn't help either...

 

My question

- is it possible at this point to write to someone (and to whom exactly) to ask to be settled out of court?

Do I need a solicitor for that? 

 

From reading previous threads I understand that if you plead guilty and pay the fine you get a criminal record.

 

Are there any other options at his point?

 

Many thanks in advance for your advice. 

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Hello and welcome to CAG.

 

To answer your questions, if you want to settle out of court, you would normally write to the prosecutions department at TfL and the person dealing with your case. Did you have a letter from them asking for your version of events before you got the court summons?

 

You can also speak to the prosecutor on the day of your case and ask if they will allow you to settle.

 

See what other people think, but I don't think there is any point in getting a lawyer on board. We've always said with transport cases that they don't necessarily understand the system and you'll end up paying for their learning curve.

 

Best, HB

 

 


Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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if you wish scan up their letter to PDF please

read upload


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Thank you honeybee!

 

I would follow your advice and write to the prosecution department at TFL. 

 

I did not get a letter from them asking me for my version of events before receiving the court summons.

 

To be honest, the idea of going to court and speak to the prosecutor is making me nauseous...but will do it if necessary

 

Thanks!

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I'm not sure how you're going to communicate with TfL if you don't have their case number. Is there any helpful information on the summons?

 

Of course if you do what dx suggests, minus your personal information, we should be able to advise.

 

HB


Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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I do have a TFL case number. I will scan and upload - thank you!

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Don't tell us the case number! It's good that you have one though.

 

HB


Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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My sense is that maybe there was a stage missed here in dealing with my claim.

 

I never had any letters about this before getting the Single Justice Procedure Notice, so it went straight to an escalated situation where the fine is very high.

 

I was never contacted to ask about explaining my side of the story or given the chance to file any kind of appeal.

 

It strikes me as unlikely that they would go straight to the point of charging 225£ for a single violation as most people can simply not pay this

And it seems like an unlikely policy for them to start out so aggressively.

 

I am thinking that if they failed to give me a chance to file an appeal, then I have a good point to argue. That is if there is a specific step they failed to take before this.

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Then if you have a contact number, it might be worth ringing TfL to find out if a stage was missed.

 

HB


Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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Here's the summon I received. There are a few more pages after asking for my income details etc. 

Binder2.pdf

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Update

- I called TFL and told them I never received any letter beforehand the summon.

 

They said that they did send one but that in any case it wouldn't have changed anything i.e. the letter only indicates the offence and doesn't allow you to tell your side of the story.

 

They also said that they don't always issue a fine on the spot (that it's usually offered to people under 18 or over 60)

 

- which I know for a fact isn't true (I know several people who have been fined with a £20-£80 fine on the spot for not having a valid ticket). 

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