The Prankster has been helping several motorists who have been issued court papers by Civil Enforcement Limited for parking events on Co-op land. The claims follow a standard template and are all for £130.
The interesting thing about this is that in each case Civil Enforcement Limited previously wrote to the defendant stating that of the £130 owed, £113.75 had been assigned to another company, DEAL Ltd, and that they would therefore 'no longer be involved in this part of the debt'.
The remaining £16.25 is retained in case it 'may fall due to The co-operative'. However, according to on-line reports, CEL have been terminated by the Co-op and have retaliated by taking action against large numbers of motorists with historic tickets. The Co-op have been paying these tickets off on behalf of motorists. It seems unlikely that the Co-op would inform CEL that the £16.25 is due knowing that they would then pay £130 back to CEL.
It seems therefore that these claims are on very shaky ground. So shaky, in fact, that CEL never appear to turn up in court to try and justify them.
Tomorrow, the 10 September, Civil Enforcement Ltd have no fewer than 5 scheduled hearings, at Bedford, Bromley, Canterbury and two at Nottingham. As CEL are essentially a one-man band it seems unlikely they will turn up at all of them, if indeed they turn up at any of them.
The Prankster therefore advises any motorists tomorrow to ask for their full costs if CEL do not turn up. The court can allow this in the case of unreasonable behaviour; pursuing a charge with no merit through the court, then failing to turn up, and having no possible prospect of turning up unless you clone yourself 4 times is certainly capable of being held to be unreasonable by the judge.
Take along a schedule of costs showing the time spent preparing for the case, billed at your usual hourly rate, any expenses, travel at 45p a mile and lost wages as a result of the hearing.
If CEL do bother to turn up, then as well as the above shenanigans you should point out that as CEL are claiming against the keeper of the vehicle then the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 sch 4 limits the amount claimable from the keeper to the amount on the parking ticket, which is £100 not £130.
You should also point out that as CEL seem to have no idea whether the amount is a contractual charge, breach of contract or trespass, then perhaps they should refrain from issuing claims until they exactly what it is they are claiming for.
The Parking Prankster